What must I do to be Saved?

Salvation is the work of God alone. It is comes from Him as a free gift. Salvation is of God, and man’s responsibility is only to receive it freely as a gift from His hand.

The salvation of man is the display of the power of God for His glory alone. No part of our salvation is dependent even in the slightest degree on human effort.

Only God can perform what He requires of man to be saved. We are blind to spiritual truths (2 Cor. 4:3-4). He requires a new creation because man is dead in trespasses and sins (Eph. 2:1-2). God requires a spiritual birth, which only He can perform (Jn. 3:3). We are powerless to bring about such a new creation (2 Cor. 5:17).

Moreover, because we are sinners, we cannot produce in our sinful nature a righteousness that is pleasing to God (Rom. 3:9-20). We cannot merit by our virtue a right relationship with God. The salvation God demands and provides is wrought for sinful man wholly apart from man’s efforts.

Salvation is provided only through the person and work of Jesus Christ (Acts 4:12). We cannot resolve our sin problem, but Jesus Christ went to the cross and died for our sins (Rom. 5:6, 8; 2 Cor. 5:21).

What God requires of the sinner is to simply trust in Jesus Christ as one’s Savior (Jn. 3:16, 36). Believing on Christ makes the sinner available to receive the infinite power and grace of God. All that the sinner can and must do to be saved is “believe” on Jesus Christ (Acts 16:31). Such a personal faith in Christ is a definite decision on the part of the individual.

“He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil” (John 3:18-19).

Saving faith  is simply to rely on Christ, to depend on His saving grace, and to receive Him. It is to believe the record God has given concerning the atoning sacrifice of His Son.

God invites us to believe what Jesus Christ did for us on the cross. God took the initiative and provided all we need to be saved. The only requirement God places on the individual is to believe or rely on Christ. He requires us to believe what He has done for us.

I often illustrate this great truth in the Scriptures by holding up a New Testament or beautiful pocket Gospel of John and ask my audience if they would like to have it. I stress that it is mine and that I paid for it. No one can buy it or do anything to merit it. All the individual can do is receive it trusting me to give it to him. I choose an individual from the audience to come forward, and they receive the gift from me.

God has given us a far more expensive and precious gift, paid for in fully by the blood of Jesus Christ. All that is required on our part is to believe on Him and receive the gift of eternal life (Jn. 5:24). A simple faith in Christ opens the way into the infinite power and grace of God in the individual’s life.

“With the heart man believes unto righteousness” (Rom. 10:9-13). The only condition on which a person may be saved is to believe on Christ.

In the New Testament, there are 115 passages of Scripture where the word “believe” is used alone from every other condition as the only way of salvation, observed Chafer. There are 35 more verses that use the synonym “faith.” In the Gospel of John, “believe” in its various forms is used 86 times. “These have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name” (John 20:31).

To “repent” and “believe” is one all-inclusive act. When we believe on the saving work of Christ there is a “change of mind” that is included as an essential part of believing in Him. It is impossible for a person to believe who does not repent. When an individual believes on Christ he experiences a change of mind which turns from everything else as an object of salvation to trust in Jesus Christ alone.

The message to be believed is the sacrifice of Jesus Christ for our sins that alone satisfies God. The only good work that satisfies God is the finished work of salvation He accomplished on the cross for us.

To reject Jesus Christ is to remain under the full condemnation of your sin of unbelief. “Men and women are saved and kept in sovereign grace through simple faith in Christ alone” (cf. John 10:27-30).

God’s invitation is, “Whosoever will may come.” Will you come today and believe on Him and receive His gift?


Message by Wil Pounds (c) 2006

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