“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” (1 Peter 1:3-5 KJV)
“If salvation is ‘given’ at the ‘last time’, the end of time, is it that we have a ‘promise’ of salvation and that we are continually working towards being saved through building our relationship with Jesus, and through our obedience to doing His will?”
The key to this passage is in the words “TO BE REVEALED”. You see when a person becomes saved by BELIEF on Christ’s atonement (John 3:18, 36), that person is from the VERY MOMENT OF BELIEF SEALED by the Holy Spirit for all eternity (Ephesians 1:13-14). At the moment of our belief we are MADE a NEW CREATION in the SPIRIT. (2 Corinthians 5:17) This Spirit is the NEW US now.
This Spirit is from the seed of God, not man (1 John 3:9). That is, we did not get our new spirit through a procreation process, nor by our own efforts in self righteous acts. Nothing is further from the Biblical truth of Scriptures. What the Scriptures do tell us is that God MADE US the very righteousness of God, in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:21). Our new spirit is right now, HOLY RIGHTEOUS and REDEEMED completely. To the believer in Christ, that person is saved from the very moment of belief (John 3:18, Ephesians 1:13-14)) and God declares of that person:
“For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember NO MORE.” (Hebrews 8:12 KJV)
Yet, we still reside in this tabernacle, our corrupt body, what the Bible calls ‘The Flesh’. The Flesh always wants to sin as it’s very nature. Our Spirit wars against the Flesh. It is a real struggle because a believer in Christ has been redeemed and the Spirit (the new us) wants to always do good, yet we find that we still have sin in our life. We strive to not sin as we should. We win battles and lose some battles against sinning because the Spirit is willingly but the Flesh is weak (Matthew 26:41). We will fail at times and sin. A saved believer is not a sinless person. A saved person is a sinner who has had all their life long list of sins forgiven! Those teaching the false doctrine of ‘sinless perfection’ are misinterpreting 1 John 3 because they do not understand the Doctrine Of The Two Natures Of A Believer that Apostle Paul revealed to us in Romans 7. Apostle Paul puts it this way in Romans 7 as he struggled with this,
“14 For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin.
(Don: Here is the internal war a believer has….)
>> 15 For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.
16 If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good.
(Don: Read this next verse carefully…)
>>17 Now then it is NO MORE I THAT DO IT, but sin that dwelleth in me.
(Don: If Paul sins it is not him who sins? Makes no sense until we realize the new us is the Spirit.. not the flesh! )
18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. 19 For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.
(Don: Again sin verse 20 we see that when we sin, it is the Flesh doing it.. not the Spirit.)
>>20 Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.
21 I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. 22 For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: 23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.
24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?
(Don: The truth..the answer to verse 24… THROUGH JESUS CHRIST. Not through our own efforts!)
25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.” (Romans 7:14-25 KJV)
In 1 Peter 1:5 it reads, ‘…TO BE REVEALED’. You see, we are eternally saved from the very moment of belief and sealed by the Holy Spirit. We are a new creation in the Spirit now and saved forever. But one day, this INTERNAL battle between flesh and Spirit will END… at our bodily resurrection when we will receive NEW glorified bodies that do not have a SIN NATURE like our current corrupt bodies have. When that happens, Salvation will REVEALED as complete.
Also , go back one verse to verse 1 Peter 1: 4 and notice the word ‘RESERVED’.
“To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, RESERVED in heaven for you,” (1 Peter 1:4 KJV)
One passage of Scripture makes all of this clear:
“13 In whom ye also trusted, AFTER THAT YE HEARD the word of truth, the gospel of YOUR SALVATION: in whom also AFTER THAT YE BELIEVED, YE WERE SEALED with that holy Spirit of PROMISE
(Don: we are sealed and saved eternally from the very moment of belief with a promise for bodily resurrection in the future),
14 Which is the EARNEST (Don: in Greek means down payment guarantee) of our inheritance (Don: Heaven with God for eternity) until the redemption of the purchased possession (Don: Our bodily resurrection to glorified bodies without the sin nature), unto the praise of HIS GLORY. ” (Ephesians 1:13-14 KJV)
Who gets the glory for our Salvation? Is it us by our own self righteous good works? NO! GOD ALONE gets the glory because Jesus paid it all. We just have to believe in Christ and the atonement for sin He provided. That is the GOOD NEWS, THE GOSPEL of Jesus Christ and His soon coming kingdom.
“Wherefore he is able also to save them TO THE UTTERMOST that come unto God BY HIM, seeing he ever liveth to make INTERCESSION FOR THEM.” (Hebrews 7:25 KJV)