Jeff Maness – March 25th, 2018
Understanding what a word means before we use it is an incredibly important part about life. When it comes to “salvation”, there is much more to it than just “God forgave me of my sins.” There are real life implications for those of us who have already been saved. In this message, we are reminded of and challenged on some specific principles that we should know about salvation.
What Should I Know About Salvation?
Acts 4:12 There is salvation in no one else! God has given no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.
Ephesians 2:8-9 8 God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. 9 Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it.
God might do all the work of salvation, but He wants to use us to accomplish the work.
Big Question: What should I know about the work of salvation?
Main Scripture: Jeremiah 31:1-14
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Jeremiah 31:1-3 1 “In that day,” says the Lord, “I will be the God of all the families of Israel, and they will be my people. 2 This is what the Lord says: “Those who survive the coming destruction will find blessings even in the barren land, for I will give rest to the people of Israel.” 3 Long ago the Lord said to Israel: “I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love. With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself.”
1. God is always drawing
John 12:31-32 31 “The time for judging this world has come, when Satan, the ruler (prince) of this world, will be cast out. 32 And when I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw everyone to myself.”
Jeremiah 31:4-6 4 I will rebuild you, my virgin Israel. You will again be happy and dance merrily with your tambourines. 5 Again you will plant your vineyards on the mountains of Samaria and eat from your own gardens there. 6 The day will come when watchmen will shout from the hill country of Ephraim, ‘Come, let us go up to Jerusalem to worship the Lord our God.’”
2. God wants us to declare
2 Corinthians 5:18-21 18 And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to himself through Christ. And God has given us this task of reconciling people to him. 19 For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation. 20 So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, “Come back to God!” 21 For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.
Romans 2:4 Don’t you see how wonderfully kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Does this mean nothing to you? Can’t you see that his kindness (love) is intended to turn you from your sin?
3. God is the one who delivers
Jeremiah 31:7-14 7 Now this is what the Lord says: “Sing with joy for Israel. Shout for the greatest of nations! Shout out with praise and joy: ‘Save your people, O Lord, the remnant of Israel!’ 8 For I will bring them from the north and from the distant corners of the earth. I will not forget the blind and lame, the expectant mothers and women in labor. A great company will return! 9 Tears of joy will stream down their faces, and I will lead them home with great care. They will walk beside quiet streams and on smooth paths where they will not stumble. For I am Israel’s father, and Ephraim is my oldest child. 10 “Listen to this message from the Lord, you nations of the world; proclaim it in distant coastlands: The Lord, who scattered his people, will gather them and watch over them as a shepherd does his flock. 11 For the Lord has redeemed Israel from those too strong for them. 12 They will come home and sing songs of joy on the heights of Jerusalem. They will be radiant because of the Lord’s good gifts—the abundant crops of grain, new wine, and olive oil, and the healthy flocks and herds. Their life will be like a watered garden, and all their sorrows will be gone. 13 The young women will dance for joy, and the men—old and young—will join in the celebration. I will turn their mourning into joy. I will comfort them and exchange their sorrow for rejoicing. 14 The priests will enjoy abundance, and my people will feast on my good gifts. I, the Lord, have spoken!”
Listen for the three “nots”: 1. Not in church. 2. Not going well. 3. Not prepared for.