The word salvation appears 119 times in the Old Testament and 45 times in the New Testament. Salvation means deliverance and can be applied to a physical or spiritual deliverance. Some people who have been delivered or saved from some physical harm claim that as their experience of spiritual salvation. For example: I once asked a man when he was saved and he replied, "I was in a plane on a bombing mission in World War II. I knew I might not make it, and I asked the Lord to bring me through alive and He did." This is not spiritual salvation but the goodness of God working in that man's life to bring him to repentance that he might experience spiritual salvation. (Romans 2:4, "Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?")
When I begin to deal with specifics of salvation, the first thing some say is, "Bro. Paschall believes in progressive salvation." Let me set the record straight. Salvation is a quickening; therefore, salvation is point action and not progressive. One second, an individual is lost and the next second, he can be saved. Salvation is not progressive, but the work of the Holy Ghost in the life of a sinner before he is saved is a progression. The Holy Ghost must reprove (Holy Ghost conviction) man of sin, righteousness, and judgment before he can be saved. (John 16:8-11, "And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: Of sin, because they believe not on me; righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more; Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.") This is the process of Godly Sorrow that works repentance, which is necessary before man can be saved. (II Cor. 7:10, "For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death." Luke 13:3, "I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.") Faith has to be produced by the Word of God in the heart of the believer so that he might believe unto salvation. (Rom. 10:17, "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.")
The time involved varies with each person. Some may have all the necessary ingredients worked in one service, while others may take time due to their upbringing, circumstances, and emotional make up. If someone can not get things settled with the Lord in one service, does that mean I should push him aside and rebuke him because he did not get saved? No!! That person needs someone to love him, pray for him, and stay with him until the Lord brings him to the end of himself so that he might repent and believe and be saved. Those who stay with such an individual are sometimes labeled as one who believes salvation is progressive. No! No! When salvation occurs it is so quick you have to speak of it as past tense. Saved! Saved!
Salvation is a general word for three specific words: justification, sanctification, and glorification.
Justification means an individual is delivered from the penalty of sin; therefore, he stands in a just position before a Holy God. This occurs when an man's spirit is quickened or made alive in Christ. (Eph. 2:1, "And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins.")
Sanctification is the walk of progression of the child of God toward perfection that will be gained at the first resurrection. This involves the work of the Holy Spirit in the life of a believer conforming him to the image of the Lord. (Rom. 8:28-29, "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.") Therefore, sanctification deals with a believer's soul being delivered form the power of sin day by day. (James 1:21, "Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.")
Glorification is future for all saints. This will occur when the Lord comes back in the rapture and changes the saint's old vile body into a glorified body like unto Jesus. (I Thess. 4:16-17, "For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord." I Cor. 15:51-53, "Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality." I John 3:2, "Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.") Therefore, glorification means we will be delivered from the presence of sin.
At the point of the quickening not only is the believer justified, but he is guaranteed to be sanctified by the Lord and also to be glorified. This is so sure, that Romans 8:30 speaks of all who are justified as already being glorified. (Rom. 8:30, "Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.")
Salvation is of the Lord! For no man can be justified without the Holy Ghost's finished work in a sinner's heart. In the same manner, no man can conform himself into the Lord's image. It is the Holy Spirit's work in the believer's life. It is also for certain no man can change his vile mortal body except the Lord. But all three specifics of salvation are guaranteed at the moment (the instant) you are born from above, quickened, made alive in Christ Jesus.
Has there ever been a time and a place where your spirit was quickened (made alive)? This did not happen over a period of time, but at a point in time and at a place. If you have this experience, you will for certain be sanctified and glorified. But, if you have not experienced this or have never been saved (justified), you future destiny is the lake of fire.
Paul said in II Cor. 13:5, "Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?" I challenge you to compare your experience to the Word of God and if you find it does not match up, then junk it and let the Lord do a work in your heart, bringing you to salvation which occurs at a point, in an instant.
THE PERSUADER - August-Sept., 1992