Salvation is God's work of rescuing a person from eternal doom and in exchange giving eternal life. It is wholly and completely a free work of God by grace on the basis of the redemptive work of Christ and the merit of His sacrificial death on the cross, and not on the basis of any human merit or works. Salvation is the prerequisite to obeying God, it is not the goal of obedience to God.
Psalm 119:146; John 1:12; Acts 4:12; Romans 3:21-26; Ephesians 1:7, 2:1-10; Titus 3:5-8; Hebrews 2:10, 5:9; 1 Peter 1:18-19
God offers redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. Acts 3:19–21; Romans 10:9–10; 1 Corinthians 6:9–11.
Election is the act of God by which, before the foundation of the world, He chose in Christ those whom He graciously regenerates, saves, and sanctifies. Romans 8:28-30; Ephesians 1:4-11; 2 Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Timothy 2:10; 1 Peter 1:1-2
Sovereign election does not contradict or negate the responsibility of individuals to repent and put their faith in Christ as Savior and Lord. Ezekiel 18:23, 32, 33:11; John 3:18-19, 36, 5:40; Romans 9:22-23; 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12; Revelation 22:17
Nevertheless, sovereign grace includes both the means of receiving the gift of salvation as well as the gift itself. The result being that all whom the Father calls to Himself will come in faith and all who come in faith the Father will receive. Sovereign election will result in what God determines; the elect cannot resist God's grace. John 6:37-40, 44; Acts 13:48
The purpose of election is to glorify God and to actually save the elect, not to merely make salvation possible. The unmerited favor that God grants to totally depraved sinners is not related to any initiative of their own part, nor to God's anticipation of what they might do by their own will, but is solely of His sovereign grace and mercy. Salvation is a gift from God, not God's confirmation of a person's decision. A person's belief is their confirmation of God's gift. Romans 8:29; Ephesians 1:4-7, 11-12; 2 Thessalonians 2:13-14; Titus 3:4-7;
1 Peter 1:2, 2:9
Election is not merely based on abstract sovereignty. God is truly sovereign but He exercises this sovereignty in harmony with His other attributes such as His omniscience, justice, holiness, wisdom, grace, mercy, and love. God's sovereignty always functions within His will in a manner totally consistent with His character as revealed in the life of our Lord Jesus Christ. God's election is motivated by love and mercy and is not cruel. Matthew 11:25-28; Romans 9:11-23; 2 Timothy 1:9
Regeneration is exclusively a work of God by which the elect partake of the divine nature. It is the initial and instantaneous supernatural work of the Holy Spirit in which God imparts new life. Regeneration is divine life because it is from God, but it is not divine in the sense that we become gods ourselves. John 1:13, 3:3-8, 5:24; Romans 1:16; Colossians 1:21, 2:13; Titus 3:5; 2 Peter 1:4
Fruits of repentance, as demonstrated in righteous attitudes and conduct manifest genuine regeneration. Good works are its proper evidence and fruit. This fruit will be experienced and manifested to the extent that the believer submits to the control of the Holy Spirit in his life through obedience to the Word of God. This obedience causes the believer to be increasingly conformed to the image of our Lord Jesus Christ. Such conformity is climaxed in the believer's glorification at Christ's coming. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20; 2 Corinthians 3:18; Ephesians 2:1-10, 5:17-21; Philippians 2:12b; Colossians 3:16; 2 Peter 1:4-10; 1 John 3:2-3
Jesus Christ died to satisfy the justice of God's nature. He rendered satisfaction to the Father so that we might be spared the just deserts of our sins. Jesus Christ atoned for sin by sacrificing Himself in the place of the offending sinner. Thus, He turned away the Father's wrath and reconciled believing sinners to the Father. Jesus' death on the cross is the one and only atonement that is acceptable to God. Leviticus 17:11; Mark 10:45; Romans 5:6-10, 6:10; 1 Peter 2:24, 3:18; 1 John 4:10
D. Sacrifice & Vicarious Substitution
By offering Himself as a sacrifice in our place, by substituting Himself for us, Jesus actually bore the punishment which should have been ours. To pay the penalty of death that all people deserve because of their sins, Christ died as a sacrifice for our sin in our place. He is our substitute, the One who suffered and died instead of we who are guilty. He has paid the price (His life) for our sin. Isaiah 53; Romans 6:23; 1 Corinthians 5:7; Hebrews 9:26, 10:12
Christ's death appeases God's wrath against sin and turns it away from those whom He saves by grace. Christ's sacrifice appeases a God who hates and opposes sin and who is going to destroy it and its agents. Romans 1:18, 2:4-13, 3:25, 5:8-9, 9:22-23; Ephesians 2:3-5, 5:5-6; 1 Thessalonians 1:10, 5:9; Hebrews 2:17; 1 John 2:2, 4:10
Christ bore not only our sins, but also the penalty for our sins as well when He died on the cross. Christ suffered in our place for our sins. Romans 3:23-25
The work of Christ on the cross paid in full the price of releasing sinners from the bondage and judgment of sin and bringing them into a right relationship with God. Jesus Christ Himself is paid as a ransom for the price of human sin that is required by the outraged holiness of God. There is no other price to be paid than the death of the Lord Jesus Christ. As a result, the offender is released from bondage to sin and liberated to live a life pleasing to God. Galatians 3:13, 4:4-5; Ephesians 1:7; Titus 2:13-14
Justification before God is an act of God by which He declares righteous those who He has made righteous by grace through faith in Christ. This righteousness is apart from any virtue or work of man and involves the imputation of our sins to Christ and the imputation of Christ's righteousness to us. Being righteous before God is the condition of the believer. Being justified is God's declaration about the righteous believer. By this means God is enabled to "be just, and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus (Romans 3:26)." Isaiah 55:6-7; Luke 13:3; Acts 2:38, 11:18; Romans 2:4, (ch. 3-5) 3:20-30, 4:6, 5:1, 8:33, 10:9-10; 1 Corinthians 1:30; 2 Corinthians 5:21, 7:10; Colossians 2:14, 1 Peter 2:24
The perfect righteousness of Christ is credited to the believing sinner as a result of being justified. Romans 3:24, 5:9 & 19, 8:1, 10:4; 1 Corinthians 1:30; Colossians 2:14
The work of Christ on the cross completely changes believing sinners personally and in their relationship to God by removing all grounds for their condemnation. As a result, redeemed and justified individuals are reconciled to God and now live in a right relationship with Him.
Romans 5:10; 2 Corinthians 5:19; Galatians 2:20
K. Faith and Repentance
Faith and repentance are two distinct, yet inextricable and necessary responses of man to God’s saving accomplishments in His Son as revealed in Scripture and in order for sinful man to partake and benefit from God’s saving work in Christ. Faith involves acknowledging the truthfulness of and personally appropriating all that God has revealed in Scripture, particularly concerning Himself, man, Christ, and redemption. Repentance is the act of turning from sin to Christ. It is, by faith, exchanging one’s own life to gain life in Christ. Repentance involves both the initial act of faith whereby the sinner submits to the Lordship of Christ and an ongoing process in a believer’s life as they turn from sin to walk in obedience. Matt. 16:24–26; 19:16–23; Luke 9:23; John 3:16–21, 36; Heb. 11:1–6; 1 John 2:3–5; 3:1–10.
Through the death of Christ believing sinners have their transgressions put away from them forever. The forgiveness of God is complete and sufficient for all sin. Matthew 26:27-28; Ephesians 1:7; Colossians 1:13-14; Hebrews 9:22 & 10:17
Every believer has been sanctified (set apart) unto God by justification and is therefore declared to be holy and is therefore identified as a saint. This sanctification is positional, instantaneous, and has to do with a believers standing before God, not his present walk or condition and should not be confused with progressive sanctification. Acts 20:32; 1 Corinthians 1:2 & 30, 6:11; 2 Thessalonians 2:13; Hebrews 2:11, 3:1, 10:10, 14, 13:12; 1 Peter 1:2
There is also, by the continuing work of the Holy Spirit, progressive sanctification by which the current state of the believer is brought closer to his eternal standing which he enjoys positionaly through justification. Through obedience to the Word of God and the empowering of the Holy Spirit, the believer is able to live a life of increasing holiness in conformity to the will of God, progressively becoming more and more like our Lord Jesus Christ. John 17:17, 19; Romans 6:1-22; 2 Corinthians 3:18; 1 Thessalonians 4:3-4, 5:23
In this respect every saved person is in a daily conflict. The new creation in Christ is doing battle against sinful thought patterns, the flesh, this world system and evil spiritual powers, but adequate provision is made for victory in every situation through the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit. The struggle nevertheless stays with the believer all through this earthly life and is only completely ended in physical death or when Christ returns. All claims to the eradication of sin in this life are unscriptural. Eradication of sin is not possible, but that is the standard all believers are called to and the Holy Spirit does provide for victory over sin. 1 Corinthians 10:13; Galatians 5:16-25; Ephesians 4:22-24; Philippians 3:12; Colossians 3:9-10; 1 Peter 1:14-16; 1 John 3:5-9
Once saved, all the redeemed are kept by God's power and are thus secure in Christ forever. John 5:24, 6:37-50, 10:27-30; Romans 5:9-10, 8:1, 31-39; 1 Corinthians 1:4-8; Ephesians 4:30; Titus 2:11-14; Hebrews 7:25, 13:5; 1 Peter 1:5; Jude 24
Believers, from the moment of their salvation, can rejoice in the assurance of their salvation. However, God's Word clearly forbids the use of Christian liberty as an occasion for sinful living. Romans 6:15-22, 13:11-14; Galatians 5:13, 25-26; Titus 2:11-14; 1 Peter 1:5