How Are We Saved?

First, let’s define a few terms:

  • A Work: Our attempt to draw near to God
  • An Act of Faith: Our attempt to honor God
  • Grace: God’s Riches At  Christ’s Expense (or, God’s unmerited favor)
 
There are those who teach that salvation is achieved through works and others hold that acting upon faith is the only way that salvation is assured. Thus, a clear distinction between ‘works‘ and ‘acts of faith‘ is critical.
 

What does the Bible say?

Primary Passages: Acts 15:11Ephesians 2:4-6,8-10; 2 Timothy 1:9

Additional Passages:  Romans 3:22-24; Romans 5:1,17

In other words, there is nothing we can do to earn or deserve salvation or the forgiveness of God. Works achieve nothing, and only through God’s grace can we be forgiven and saved! In fact, any “goodness” we are able to achieve is, in God’s eyes, “filthy rags” (Isaiah 64:6)

With that in mind, let us now consider the original question: “How are we saved?

Illustration: Picture your favorite pie, cut into six equal pieces…
  • If they are truly equal, no piece is larger or smaller than the others.
  • If they are truly equal, no piece tastes better or worse than the others.
  • If they are truly equal, no piece is desired more than or less than the others.

In regards to our salvation, we have a “pie” with six equal pieces (or six acts/steps of faith), and none are to be considered more or less important than any other.

These steps of faith are:

  • Belief in Jesus
  • Confession (agree with God)
  • Repentance (turn around 180 degrees)
  • Accepting Jesus as Lord and Master
  • Baptism (by immersion)
  • Obedience (living a Godly life)

 

Now let’s consider these steps of faith in the light of Scripture:
1. Belief in Jesus
      2. Confession: To agree with God
      3. Repent: Turn around 180 degrees
      4. Accepting Jesus as Lord and Master
      5. Baptism: “To dip, submerge, immerse”
      Examples of Baptism:

       

      When discussing baptism, a common question is, “Do you have to be baptized to be a Christian and/or to be saved?” In answer to that question, we believe God is the only One with the authority and power to make that judgment. However, once a person chooses to say “yes” to Jesus as their Savior AND Lord, they are committing themselves to obeying Christ’s commands… and baptism is one of those commands. So, if for some reason, a person refuses to be obedient in baptism, it is apparent that they have not yet understood the concept of Jesus being Lord and Master.
       
      6. Obedience