What is salvation?
Biblical Salvation is both a Who and a what.
God is the Author of all good things.
A huge number of Christians are taught that salvation is of God;
that it is His work;
that it is a free gift
and there are no works that a man can do to receive it;
that it is by “grace alone”.
Did you know that Salvation is a Who?
The Scripture states that:
The LORD is my Light and my Salvation. Psalm 27:1
The LORD is my strength and song, and He is become my Salvation: Exodus 15:2
He also shall be my Salvation: Job 13:16 (see verse 8)
Oh that the Salvation of Israel were come out of Zion! Psalm 14:7 (see Psalm 38:22)
…say unto my soul, I (God) am thy Salvation. Psalm 35:3
Make haste to help me, O Lord my Salvation. Psalm 38:22
Oh that the Salvation (Messiah – Jesus) of Israel were come out of Zion! Psalm 53:6
He only is my rock and my Salvation: He is my defence; I shall not be moved. Psalm 62:6
The LORD is my strength and song, and is become my Salvation. Psalm 118:14
I will praise Thee: for Thou hast heard me, and art become my Salvation. Psalm 118:21
Behold, God is my Salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; He also is become my Salvation. Isaiah 12:2
Behold, thy salvation (Messiah – Jesus) cometh; behold, His reward is with Him, and His work before him. Isaiah 62:11
For mine eyes have seen thy Salvation (Jesus the Christ), Luke 2:30
(words in parenthesis and, the capital “S ” are mine; I did this to clarify and highlight a point)
These thirteen passages each in their context tell us that the LORD (known also as Jehovah with variant spellings), God, – Jesus Christ, is Himself Salvation.
This is the first thing we must understand about the Biblical meaning of salvation for sinners.
the Lord God Almighty is our SALVATION.
Once we can receive this truth into our hearts, all other references to salvation will fall eventually into their place. If we think that salvation is only a work that God does, then we have missed the central truth of God – Who He is.
All GOOD things come from God, the Father of glory.
And salvation for sinners is a very good thing.
To further this simple brief foundational study we will look at the meaning of salvation in the Bible. You can check this out for yourself, as I did.
The Hebrew (represented by “H”) equivalent for the English word salvation is “shua” pronounced yesh oo aw (according to Strong’s Concordance; but there are variations of the spelling and pronunication.).
This word is numbered in Strong’s as 3444. Its various meanings are “Feminine passive participle of H-3467; something saved, that is, (abstractly) deliverance; hence aid, victory, prosperity: – deliverance, health, help (-ing), salvation, save, saving (health), welfare.”
(NOTE: the use of the term “Feminine” as above does not mean that the thing or one referred to ‘God’, is ‘female’)
Another Hebrew word translated as salvation is tshua (8668) (Its meanings are similar to 3444.)
“From H-7768 in the sense of H-3467; rescue (literally or figuratively, personal, national or spiritual): – deliverance, help, safety, salvation, victory.
This word appears in 1 Samuel 11:13; 1 Samuel 19:5.
Another form of the Hebrew word for salvation is yasha, and means essentially the same thing.
Exodus 14:13 and 15:2 use the same Hebrew word for salvation, and it also appears in Psalm 27:1, and Isaiah 12:2, and other places.
The Greek (G) word for Salvation is soteria (G-4991); Feminine of a derivative of G-4990 as (properly abstract) noun; rescue or safety (physically or morally): – deliver, health, salvation, save, saving.
Another form of the Greek is soterion (G-4992); Neuter of the same as G-4991 as (properly concrete) noun; defender or (by implication) defence: – salvation.
The meaning in both languages is more or less identical.
So when we say according to the Holy Scriptures that God is salvation, we are saying that
God is our Deliverer and our Deliverance;
God is our Saviour and our Safety;
God is our Rescuer and our Rescue;
God is our Healer and our Health;
God is our Defender and our Defence;
God is our Helper and our Help;
God is our Redeemer and our Redemption;
God is our Victor and our Victory.
Jesus Christ is all of these things to us and more…and we will receive His benefit if we will believe it of Him.
The reality is only applicable to each individual on the basis of practical outworked faith that God grants to us
God often gives a person a gentle peaceful yet insistent urge to accept it as truth for them personally.
Some folk may find this hard to believe that GOD Himself is salvation.
Some ‘Christians’ may find it hard to believe too.
But it is very easy for us who believe with childlike faith that the Holy Bible is God’s Word,
to accept the following statements such as –
‘God is Light’ – 1 John 1:5
‘God is love’ – 1 John 4:8.
It only needs the same simple trust or believing employed in accepting the above, as it does for believing the statements about God being Salvation, for this too to become our reality.
It really is quite exciting and liberating.
It answers a lot of questions which may not have otherwise been answered.
If we can accept the truth of God’s Word that says GOD IS LIGHT, then many questions that may arise concerning spiritual light (or natural physical light; sun moon, stars, insects etc, ) will eventually fit into their place.
If we can accept the the truthful statement that says God is the ‘Father of lights’ – James 1:17, then this will become a foundational stone in understanding where all other ‘lights’ came from in their original and pure state.
If we can accept Jesus’ words as truth when He says that the Devil is a murderer from the beginning and the father of lies – John 8:44, then this will also be foundational in understanding where all lies and murders come from, and why they take place.
In the same way, as we grow in understanding the declarations of God Himself being “Salvation”, “my Salvation” etc, we will be greatly helped in understanding the work and nature of salvation as a work that God does for mankind.
To be continued…