I Peter 2:7 Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner,
8 And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed.
We have been looking at God’s gift of salvation for the past while. We have noted that God’s salvation is a gift. No one has ever been saved by works. Adam was created without sin and did not need to obey God in order to become His child. Adam needed to obey God because he Was His child. Adam was given clear instructions of what God required of him as His child. God told Adam there was one tree in the midst of the Garden he was not to eat the fruit of. God warned Adam that the day he would eat of that forbidden fruit, he would die. Adam chose to defy God and he chose to disobey God. The result of that disobedience was that Adam died that very day. He died spiritually the moment he ate of that forbidden fruit. He began to die physically that same day.
Adam was unique. No one else could ever face the situation he faced. The Bible is clear that all of Adam’s descendants would be born as lost sinners. All, including Adam, would need a Saviour.
We looked at some of Adam’s descendants. In Genesis 6 we looked at Noah. Noah lived in a time of great wickedness. However, Noah chose not to follow the wickedness that was all around him. He chose to trust in the true God and His promise of a Saviour. The Bible tells us that Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. Noah was married and they had three sons who also eventually married. Noah was told to build an ark to the saving of his family. Noah obeyed God and built that ark according to God’s instructions. We noted that the building of that ark did not provide spiritual salvation for Noah. It provided physical salvation from the flood that would destroy all the rest of humanity and all living creatures that were not in the ark. The earth was changed due to that flood and only those in the ark survived to replenish the earth.
We also studied the life of Abram and Sarai, later called Abraham and Sarah. God chose Abraham to become the physical father of the nation of Israel. God’s intent was that He would be the spiritual Father of the nation of Israel. Abraham was a child of God just as Noah before him was. Abraham was not a god and he demonstrated his humanity in that he did not always obey God’s commands to him. He needed to learn the importance of obedience to God.
We could study more Old Testament individuals and we would find that those who walked in the fear of God were not without sin. God held every one of His children accountable for their actions. He never condoned their sin. He pointed out their sin and He showed them the importance of dealing with their sin and growing in faith toward Him.
We contrasted God’s gift of salvation with that of the New Evangelical philosophy that is very common in our time. It is important to note that God has never changed His gift of salvation. He has never changed the way in which a person can receive this gift.
The Bible makes it clear that repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ is necessary to be saved. Repentance is a turning to God and trusting in Him alone for salvation. God has made it clear from Genesis 3:15 and on that He would provide one individual who would be the Saviour of mankind. As God unfolded His plan in the Bible, He added more information to His promise in Genesis 3:15. There we learn that the seed of the woman would be a male.
We have the completed Scriptures and we know that this seed of the woman is more than just a male. He is a special person and He is one of a kind. He is referred to as Messiah, Saviour, Redeemer, Lamb, etc. In the New Testament we learn further that His name is Jesus. We also learn that His birth was not the beginning of His existence. John 1:1 declares:
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God
John 1:14 tells us:
And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
We learn further that this Word is Jesus Christ. In John 1:29 He is called:
John 1:29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.
The Bible makes it clear that the Old Testament saints such as Adam, Noah and Abraham all trusted in God’s promise as given in Genesis 3:15. They trusted in what God had declared. They were saved by faith in God’s promise. The book of Hebrews is one of several places that clearly teach that the blood of bulls and goats can never take away sin.
Hebrews 10:12 But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God;
13 From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool.
Jesus Christ is the Only Saviour there will ever be. He is alive today and is seated on the right hand of His Father in Heaven. As mentioned, the Old Testament saints believed God’s promise of a Saviour and Jesus Christ provided salvation for them in the same manner that He does for New Testament saints. It is His shed blood that saves.
The apostle Paul also made it clear that a dead Saviour is no Saviour at all. In I Corinthians 15, Paul was directed by God to argue for the validity of the resurrection, first of all of Christ and then of all those who trust in Him for salvation.
John 3:16 declares:
John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
God provided His Son as the Saviour of mankind. Salvation is a free gift of God to man. It was very costly for God. He sent His only begotten Son to this earth to take upon Himself flesh and then be willing to go to the cross to die and shed His blood for our sins. This gift of God is precious and It does make a difference in the heart and life of every person who is saved. There will be similarities in the life of those who are saved. It is the same God Who saves all. It is important to note that God is able to save anyone and everyone that comes to Him in repentance, trusting in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation. It is also important to note that we must follow what God says in regard to the fruit of His salvation.
We will continue to look at that over the next few days. One of the certainties of life is death. Some have said there are two sure things in life: death and taxes. That is not a true statement. Those things are sure, but there is also the fact that there is a judgment for each person born into this world and there is also a destination for each person based on the choice the person makes regarding the Lord Jesus Christ. It is important to take the time to know and believe the truth. Many are living a lie today. They are careless and willing to accept something that feels right to them, rather than believe that which is right. God’s Word is truth. Rightly dividing the Word of Truth is essential. Don’t be deceived. Claiming deception will not help you now nor after you die. Accept the truth and follow that.