Salvation ~

An Inheritance


 

When speaking about Jesus Christ, God's Word says,
Ephesians 1:13,14
    "In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth,
the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed,
ye were sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise, which is the earnest
of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession,
unto the praise of his glory."

Notice the last part...it says that our being "sealed with the Holy
Spirit" is the "earnest" of our inheritance.  This word "earnest" means
the same as "pledge" or "deposit".   Like when a down payment is made on
something we are buying...

In this verse (as in other places in the Bible) God calls our salvation
an "inheritance". (see Romans 8:15-17 and additional verses)
This is because when we are united with Christ we become a "joint-heir"
with Him of the Father's kingdom.  But just as an earthly heir, who has
not yet received his father's inheritance...even so we, as heirs with
Christ, have not yet fully entered into OUR  inheritance...that will come when
we physically die or if we are present at Christ's coming when He
raptures the remaining saints who are still physically on this earth.
Although an earthly heir has not yet been given his inheritance, does he
still own it?  the answer is YES.  It is in his account until the time appointed for him
to receive his inheritance.

Christ has fully paid the price for our salvation and purchased for us
the right to be heirs of God.  (Hebrews 10:14; 1 Peter 1:18,19)
As heirs of God we already own the treasures of the Father's kingdom.
We have not yet, however, entered into that kingdom with our whole being.
We can begin to experience some of those treasures now though-- through
God's Spirit -- which He has given us as a deposit upon us guaranteeing our
inheritance to come.  Just as Ephesians 1:14 explains that the Spirit is the
pledge (or guarantee) of our inheritance "until the redemption of the purchased possession".
We are the possessions God has in view.   And although Christ has already
paid for us in full...and we are His, belonging to him completely (1 Corinthians 6:19,20)
and can never be parted from Him...(Romans 8:38,39; John 10:27-30; Hebrews 13:5)
the Bible is also clear that to be present in the body is to be "absent from the Lord".
2 Corinthians 5:1-8
 "For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were
dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands,
eternal in the heavens.
2 For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with
our house which is from heaven:
3 If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked.
4 For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not
for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be
swallowed up of life.
5 Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who
also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit.  (here's that word
"earnest" again --meaning "pledge")
6 Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at
home in the body, we are absent from the Lord:
7 (For we walk by faith, not by sight:)
8 We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the
body, and to be present with the Lord."

We walk by "faith" trusting that God will carry out this aspect of our
salvation and give us a new body or in the sense this passage speaks "a
new house" (vs1) We are with the Lord in Spirit now presently...but not in body.
(2 Corinthians 5:6) That will occur when He brings us to be with Him in Heaven.
(1 Corinthians 15:51-53; Philippians 3:21) This is our hope as believers, what we
are trusting God will do for us, and one aspect of our salvation.  But
"hope that is seen is not hope" as Romans 8:24 says -- so although we do not
yet see this aspect of our salvation fulfilled yet, we know that IT WILL HAPPEN
because Jesus already purchased for us this right.  Until then we patiently wait for the
"redemption of our body" Romans 8:23.

The Bible says,
1 Corinthians 15:44
"It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body,
and there is a spiritual body."
We are physical beings and spiritual beings.  The moment we truly believe
we are saved in our spirit and soul and body. (John 5:24) But only our spirit
becomes regenerated (or changed) for now.  (John 3:5-8; Romans 7:14-25; 8:10)
Our body will be changed when we leave this world.  In the mean time we have
to wrestle with it's continuing sinful desires...
The apostle Paul mentions this in Romans 7 and says,
Romans 7:22-25
"For I delight in the law of God after the inward man:
23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of
my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my
members.
24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of
this death?
25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind
I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin."

Who shall deliver us from the body of this death?  Our Savior who has
already purchase for us our deliverance...THANKS BE TO GOD!

In the mean time, we have to be careful to be fed by God's Spirit through
His Word, prayer and fellowship -- because ONLY then will we find the
strength to stand against the lusts of the flesh.
Galations 5:16-18
"This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill
the lust of the flesh.
17 For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against
the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot
do the things that ye would.
18 But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law".

We have to be careful, not because we might somehow lose our
salvation....
but because we cannot be an effective witness if we gratify the desires
of the flesh, and this is our main purpose as believers in this life -- to be God's
instruments in the salvation of others.
The Bible mentions that  we need to be on our guard because Satan
"walks about as a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour" (1 Peter 5:8)
Well, he cannot take away our salvation, but he can render our life
ineffective if we neglect our relationship with the Lord.  This would
bring immense grief to the true believer...but the Lord promises to
chastise those He loves, and correct us and not let us wander away from
Him. (Hebrews 12:6; 1 Peter 1:17-19)  He will keep us unto the end!

Philippians 1:6
"Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a
good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:"

Hebrews 12:2
"Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith;
who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising
the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God."

1 Peter 1:3-5
"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time."

Philippians 3:20,21
"For our conversation (Old English for "citizenship") is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself."
 
 
 

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