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Salvation

 

Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that:

  • To be saved a person must take 9 steps [1]:
    • Take in knowledge of Jehovah and Jesus through JW publications
    • Increase in faith that this is “the Truth”
    • Pray regularly, but only to Jehovah
    • Associate regularly, but only with JWs
    • Repent of sins continually
    • Turn around, clean up his life according to the rules of the organisation
    • Start to preach using the JW message and literature
    • Dedicate his life
    • Baptism in recognition of the organisation [2] then endure to the end as a loyal JW
  • One need not be born again to be saved [3]
  • It is presumptuous for a Christian to say that he has been saved [4]
  • A Christian has no assurance of salvation [5]

What does mainstream Christianity believe?

Q1. What is the condition before God of the unsaved?

Answer: Lost and hopeless; alienated and condemned; sinners and enemies of God – dead to Him

Matt 8:22 Jesus said to him, “Follow me, and leave the dead to bury their own dead.”

Luke 15:24 For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to celebrate.

John 3:16,18,36 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life … whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God … whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.”

Rom 5:10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.

Eph 2:1-3 And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience … and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.

(Also, Matt 10:6; Luke 13:1-5; 19:10; Col 2:13; 2 Thess 1:7-9; Rev 20:15)

Q2. How can one be saved?

Answer: Stop relying on trying to be religious or righteous. He chooses us, so repent and believe in Jesus to find eternal rest (Matt 11:28-30)

Matt 19:25-26 They were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?”  But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

John 3:14-16 As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

John 15:16 You did not choose me, but I chose you

Acts 13:38-39,48 “Through this man forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you, and by him everyone who believes is freed from everything from which you could not be freed by the law of Moses.” … When the Gentiles heard this, they began rejoicing and glorifying the word of the Lord, and as many as were appointed to eternal life believed.

Acts 16:29-31 The jailer … said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.”

Rom 10:9-10,13 If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved…  For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord [Jesus] will be saved.”

1 Pet 2:24 He [Jesus] himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.

Rev 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.

(Also Isa 53:4-9; Mark 16:16; John 3:36; 6:47; Acts 3:19-21)

Q3. Is it proper for a Christian to say that he has been saved?

Answer: Yes. Scriptures talk about salvation as finished, as past, at the point of believing but like an engagement that culminates in a wedding day and honeymoon our new covenant relationship with Christ grows and matures (Eph 2:8-9; 1 Cor 1:18; Rom 5:9)

[For Matt 24:13 see Scripture Explainer; for John 3:3-5 see Born again]

John 3:36 “Whoever believes in the Son HAS eternal life

John 5:24 “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me HAS eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life”

Rom 5:11 We also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we HAVE NOW received reconciliation.

Rom 8:1-2 There is therefore NOW no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life HAS set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.

Eph 2:4-8 God … made us alive together with Christ – by grace you HAVE BEEN saved. …For by grace you HAVE BEEN saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God

2 Tim 1:8-9 God, who SAVED us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace

1 John 5:11,13 This is the testimony, that God GAVE us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. … 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.

(Also, John 6:47; Eph 4:32; Phil 4:3; Heb 10:19; 1 Pet 1:23; 1 John 3:14)

Q4. How can a Christian have the assurance that he has been saved?

Answer:

  1. Salvation is a gift based entirely on what Jesus has done not upon our good (or bad) conduct / works
  2. Father and Son are securely holding us
  3. the Spirit has permanently sealed us 
  4. although we sin at times our desires and direction of life has changed

John 10:28 “I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand.”

John 13:10 Jesus said to him, “The one who has bathed does not need to wash, except for his feet, but is completely clean. And you are clean, but not every one of you.”

Rom 6:9–11 We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God. So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.

Rom 8:1,16 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. … The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God

Rom 8:30 Those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.

2 Cor 1:21-22 It is God who establishes us with you in Christ, and has anointed us, and who has also put his seal on us and given us his Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.

Eph 1:13-14 In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.

Phil 1:6 I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.

1 Thess 1:4-5 For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not only in word, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction.

Heb 10:10,14 By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. … For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.

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.

Rev 3:5 The one who conquers will be clothed thus in white garments, and I will NEVER blot his name out of the book of life. I will confess his name before my Father and before his angels.

(Also, John 5:24; 2 Cor 13:5; Eph 4:30; Col 3:3-4; Phil 4:3; Heb 10:35

Q5. Does a Christian await future, bodily salvation?

Answer: Yes. The resurrected body of the believer will, in some ways, be like the resurrected body of Christ.

Rom 5:9-10 Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.

Rom 8:11 If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.

Eph 4:30 Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.

Phil 3:20-21 We await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself.

1 Pet 1:4-5 By God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

 (Also, 1 Cor 15:38,42-48; 1 John 3:2)

 Summary

  • To be saved one must believe on the Lord Jesus Christ
  • One must be born again to be saved
  • The test of salvation is: is Jesus in you? (2 Cor 13:5)
  • The indwelling Holy Spirit gives the Christian assurance of salvation
  • It is proper for a Christian to say that he has been saved
  • A Christian awaits future, bodily salvation

 Endnotes

  1. Watchtower 2013 March 15th pp 15-20
  2. Watchtower 2020 March pp 8-13 (revised baptism questions)
  3. Reasoning pp 77-78
  4. Reasoning p 358
  5. Revelation Climax pp 115-116

 

Article Credits: KevinQuick.com

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