We are not

We are not saved by knowledge,
We are saved by the grace of God
We are not saved by water
We are saved by the grace of God
We are not saved by our speech
We are saved by the grace of God
We are not saved by our good deeds
We are saved by the grace of God
There is nothing we can do for our salvation
Christ has done everything

When I was reading Barclay, it struck me that he wrote:

Faith and historical knowledge is indeed part of the Christian religion, but not an essential part… but integral part, which goes to the completing of the Christian religion; as the hands and feet are the integral parts of a man, without which a man may exist, but not an entire and complete man.

Barclay recognizes the importance of knowledge of knowledge in the redeemed life. Ignorance is a crippling force… however he also observes that God is the redeemer not men. God is able to bring people to himself, without the person knowing scripture, or doctrine, or even the name Jesus — this point has been argued over and over again from the earliest centuries of the church — if knowledge is a prerequisite, then we are not saved by God’s grace — but knowledge and God’s grace. Though we are cripples, we are not damned for our ignorance.

No one is saved by initiation ceremonies — whether we are initiated into the faith through water or through a spoken ceremony, the ceremony is not the source of salvation, otherwise we would be saved by means of a human deed, done by human will, and not by God’s guidance…. however, we are humans, and humans are creatures of ceremony. We preform ceremonies because we wish to mark the change in our memories.

No one is saved by good deeds, though many try to work their way into heaven. Again — this would move salvation from God’s work to man’s work — yet, it is difficult to imaging a Christian without good deeds in his life.

We are not able to boast of anything, because nothing we do, nothing we can do can bring salvation to anyone, least of all ourselves… in all things, we are fully dependent upon Christ.


4 comments on “We are not

  1. kevin says:

    Nothing left for us to do?

    What about turning to the Light, and not resisting it? This little task is very hard to do, and has been left to us.

    • Kevin — you could say that by quoting Barclay! I resist the Light all the time — and I make an effort to live in the Light. Thanks for bringing up an aspect I did not consider while writing. I guess that comes from my… “We call fundamentalists liberal” background. I’m getting better!

  2. kevin says:

    Think about it. I don’t object to the term “works righteousness,” either, as I think justification is a gradual process that ocurs simultaneously with sanctification. “Turning to the Light” is one way to describe the process of actually becoming what we profess and hope to become. But there are lots of ideas about this. Barclay betrays his dour Presbytarian environment with this stuff.

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