Do we have salvation now?

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Matthew1034

Puritan Board Freshman
Haven't referred the the confessions yet, but wanted to post the topic before I go to sleep.

Basically I am wondering how the following verses fit together:

Romans 8:24,25 "For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience."

Romans 13:11 "Besides this you know the time, that the hour has come for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed."

1 John 5:13 "I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life."


In Romans 8 Paul is referring to our resurrected bodies, the adoption, our redemption from corruption... we obviously do not have them now so we cannot see them and we thus hope for them.

In Romans 13:11, is Paul referring to our regenerated spirits being "awake" from their previous darkness/sleep? Or by "waking up" does he mean, as in ch. 8, the resurrection of our bodies? By the second part of the verse it seems that he means the latter, as if the resurrection is closer to us now than when we first believed.

Maybe verse 12-13a make it clearer,

The night is far gone; the day is at hand. So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light.13 Let us walk properly as in the daytime,

that the salvation in v.11 is the sun rising, our sleep was in the night far gone, and where we are now is just before dawn when the day is at hand/near, and we should walk as we would in the daytime. But then again, "that the hour has come for you to wake from sleep" implies "you" are still asleep. Any ideas on this specifically (although somewhat off-topic)?

In 1 Jn. 5:13, John is absolutely clear that those who believe have eternal life.

So my question, then, is.. do we have salvation now? or is it in the future? Isn't eternal life salvation? If we have eternal life now how can we hope for it? If we have salvation now how can we wait for it? How can we have eternal life and not salvation?
 
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Herald

Administrator
Staff member
Matthew,

Romans 8:23-25 23 And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body. 24 For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.

This hope was in what was to come, namely the resurrection of the body. The sum of Paul's salvation was not his experience on earth ("but hope that is seen is not hope"), but the life after this one.

Romans 13:11-12 11 Do this, knowing the time, that it is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep; for now salvation is nearer to us than when we believed. 12 The night is almost gone, and the day is near. Therefore let us lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.

This passage speaks about expectant living. Paul is telling his readers to live and act as though the coming of the kingdom was imminent ("salvation is nearer'). It is not referring to their spiritual state, as to whether they are actually saved. It is because they are saved they are to live like it, looking for the return of the King.

1 John 5:13 13 These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.

This verse speaks about the confidence of eternal life. Lest John's readers doubt, he wrote to them in order to encourage their faith.

Someone once said, "We are saved and being saved." Salvation is a here and now, but it's also a future event. We are sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise (Eph. 1:13, 14), the promise being our future inheritance with Christ.

I leave you a passage to contemplate.

Romans 8:29-30 29 For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 30 and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.
 

Whitefield

Puritan Board Junior
So my question, then, is.. do we have salvation now? or is it in the future? Isn't eternal life salvation? If we have eternal life now how can we hope for it? If we have salvation now how can we wait for it? How can we have eternal life and not salvation?

As to the word hope: in modern English we often use hope as if the word meant wishful. I continually make this point in many of my sermons, so the people know what is coming. The word hope in the New Testament is better translated confident, rather than wishful. Try that, every time you encounter the word hope in the NT say confidence, confident and you'll see how powerful that passage becomes.
 

Rich Koster

Puritan Board Post-Graduate
We have an earnest, the indwelling Holy Spirit, of our future. God is not subject to time, we are. If God says something is so, even if we don't see it, it is.
 

lynnie

Puritan Board Graduate
You might enjoy a word study on the greek word sozo ( saved, made whole).

In the NT it is used in reference to physical healing, sin, casting out demons, etc. Its all sozo. You are saved out of this present evil age, from death, from God's final wrath, out of darkness.

We experience some of this now, but not fully until heaven. In this world we will battle sin, sickness, the world, the devil, and death. It is real and true now in part, but then we will know fully even as we are fully known.
 

Hilasmos

Puritan Board Freshman
To throw some other thoughts in the mix..

2 Cor. 4:3 "And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing..."

There are those who are perishing right now. You don't have to go to hell or the lake of fire to perish...being in a state of unbelief, not seeing the "light of the glory of Christ" in the gospel IS to perish.

On the contrary, seeing the glory of Christ in faith is to not-perish, but to have eternal life, salvation.

John 17:3: “This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

John 17:24: “Father, I desire that they also, whom You have given Me, be with Me where I am, so that they may see My glory which You have given Me, for You loved Me before the foundation of the world.

The difference between the now and then, is...

2 Corinthians 3:18: But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.

When studying these passages in a sermon I did on the the relation of the glory of Christ to the life of the believer, I was struck with how literal the statement "saved by faith" could or should be taken. We are not saved by faith, necessarily, just in the sense that if we believe we will one day be saved in heaven. Rather, the act of beholding the glory of Christ in the gospel is to be saved, or to be in a non-perishing state -- although that beholding is as in a mirror. Thus, I am saved by faith because it is through faith that my eyes can start beholding the glory of Christ now, where as one day I will see Him face to face, and not by faith.

So, perhaps, its not a question of when we are actually saved...now or in heaven, or in resurrection, but the differing levels, perhaps, by which we are introduced into the beholding of the glory of God and Christ, which is eternal life.
 

OPC'n

Puritan Board Doctor
When I think of salvation, I think of the title of God's work in His children. Some people think salvation and justification are the same...I don't. I think justification, sanctification, and glorification all fall under salvation. So we have justification at new birth, we are being sanctified, and we will be glorified one day. Until we reach glorification, the completion of salvation will not be reached. The different verses which speak of having our salvation, striving of salvation, and the hope of salvation all speak to justification, sanctification, and glorification all of which needs to be taken in context.
 

Matthew1034

Puritan Board Freshman
To throw some other thoughts in the mix..

2 Cor. 4:3 \"And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing...\"

There are those who are perishing right now. You don't have to go to hell or the lake of fire to perish...being in a state of unbelief, not seeing the "light of the glory of Christ" in the gospel IS to perish.
On the contrary, seeing the glory of Christ in faith is to not-perish, but to have eternal life, salvation.

John 17:3: “This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

John 17:24: “Father, I desire that they also, whom You have given Me, be with Me where I am, so that they may see My glory which You have given Me, for You loved Me before the foundation of the world.

The difference between the now and then, is...

2 Corinthians 3:18: But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.

When studying these passages in a sermon I did on the the relation of the glory of Christ to the life of the believer, I was struck with how literal the statement "saved by faith" could or should be taken. We are not saved by faith, necessarily, just in the sense that if we believe we will one day be saved in heaven. Rather, the act of beholding the glory of Christ in the gospel is to be saved, or to be in a non-perishing state -- although that beholding is as in a mirror. Thus, I am saved by faith because it is through faith that my eyes can start beholding the glory of Christ now, where as one day I will see Him face to face, and not by faith.
So, perhaps, its not a question of when we are actually saved...now or in heaven, or in resurrection, but the differing levels, perhaps, by which we are introduced into the beholding of the glory of God and Christ, which is eternal life.

This is awesome!!! -- just what I was searching for. We are being saved, we've passed from death to life, we are being transformed to the image of Christ, and the redemption of our bodies is closer every day. Just the opposite can be said of those who are dead.

It being a few weeks later that I'm responding, reading this has also helped with something that's been uneasy with my soul. Namely, using 'eternal life' to mean heaven -- evangelicals today equate the terms when witnessing, which has just seemed wrong to me because there is so much emphasis put on going to heaven and not going to hell that it makes God just an accessory to "eternal life in heaven, with your own mansion, seeing your family, happiness forever." etc etc... No, we are eagerly waiting to see Jesus because we love Him -- we're not eagerly waiting the gifts or treasures in heaven but Jesus!

And telling people that if they want to go to heaven they need to accept Christ is not even the Gospel and it makes the person trust more in going to heaven than Christ's propitiating death. The person's idea of heaven may be something totally different than what is said, and we thus make Christ out to be a stepping stone to some idol-laden heaven.

Its so pathetic how evangelical christianity in America has used heaven and hell as an arm-twister to get a decision for Christ out of them, just to add numbers to those they've saved. I really hate this with a very Godly hate.

I mean, if someone loves the Lord and is humbled by His grace and saturated with His promises and is prompted by His Spirit to preach the Gospel to every creature, if someone has been given these wonderful gifts they don't need to twist anyone's arm to get them to make a decision, the Lord himself will be reflected in the countenance and life of a person like this and this alone is what draws people to God!

[video=youtube;-OJ4Ysp5l98]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-OJ4Ysp5l98[/video]

Thank you.
 

Hilasmos

Puritan Board Freshman
God just an accessory to "eternal life in heaven, with your own mansion, seeing your family, happiness forever." etc etc...

You may like John Owen's book, The Glory of Christ, where he argued that you will not find anything in heaven which you cannot start to find now. If you don't behold and love the Glory of Christ now, you will be sorely disappointed in the life to come.

What is the reason for wanting to go to heaven? I doubt many people would concur with the psalmist.

Psalm 27:4: One thing I have asked from the Lord, that I shall seek: That I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, To behold the beauty of the Lord And to meditate in His temple.
 

Jimmy the Greek

Puritan Board Senior
As believers we are justified and have eternal life. But there is a sense in which we have been saved (from the penalty of sin), are being saved (from the power of sin), and will be saved (from the presence of sin). Scripture speaks to all three senses (or should I say tenses).
 

Michael Doyle

Puritan Board Junior
We see the "already but not yet" in the new life. On the one hand, it is already ours; on the other hand, it is not yet fully ours.

The Bible offers us many illustrations of people living out the "already but not yet." Think of Noah. He is described as a righteous man yet he also got drunk and lay shamefully exposed for all to see him. Think of Abraham. He is called God's friend yet in Egypt he failed to trust God when Pharaoh saw his beautiful wife Sarai. Think of Moses. God talked to him face-to-face as a man talks to his friend, yet he failed to obey God and was not allowed to enter the Promised Land. Think of King David. He is not only a mighty man of God but he is also a peeping tom, an adulterer, and a murderer. Or, think of Peter. He is not only one of the Lord's saints, the rock on whom the church is built, but he is also a liar, someone who denies the Lord in order to save his own skin.

Romans 6 and 7 is very discriptive. Giving us a clear view of what is, as John Piper says, "Decisively and Irrevocably Free" and what is not yet, "Finally and Perfectly Free."

That, too me is the glorious hope which is to come, in that God has freely chosen me and sealed me into adoption into the kingdom, yet still I am given to wait in the hope and anticipation of the glorious coming of Christ and the joy of spending eternity in the prescence of the Holy Lamb. What a glorious gospel! :sing: :sing: :sing:
 
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