Vol. 14 No. 43
God’s Way of Salvation
Eph 2:5, “Even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved).”
“Were dead” is the Present, Active, Participle of Verb EIMI with the noun NEKROS once again that identifies the state of being we were in when God’s Love, Mercy and Grace found us, spiritually dead and operating in the sphere of our “transgressions,” which is PARAPTOMA once again. This reiterates vs. 1-3, that we were spiritually dead, under the authority and influence of Satan and under the control of our Old Sin Nature.
Real spiritual death occurs for us at birth; but occurred in the garden for mankind. It is the penalty of sin, and so given as a warning to our original parents in Gen 2:17, “dying you shall die.” When they partook of the forbidden fruit, they died spiritually. The penalty was imposed at the fall of mankind.
Spiritual death is defined as separation from God in a state of total helplessness with regard to any relationship with God. It is categorized as humanity separated from God from birth. It can be classified as judgment from God.
Spiritual death is perpetuated in the human race by the imputation of Adam’s original sin to the genetically-formed Old Sin Nature inside of each new baby born. Rom 5:12, “Therefore, just as through one man (Adam) sin entered the world (Adam’s original sin), and death (real spiritual death) through that sin, so (real spiritual) death spread to all men because all sinned (when Adam sinned).”
When the entire human race is born physically alive, it is also born spiritually dead. Mankind is not condemned because of his personal sins, but through the imputation of Adam’s original sin.
There are Two Categories of Spiritual Death.
1. Real spiritual death, which is separation from God in a state of sin. This applies to man as real spiritual death and is the result of Adam’s original sin, which becomes the status quo of the human race at the point of physical birth.
2. Substitutionary spiritual death, which is separation from God in a state of perfection and impeccability. This applies exclusively to Jesus Christ. Substitutionary spiritual death applies to the saving work of Jesus Christ on the Cross when the sins of the entire human race were imputed to Jesus Christ and God the Father judged those sins.
Adam’s spiritual death in the garden and our Lord’s spiritual death on the Cross have only one thing in common, separation from God the Father in a state of judgment.
There are Eight Results of Adam’s Original Sin in the Garden.
1. At the point of the original sin, Adam lost his rulership of planet earth to Satan.
2. When Adam died spiritually, he entered into a state of total separation from God. He was separated from God in a state of total helplessness; there was nothing he could do to regain his relationship with God. As a result of God’s love, mercy and grace, God did all the work: He came to Adam in the garden; he did the judging and then provided the solution for our spiritual death. Adam’s spiritual death was demonstrated by the fact that when Jesus Christ came in the garden, Adam hid himself from God.
3. In spiritual death, Adam became dichotomous, having only a body and soul. Real spiritual death means loss of the human spirit, by which we have fellowship with God. 1 Cor 2:14 calls unbelieving dichotomous man the PSUCHIKOS, or soulish man; cf. Jude 19.
1 Cor 2:14, “But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God; for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.”
Jude 1:19, “These are the ones who cause divisions, worldly-minded, devoid of the Spirit.”
4. Adam’s original sin invented the Old Sin Nature, which is genetically perpetuated to the entire human race. From the Old Sin Nature comes our total depravity, which includes both moral and immoral degeneration.
5. It was the beginning of personal sins in the human race, perpetuated from generation to generation.
6. It resulted in the status of total helplessness to enter into a relationship with God on the basis of any human good, any human merit, or anything we can do, all of which is classified as dead works.
7. Likewise, spiritual death was perpetuated in the human race, Rom 5:12-21. This is why the unbeliever is dichotomous and why the believer is trichotomous, 1 Thes 5:23; Job 32:8; Philemon 25; 2 Cor 7:13; Heb 4:12.
1 Thes 5:23, “Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
8. The incarnation and hypostatic union is a direct result of Adam’s original sin, whereby our Lord Jesus Christ entered the world at the First Advent to provide the solution to spiritual death through His efficacious substitutionary spiritual death, His saving work on the Cross.
So real spiritual death is perpetuated in the human race at the point of physical birth. 1 Peter 3:18, “For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, in order that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit.”
1 Peter 4:6, “For the gospel has for this purpose been preached even to those who are dead, that though they are judged in the flesh as men, they may live in the spirit according to the will of God.
Therefore, Adam’s original sin brought real spiritual death to the human race. Our Lord’s sacrificial or substitutionary spiritual death on the Cross brought eternal life to the human race. The real spiritual death of Adam made the human race dichotomous, having only body and soul. The substitutionary spiritual death of Jesus Christ on the Cross makes mankind trichotomous, having body, soul, and spirit. We acquire a human spirit at the point of faith in Christ.
The point is, we were not worth loving at that time because we were spiritually dead, under the authority of Satan and our Old Sin Nature, and operating in sin. Yet, God “made us alive together with Christ,” SUZOOPOIEO EN HO CHRISTOS.
SUZOOPOIEO, συζωοποιέω is in the Aorist, Active, Indicative and means “to make alive together with.” It is a triple compound word from the prepositional prefix SUN meaning “with,” the Verb ZAO meaning, “to live or be alive” and the Verb POIEO, “to do or make.” It is used only here and Col 2:13.
Col 2:13, “And when you were dead (spiritually) in the sphere of your transgressions (willful disobedience) and the uncircumcision of your flesh (Old Sin Nature), He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions.”
So we see that salvation is a transfer from death in sin to life in Christ.
SUZOOPOIEO is the first of three in the context that has the prefix SUN, “with.”
The first is here in vs. 5, SUZOOPOIEO, and is translated, “made alive together with Him.”
The second is in vs. 6, SUNEGEIREN, and is translated, “raised us up with Christ.”
The third is also in vs. 6, SUNEKATHISEN, and is used for, “seated us with Him.”
These verbs beautifully summarize what God does for believers in the Lord Jesus Christ. First, He implants spiritual life within; then He elevates them to a new level of life; and thirdly, He gives a new level of authority in this life and in the One to come that permits us to enjoy a continuous relationship with Christ.
God accomplished all of this “by grace,” CHARIS, an instrumental case construction in the Greek language that expresses the means by which something is accomplished. “Grace” explains how God operates. It refers to “undeserved favor” and is a constant reminder that God does not manifest acts of mercy toward people because they deserve them. It is the instrumental of means, to indicate the principle of God’s grace, that God found a way to love us, even though He is perfect and the total sum of perfection, and we are the total of everything that is imperfect.
The something accomplished by grace is “you have been saved,” EIMI SOZO.
SOZO is the Greek verb meaning, “save, keep safe, preserve, rescue or make well.” Here it is in the Perfect, Middle, Participle, meaning a completed past action with continuous results. We have in this case the Intensive Perfect, which emphasizes the fact that the work of salvation is completed and the results are perpetuated forever. The Middle voice tells us that God’s grace operated, which had a benefit back to Him. That benefit was saving you from eternal condemnation and instead, entering you into His Royal Family. The Participle indicates the permanence. So we see that as there was a future to sin (wrath), and likewise there is a future to saving grace (eternal life with God).
God’s greatest act of mercy is explained in this verse. Even though we were dead spiritually, He “made us alive together with Christ.” Just as Christ was resurrected to eternal glory, so will the believer in Jesus Christ be resurrected to eternal glory with Him. Salvation is expressed this way because of the necessity of an initial act of conversion. However, God does not cease working in believers’ lives after conversion. New life happens purely by God’s grace and entails rescue from wrath. Vs. 6 then tells us of two of the “spiritual blessings in the heavenly places in Christ,” Eph 1:3.
But before we note the blessings, we first will note the Doctrines of Salvation and Grace.
Salvation is by Grace through Faith in Christ.
1. Faith is the only system of perception which is totally devoid of any human merit. Only the object has merit, and in salvation the object of faith is our Lord Jesus Christ. How much faith does it take to be saved? Just a little bit more than no faith at all.
2. The salvation work of Christ on the Cross excludes anything being added to faith. No works of any kind are allowed. Salvation is by grace through faith, “not of works, lest any man should boast,” Eph 2:9.
3. Grace is all that God is free to do for unsaved mankind on the basis of the saving work of Christ on the Cross. Grace is extended to homo sapiens as unbelievers, living under spiritual death in total depravity and total helplessness regarding salvation.
4. Therefore, as a matter of grace, salvation is entirely the work of God. It is the work of the Father in judging our sins, of the Son in being judged for our sins, and of the Holy Spirit in common and efficacious grace. This is why the way of salvation is faith in Jesus Christ, and faith alone with no works added to it.
5. Scripture references for Salvation By Grace.
Rom 3:24, “Being justified as a gift by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.” Grace excludes human works.
Rom 4:4-5, “Now to the one who works for salvation, his wages are credited, not on the basis of grace, but on the basis of debt. But to him who does not work for salvation, but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited for righteousness.”
Rom 4:16, “For this reason, it is by faith, in order that it might be in accordance with (on the basis of) grace.”
Rom 5:1-2, “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have obtained an introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand.”
Rom 5:15, “But the free gift (of salvation) is not like the transgression. For if by the transgression of the one (Adam) the many died (spiritual death), much more did the grace of God and the gift by grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abound to the many.”
Rom 5:17, “For if by the transgression of the one (Adam), (spiritual) death reigned through one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace, and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.
Eph 1:6-7, “Resulting in the praise of the glory of His grace, which grace he freely bestowed on us (has graced us out) in the beloved, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace.”
2 Tim 1:8-9, “Therefore, do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord or of me His prisoner, but join with me in suffering for the gospel according to the power of God, who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, (Divine call), not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was granted to us in Christ Jesus from all eternity.”
Heb 2:9, “But we do see Him who has been made for a little while lower than the angels, namely, Jesus, because of the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that by the grace of God He might taste death (as a substitute) for everyone.”
6. Salvation is by faith in Christ plus nothing. There are three reasons for faith plus nothing as the condition for eternal salvation.
a) Efficacious grace, documented by Eph 2:8-9.
b) Our Lord’s utterance on the Cross: “TETELESTAI.”
c) The direct statement of scripture.
If you would like more information on this subject, you may watch/listen to lesson #’s:
15-132, 15-123 & 15-134
A PERSONAL NOTE FOR YOU
If you have never accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, I am here to tell you that Jesus loves you. He loves you so much that He gave His life for you. God the Father also loves you. He loves you so much that He gave His only Son for you by sending Him to the Cross. At the Cross Jesus died in your place. Taking upon Himself all of your sins and all of my sins. He was judged for our sins and paid the price for our sins. Therefore our sins will never be held against us. Right where you are, you now have the opportunity to make the greatest decision in your life.
To accept the free gift of salvation and eternal life by truly believing that Jesus Christ died for your sins and was raised on the third day as the proof of the promise of eternal life. So right now you can pause and reflect on what Christ has done for you and say to the Father:
“Yes Father, I believe that Your Son, Jesus Christ, died on the cross for the forgiveness of my sins.”
If you have done that, I welcome you to the eternal Family of God!