The 3 Steps In Salvation

Posted on June 21, 2019

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The 3 Steps In Salvation

by Pastor Andrew Morgridge

The Hebrew and Greek words for salvation imply the idea of deliverance, safety, preservation, healing and soundness. According to Scoffield, “Salvation is the great inclusive word of the gospel gathering unto itself all the redemptive acts and process: as justification, redemption, grace, propitiation, impartation, forgiveness, sanctification and glorification.

It starts with redemption, then sanctification and glorification.

Redemption: The believer has been saved from the guilt and penalty of sin. “And he said to the woman, Thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace.” Luke 7:50

For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.” (1 Cor. 1:18)

2 Cor. 2:15 Eph. 2:5-8; 2 Tim. 1:9

This salvation is the common type of salvation – the crusade ground, Church altar call presentation of grace. But there is more to salvation: there is another salvation. Here the believer is being saved from the habit and dominion of sin – what can be called soul cleansing or sanctification.  The Greek word for sanctification is from Hagiazo which means to withdraw from fellowshipping with the world by first gaining fellowship with God. Hagion is holy. And is used of those structures set apart for God. Collectively sanctification means “to be separated unto God and cleansed for service; prepared to be used as the owner wills.”

There is the Scripture in 2 Timothy 2:20-21 which says “But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master’s use, and prepared unto every good work.”  Here, the burden of cleansing oneself is left to the Christian – learning and applying truth to one’s life as one learns about the evil in sin and henceforth shuns it – that is the “flee fornication” in verse 22: Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart.”

This is the aspect of salvation that has to do with learning; something we don’t enjoy doing.  David said in Psalm 119:11 “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.” The only way it could enter his heart was to have studied. In the New Testament Jesus also referred to this in relation to salvation. He said, Matthew 11:28-29 “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.”

And in the book of Titus, Paul again re-affirms the words of Jesus that learning about God must follow the salvation experience. He said in Titus 2:11-14 “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; ……

It is only when one knows the word of God that one can choose to do right – righteousness: right standing with God because one is applying His word to one’s daily living (Romans 6:14; Philippians 1:19; Phil. 2:12-13; 2 Thess. 2:13; Romans 8:2; Gal. 2:19, 20; 2 Cor. 3:18).

The third usage of the word salvation implies the believer is to be saved only after conforming to the image of Christ.

Romans 13:2 says “Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.” What is damnation? It’s hell. He says if you don’t receive the teaching, cleansing part of the work of salvation, according to this Scripture in Roman 13:2 the person is fit for damnation. This is serious.

This seriousness was also conveyed to Christians who were leaving the faith in Hebrews 10:23-37 “Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised)….. have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.

What is the promise? It is eternal life in heaven. If you read that Scripture from commentaries: Here was a set of people who were hot for the Lord, suddenly they changed, because of affliction (persecution). He said, “You endured affliction, when they threw away your property, when they burnt your houses, you did not mind but because you were now weighed down you began to give up. The work of enlightenment, the second part of salvation that was supposed to have built faith and acceptance of the will of God in your life was now missing; but having cast away your confidence God will not give you the promise.”

The promise that everybody that is a Christian has is translation. The Scripture in Titus 2:11-12 says, ….looking for that blessed hope, the appearing of our great God and our Saviour: that’s the Promise. It’s salvation that puts in you a desire for heaven. But it starts with receiving the grace for salvation, followed by the learning to live right and then causing something in you to begin to desire, look for heaven. If getting to heaven is not uppermost in your mind, it is doubtful if you received (accepted) the grace for salvation (got born again) in the first instance; because all that are born again genuinely will follow the steps mentioned in Titus 2:11-14. Other Scriptures confirm this: Heb. 9:28 says, So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation. (2Tim. 4:6-8)

By faith Abraham, also looked for God. (Heb. 11:8-16).

Salvation doesn’t stop with being born-again; it only gives you an environment to thrive. The second part of salvation is supposed to do the cleansing work in your life and bring you to maturity while the third part of it speaks about the saving that is ahead when the body is changed to conform to that of Christ. This can only happen during Rapture. It is still Salvation. Peter says we look for the salvation that is to appear at the day of redemption (1 Pet. 1:3-5). So there is still another salvation that is ahead of you. We read from Philippians 1:19 where Paul said, “this will be for my salvation.” So this word Salvation is continuous. It doesn’t’ stop at being born again.

The same three steps are again seen here in I Peter 1:3-5 “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.”. Blessed be God our Father who has given us grace to be born again. Born again for what? There is a lively hope. I’m born again because I want to go to heaven. That is the Promise that he told the Hebrews that they would lose, that is the damnation mentioned in Romans 13:2 which is awaiting all those who will not accept the things cleansing, teaching is supposed to do. This is the lively hope that is possible because He resurrected from the dead, reserved for you in heaven the salvation to be revealed at the last time.

The Place of Works

The divine order in salvation is this. Salvation is by grace through faith – being born again.  Thereafter what becomes of the grace you just received is entirely up to you.  You must learn and as you learn you must apply the knowledge to your daily living. 

Thus far we have seen that knowledge points you to the fact that you must abstain from sin and that you endure all afflictions as you await the rapture. But beyond this, attention must be drawn to the place of works as you await the third salvation – rapture.  God places a very high premium on good works. According to Him that is the main reason for our existence: why He gave us grace to be born again: For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:10)

Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. Titus 2:14

Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men.” Titus 3:5-8

And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever. Daniel 12:3

So if you say it’s by grace and you sit down somewhere, with folded hands doing nothing note that the Scriptures shown above say there is eternal damnation waiting for someone who has not accepted teachings unto service. The teachings teach you to be zealous of good works. You want to go to heaven and think works don’t matter? You want to shine when you get to heaven? It says you have to turn people to righteousness.

For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have shewed toward his name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister. Hebrews 6:10

Is that works or not? (in the above mentioned Scripture). And yet some people say, “I don’t need works, all I need is grace.” What does He will not forget what you’ve done mean? It means He will reward you physically on earth and in heaven: The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise. Behold, the righteous shall be recompensed in the earth: much more the wicked and the sinner. Prov. 11:30-31

Matthew 25:31-46 again highlights the importance of works. Jesus said, you gave me food when I was hungry, you gave me water when I was thirsty. I was a stranger and you took Me in. You saw Me naked and clothed Me. I was sick and in prison and you visited Me. These are our works and because of that He said, “Enter into what has been prepared for you.” Jesus told the wicked, “You gave me no food when I was hungry, you gave me no water when I was thirsty. I was a stranger and you did not take Me in. You saw Me naked and did not clothe Me. I was sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.” These works were done after receiving salvation; for these Jesus says they merited heaven.

Then in Matthew 25:41-46 we see the flip side of the coin. Because they did the opposite of what the first set of people did, they ended up in hell – with Satan; yet they were all virgins: all talented, all gifted. Jesus emphasizing “with satan” (vs 41) is saying if you receive salvation and still live like satan you will stay with him forever.  In Ezekiel 28:3 Satan is described as “wiser than Daniel” so he was learned; in fact, very learned. He knew a lot about the nature of God, but simply chose to displease God. Of course it earned him a ticket to hell; that horrible place the Lord warns learned men and unbelievers alike to avoid.

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