This is one man’s view of what the OT and NT reveal about man’s salvation. Scripture references are available for each and every fact below. Note: “The hard sayings of Jesus” are balanced by Paul’s many encouragements, edifications, and exhortations, which are mixed in with all of his warnings/threats to the struggling churches. - All humans are created to have free will (and ditto for God’s angels). - All humans are born with an inherited sin nature. - God’s grace means God’s unmerited favor towards man. - Throughout the Scriptures, God desires that man co-operate with Him in a mutual relationship. - Abraham’s belief-faith (proven genuine by obedience) was accounted to him for righteousness. - In the OT, God’s major covenant is “the Mosaic covenant” between Him and His “chosen people”. - These “chosen people” proved that it is almost impossible for man to please and satisfy God. - Through their constant rebellion, disobedience, sinning, etc. they broke their covenant with God. - God grew tired of having their sins atoned for through the blood sacrifices of countless animals. - God refused to heal them of their spiritual blindness (see pt.2), and scattered them all over the earth. - The OT talks about the great blessings that God has in store for the righteous (and a few were). - God decided to institute a new and better covenant, featuring His Messiah-Redeemer-Savior. - Jesus Christ had no human father … so by not having a sin nature, He was able to live a sinless life. - God was satisfied with Jesus serving as the final and ultimate blood sacrifice for the sins of mankind. - God gives His free gift of grace-faith-salvation, and His Spirit, to some people (who are “born again”). - At that moment, one is set apart for God to work on, and is declared free of sin, justified, righteous. - God’s grace is simply Square-One … the starting-off point in the Christian’s walk and sanctification. - God’s grace is totally useless unless it is appropriated (appreciated, used, taken advantage of, etc.). - The Holy Spirit within makes it possible for God to succeed in His sanctification-unto-holiness process. - Jesus warned to first count the cost of losing one’s soulish life on earth in order to gain eternal life. - Jesus warned that the way which leads to eternal life is narrow and difficult, and few find it. - Eternal life majors on “knowing” both Father God and Jesus Christ, and being obedient (like sheep). - Paul taught -- grace >> belief-faith >> obedience >> righteousness >> holiness >> everlasting life - One can lose all of the blessings above, if one breaks his/her covenant with God. - If one breaks the covenant, he/she falls from grace (which was never promised to last forever). - The new covenant explains how one is to be obedient to God, and how to co-operate with God. - If anyone practices (unrepented-of) sin, he/she is practicing lawlessness and will not enter heaven. - Example of a major deadly habitual sin: Lying is an abomination and will put you into the lake of fire. - Example of a major deadly habitual sin: If you do not forgive people, God will will not forgive you. - Our sins can be forgiven and cleansed, if we confess them to God and repent (change our ways). The apostle Paul said it best when he warned us in Romans 6:16,19 … “Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether (slaves) of sin leading to death, or (slaves) of obedience leading to righteousness? … so now present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness.” .