“Salvation” is a word that flows in Christian circles the way water hurls itself down a riverbank. Assumptions are made, distinctives are codified and labels are assigned.
Most have a narrow understanding of the concept that Jesus called the Kingdom of God, or Kingdom of Heaven.
Jesus was excited about it.
He wanted everyone to experience it.
He gave His life to open it’s entrance.
I like Tozer’s take:
“If man had his way, the plan of redemption would be an endless and bloody conflict. In reality, salvation was bought not by Jesus’ fist, but by His nail-pierced hands; not by muscle but by love; not by vengeance but by forgiveness; not by force but by sacrifice. Jesus Christ our Lord surrendered in order that He might win; He destroyed His enemies by dying for them and conquered death by allowing death to conquer Him.”
― A.W. Tozer
Salvation is more than a get out of Hell card. That limited view makes Jesus a mechanism, and centers everything on me.
Salvation is an invitation.
Salvation is a transformation.
Salvation is undeserved.
Salvation is a person, Jesus.
N.T. Wright notes:
“the work of salvation, in its full sense, is (1) about whole human beings, not merely souls; (2) about the present, not simply the future; and (3) about what God does through us, not merely what God does in and for us.”
― N.T. Wright
The motivation for salvation is God’s tenacious, unyielding, ferocious and all-consuming love.
The hum that you feel in the core of your soul, is the love of God inviting you into an adventure through Christ. Peter Kreeft said it this way:
“We sinned for no reason but an incomprehensible lack of love, and He saved us for no reason but an incomprehensible excess of love.”
― Peter Kreeft, Jesus-Shock
Grace and Peace…
*artwork (c) is by Justin Spencer Lamborn: http://www.specterandbride.co/
I read and mediated on this Tozer piece this morning…. It comes from his book "The Divine Conquest" I have always said that God is always previous, that He is the first of all moves in life; Tozer ruminates on this as looks at the "unbeginning One." Grab some coffee (Tozer blend ) read, and ask yourself just how large a concept of God do you have, how you experience Him is limited by your concept of Him.
The Great Antecedent
For all things God is the great Antecedent. Because He is, we
are and everything else is. He is that "dread, unbeginning One,"
self-caused, self-contained and self-sufficient. Faber saw this when he
wrote his great hymn in celebration of God's eternity.
Thou hast no youth, great God,
An Unbeginning End Thou art;
Thy glory in itself abode,
And still abides in its own tranquil heart:
No age can heap its outward years on Thee:
Dear God! Thou art Thyself Thine own eternity.
Do not skip this as merely another poem. The difference between a
great Christian life and any other kind lies in the quality of our
religious concepts, and the ideas expressed in these six lines can be
like rungs on Jacob's ladder, leading upward to a sounder and more
satisfying idea of God.
We cannot think rightly of God until we begin to think of Him as
always being there, and there first. Joshua had this to learn. He had
been so long the servant of God's servant Moses, and had with such
assurance received God's word at his mouth, that Moses and the God of
Moses had become blended in his thinking, so blended that he could
hardly separate the two thoughts; by association they always appeared
together in his mind. Now Moses is dead, and lest the young Joshua be
struck down with despair, God spoke to assure him, "As I was with Moses,
so I will be with thee." Moses was dead, but the God of Moses still
lived. Nothing had changed and nothing had been lost. Nothing of God
dies when a man of God dies.
"As I was—so I will be." Only God could say this. Only the Eternal
One could stand in the timeless I AM and say, "I was" and "I will be."
"No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of
your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with; I will never leave
you nor forsake you." Joshua 1:5
We cannot think rightly of God until we begin to think of Him
as always being there, and there first.
Let us think rightly of You, Lord, by realizing that You have
always been there and that You were there first.