I’m continuing to post through Paul’s letter to the Ephesian church. I’ve been talking about the good things provided for us by Christ on the cross. The apostle continues with this.
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast.
This work that Christ has done in us is totally His doing. It didn’t matter how good I was, being brought up in church. I’m just as guilty before God. It wouldn’t matter if I was a drug dealer, rapist, or terrorist. The blood of Christ is sufficient to cover all of my sins.
I have nothing to boast about in my life before I met Christ. For years I continued to miss the mark of God’s righteousness. The Good News is, that it doesn’t matter if you missed it by an inch or a mile. God’s grace can cover it all. You just need to cry out to Him.
Our past had no bearing on His love for us.
…for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
The salvation of the Lord is all encompassing. But, as incredible as all this is, it’s not the end of it. Even though in one sense I have been saved, God’s work continues to have an effect upon my life. Salvation doesn’t end with the sinner’s prayer.
By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.
1 Corinthians 15:2
It should be clear from the context of this verse that being saved is an ongoing process. The word for saved in this verse implies a continual work. That’s why there’s an “if” in this section. The process of salvation can only continue if you hold firmly to the Word.
I think that part of our problem in the modern church is our stubborn refusal to allow God to continue His work of change in our lives. We’re happy that our sins were forgiven. We look forward with joy to our home in Heaven. But right now there’s so many things that we want to do and experience in the world. The thought of God disrupting those plans for His purpose doesn’t sit well with us.
We need to see change as the natural outgrowth of our walk with God. His ongoing plan of salvation in us should never stagnate. There’s always something new to look forward to. That even applies to the return of Christ.
Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him!
Not only is the saving work of the Lord active in me today, but it also gives me a future hope. I know that on the Day of Judgment I have nothing to fear. Because of Christ’s work on the cross, I will be saved from the wrath of God. Death holds no fear for the Christian, only the promise of a new address in the presence of God.
Question: How is God’s ongoing work of salvation continuing to change your life?
© 2023 Nick Zaccardi