“What else to be saved from beyond our sin?”- this may sound like a weird question to some of us. Once I have been saved by Jesus Christ my Savior, am I not done being saved?
This discussion question popped up in our most recent Bible Study on Hebrews 7 on campus. Often, we think that salvation is a one-time process, in which Jesus, as our Savior, died on the cross to save us from our sin. However, even after we have been given a new life in Christ, we are also asked to “continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his purpose.” (Philippians 2:13-14).
What does it mean to continue to “work out our salvation” if Christ has already saved us by dying for us? I believe it is to continue to pursue God and run our race in Him. We are called to press on (Phillippians 3:13-14). We are set free by Christ, yet this freedom in to be exercised in the spirit but not in the flesh, “For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.”(Galatians 5:13).
What then, are we to be saved beyond sin? I think there can be many answers, but these are my two answers:
Christians fail all the time even after being saved, yet this is where grace comes in. \We need to realize that we are not able, but He is able. Our job is not trying harder, but to remain in the Lord and let Him work in and through us. And is it not wonderful that when we fail, we can come forward to the throne of grace (Hebrew 4:16).
Passiveness and Lukewarmness
But the opposite of “trying harder” in our own effort is just as damaging. Many times we have become ignorant or even numb towards grace because we have become numb towards our weaknesses and sin. We should let God’s feeling become our feeling. His joy is our joy; His sorrow is our sorrow.
But it is easy to sit still passively. It is easy to ignore. Be it God’s calling, our spiritual thirst and hunger, or the Spirit’s conviction. Sadly, if we decide not to do anything, we are actually making a decision by deciding not to do anything. In other words, by not responding to the Lord’s speaking, we can easily grieve the Spirit, refuse our spiritual growth, and become lukewarm. Help us, oh Lord.