Vital Truths - How Can I Be Saved?
God, in the Bible, gives a very clear answer: “Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward Jesus Christ,” (Acts 20:21.) God’s way of salvation is through faith and repentance.
God, through the gospel, outwardly calls all men, everywhere, to repent and believe as the only way of salvation. He promises eternal life – not to everyone – but to all who do obey his call. And he sends the Holy Spirit to call his elect inwardly and savingly – changing their hearts, and making them both willing and able to obey his call.
What is it to believe? Saving faith is not something native to man, it is a gift of God, (Eph.2:8). Faith believes the whole Bible to be true, and comes to a certain knowledge of Jesus Christ as the Saviour, and of God’s way of salvation in him. The principle acts of saving faith are accepting, receiving, and resting upon Christ alone for complete salvation. Faith willingly submits to be saved in God’s way, and on God’s terms. Knowing that it can contribute nothing to salvation by its own good works, faith trusts completely and exclusively upon Jesus Christ. In this way, faith embraces the Saviour and complete salvation in him. The believer’s confession is: F-orsaking A-ll I T-rust H-im! Nothing less is saving faith.
What is repentance? Repentance is also a saving gift from God (Acts 11:18). It is a change of heart, and mind with respect to sin. Repentance turns from sin – it stops approving and enjoying sin, and starts hating and grieving over it, not just because of its painful consequences, but because it sees sin as disgusting and evil, and because God hates it. Repentance also turns to God for forgiveness of sins – with a full purpose of, and endeavour after, new obedience. When God says: “Repent!,” he means turn from all your sins to love and serve Him in new obedience.
Reader, the merciful God calls you too. Sinner, believe and repent! This is way of life everlasting!
Rev. C. J. Connors