Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
July 10, 1958

Things By Which Man Is Saved

Judson Woodbridge, Mulvane, Kansas

One of the age old reasons for failure to understand the Bible is man's inclination to take one verse, or two, or three, and ignore other teachings on the same subject. If we are to know God's will, we must take ALL he says on any subject. Consider, for example, the matter of salvation:

1. We are saved by faith. "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and they house." (Acts 16:31.)

2. We are saved by repentance. "For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation." (II Cor. 7:10.)

3. We are saved by confession. "For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. (Rom. 10:10.)

4. We are saved by baptism. "The like figure whereunto baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ." (I Peter 3:21.)

5. We are saved by blood. "Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received from your fathers; but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot." (I Peter 1:1819.)

6. We are saved by grace. "For by grace are ye saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God; not of works, lest any man should boast." (Eph. 2:8,9.)

7. We are saved by mercy. "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." (Titus 3:5.)

8. We are saved by work. "Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling." (Phil. 2:12.)

9. We are saved by love. "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." (Jno. 3:16.) "If ye love me, keep my commandments.' (John 14:15.) "For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision; but faith working through love." (Gal. 5:6.)

10. We are saved by hope. "And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure." (I John 3:3.) "For we are saved by hope; but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for what we see not, then do we with patience wait for him." (Rom. 9:24-25.)We are saved by truth.

11. "And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free' (John 8:32.)

12. We are saved by obedience "And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him" (Heb. 5:9.)

In this list you see God's love, mercy, grace, Son, truth, and Christ's blood. Then you see man's obedience, work, faith, hope, love, repentance, confession, and baptism. These acts of man unite him with God's mercy, grace, and love. This is the way he is saved by the blood of Christ.

Looking at the above passages, who wants to say salvation is by any one thing alone? How can it be said that it is by "faith only"? What part of the list would you dare to leave out?

Then again, should there be any difficulty in deciding what works save, and the works that do not? The works of man (which he originates) and the works of the law of Moses would allow for boasting, thus setting aside the grace of God; but "faith working through love," which is obeying God's commandments (I Cor. 7:19) is working out "your own salvation with fear and trembling." This is the life that brings us the Lord's grace and mercy. Obey and salvation is given. This salvation is a gift, and not something earned. But never be deceived into thinking that obedience is not necessary.