Yesterday we mentioned that our salvation is awe-inspiring because of God's grace to us, and because millennia ago, prophets foretold it. Let's jump right into our study for today!
Another reason our salvation is "great" (in the way Paul meant that, in Hebrews) and awe-inspiring, is that it's revealed by God to mankind. (And if anyone has an issue with my using that word, just get over it....it means both men and women!!)
The prophets didn't just dream up their "thus saith the Lord" prophecies. They didn't invent those. And neither did the folks who wrote the gospels and the letters that are in our present-day Bible. They were all inspired by the Holy Spirit. Peter mentions later, after our focus passage that:
For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. (II Peter 1:21)Nor did Peter or the other apostles invent things, as he says in I Peter 1:12, they preached "by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven." Even though they were totally different people with different viewpoints and personalities, they recorded God's message and they did it without errors. Yes, the Bible is the Word of God, inspired by Him.
And I realize that some people get really hung up on the compilation of the Bible, as well. How the gospels and letters were chosen....which ones "made it in" and which ones didn't. So much room for error.....so much of the human there. How can we be certain? Sure, there's this verse (and others):
..........but our critics might say that we are using faulty reasoning. Arguing in a circle, they'd say. But if we study the Bible, we find that in so many cases, it's a self-authenticating book; we also see archaeologists who "discover" things that prove it's truth; Jesus told us several times to revere scripture because it came from God; and here's the proof of the pudding...... we know that we know that it's God's Word because His Spirit speaks to us there. We claim His promises and He works in our lives. Our faith is strengthened as He teaches us from the Bible.
That's all the proof I need, how about you? (Grin) I'm so glad that God planned and revealed this awe-inspiring salvation!
Lastly, our salvation is awe-inspiring because it involves the sufferings and the past, present, and future glories of our Lord. Many people have different opinions about history: some want to ignore it, some want to revere it, and some want to argue endlessly about the significance of a variety of events. But we believers know the truth -- Jesus Christ's coming to the earth as a wee babe, His death on the cross, His resurrection and ascension to heaven, and His return are the most important facts in history! Our Savior spoke to the travelers on the road to Emmaus:
Our salvation is awe-inspiring because God assumed the form of a human, and was crucified even though He was sinless -- and rose again....all for a pack of sinful, wretched human beings.....all the human beings that ever were, and ever will be.
For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; (I Corinthians 15:3)Christ suffered so much at the hands of sinners, and then He was and is glorified -- His resurrection, ascension, and His place at the right hand of the Father are the glories of Christ. In the future, He will be glorified continually, as He reigns after His second coming to this earth. In our focus verses in I Peter, he is arguing that our salvation is so amazing that anything we endure now for Jesus' sake is nothing compared to the joys and glories that are in store for us. As long as we personally grab hold of God's promises and accept His salvation, the glories promised will be ours.
Earlier this week, we mentioned a question -- what makes you smile? What brings you joy in your life here on earth? Was your answer, "Jesus my Lord, and the salvation He has given to me"?
We may be church members, or even church leaders, but if we have never responded personally to Jesus, we are lost.
If we don't know the wonderful joy of salvation, perhaps we need to search our own hearts, and then search the scriptures.... there is a tab on this blog that will give us the pathway to salvation; I hope that if you are searching, you will click there.
As my grandma used to tell me, "there's no time like the present!" Don't put it off. Make sure today. We can all experience the joy of this great, awe-inspiring salvation!