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Work Out Your Own Salvation

Discussion in 'General Theology' started by dreadnought, Sep 16, 2017.

  1. dreadnought

    dreadnought Lip service isn't really service. Supporter

    United States
    United Methodist
    But if we could work out our own salvation, not only would it make the Lord's job easier, it would make us feel safer, don't you think?
  2. Anguspure

    Anguspure Kaitiaki Peacemakers NZ Supporter

    New Zealand
    If you are referring to good works, maybe you would feel safer, maybe you are a good person.
    But me and many that I know? Without the hope in the promise of His total one sided Love I am a dead man. It is only because I trust that He has everything sorted on my behalf that I can live in hope of salvation, because my works without Him are so contaminated with sin I am totally spiritually bankrupt.
    So I can say for myself: "Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of God. Blessed are those who mourn for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek because they will inherit the land and; Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness for they will be filled."

    Would it make His job easier? All I can say is that He has finished His work, it was done on the cross, so how those of us who live now could possibly effect the finished work of the cross I am not sure. I think it is simply for us to accept the gift that He has offered us, thankfully and entering into relationship with Him because of it.
  3. mukk_in

    mukk_in Yankees Fan Supporter

    One way is through godly deeds and christian service (faith expressing itself through love) :).
  4. Ron Gurley

    Ron Gurley What U See is What U Get!

    United States
    OP: MODIFIED: Q: how does "one" (Believers ONLY!) "work out" (act within?) their "own" (spiritual relationship with God) "salvation"? (SANCTIFICATION?!)"

    Philippians 2:1-18 (ALL NASB)...Paul to saved Believers: theme: BE LIKE CHRIST!
    12 So then, (SEE: verses 2:1-11)
    my beloved, (fellow BELIEVERS)
    just as you have always OBEYED,
    not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence,
    "work out" your "salvation" (PROGRESSIVE SANCTIFICATION?)
    with fear and trembling;(REVERENTIAL AWE!)
    13 for it is God (the Holy Spirit) who is at work "IN" you, both to (SPIRITUALLY) will and to (PRACTICALLY) work for HIS good pleasure.

    work out...Greek 2716...katergazomai...accomplish; (by implication), to finish, fashion
    I.to perform, accomplish, achieve
    II.to work out i.e. to do that from which something results A.of things: bring about, result in
    III.to fashion i.e. >>>render one fit for a thing<<<

    salvation...Greek 4991...sōtēria...
    I.deliverance, preservation, safety, (salvation)
    A.deliverance from the molestation (prison) of enemies
    B.in an ethical sense, that which concludes to the soul's (spirit's) safety or salvation
    i.of Messianic salvation
    II.salvation (completed action) as the present possession of all true Christians (Christ-followers)
    the sum of benefits and blessings which the Christians, redeemed from all earthly ills,
    will enjoy after the visible return of Christ from heaven in the consummated and eternal kingdom of God.

    Romans 6:22
    But now having been freed from sin and enslaved to God (the Holy Spirit), (=salvation EVENT)
    you derive your BENEFIT,
    resulting in SANCTIFICATION, (= A PROCESS!)
    and the outcome, eternal (SPIRITUAL) life.

    sanctification...Greek 38...hagiasmos...
    I.consecration, purification
    II.the effect of consecration (being "set aside")
    A.sanctification of heart and life

    2 Thess. 2:13
    But we should always give thanks to God for you,
    brethren beloved by the Lord,
    because God has chosen you from the beginning for salvation through sanctification
    by (God) the Holy Spirit and faith in the truth.


    Spiritual POSITION ...VERSUS...Man's PRACTICE

    "How God views Man's SPIRIT ...VERSUS... "Christian Living"

    I WAS SAVED from the PRISON of SIN in the PAST....simple "saving faith"...John 3 explained in Ephesians 2...BENEFITS: "FORGIVENESS OF SINS" +
    1. Substitution: "in the place of"
    2. Redemption: " pay ransom, remove, and release "
    3. Reconciliation: "alienation ends"
    4. Propititation: "satisfaction with action"
    5. Sin Nature Judged: "good overcomes bad"...nature changed
    6. Justification: "view: Just-if-I..never" SINNED by the Advocate
    7. Sanctification: 'process of being set aside for God, becoming more holy, following Jesus' precepts and example

    I AM BEING saved from the POWER of SIN in the PRESENT

    ....influence of the PERMANENTLY indwelling God the Holy Spirit, comforting and guiding "battles" against the foes: World + Flesh + devil
    Sanctification (setting apart) is Progressive.
    "Good works" are guided by God the Holy Spirit to eventual "Judgment of Believer's Works."
    SEE: 2 Corinthians 5: 1-15 (NIV) + 1 Corinthians 3:10-15 (NIV) + Romans 14:10b,12 (1-23)
    Faith put to WORK! ...Becoming more Christ-like by following His precepts and Spiritual guidance.
    Philippians 2:12 ...work out...Hebrews 12:1 ...run race

    NOTE: (Saving) FAITH without (spiritully guided following ) WORKS is DEAD (judged spiritually useless)...a paraphrase of James. SEE: James 2:22

    I WILL BE saved from the PRESENCE of SIN in the FUTURE

    ...Eternity in the NEW Heavens and NEW Earth and NEW Jerusalem, with the Tri-Une God! Revelation 21-22

    The Spiritual Gift of Grace of God + The Spirit-Led Belief/Faith of Man =
    Spiritual SALVATION and SANCTIFICATION of Man...Past / Present / Future
  5. Emmy

    Emmy Senior Veteran

    Salvation Army
    Dear dreadnought. In Matthew 22: 35-40: Jesus told us: " The first and great Commandment is: Love God with all thy heart, with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. The second is like it: love thy neighbour as thyself." In verse 40 we are told: On these two Commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets." our neighbour is all we know and all we meet. God is Love, and God wants loving sons and daughters.
    The Bible tells us: give up all selfish and unloving thoughts and wishes, ask God for Love and Compassion, Matthew 7: 7-10: then thank God and share all love and compassion and joy with all around us. God Loves us and God wants loving men and women. Love is very catching, and when we ask for Love and Compassion, God will give us Love and Compassion. Then we thank God and share all love, compassion, and joy with our neighbour. God will see our love and compassion, and joy, and God will BLESS us greatly. Why not try it, dreadnought? Ask and receive, then thank God and start loving and caring. Let us turn this unfriendly world into a world where God is loved, and ALWAYS Loving Us.
    I say this with love, and send greetings. Emmy, your sister in Christ.
  6. dreadnought

    dreadnought Lip service isn't really service. Supporter

    United States
    United Methodist
    But if the Lord showed us an easy way to stay out of trouble, I would think that would appeal to you.
  7. dreadnought

    dreadnought Lip service isn't really service. Supporter

    United States
    United Methodist
    I would think it would even be more important to resist the temptation to sin. Add to that Godly deeds and Christian service, which are fun to perform, and you've got a plan, don't you?
  8. dreadnought

    dreadnought Lip service isn't really service. Supporter

    United States
    United Methodist
    Actually, it said "salvation," not "sanctification," though I believe lasting salvation rests on our willingness to repent of our sin.
  9. dreadnought

    dreadnought Lip service isn't really service. Supporter

    United States
    United Methodist
    Yes, in the end I think we need to repent of our sin. The Lord gets us out of the scrapes we get ourselves into, but he expects us to learn from our mistakes.
  10. Bible Highlighter

    Bible Highlighter Law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul. Supporter

    United States
    Perfect love casts out fear (1 John 4:18).

    Are we to assume the word "fear" in the Bible is merely "reverence for God" in this verse?

    Or does the word "fear" change when we don't like it in a certain part of the Bible?

    Also, how does one cast out fear with perfect love?

    By keeping His Word.

    For Scripture says we can perfect the love of God in our life by keeping His Word (1 John 2:5).
  11. Bible Highlighter

    Bible Highlighter Law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul. Supporter

    United States
    What is one reason a believer works out their salvation with fear and trembling?

    Well, the Bible says,

    “Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.” (James 1:12).

    You either believe God's Word here or you don't believe it.

    My encouragement to folks is to believe God's Word and do not seek to change it just because we may not like what it says.

    Believe, my friends.
  12. Anguspure

    Anguspure Kaitiaki Peacemakers NZ Supporter

    New Zealand
    While I realize you are just following the possibilities, it seems to me that you are asking the impossible question a bit like asking what would happen if God made the colour two smell like roses. A person who is able to dispense with moral justice is not God, any more than a person who does not Love perfectly.
    Besides He has showed me an easy way. Trust Him, job done.
  13. throughfireytrial

    throughfireytrial Truth-Lover Supporter

    I look at that verse as a manner of speaking. For as a manner of speaking this is what we do while here on earth; do we not? We have to be careful not to fall from our secure position says II Peter 3:17-18:
    Therefore, dear friends, since you have been forewarned, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless and fall from your secure position. 18 But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen.

    The above passages allude to the binding of the sinful flesh (keeping it in check through prayer and being vigilant or watchful) and growing in the love of God. We do or must work (exert ourselves) toward the end of achieving our goal of salvation. The passages that follow illustrate this for us:
    I Corinthians 9:24-27:
    24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. 25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 26 Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. 27 No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.
  14. aiki

    aiki Regular Member

    The Christian only works out what God has first worked into him. We are totally dependent upon God for everything. He not only brought each of us into existence but sustains our physical being moment-by-moment. If God ceased to exist in the next instant, so would we. The idea, then, that we can in any measure be truly independent of God is utterly false. We are, and always will be, contingent creatures, completely reliant upon God for both physical and spiritual life. Paul was exactly right when he wrote in the passage above that God works in us both the desire and the ability to do His will. If He does not, we cannot act to love and serve Him.

    John 15:4-5
    4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.
    5 I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.

    Romans 8:11-13
    11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.
    12 Therefore, brethren, we are debtors--not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh.
    13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

    Galatians 5:22-25
    22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
    23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
    24 And those who are Christ's have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.
    25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

    OP, you've remarked that God wants us to be happy. I disagree:

    Our Happiness Is Not God's Ultimate Goal. | Christian Forums
  15. Wordkeeper

    Wordkeeper Newbie

    Let's start out with a general example and then go to a biblical one.

    Many projects are difficult and costly ones. Suppose we decide to start out on a plan to live a healthy life. It would involve giving up oily food, sweets, alcohol, smoking, gluttony, and taking up exercising and sleeping early.

    Well some would think it too difficult and costly in terms of giving up some pleasures. It wouldn't matter if the end results were the same whether living healthy lifestyles or not, but the fact is that those who do make sacrifices live longer and better.

    SO the situation is like this:

    Option 1 Give up bad habits, begin good ones, live longer and better.

    Option 2 Continue with bad habits, avoid good ones, live shorter and lower quality loves.

    There is no magic bullet, no shortcuts, no pills that give you the result of Option 1.

    The Israelites in the Exodus event lived a poor life, with less sacrifices in Egypt.

    God offered them a better life, if they were willing to be loyal to Him, go through dangerous training, take risks.

    They CHOSE the poorer option, they spoke out loudly to be taken BACK. They feared stepping out, taking risks. Even though God had demonstrated His ability and willingness to carry them to the final outcome.

    In the New Testament, it says that many people feared joining the disciples:

    Acts 5:12, 13
    12At the hands of the apostles many signs and wonders were taking place among the people; and they were all with one accord in Solomon’s portico.

    13But none of the rest dared to associate with them; however, the people held them in high esteem.

    They too CHOSE the poorer option. They feared stepping out, taking risks.Even though God again had demonstated His ability and willingness to carry them to the final outcome.

    This is why people refuse to become believers, because no one believes in a free lunch, that there is no gain without pain, although this fact is lost in unnecessarily jumping to other conclusions. Don´t let your theology get in the way of what the text actually says.
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2017
  16. mikeforjesus

    mikeforjesus Senior Member Supporter

    But unless the Lord guards the city the watchman stays awake in vain

    So it is God saving you and not you yourself

    If you keep trying to stop sin on your own you will fall often I recently fell

    I think God is looking for people with relationship with Him not people trying to save themselves. People who are preserved in prayer and walking in the Spirit that they may not fulfill the lust of the flesh

    God does not want us to reach the point of being tempted and having to fight it but watch that we may not enter temptation at all. Let the Lord guard your heart so when temptation strikes externally you don't respond to it if you have spent enough time with the Lord otherwise you have to fight a lot and may fall often and fail

    Therefore there is no successful watching without praying and spending time with the Lord reading the bible and doing the commandments but you don't do that at expense of work that we are called to do as we are called to trade with talents but you do them together.
  17. Wordkeeper

    Wordkeeper Newbie

    No one is arguing for a salvation by self effort. Joshua stepped out to face the Canaanites, but it was God who did the fighting for him:

    Deuteronomy 1:30
    'The LORD your God who goes before you will Himself fight on your behalf, just as He did for you in Egypt before your eyes,

    Deuteronomy 3:22
    'Do not fear them, for the LORD your God is the one fighting for you.'

    Deuteronomy 31:6
    "Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid or tremble at them, for the LORD your God is the one who goes with you. He will not fail you or forsake you."

    Joshua 23:10
    "One of your men puts to flight a thousand, for the LORD your God is He who fights for you, just as He promised you.

    The take away lesson is to be loyal to God, to take up your Cross daily.

    Jesus took up His Cross daily, went into dangerous situations, and God always delivered Him. Finally in the eponymous act, He picked up the real Cross, laid down His life, as the Father commanded, and God again raised him up, confirming His ability and willingness of to restore, save, lead into Eternal Life, Rest.

    Working out your salvation is experiencing the resurrection daily, after picking up your cross daily, till when God asks you to make the final step, face Canaan, you are ready. Like Joshua. Like Abraham. At the TODAY, the Day of the Lord.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2017
  18. mikeforjesus

    mikeforjesus Senior Member Supporter

    Thankyou wordkeeper for your explanation