Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Salvation Planned, Accomplished and Applied

1 Peter 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead

Whenever people commonly talk about salvation, they speak of God's work of salvation in one of three ways: Salvation Planned, Salvation Accomplished and Salvation Applied.  This three-fold way of describing salvation is intentional, since what is being described points to the activity of the Trinity as the source of salvation.  Just as God is One God identified as Father, Son and Holy Spirit, salvation is one work that has three distinct branches. 

God the Father Planned salvation from beginning to end. (Romans 11:33-36) 

Christ of course, being Divine, also took upon Himself a human nature.  As God He is qualified to be the Savior, and as perfect man He could die, be buried, rise from the dead and ascend to the Father's right hand. (1 Timothy 3:15-16)  The Four Gospels detail the event of Christ's work of salvation, with the Acts and New Testament letters unfolding what Christ accomplished.  

When we come to the application of salvation, we are of course referring to the work of God the Holy Spirit.  It is He who takes what was planned by the Father and accomplished by the Son and applies it to those whom are loved by the Father and called by His grace through faith to believe on Christ. (Ephesians 1:13-14)  It is at saving faith that we begin to discuss the actual application of Christ's accomplishment.  

Salvation is truly from God, through God and to God.  It is not three salvations but one salvation.  God is not three gods but One God who is three persons.  As Romans 11:36 summarizes - all things are from Him, through Him and to Him.  This includes salvation - From God the Father, accomplished through God the Son and applied to the glory of God by the Holy Spirit to all who believe.   

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