18th June 2020
“But, beloved, we are persuaded better things of you, and things that accompany salvation, though we thus speak.” Hebrews 6:9
What is “salvation?” In looking at salvation, we must consider it in two points of view; salvation wrought out for us, and salvation wrought out in us. Salvation was wrought out for the Church by the finished work of the Son of God, when he cried with expiring breath, “It is finished.” The salvation of “the remnant according to the election of grace” was then completely accomplished, so that nothing could be added to, or taken from it; for “by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified;” and thus the Church stands complete in Christ, “without spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing.”
But there is a salvation which is wrought out in the soul; the manifestation and application of that salvation which Jesus wrought out by his sufferings, blood-shedding, and death; and this we can only know experimentally so far as the blessed Spirit brings it into our hearts, and seals it there with holy unction and heavenly savour.
But all the people of God cannot feel sure they have this salvation as an experimental reality; doubts, fears, darkness, and temptations becloud their path; Satan hurls his fiery darts into their souls; and they are often unable to realise their interest in the Lord Jesus Christ and his salvation. They do not doubt that the Lord Jesus is the Saviour of those that believe; they know that there is no other refuge for their guilty souls but the blood of the Lamb. They are effectually stripped from cleaving to a covenant of works; they are not running after things that cannot profit them, nor hiding their heads in lying refuges; from all these things they are effectually cut off by a work of grace on their souls. But through the unbelief of their hearts, the deadness of their frames, the barrenness of their souls, and the various temptations they are exercised with, they fear they have not the marks of God’s family, and are not able to realise their interest in the love and blood of the Lamb. The Apostle, therefore, speaks of “things that accompany salvation;” that is, certain marks and signs, certain clear and indubitable tokens of the work of grace on the soul. And, speaking to the Hebrews, he says for their comfort and encouragement, “We are persuaded,” whatever be your doubts and fears, whatever the darkness of your mind, however exercised with sharp and severe temptations, “we are persuaded” you are in possession of those “better things,” of those “things that accompany salvation;” and that this salvation is therefore eternally yours.
J. C. Philpot 1802-1869