There are 33 works of God which together comprise the salvation of a soul. Please keep in mind that these are all acts of Divine Grace and grounded on the merit of Christ. We cannot earn them and there is no set of rules we can keep to acquire them. They are all part of the gift of God that we call salvation.

1. IN THE ETERNAL PLAN OF GOD


We are FOREKNOWN.

The doctrine of divine foreknowledge is restricted in that it is outside the range of things which God causes to come to pass. Closely related to foreknowledge is foreordination:

Acts 2:23 This man was handed over to you by Godís set purpose and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross. (NIV)

1 Peter 1:2 who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and sprinkling by his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance. (NIV)

1 Peter 1:20 He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake. (NIV)

We are PREDESTINATED.

As used in the New Testament this great doctrinal word declares that God determines beforehand that which comes to pass. In its New Testament use it refers only to that which God has predetermined for His elect.
Romans 8:29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. (NIV)

Acts 2:23 This man was handed over to you by Godís set purpose and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross. (NIV)

1 Peter 1:2 who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and sprinkling by his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance. (NIV)

It is, therefore, Godís message to every believer that he has been both foreknown in predestination and predestinated through foreknowledge to the unending realization of all of Godís riches of Grace.

We are ELECT OF GOD.

The term elect, as related to Christians, is distinctive in that it designates those who are predestinated, but with only an implication relative to destiny. They are the elect in the present age and will manifest the grace of God in future ages:

1 Thessalonians 1:4 For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you, (NIV)

1 Peter 1:2 who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and sprinkling by his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance. (NIV)

Romans 8:33 Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. (NIV)
Colossians 3:12 Therefore, as Godís chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. (NIV)

Titus 1:1 Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ for the faith of Godís elect and the knowledge of the truth that leads to godlinessó(NIV)

A.

We are CHOSEN.


The term chosen, when referring to that which God has wrought in behalf of the saved, emphasizes the peculiar act of God which separates unto Himself His elect who are both foreknown and predestinated. The Christian bears the high distinction that he has been chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world:
Ephesians 1:4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love (NIV)

B.

We are CALLED.


As far as New Testament terms have been traced, the words predestination, elect, and chosen are not used of those whom God has selected for salvation when still in their unregenerate state. The word called, however, may include in the breadth of its meaning those who, at a given time, are unregenerate but who in the divine purpose are to become regenerate. The angels are not only ministering spirits in behalf of those who are now saved, but of them also who shall be heirs of salvation:

Hebrews 1:14 Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation? (NIV)
1 Thessalonians 5:24 The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it. (NIV)
Reference in all this discussion is to an effectual call, such as is indicated in Romans 8:30:
Romans 8:30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified. (NIV)
implying that God not only gives an invitation, but inclines the heart to glad acceptance of it.
How great, then, is this characterizing work of distinctive position! and how immeasurable the opulence of the one who is included in the eternal purpose of God!

2. We are REDEEMED.

Redemption, as a doctrine and as it obtains in the present age, is subject to a threefold classification:

A. It is universal in character in the sense that it includes the whole world and provides a sufficient ground of righteousness upon which God may save those who are lost.

B. It is specific when contemplated as the position into which the saved one has been brought. He is purchased out of the bond slave market and set free with that liberty which is the rightful portion of the sons of God:

Galatians 5:1 It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. (NIV)

It is not a position to be sought or secured by faithfulness; it is that which God has performed in behalf of every regenerate person. The exercise of divine grace - even to the finality of justification - is said to be:

Romans 3:24 and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. (NIV)

It is in connection with redemption that the believer has ďforgiveness of sins,Ē and this is ďaccording to,Ē and a part of, ďthe riches of his graceĒ:

Ephesians 1:7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of Godís grace (NIV)
C. There is yet a redemption of the body of the believer and for that redemption the Christian is waiting:

Romans 8:23 Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. (NIV)

The thought here, as in all the riches of grace, is that redemption is a position of transforming reality and is the possession of all who are saved.

3. We are RECONCILED.

A special reconciliation is in view, one which reaches far beyond that aspect of it which contemplates the whole world. It is the reconciliation of the believer to God as stated here:

2 Corinthians 5:20 We are therefore Christís ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christís behalf: Be reconciled to God. (NIV)

We can see a difference between the reconciliation of the world:

2 Corinthians 5:19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting menís sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. (NIV)

and the reconciliation of the individual:

2 Corinthians 5:20 We are therefore Christís ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christís behalf: Be reconciled to God. (NIV)

2 Corinthians 5:21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. (NIV)

The reconciliation of the world does not obviate the reconciliation of the individual. The latter is that form of reconciliation which is applied to the believerís heart and results in a perfect and unending peace between God and the reconciled believer. We are perfectly reconciled to God on the ground of the merit of Christ.

4. We are related to God through PROPITIATION.

1 John 2:2 He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world. (NIV)

1 John 2:2 And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world. (NKJ)

The ever recurring need of adjustment between the Christian and his Father is possible on the ground of the truth that the Father is propitious. To be in that relation to God in which He is propitious toward the specific sins of the child of God is a benefit of infinite grace.

5. We are FORGIVEN ALL TRESPASSES.

Colossians 2:13 When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, (NIV)

This covers all trespasses, past, present, and future.

Ephesians 1:7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of Godís grace (NIV)

Ephesians 4:32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. (NIV)

Colossians 1:14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. (NIV)

Colossians 3:13 Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. (NIV)

In no other way than to be wholly absolved before God, could a Christian be on an abiding peace footint with God or could he be, as he is, justified forever.

Keep in mind that all sin of this age was still in the future when Christ died. The power of sin to condemn is disannulled forever.

Romans 8:33-34 33 Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. 34 Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who diedómore than that, who was raised to lifeóis at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. (NIV)

This chapter of Romans, chapter 8, which begins with ďno condemnationĒ ends with ďno separationĒ; but such complete forgiveness is possible only on the ground of Christís work in bearing sin and in releasing His merit to those who are saved through His mediation and are in Him.

At this point we need to note the distinction between this abiding judicial forgiveness and the often repeated forgiveness within the family of God. The seeming paradox that one is forgiven and yet must be forgiven, is explained on the ground of the truth that there are two wholly and unrelated spheres of relationship between the believer and God. Regarding his standing, which like his sonship is immutable since it is secured by his place in Christ, he is not subject to condemnation and will never be unjustified or separated from God. Regarding his state, which like the daily conduct of a son is mutable (changeable) and is wholly within the family relationship, he must be both forgiven and cleansed:

1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. (NIV)

Family fellowship Explained: You are your fatherís son and even if your father passed away he would still be your father. If you were to pass away you would still be your fatherís son. If you live in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and your brother lives in New York City, New York he is still your brother. While living together with your mother you have a disagreement with her and the two of you stop talking to each other until the matter is resolved but this does not mean that she stopped being your mother. You could do something so bad that no one in your family will have anything to do with you until you change (repent). The lesson in all of this is that you may be out of fellowship with your family members but you are not out of the family.

None of the believerís positions before God, when rightly apprehended, is more a blessing to the heart than the fact that all condemnation is removed forever, God for Christís sake having forgiven all trespasses.

6. VITALLY CONJOINED TO CHRIST FOR THE JUDGMENT OF THE OLD MAN ďUNTO A NEW WALKĒ

The essential doctrine of union with Christ appears as the basis of many of these riches of divine grace. In the present aspect of truth, only that which has to do with the death of Christ unto the sin nature is in view, and the central passage which declares this truth is:

Romans 6:1-10 1 What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? 2 By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? 3 Or donít you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. 5 If we have been united with him like this in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection. 6 For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sinó 7 because anyone who has died has been freed from sin. 8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9 For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him.
10 The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God.

This important Scripture will be referenced again and it will always be pointed out that it refers neither to self-judgment by self-crucifixion nor to a mode of ritual baptism. If the passage does not contemplate more than these interpretations imply, one of the most vital truths of the New Testament is deprived of its most important affirmation.

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