Salvation From and Unto

We need to be clear about what it means to be saved.

Such a Great Salvation (8)

He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins. Colossians 1.13, 14

Such a great salvation!
The apostle Paul explained that the power of God at work within us, the power of His indwelling Holy Spirit, is exceedingly abundantly greater than all we could ever ask or think (Eph. 3.20). 

Greater for what?

For a clearer vision of Christ and more intimate communion with Him (Col. 3.1-3; 2 Cor. 3.12-18). More continuous and abundant yield of spiritual fruit (Gal. 5.22, 23). Greater consistency and effectiveness in the exercise of spiritual gifts for ministry (1 Cor. 12.7-11). More power to bear witness for Christ, to love God and our neighbors, and to advance His rule of righteousness, peace, and joy on earth as it is in heaven (Acts 1.8; Rom. 14.17, 18).

Our salvation is greater than we can ever know. We can never plumb the depths nor soar to the heights of what God has prepared for us in Jesus Christ. The more we think about and meditate on our great salvation, and the more we ask for a greater measure of it, the more that great and inexhaustible gift will be ours.

We must not neglect this great salvation (Heb. 2.3), which we do when we settle into spiritual complacency, insisting that the current state of our salvation is good enough. 

It’s never good enough. It can always be better. Blessings and benefits and manifestations of grace and truth, beauty and goodness, lovingkindness and righteous judgment await us day by day in our walk with the Lord – bounties of God’s Kingdom and Spirit that fill us with grace and peace, and can turn our world rightside-up for Jesus Christ.

So, as the writer of Hebrews exhorts us, “let us go on to perfection” (Heb. 6.1), and strive to lay firmer hold on the great salvation Jesus has won for us, and which He so earnestly desires us to know.

But to do this, we must have a clear understanding of how great our salvation is. And this begins with understanding what we have been saved from and what we have been saved unto.

Salvation from

The problem with not being saved is that we have nothing with which to compare our condition. We think we’re doing OK, sort of, and that everything’s going to work out soon enough. We’re happy enough, some of the time, and we are managing to get along in life without making too much of a mess of things. Life for people who do not know the salvation of the Lord is good enough, although they’re always open to finding ways of making things a little better.

What lost people don’t realize – and what believers in Jesus must never forget – is that Jesus saves us from a life that is, as Ignatius of Antioch put it, merely a semblance of what God really intends for us (Epistle to the Smyrnaens 4.2). This is because, as the apostle John noted, “the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one” (1 Jn. 5.19), and all the lies and selfishness and guilt and fear and uncertainty and grasping and covering-your-bases that go with life in the kingdom of darkness.

Jesus has delivered us from this dark domain. He has overthrown the power of the devil to deceive, mislead, and corrupt us. He has cancelled the guilt and shame of our sin, banished the fear of death, transported us into the Kingdom of light, and rescued us from the inevitable narcissism of a merely self-referential life. He has exposed and demolished the idols of self and the world that commanded our devotion. He has ripped us free of the clutches of the lie and rested us firmly in the hand of our loving heavenly Father.

We are saved from sin, saved from the devil, saved from fear of death, saved from death itself, and saved from judgment and hell. Hallelujah! What a great salvation!

Salvation unto
But that’s not even half the story. God has “conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love.” We are citizens and ambassadors of a realm of righteousness, peace, and joy that is not of this world, but that comes to us in the Person of the Holy Spirit, Who reconciles us to God through Jesus Christ, and begins the lifelong project of making all things new in our lives.

We have new power to live selflessly, confident that our God will supply all our needs through His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. We are free of the fear of condemnation and death, and are liberated into the joy of knowing God in Jesus Christ and dwelling in His house forever. We have a standard of unchanging truth to guide our paths and a company of faithful fellow sojourners to encourage and assist us on our way. We are embarked on an adventure of being conformed to the very image of Jesus Christ, of creating communities that refract His resurrection and glory into every area of life, and of caring for the creation and renewing culture so that beauty, goodness, and truth shine indelibly into every nook and cranny of the world.

Ours is a great salvation. So great that words cannot begin to describe it. So rich that we can always delight in it more and more. So vast that we can never outgrow it. And so near, so very, very near to us, because it is in us – in Jesus and His Spirit, in His Word, hidden with Him in the presence of the eternal God. Hallelujah! What a great salvation, indeed!

Let us, therefore, go on to perfection!

For reflection
1.  How do you experience the presence of the Holy Spirit, living in you? Do you think there’s yet more for you to experience of Him? Explain.

2.  Why is it important for us to know that we have been conveyed from one kingdom unto the Kingdom of Jesus Christ?

3.  In what areas of our great salvation would you most like to see progress?

Next steps – Preparation: Reflect on your answers to the questions above. Use your answers to lead you into a time of silent meditation and prayer, waiting on the Lord to convict, affirm, and direct you as He will. Share with a Christian friend your answer to the last question.

T. M. Moore

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Except as indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission.

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in Essex Junction, VT. 

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