1. All scripture is given by inspiration of God and is absolute truth.
2 Tim 3:16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.
2. There is only one correct literal interpretation of scripture.
2 Peter 1:20-21 knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. 21 For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.
3. God doesn’t always give everything about a particular subject in one place and we must find all of the scriptures to properly understand God’s view on a subject.
Isa 28:9-10 To whom will he teach knowledge, and to whom will he explain the message? Those who are weaned from the milk, those taken from the breast? 10 For it is precept upon precept, precept upon precept, line upon line, line upon line, here a little, there a little.”
4. Every passage of scripture has one meaning but may have many applications. We must study to “rightly handle the Word of truth.”
2 Tim 2:15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.
An Overview of Salvation
There are over 1,700 Christian denominations in the world, some even put this number to be over 40,000! How do we know which is the correct way to believe? By carefully studying the scriptures and allowing scripture to interpret scripture. If my opinion contradicts scripture then my opinion is wrong. The most common question that everyone wants to talk about is “salvation” and rightfully so. Let’s use our rules of interpretation that we have learned above and look at what the scripture says about salvation.
We want to take a literal view of the scriptures, so let’s begin by defining the Greek word used in the New Testament for Salvation. The word is:
Sozo – to save a suffering one; to deliver, protect, heal, and preserve. In religion, to deliver from the effects of sin which is eternal death.
When we say that God “saves us” then we are saying that God has forgiven our sins, and is making us ready to escape the judgment of this world. He is also protecting us, healing the issues in our lives and relationships, and delivering us from day to day situations. Being “saved” is not something that you get once and never lose, but it is a state of living for God in which we must continue.
How am I saved? We cannot take just one scripture and build our doctrine on that verse alone while ignoring others that we do not like. We must take ALL the scriptures on a subject and obey ALL of them. Here are some basic scriptures on salvation:
Titus 3:5 he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
James 1:21-22 Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.
1 Peter 3:20-21 because they formerly did not obey, when God’s patience waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through water. 21 Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ,
Acts 2:38-40 And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.” 40 And with many other words he bore witness and continued to exhort them, saying, “Save yourselves from this crooked generation.
Matt 10:22 and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.
Prov 28:18 Whoever walks in integrity will be delivered, but he who is crooked in his ways will suddenly fall.
John 10:9 I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture.
Isa 45:22 Turn to me and be saved, all the ends of the earth!
For I am God, and there is no other.
Acts 16:31 And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.
Eph 2:8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,
Mark 16:16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.
Rom 10:13 For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.
Rom 8:24 For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees?
Rom 10:9 because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
We must take all of these scriptures and believe them. All of these scriptures and the hundreds more in the Bible can be described in four steps. That is every scripture that instructs us on salvation fall under these four categories.
Heb 11:6 And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.
Rom 10:17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.
Eph 1:13 In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit,
1 Cor 1:21 For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe.
Matt 4:17 From that time Jesus began to preach, saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”
Luke 13:3No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.
2 Peter 3:9The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.
We will study Repentance in detail in another lesson.
Acts 22:16 And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on his name.’
Luke 24:47 and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.
John 3:5 Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.
We will study Water Baptism in detail in another lesson.
Receiving the Holy Ghost
Rom 8:9 You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.
Acts 1:5 for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
Acts 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.
Acts 10:44-46 While Peter was still saying these things, the Holy Spirit fell on all who heard the word. 45 And the believers from among the circumcised who had come with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit was poured out even on the Gentiles. 46 For they were hearing them speaking in tongues and extolling God.
Acts 19:2, 6 And he said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” And they said, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit… 6 And when Paul had laid his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they began speaking in tongues and prophesying.
We will study the Holy Ghost in detail in another lesson.