Words of Grace
You see those words on signs at ball games, along the side of the road, or on the church marquee. We were taught to ask people if they have been saved. We speak about saving faith. We print booklets outlining the way of salvation. And we hope that we are saved ourselves.
But with all the emphasis on being saved, most believers have trouble explaining what we are saved from.
Some people say that we are saved from sin. Others specify that we are saved from the consequence of sin. Most say we are saved from hell. Some say we are saved from the wrath of God.
Without going into theological details, I would simply say that we were saved from the darkness. Because of sin, all humanity is born into darkness. We grow up in darkness and, without Jesus, live through eternity in darkness. Jesus came to save us from the darkness.
The darkness, in Scripture, seems to represent all of evil and sin, everything that is apart from the Lord. It includes everything that proceeds from sin and is the realm within which all people live until rescued by the Savior. Jesus refers to Himself often as the Light that shines into the darkness, inviting those who are trapped to come to Him. He is the Door that leads to light and life.
So those who are saved are those who have been rescued from the realm of darkness.
He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins. Col. 1:13-14
There is much mystery here. The simple fact is that Jesus often spoke of saving people. He said that He had come “to seek and to save that which was lost.” That was His purpose, to rescue us from the darkness.
And He did it. Those who belong to Jesus have been saved. Notice the past tense. He has delivered us. He has rescued us. He has saved us. He did all that needed to be done and we entered into His kingdom by trusting in what He did. He is the Door and we have passed through Him from darkness into light. So many Scriptures tell it just like that.
So we can say with assurance that we have been saved, that we are saved. The darkness is in our past. Yes, we may still think dark thoughts. Yes, we may still do things associated with the darkness. Yes, the darkness is still so familiar. But it is no longer our home. We have been saved.