Recently my family crossed from Canada back into Alaska. We cleared customs and drove a mile into Alaska and there on a hillside in bold, white rocks was the statement, “Jesus Saves.” What does it mean that Jesus saves? The word saved simply means “to rescue.” Yes, Jesus saves. There is only one way to be saved and that is through Jesus. There is no doubt that Jesus saves but the real question is, “From what does Jesus save us?” Thankfully, the Bible answers this question!
Jesus saves from guilt to righteousness. Every person has sinned against God. God is a just and holy God. God always punishes sin. Romans 3:19 says, “Now we know that whatever the Law says, it speaks to those who are under the Law, so that every mouth may be closed and all the world may become accountable to God.” If a judge does not punish sin, he is not a righteous judge. The entire world is guilty before God. But when a person understands that Jesus came to rescue sinners- He died in our place- the righteousness of Jesus is credited to your life. You move from guilt before God to righteousness before God!
Jesus saves from the wrath of God to the love of God. Romans 5:9 says, “We shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him.” We used to live with God’s anger. God expects us to obey Him and we fail to do so. God’s standard is perfect obedience every moment of every day. But through Jesus Romans 5:9 is transformed into Romans 8:39 where nothing “can separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Jesus saves us from alienation to fellowship. Romans 5:10 says, “For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.” Jesus died a substitutionary death. Through faith and repentance, you go from being God’s enemy to being God’s child.
Jesus saves from slavery to sin to freedom. Romans 6:17 says, “But thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed.” We often think of ourselves as free. People say, “I am free. I do what I want.” The Bible says that we are slaves of sin. Jesus saves us from being slaves of sin to being able to live like He made us to live.
Jesus saves us from eternal death to eternal life. Romans 6:23 says, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.” Jesus said, “He who believes in Me will never die” (John 11:26). Christians die physically but they don’t die spiritually. Even the fear of death is taken away. Death is simply passing from this life into the next life for the believer.
Jesus saves from a fallen, decaying body to a perfect, new body. The Bible promises that every Christian will one day receive a new body. Our present bodies experience groaning and pain (Romans 8:22). My parents went to their fiftieth high school reunion. They returned and said, “We are the only ones who hadn’t changed!”
We are all getting older but Romans 8:23 reveals a great truth. “….even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body.” In 1 Corinthians 15 the apostle Paul talks about the perfect, new, eternal bodies which will be given to every person saved by Jesus.
The gospel is the best news possible. The cross is amazing. God the Father treated Jesus as if He lived my life. Then God the Father treats me as if I lived the life of Jesus. Jesus gets all of my bills and pays them in full. I get all of His deposits. The gospel is an amazing exchange. Jesus gets the blame for my sin. I get the credit for His perfect obedience!
Won’t you be saved today? Understand your great need. We are sinners who need a Savior. Understand our great Hero, the Lord Jesus Christ, who defeated sin, Satan and death. Repent of your sins and put your faith and trust for spiritual rescue in the death and resurrection of Jesus.
Ethan Hansen is the pastor of Faith Bible Fellowship in Big Lake.