Temporal SalvationBy Pastor Boffey on Sunday, March 8, 2009.
TEMPORAL SALVATION I. Temporal: “Lasting or existing only for a time; passing, temporary. Of or pertaining to time as the sphere of human life; terrestrial as opposed to heavenly; of man's present life as distinguished from a future existence; concerning or involving merely the material interests of this world; worldly, earthly. (Opp. to eternal or spiritual).” See 2CO 4:18. II. The question is often asked, “Are you saved?” A. A legitimate answer to the question is “From what?” Salvation must be qualified. B. The word “saved” is synonymous with “delivered.” JOE 2:32 c/w ACT 2:21; ROM 10:13; JOS 2:12-13. III. A proper understanding of salvation is based upon a fundamental rule of Bible study: there are no contradictions in the Bible. 2PE 1:20; ROM 12:6; PRO 8:8; MAT 4:4. A. There are verses in Scripture which speak of salvation as conditional. B. There are verses in Scripture which speak of salvation as unconditional. C. God is not double-minded; there is reconciliation of these verses. IV. Scripture makes plain that the eternal salvation (election unto justification, regeneration, deliverance from death in sin and from sin's penalty, and final resurrection) of sinners is entirely by the will of God through the covenant-work of Christ and it is a completed work, unconditional in nature. A. Election (God's choice, MAR 13:20) of sinners unto the saving power of Christ's blood is not based upon man's work or will. 1PE 1:2 c/w ROM 8:28-30; ROM 9:11-16. B. Regeneration or being born again as a child of God also is not based upon man's work or will. JOH 1:12-13; 3:8; 6:63; 2TI 1:9; TIT 3:5. C. The acquisition of Christ's righteousness is not based upon man's work or will. ROM 4:6; 5:19; 2CO 5:21. D. Sin has so corrupted fallen man that he has neither desire nor ability to respond genuinely to a conditional eternal salvation. PSA 10:4; ISA 64:6; ROM 8:7-8, 14; 2CO 4:3-4. E. The work of eternal salvation which brings the elect into favor with God is a completed work. JOH 17:2-4; HEB 1:3; 9:12; GAL 3:13; 2TI 1:9. V. Because of verses like ACT 16:31, many contend that the acquisition of eternal life is indeed conditional, and that upon our belief. A. It is said that belief is not a work, and therefore does not fall under the exclusion of human works which many verses declare. 1. Work: “Something that is or was done; what a person does or did.” 2. ACT 16:30-31 makes it clear that our belief is something that we DO and is therefore a work. c/w MAT 23:23. 3. Other Scriptures prove that the exercise of our belief is a work. JOH 6:28-29; 1TH 1:3; HEB 4:1-3, 9-11; JAM 2:22. B. If “saved” always means eternal salvation and belief is a condition which men must fulfil to acquire it, then what about: 1. confessing? ROM 10:9-10. a. Some contend that believing and confessing are the same thing. b. See JOH 12:42. 2. baptism? MAR 16:16. 3. calling on the name of the Lord? ACT 2:21. 4. marine travel? ACT 27:31. 5. hope? ROM 8:24. 6. good memory? 1CO 15:2. 7. pregnant? 1TI 2:15. 8. a doctrinally stedfast preacher? 1TI 4:16. 9. works? JAM 2:14, 17. 10. never folding or backsliding? MAT 24:13. C. There are diverse salvations / deliverances. PSA 44:4; 18:17, 43, 48; 107:6; 116:8. VI. Given that eternal salvation is unconditional and already completed, and given that there is obviously salvation that is conditioned upon faith and obedience, it stands to reason that there is a salvation OTHER THAN eternal salvation that is for believers. A. Mark that the possession of eternal life must precede believing. JOH 5:24; ACT 13:39, 48; 1JO 5:1. 1. It is a just (justified) man who shall live by faith. HEB 10:38. 2. The confession of belief that Jesus is Lord and Christ is PROOF of God's Spirit within. MAT 16:16-17; 1CO 12:3. B. Paul labored, not to make men elect, but so that the elect might obtain another salvation. 2TI 2:10. C. Belief and obedience saves a child of God from: 1. ignorance of the truth. JOH 7:17. 2. bondage. JOH 8:30-32. 3. working his way into God's righteousness. ROM 10:1-3. 4. chastening. LUK 12:47-48; PHIL 2:14-15. 5. deception. EPH 4:11-14. 6. an untoward generation. ACT 2:40. D. Belief and obedience saves a child of God to: 1. assurance of eternal life. 1TH 1:4-6; 1JO 5:13; JOH 6:47. 2. fellowship with like believers and with God. ACT 2:41-42 c/w 1JO 1:3. 3. fullness of joy. 1JO 1:4. 4. the comforting ministry of the Spirit in the church. ACT 2:38-39. 5. the abundant Christian life. JOH 10:10. 6. the victorious Christian life. 1JO 5:4. VII. Recognizing the difference between conditional and unconditional salvation is “rightly dividing the word of truth” (2TI 2:15). A. There is a salvation which God has wrought freely for all of the elect that establishes RELATIONSHIP with God in eternity. 1. This salvation is of God's work and will. 2. This salvation is unconditional. 3. This salvation cannot be lost. JOH 10:27-29. 4. The gospel DECLARES this salvation. 2TI 1:10. B. There is a supplemental salvation which comes by believing and obeying the gospel that establishes FELLOWSHIP with God in time. This is temporal salvation. 1. The elect, regenerate man's will and work is very active in obtaining this salvation. 2. This salvation is obviously conditional. 3. This salvation can be lost through unbelief and sin. 1CO 5:5. 4. The gospel MAKES AVAILABLE this salvation.