Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Everyone's Savior

Here’s a question: is Christ the Savior of only those who believe in Him and accept Him as their Savior, or is He everyone’s Savior—regardless of what they believe? I’m sure many of you see this question as a “no brainer,” while others do not see the relevance for it at all.

But let’s get it straight, first. According to Paul, Jesus is the “Savior of all men” and women (1 Timothy 4:10). As we learned a while back, Christ has already saved everyone from the wages of their sins. All of us should have died eternally when we committed our first sin. But because of Calvary, Christ saved us from immediate destruction. And we should all praise the Lord because of this.

So in this sense—and others—Christ is very much everyone’s Savior. He is not merely potentially, possibly, maybe everyone’s Savior. He actually is. Whether a person realizes it or not, Christ is his or her Savior and wants nothing more than for the person to understand it. This should cause all of us to fall down on our knees in incredible gratitude for what Christ has already done for us.

And yet Paul adds another thought to this idea. After saying that Christ is everyone’s Savior, he continues, “Especially of those who believe.” What’s up with that? Why is Christ “especially” the Savior of those who believe? Are they favored of God more?

Not at all. He is “especially” their Savior because they have received the special blessing of recognizing Christ’s saving message and power and their experience has gone deeper than merely living on the “life support” system that the whole world is living on. Not only do they have life, but they have it more abundantly (see John 10:10). And they know their Savior on a deeper and more intimate level.

So what about you? Have you entered into the joy of experiencing your Savior in a “special” way? Or have you been content with living a life that is merely going through the motions? Why not acknowledge His saving grace today and enter into a richer experience with Your Savior.


Mithun said...

"All of us should have died eternally when we committed our first sin. But because of Calvary, Christ saved us from immediate destruction."

If this is true, then Christ must be the savior of Satan and all the fallen angels as well, right? Otherwise they too would have been immediately destroyed upon their fall. Or is it possible that their continued existence — and some of ours — has the greater purpose of theodicy and the message behind the Great Controversy rather than a temporary salvation by Jesus' blood?

Anonymous said...

Very probing question Mithun. However, I would have to fall back on the Greek of 1 Timothy 4:10 where Paul tells us that Jesus is the Saviour of all men (anthropos)not of all inhabitants in the universe, including Satan & his minions. Yes, in a sense, Jesus "saved' God's government.

But I'm interested in more dialogue!

Shawn Brace said...


Good question! I am not sure that I am completely uncomfortable with saying that Christ is, in some senses, Satan's "Savior." In an objective way, Christ has saved Satan and his minions from destruction. This does not mean that Satan has ever recognized this, but in the same way that God is still objectively Satan's Creator, Sustainer, and God (though he does not recognize or acknowledge it), I would say that there could be room for using the title "Savior."

I have not explored all of the implications of this idea, but let us remember that when Lucifer initially started rebelling, there was still a chance for him to repent and still be in God's favor. The same with the angels. It wasn't until the cross that Satan's destiny, as well as the destiny of his minions, was sealed.

I would also point to John 12:32 where Jesus says, "And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all unto me." Most versions supply the word "men," but it's not there in the Greek. So because of the cross, Christ has drawn "all" beings in the universe unto Him in some senses (even the Father's heart was drawn more to Christ because of His sacrifice). And I think that will be seen at the end of the Great Controversy when all created beings - including Satan - will acknowledge that God was just, righteous, and fair in His judgments and dealings with the universe.

Lastly, I do not think that what I have presented and what you have suggested about the Great Controversy are at odds with one another. I think they are in concert with one another. And I would direct you to this article from our magazine that touches upon the subject. It is called "Calvary Justifies Life: Justification and the Great Controversy."

Thanks for the feedback!