Steps of Salvation for the Christian

Steps of Salvation for the ChristianText: Revelation 2:5

We often emphasize the “steps of salvation” – what one must do to become a Christian (hear, believe, repent, confess, and be baptized). After that, we must live faithfully. But how do we live faithfully? The church in Ephesus was told to “do the deeds you did at first.” Remember the steps that lead one to get INTO Christ. They also provide an outline for the steps we must take in our Christian walk.

Hear

  • We must pay close attention to what we have previously heard (Hebrews 2:1-3) – this can be done by being reminded (1 Timothy 4:6) and by studying for ourselves (2 Timothy 2:15)
  • The Hebrew brethren had become “dull of hearing” (Hebrews 5:11-14) – they were rebuked for this; they were not learning/growing as they should have been; we must not fail in this way
  • After obeying the gospel, we must continue to devote ourselves to the apostles’ teaching (Acts 2:42)

Believe

  • It is possible for Christians to develop “an evil, unbelieving heart” (Hebrews 3:12-13) – by becoming “hardened by the deceitfulness of sin“; so we must guard against sin (cf. Romans 6:1-2)
  • Our faith is demonstrated by our obedience (James 2:17-24) – one may know little about the Bible when becoming a Christian (Acts 16:30-34), but they believe God and determine to submit to His will; so as they learn, they obey
  • This also means we put our trust in God and His promises (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; Colossians 3:1-4)

Repent

  • There is a great change that occurs when one becomes a Christian (Romans 6:17-18) – yet there is always the possibility of falling back into sin (Hebrews 3:13)
  • When we sin as a Christian, we must repent and pray (Acts 8:22) – the “once saved, always saved” doctrine is not taught in the Scriptures (Acts 8:23; Hebrews 4:11); the blood of Christ does not continually cleanse us if we continue to walk in darkness (1 John 1:6-7)
  • We must live free from sin (Romans 6:7) and dead to sin (Romans 6:11) – not to be content in our sin

Confess

  • We must be willing to confess Christ before men (Matthew 10:32-33) – this verse is sometimes used in the steps of salvation for the non-Christian; yet this is talking about a way of life, how we continue to confess after we are following Christ
  • We confess our faith by being willing to give an answer for our hope (1 Peter 3:15)
  • We also confess our faith by being willing to suffer for His name (Matthew 5:11-12) – this shows that we truly believe; we glorify God in this (1 Peter 4:16)

Baptism

  • Baptism is the point in which God puts one in the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:13; Acts 2:41, 47) – this is how the non-Christian receives forgiveness of his sins (Acts 2:38); when a Christian sins, he does not need to be re-baptized; he needs to repent and pray (Acts 8:22)
  • How does baptism relate to our Christian life? (Colossians 2:11-13) – in baptism (like circumcision), the body of flesh is removed, so we must walk by the Spirit (Romans 8:6); we are baptized in faith in the working of God, so we must continue to trust in God (Romans 8:31, 35); we have died to the elementary principles of the world (Colossians 2:20), so we must submit to Christ and not to man; since we have been raised with Christ, we must keep seeking the things above (Colossians 3:1-3); we must put off the old man and put on the new man (Colossians 3:5-17)

Conclusion

  • It is vitally important that one obeys the gospel – follow the steps we find emphasized in the New Testament
  • After that, it is just as important to continue – follow these same principles to continue in the faith

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