November 8, 2010

Redemption of Mankind by Jath van der Westhuizen

Jath's blog:

Jesus said that He is the Truth, Life and Way. There is no other way to the Father. On a previous note I showed that nobody is going to hell. Then how do we present the Gospel to the Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus and atheists? Don’t they need salvation as well?

First, let us just look at a few Scriptures concerning God’s plan for mankind.

Meaning of redemption

Our true origin is not found in Adam. In eternity, all of mankind has already existed in His breath. We were made in His image. (Gen.1:27) We are His workmanship, God’s property, being born from above! Whatever belongs to God, will eventually return to Him. Later on, when His Ruach Wind or Spirit and clay merged, man became a living soul. (Gen.2:27) But before that, we already existed in His likeness, being the God-kind in eternity.

The day when Jesus Christ died on the cross, whole of mankind died together with Him and was co-raised into a new life with Him. How was that possible? Before the foundation of the world, Jesus was already crucified in eternity, but still, it had to manifest in time.

1Pe 1:20 It is true that He was chosen and foreordained (destined and foreknown for it) before the foundation of the world, but He was brought out to public view (made manifest) in these last days (at the end of the times) for the sake of you.

In Christ God has already reconciled Himself with the whole world. God has redeemed the whole of humanity. Any reason to experience guilt and shame has been settled by the completed work of the cross.

Redemption is a sovereign act of God. It happened 2000 years ago. Our believing cannot change what has happened to us on the cross. (For instance, the moment when we believe, does not mean that we have just become born again. That happened on the cross.) The main challenge is that other religions and unfortunately most Christians are ignorant of what has happen to them when Jesus died. Jesus did not only die for us in our place. We died together with Him. Therefore Christ is not an example for us; He is an example of us. The fact that people do not realize this truth, makes absolutely no difference in the reality of the cross and its implications for mankind. The Seed of Christ lies dormant in every human being. It only waits for the Word to activate it! Christ is all in all.

After WW2 many POW in remote areas did not realize the enemy was conquered. The enemy has surrendered and peace treaty was signed, but yet they had to be rescued from their imprisonment. Likewise, when a dog breeder, for instance, legally purchase his previously owned animal back from an abusive owner, he has redeemed his dog that he initially raised up as a puppy before selling it to the new owner. But the traumatized dog may still have the mentality of its former life, thus not accepting his original owner because he does not know or remember his kindness. He still needs to experience wholeness. And that brings us to the next aspect, namely the need to get saved.

Salvation is a broad term. The meaning of the word is always determined by the context of Scripture. In Eph. 1 for instance, it refers to the redemptive act of God. In the Gospels, however, it often refers to Jesus’ healing miracles. “Go, your faith has made you whole.”

The word “salvation,” means, healing, prosperity, peace, protection, deliverance, wholeness, save and safe. Its OT equivalent is, “shalom.”Salvation is also related to the soul of the human. By believing, your soul will be saved. The soul is referring to your mind, your being, your personality. The Greek word for soul is psuchē, meaning “the seat of the feelings, desires, affections, aversions (our heart, soul etc.) (Strongs 5590).

Salvation will enable you to live a life of fruitfulness, prosperity and healing. Salvation is for now, allowing you to live a life full of victory. God has destined us to rule in this life. The kingdom of God is within us. Victory is not reserved for the sweet by and bye. We work out our salvation with fear and trembling. How? Grace, the cheerful divine influence in us, will empower us so that the Christ-life becomes revealed. Christ wants to expose Himself now through us.

By believing we get saved. Unbelief, keeps people in their state of ignorance. Not believing or knowing about their restored innocence before Father, will deny people from knowing the truth. “You shall know the Truth and the Truth shall set you free.” Truth will save you when you discover your identity in Christ. With that authority you can move mountains.

By believing the implanted Word that is in us will save our souls. Jam 1:21 wherefore having put aside all filthiness and superabundance of evil, in meekness be receiving the engrafted word, that is able to save your souls;

Jesus often said to people that their faith has saved them. It is God’s faith working within you that can save you. Faith is a gracious gift, not a psychological ability. God’s faith in us is activated through grace when the Word falls in our hearts.
All will be saved
Ps 33:15 affirms that, “The one who formed their hearts understands everything they do. God fashions ALL hearts. God wounds then He makes whole. (Job 5:17-18). God tears, but in the third day He heals (Hos. 6:1-2). Lam 3:31-32 gives us the assurance that God will not cast us off forever. In Ps 102:18-20 we read that God will loose (release) those appointed to death. Isa. 2:2 shouts it out that “ALL nations will flow to the Lord’s house.”

ALL families of the earth will be blessed (Gen 18:18). Who can deny this Scripture in Isa 45:22 stating that “ALL the earth will be commanded to look and be saved?” And then Isa 45:23 promises us that “unto God ALL will bow & every tongue swear.” Ps 138:4 states that “ALL kings will praise God” and Ps 72:17 repeats it, “ALL nations will call Him blessed” Ps 86:9 says that “ALL nations will worship God & ALL men blessed.” Isa 52:10 is my favorite, “ALL earth will see the salvation of God.”

Rom 14:9-11 “For to this end Christ both died, and rose, and revived, that he might be Lord both of the dead and living. But why dost thou judge thy brother? Or why dost thou set at nought thy brother? For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ. For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.
He is Lord of all, the dead and the living! Eventually every person will utter these words, "He is Lord!"

In Joh 8:29 we read that Jesus ALWAYS does which pleases His Father. Then in 1Ti 2:4 we read that it is God’s will for ALL to be saved. Joh 4:14 tells us that Jesus was sent to be the Saviour of the world. Joh 12:47 makes it very clear that Jesus came to save ALL. 1Ti 2:6 says that “Jesus gave Himself a ransom for ALL.” Joh 4:42 confirms that “Jesus is the Saviour of the world.”

Col 1:15 goes on to say that Jesus is the first born of ALL creation, Then Rom 5:15-21 promises us that In Adam ALL were condemned, but in Christ ALL live. 1Cor 15:22 - In Adam ALL die, but in Christ ALL live. Phil 2:9-11 echoes it out: Every tongue shall confess that Jesus is Lord. Eph 2:7 says that His grace will be shown in the ages to come, while Heb 8:11-12 declare that ALL will know God.

1Cor 3:15 and Mar 9:49 says that ALL will be saved, yet so as by fire. According to 1Ti 4:9-11 Jesus is the Saviour of ALL. These Scriptures speak for itself. From all of these Scriptures it is clear that nobody will be tormented forever in the lake of fire. Eventually everybody will be saved. God’s fire will save, purify and restore all of mankind. Everything that originates from God will eventually turn back to Him.
Our joyful mandate
Protestant missionaries inform people about the salvation plan of God but still warn them about hell should they reject God. Sounds like blackmail to me. That is not good news. How can Father still love those that are burning in hell forever? Bit of a sick kind of love! I have no desire to know such a father, even if his name was God.

Our mandate to the world is not to preach a “turn or burn” message. The Good News proclaims that God has already reconciled Himself with us. He is not angry at us! Jesus has fulfilled the legal requirements of righteousness. All judgment was drawn to the cross. IT IS FINISHED! He loves us all and desires to live in unity and having an intimate relationship with us. He wants us now to enjoy Him. We are His righteousness, enabling us to stand in His presence without inferiority, sin consciousness or guilt. Yes, to be totally unaware of any sin, though as if we have never sinned before. That is the implication of the perfected work of the cross. Nothing can separate us anymore from the love of Christ.

How beautiful it is when Muslims and Hindus bow their knees before God, the Father, based on His unlimited and unconditional love as demonstrated by the completed work of the cross!

A license to sin?
Am I not pushing grace too far? You may even wonder if this is perhaps not a dangerous teaching, meaning that we can do whatever we want and eventually still get saved? The answer is simple: Jesus' blood on the cross exceeds anything we could (past, present and future) ever do, whether it is good or evil. "For if, being enemies, we have been reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved in his life. Rom. 5:10. (YLT). The Mirror Translation states it beautiful: "Now that the act of reconciliation is complete, His life in us saves us from the guttermost to the uttermost." Once you have a revelation of grace, the desire to live an irresponsible lifestyle will be anyway non-existent.

Rom. 5:20 assures us that sin can never overtake grace. "...But where sin increased and abounded, grace (God's unmerited favor) has surpassed it and increased the more and super-abounded." (AMP). God's goodness and kindness will lead people to repentance; (Rom.2:4) not the fear of the wrongly interpreted so-called "upcoming judgment" of hell and brimstone.

There is however a danger in the statement, “Once saved always saved," implicating that henceforth you can just live like you want because you are anyway going to heaven. Likewise, the dilemma of universalism is that the zeal often lacks to share this Good News to others. Jesus came that we now can experience His abundant life, the higher life right now here on earth. Such Good News definitely needs to be shared with everybody! Surely people will be drawn to Father by His goodness and love. Once they have a revelation of the nature of Him, a desire within to live according to their original God-design will be the compelling grace-force. This is the outworking of grace.

by Jath van der Westhuizen

1 comment:


As Always, Jath, wonderfully written! Thanks for writing this COMPREHENSIVELY, I mean, I don't think you left anything out!
And thanks Dave for re-posting this.
God Bless Your Blog.