Friday, March 29, 2013

My Personal Savior

The debate rages as people are asking the question, is Jesus my personal Savior? I really want to answer that with absolute certainty. I feel like there are many well meaning thinkers who used a computer search engine or a Strong's concordance, looked up those words and decided, "That's not in the Bible." Somehow, they have chosen to ignore the reason for Jesus coming to earth. While I agree that salvation found in Jesus brings God glory, I further submit that God's glory in no way precludes that salvation was a very personal thing. He died for me. That is what makes my Savior personal.
There are at least four points that brought me to an understanding as to how personal it is that Jesus saved me.
1) Not everyone will be saved. That means that only those who have made a personal decision to follow the crucified and risen Savior will receive salvation. It is enough for everyone, but only those who receive Him will enter Heaven. The Bible clearly tells us the line in the sand that God drew when it comes to personal salvation:
He came to His own, and His own people did not receive Him. But to all who did receive Him, He gave them the right to be children of God, to those who believe in His name, (John 1:11, 12 HCSB)
2) My personal salvation also brings God glory. When a sinner like me receives salvation, there is rejoicing in Heaven. Is it because of my new relationship with God? Of course it is. Is it to bring glory to God for the Lamb slain before the foundation of the world? Of course it is. Listen to the words of Jesus:

‘Rejoice with me, because I have found my lost sheep! ’ I tell you, in the same way, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents. (Luke 15:6, 7 HCSB)
3) God the Son was already in heaven enjoying the worship of the heavenly hosts. He didn't need to die in order to be worshiped. In other words, God's glory did not depend on Jesus dying on the cross. His glory was and always has been intact, with or without His death, in order to bring me salvation. When He came to earth, mankind was finally able to see His glory. John reminds us of that from the very beginning of His Gospel:
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The Word became flesh and took up residence among us. We observed His glory, the glory as the One and Only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:1, 14 HCSB)
4) Without my personal need for salvation, there was no reason to come to earth and die on the cross. Isaiah, which is known as the Gospel of the Old Testament, understood that Jesus is my Savior. And that is very personal:
Indeed, God is my salvation; I will trust ⌊Him⌋ and not be afraid, for Yah, the Lord, is my strength and my song. He has become my salvation.” (Isaiah 12:2 HCSB, italics mine)
Mary also understood her personal need of salvation when she sang out:
And Mary said: My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, and my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior (Luke 1:46, 47 HCSB)
God saved me from my sin, and it was very personal. As the hymn writer wrote so eloquently:

My faith has found a resting place, Not in device nor creed;
I trust the Everliving One, His wounds for me shall plead
I need no other argument, I need no other plea;
It is enough that Jesus died, And that He died for me.
-- Lidie H. Edmunds, No Other Plea

I have no other plea other than Jesus saved me. That's very personal, and that is enough.
Pastor Trey