By Gilbert W. Holt
The subject of salvation is the greatest subject that has ever engaged the minds of men. To be saved with the redeemed of all ages, to be free from all of earth’s sorrows (Rev. 21:4), to gather around the great white throne of God in heaven and sing His praise for all eternity (Rev. 14:3), to eat of the Tree of Life and drink of the River of Life that flows from the throne of God (Rev. 22:1-2), and to live forever will indeed by blissful. On the other hand it is sad to know that all will not go to heaven. In fact the Bible reveals in Matthew 7:13-14 that the majority will choose the way that leads to eternal destruction. To me the thought of being lost is the most terrible thing that we could think about. To be separated from the Lord and the glory of His power forever (2 Thess. 1:9); to be cast into “outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of, teeth” (Matt. 25:30), to hear the Lord say, “depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels” (Matt. 25:41), to have to live in eternity in a place where the “worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched” (Mk. 9:44-48), to be in a place where “the smoke of their torment ascendeth up forever and ever: and have no rest day nor night” (Rev. 14:11), is indeed horrifying. Yet, my friends, these two places that we have described are a reality. One day the Lord will come again to judge the world (Matt. 25:31-46). On this great day we will hear Him say, “well done good and faithful servant” (Matt. 25:21), or “depart from me ye cursed, into everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels” (Matt. 25:41). Which will it be for you? God has set salvation on the one hand and damnation on the other. Man whom God created is a free moral agent, therefore, he can choose his own eternal destiny. If he chooses to obey God, he has chosen salvation (Heb. 5:9); but if he chooses to disobey God, he has chosen damnation (Col. 3:6).
God Wants Everyone To Choose Salvation
“Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear” (Isa. 59:1). “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to usward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (2 Pet. 3:9). God “will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of truth” (1 Tim. 2:4). “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (Jno. 3:16). “God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8).
Christ Wants Man To Be Saved
“For the Son of man is come to seek and save that which was lost” (Lk. 19:10). “For this is my blood of the New Testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins” (Matt. 26:28). “Being made perfect, He became the author of eternal salvation unto all that obey him” (Heb. 5:9). Christ came to save sinners (1 Tim. 1:15).
The Holy Spirit Wants All To Be Saved
In John 16:13 we learn that the Holy Spirit revealed the plan of salvation unto us. In Ephesians 4:30 we also learn that the Holy Spirit is grieved when we reject the plan of salvation which he has revealed to us.
Christians Want Others To Be Saved
Christians are supposed to be soul winners for Christ (Matt. 28:19-20; Mk. 16:15-16; Rom. 1:14-17).
The Devil And His Angels Want You To Be Lost
“The devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Pet. 5:8). Yes, my friends, Satan will do everything in his power to cause you to disobey God. He will tell you that it is too hard to live the Christian life, that you should not deprive yourself of the pleasures of sin. His philosophy is eat, :drink, and be merry for tomorrow you die. But dear reader, to die unprepared to meet your God means eternal damnation.
Sinner friend do you not want to go to heaven? If so, why do you not obey the Gospel of Christ, let God save you and the Lord will add you to his church? The gospel plan of salvation is simple:
1. One must hear or be taught the gospel (Jno. 6:44-45; Matt. 28:19-20; Mk. 16:15-16; Rom. 10:17).
2. Man must believe (Mk. 16:15-16; Jno. 8:24; Rom. 10:17: Heb. 11:6).
3. Man must repent (Lk. 13:3; Acts 17:30; 3:19; 2:38).
4. Man must confess Christ (Rom. 10:9-10; Acts 8:37).
5. Man must be baptized (Mk. 16:15-16; Acts 2:38; 22:16; Rom. 6:3-5; Col. 2:12; Gal. 3:27; 1 Pet. 3:21).
After obeying from the heart these commands we must “Grow in grace and knowledge of our Lord” (2 Pet. 3:18). “Be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord” (1 Cor. 15:58). Be faithful in our service unto death and he will give us a crown of life (Rev. 2:10). The beautiful place that is called heaven will be our eternal abode.
Truth Magazine, XVIII:48, p. 6
October 10, 1974