Here are some additional thoughts from yesterday’s message:
This week I shared a message from John 13:34-35. In this passage Jesus gives us a new command to love one another, as He had loved us. If you missed it, you can get the full service video on our media page.
In this message I talked about a story from my childhood. I talked about a church that I was in once where some of the people didn’t treat me very well, because I wasn’t wearing the right clothes. I talked about their lack of concern over whether I was “saved” or not. Later it occurred to me that some people might not know exactly what I meant when I said “saved”.
A familiar term, but slightly different meaning
We are all familiar with the term “saved”. We can freely talk about medical personnel saving a family member from some medical problem. We can talk about emergency personnel saving us after an accident. We can talk about saving money. Heck, dieters can be heard talked about “saving” calories for that sweet treat they are looking for later. When I spoke of being “saved”, it was similar to this, but also a little different.
Saved from something
Being saved often means being saved from something. That is a major part of what Christians mean when they talk about being saved. You see, when God created everything it was perfect. However, that didn’t last. Adam and Eve, the first people God created, had only one rule. They broke this one rule and as a result what the Bible calls “sin” entered the world.
What is “sin”
It would be great if the Bible gave a clear, easy to understand definition of what sin is. Sadly, it does not. However, it does teach us that sin is anything that falls short of God’s glory. Ok, I know that’s king of out there too. How about this: God is perfect and anything that doesn’t measure up to THAT standard is considered sin. WOW! So, basically, I have to be perfect to make God happy? Well, not exactly. Keep reading.
Who has sinned?
Paul wrote in Romans 3:23 “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Well, I guess this means that we ALL have sinned. According to this, we ALL fall short of the perfection of God. Congratulations, you are not perfect.
Many people inside the church like to pretend that they are perfect. They like to pretend that the don’t sin. Some even like to act as if they never have. Clearly Paul says something different. We ALL have sinned, and that’s ok. (Like I said, keep reading.)
Many outside the church also like to pretend that they have not sinned. They think that since they are a “good person”, then they are good to go. Well, again, Paul says that we have all sinned. This includes you… and me.
Saved from what?
Being “saved” is more than simply being saved from sin. You see Paul also wrote, “For the wages of sin is death…” THAT is what we are saved from. This is not to say that our physical body is not, someday, going to die. However, the Bible teaches that, after our physical body dies that our spirit will exist for eternity. Those that are saved, will go on living forever in a heaven, while those that are not will go on forever dying in a place called hell.
It’s more than that
Salvation, being saved, is more than simply a get out of hell free card. You see, within what Christians call “the gospel” is also the opportunity to be saved from things while still in this life. There is the power, within the gospel and through Jesus, to be saved from things like pornography, drug and alcohol abuse, anger, and many more. This is why the gospel is called “the good news”. I’ll share a post specifically about that soon.
So, what do I mean when I say “saved”
Well, I certainly don’t mean that I have been made perfect. I certainly don’t mean that I never sinned, or that I no longer sin. However, I have been saved from the eternal consequences of sin. Through Jesus, I have been forgiven of my sins. I can also say that I have been “saved” from many of the things that people struggle with today. Again, I am not perfect. But, there are some things that God has saved me from, even in this life.
Bad news, good news for me… AND YOU
The bad news is that we have all sinned and we all fall short of God’s perfect standard. However, the good news is that, through Jesus, we can be forgiven from our sin. If you want to know more about how you can be saved, please use the contact link at the top of the page. That sends a message directly to me. I’d love to talk with you some more about this.