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An Overview of Soteriology Terms Part 2

By Edited Nov 13, 2013 0 0

Following you will find a list of terms related to salvation found in the Bible. If you haven't read Part 1 of this series yet, you may want to go there first. Thanks.


Concerning the doctrine of election, foreknowledge basically means that God intimately knows an individual before the creation of the world. It’s not the knowledge of facts or even the foreknowledge of actions or events. It’s all about the intimate relationship with a person, even if it’s only in the thoughts and plans of God.


Predestination is the doctrine that God has elected individuals before they had done anything good or evil. It’s the ultimate plan toward God’s people for their salvation. This also refers to the reprobation of individuals to an eternal damnation.


This is a specific act of God before the creation of the world in which He wrote the names of individuals in His Book of Life so that they will be justified and glorified.


The rising from death to a new type of life and creation where the individual will possess certain qualities like immortality, imperishable, glory, and power.


This is a legal standing before God that says that you are legally declared to be free of all debt and sin and declared to possess the righteousness of Christ and be as perfect in the sight of God as if you had never sinned against Him.


On the basis of what Christ did in the atonement, this is a declaration and an act where God receives you into His family permanently.


The final step in the application of salvation. This happens when Christ returns and raises from the dead the bodies of all believers for all time who have died, reunites their bodies with their souls, and changes their bodies into imperishable, immortal, powerful, and perfect bodies like that of Christ’s.


This is when the Holy Spirit does a work in an individual where they feel as though their sins are weighing them down and separating them from God. This conviction begins in the heart and causes one to turn to God for forgiveness and freedom.


See Regeneration.


When an individual receives the grace, faith, and salvation of God, the Holy Spirit implants Himself into a person in such a way that they are then sealed and guaranteed to go on to glorification. The Holy Spirit seals a person’s destiny by making their body a temple to live in for eternity.


Regeneration is the act of the Holy Spirit to impart new life into a person, sometimes called “being born again”, so that they turn to Christ in repentance and faith, thus saving them. The work of regeneration is not cause by the individual, but God Himself. It is the act of creating a new nature out of a crooked one.


This is the process of making a believer more like Christ in thought, attitude, and action throughout their entire life.


Gospel literally means good news. But this good news has to be specific to Jesus Christ and is a message of grace and salvation for those who would repent and believe upon Christ for their salvation. Here’s a short summary of the Gospel in a list:

1.     God is holy and just

2.     You are utterly and totally sinful

3.     God hates sin and cannot have you in His presence…ever!

4.     Your debt must be paid for your to not go to Hell for eternity

5.     God stepped down and paid your sin debt

6.     If you repent of your sins and your goodness and turn to Christ for forgiveness and grace, you will be saved

7.     Trust in Him and don’t stop

8.     Die to self and live for Christ

9.     Persevere and you will prove you’re saved

10. Now read your Bible and pray often

11. Now go into all the world and preach the good news you’ve just heard


Confession is the agreement with God and His Word that you have sinned and brining that agreement before Him for the forgiveness of that sin. It’s saying, “God, You are right that I am a sinner and I have done this against You. Please forgive me because of Christ.”


Faith is more than just a belief. We see this elsewhere when James says that, “even the demons believe – and shudder” (James 2:19). So we can understand that faith isn’t just belief in facts or belief that something is technically real. Faith is more personal than that and affects us at the core. Bob Jennings, a pastor and theologian, once said that faith is the uttermost despair of your ability to save yourself and a trusting in Christ to do it. Jeff Purswell says that faith is, “trust or dependence on God based on the fact that we take Him at His word and believe what He has said.” And he says about saving faith that it is “trust in Jesus Christ as a living person for forgiveness of sins and for eternal life with God.” I agree with this, but then I also believe it’s so much more. There’s a better way to say it, but not necessarily in one sentence.

Faith is a rocking of the core of a person. I believe, along with John Piper, that faith is caused by regeneration, but they both happen simultaneously; like the relationship between a fire and light. Fire comes first, but they both happen at the same time. Light doesn’t cause fire, but fire causes light. So it is with regeneration and faith. The regenerating work of the Holy Spirit must first come in and change the nature of a person before that person can truly believe upon the Lord Jesus Christ. How can a sinner believe in somebody He hates (Romans 3:9-11)?

Faith is also a self-despairing look to Christ. It is a giving up on your own goodness and sinfulness and looking unto Christ as your only hope. He is all we need. He is all we have. Faith would jump into the abyss of Hell only to hope that Christ catches him. Christ is the only One who can catch him.

Faith acts. Faith produces the fruits of the Spirit in a person and these fruits push a person to act. Your love for your neighbor pushed you to act and share the Gospel. So faith must produce action in somebody. Faith also produces godliness.


Repentance is a turning from one’s own thinking about sin to Christ for forgiveness and comfort. It’s a giving up on everything you can do to save yourself. It’s an all-out war against who you were and a turning to who Christ is. It’s self-defeat that makes you run to Christ.


This is the process of what happens when we repent and turn to Christ for the forgiveness of our sins. It’s the whole undertaking of the Spirit to create in us a new person and to unite us to Jesus.



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