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Featured How were people before the time of Jesus saved?

Discussion in 'General Theology' started by zoidar, Oct 8, 2018.

  1. zoidar

    zoidar Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I have heard it be said that the people before the time of Jesus were saved by faith in the saviour who was to come, but I don't know.

    Did someone like Abel knew to trust in the saviour to come? Did the OT-people knew to trust in the saviour for salvation? Is there even one verse in the OT that says that salvation comes from trusting in a future saviour? Aren't OT more about keeping the Laws and following God?

    I know there are a lot of prophecies in the OT about Jesus, still did the people understand these prophecies? Didn't even the Jews believe that Christ was going to be an earthly ruler?
     
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  2. Al Masihi

    Al Masihi Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Before Jesus, any Jew who followed the law of Moses was saved and any Gentile who followed the law of Noah was saved.
     
  3. zoidar

    zoidar Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The Law of Noah?

    And Abel?
     
  4. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    They were saved just as we are, only they had less detail than the gospel provides for us.

    “But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.” (Romans 8:9)
     
  5. Lost4words

    Lost4words Like a puppy, i need guidance.

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    Jesus went down to the dead, when He died on the cross and saved those that heard and believed.
     
  6. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Not supported directly by scripture.
     
  7. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    We don't know for sure. However, there are people in the Old Testament whom God judged to be righteous because of their fidelity to him and his laws. While it is not the case that they never sinned, and they did not know the Messiah, God has some standard that they met.

    The usual belief is that after the Crucifixion, Jesus went into the afterlife where they had been waiting, proclaimed his triumph, and they were freed to move to Heaven (thanks of course to the redeeming work of Christ on the Cross).
     
  8. Anthony7

    Anthony7 Rigatoni Supporter

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    I've been intrigued by this subject for a long time. I do believe people in the O.T. time were saved the same way as today, by repentance and faith in God's promises. Abraham believed God's promise for him regarding his descendants, and it was stated that this was credited to him as righteousness (Romans 4:3, Genesis 15:5-6). There could also be evidence to suggest the same for Adam and Eve, that they were saved by believe in God's promises.

    However, the role of the Holy Spirit was different back then. Since Jesus' sacrifice for us on the cross and His glorification, the Holy Spirit now empowers all believers. But beforehand, people were only empowered by the Spirit for service.

    What was the Old Testament way of salvation?
     
  9. Al Masihi

    Al Masihi Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Before Noah there was no string of commandments to follow, it was just believing in the One God of Adam.
     
  10. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Hebrews 11 lists many OT saints who had the Holy Spirit and his fruit - faith.
     
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  11. Soyeong

    Soyeong Well-Known Member

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    Grace and faithfulness have always been important attributes of God (Exodus 34:6-7) and every example of saving faith listed in Hebrews 11 is of someone in the OT. In particular, Hebrews 11:7 listed Noah as an example and in Genesis 6:8-9 it says that he found grace in the eyes of God and that he was a righteous man, so he was declared righteous by grace through faith in the same way as everyone else. In Matthew 23:23, Jesus said that faith is one of the weightier matters of the Law and in Psalm 119:29, David wanted God to be gracious to him by teaching him to obey His Law, so the same goes for him. Likewise, Jesus said in John 8:56 that Abraham rejoiced to see his day and was glad, so Abraham was also justified by grace through faith. Furthermore, in Luke 24:27, Jesus began with Moses and the Prophets interpreting to them all of the things in Scripture concerning himself, in Hebrews 10:7, the volume of the scroll is written about Jesus, and in Romans 10:4, Jesus is the goal of the Law for righteousness for everyone who has faith, so following God's Law has always been about growing in a relationship with Christ based on faith and love. Jesus was slain before the foundation of the world, so having faith in Him as our redeemer has always been the plan, which God first started to reveal in the Garden (Genesis 3:15).
     
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  12. redleghunter

    redleghunter Abide Boldy my friend Supporter

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    It has always been by faith in God establishing and keeping His Promises:

    Hebrews 11: NASB
    1Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. 2For by it the men of old gained approval.

    3By faith we understand that the worlds were prepared by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things which are visible. 4By faith Abel offered to God a better sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained the testimony that he was righteous, God testifying about his gifts, and through faith, though he is dead, he still speaks. 5By faith Enoch was taken up so that he would not see death; AND HE WAS NOT FOUND BECAUSE GOD TOOK HIM UP; for he obtained the witness that before his being taken up he was pleasing to God. 6And without faith it is impossible to please Him,for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him. 7By faith Noah, being warned by God about things not yet seen, in reverence prepared an ark for the salvation of his household, by which he condemned the world, and became an heir of the righteousness which is according to faith.

    8By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed by going out to a place which he was to receive for an inheritance; and he went out, not knowing where he was going. 9By faith he lived as an alien in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, dwelling in tents with Isaac and Jacob, fellow heirs of the same promise; 10for he was looking for the city which has foundations, whose architect and builder is God. 11By faith even Sarah herself received ability to conceive, even beyond the proper time of life, since she considered Him faithful who had promised. 12Therefore there was born even of one man, and him as good as dead at that, as many descendants AS THE STARS OF HEAVEN IN NUMBER, AND INNUMERABLE AS THE SAND WHICH IS BY THE SEASHORE.

    13All these died in faith, without receiving the promises, but having seen them and having welcomed them from a distance, and having confessed that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. 14For those who say such things make it clear that they are seeking a country of their own. 15And indeed if they had been thinking of that country from which they went out, they would have had opportunity to return. 16But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God; for He has prepared a city for them.

    17By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was offering up his only begotten son; 18it was he to whom it was said, “IN ISAAC YOUR DESCENDANTS SHALL BE CALLED.” 19He considered that God is able to raise people even from the dead, from which he also received him back as a type.20By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau, even regarding things to come. 21By faith Jacob, as he was dying, blessed each of the sons of Joseph, and worshiped, leaning on the top of his staff. 22By faith Joseph, when he was dying, made mention of the exodus of the sons of Israel, and gave orders concerning his bones.

    23By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden for three months by his parents, because they saw he was a beautiful child; and they were not afraid of the king’s edict. 24By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, 25choosing rather to endure ill-treatment with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, 26considering the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt; for he was looking to the reward. 27By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king; for he endured, as seeing Him who is unseen. 28By faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of the blood, so that he who destroyed the firstborn would not touch them. 29By faith they passed through the Red Sea as though they were passing through dry land; and the Egyptians, when they attempted it, were drowned.

    30By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they had been encircled for seven days. 31By faith Rahab the harlot did not perish along with those who were disobedient, after she had welcomed the spies in peace.

    32And what more shall I say? For time will fail me if I tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets, 33who by faith conquered kingdoms, performed acts ofrighteousness, obtained promises, shut the mouths of lions,34quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, from weakness were made strong, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight. 35Women received back their dead by resurrection; and others were tortured, not accepting their release, so that they might obtain a better resurrection; 36and others experienced mockings and scourgings, yes, also chains and imprisonment. 37They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were tempted, they were put to death with the sword; they went about in sheepskins, in goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, ill-treated 38(men of whom the world was not worthy), wandering in deserts and mountains and caves and holes in the ground.

    39And all these, having gained approval through their faith, did not receive what was promised, 40because God had provided something better for us, so that apart from us they would not be made perfect.
     
  13. Anthony7

    Anthony7 Rigatoni Supporter

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    Agreed. I do believe they were all empowered for service by the Holy Spirit.
     
  14. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Aren't we all?
     
  15. Hank77

    Hank77 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    By grace through faith.
     
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  16. Anthony7

    Anthony7 Rigatoni Supporter

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    Now we are, yes. But based on my understanding, not everyone who was saved back in the Old Testament times were empowered like we are today (Acts of the Apostles 2:17); people were only empowered for a certain task. Just like how Sarah received power as stated in Hebrews 11:11:

    Reference: What was the role of the Holy Spirit in the Old Testament?
     
  17. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Much of what people miss is in the gifts of the Spirit being unique to Pentecost. But many OT faithful were there that day and converted from the Old Covenant to the New. They remained believers as always.
     
  18. TuxAme

    TuxAme Quis ut Deus?

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    I want you to know, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, and all ate the same supernatural food and all drank the same supernatural drink. For they drank from the supernatural Rock which followed them, and the Rock was Christ. Nevertheless with most of them God was not pleased; for they were overthrown in the wilderness.
     
  19. Greg J.

    Greg J. Well-Known Member Supporter

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    @zoidar, salvation has always been through the same way: through humility, believe in the real God, recognize that you deserve punishment for your sins, know God well enough to trust/know he will save you. At some point in Jesus' life, the Father granted Jesus authority over all and made him judge of all that all might honor the Son, because of what Jesus was going to do for all mankind.

    Moreover, the Father judges no one, but has entrusted all judgment to the Son, that all may honor the Son just as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father, who sent him. (John 5:22-23, 1984 NIV)
     
  20. dqhall

    dqhall Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Jeremiah was prophesying to Jerusalem telling them the Babylonians were coming and unless they surrendered, there would be great losses. The king imprisoned him to silence him and had a similar prophet killed. The city ran out of bread and the Babylonians captured Jerusalem. They deported many of those who survived to Babylon. Since Jeremiah told the truth about what was going to happen, God saved him. People who believe God get saved to this day.
     
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