What is Salvation?
In Christianity, salvation (also called deliverance or redemption) is the "saving of human beings from sin and its consequences, which include death and separation from God" by Christ's death and resurrection, and the justification following this salvation.
Salvation means being rescued by God from the consequences of sin. The creation account in the book of Genesis, in the Bible, shows God walking with man in close relationship with him. This all ended when men defied God and chose to obey an enemy bent on killing, stealing & destroying God's creation. This defiance introduced humanity and all of creation to sin & death, creating distance between God and men.
The book of Romans says ‘the wages of sin is death…’ The stain of sin on humanity was so deep that no-one but God Himself could remove it & make a way for a relationship with Him to be restored. The Bible says Jesus was given His name so He would save His creation from the curse of disobedience that began in the garden of Eden. 1 Corinthians 15:21-22 records this incredible statement, “So you see, just as death came into the world through a man, now the resurrection from the dead has begun through another man. Just as everyone dies because we all belong to Adam, everyone who belongs to Christ will be given new life”. Jesus Christ was the fulfillment of the desire of humankind to be free from sin, and their desire to know God personally. This is the Gospel. God died for men. He saved men from judgement. Jesus, who is God, is our Savior & Redeemer.
The concept of needing to find peace and freedom, and to be rescued from an imperfect world, is not unique to Christianity. What is unique is that humanity is rescued by God Himself – because humanity cannot rescue itself. Salvation cannot be earned by behaving differently, giving money to good causes or a life full of good acts.
Salvation is God’s grace. We are saved and justified by Christ's sacrifice. Justification is God's act of removing the guilt and penalty of sin while at the same time making a sinner righteous through Christ's atoning sacrifice. It is the saving work that God did through Christ to reconcile the world to Himself, and also an individual being reconciled to God. It is the gift of freedom from our sins that Jesus made possible by taking the punishment for our sins on the cross. Through this gift, 1 John 1:9 promises that “If we confess our sins, He who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” This is one of the most important promises of Scripture; it gives us freedom and hope for the future. God is faithful and daily invites us to find new life in response to that faithfulness.
“If we confess our sins, He who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.