The Confirmed Message Of Salvation
By: Brian A. Yeager

In the article last week, we pondered the statement “so great salvation”. In that study, we looked at part of the context in which that statement appears. Let me draw your mind back to those Scriptures as we begin this study: “Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip. For if the word spoken by angels was stedfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompence of reward; How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him; God also bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will (Hebrews 2:1-4)?

Long before Jesus was born in the flesh, the hope of Salvation began to be declared to humanity (Genesis 12:1-3; cf. Galatians 3:16-29). Long before God told Abraham or the prophets anything, the plan for Jesus to be our source of salvation was made (Ephesians 1:3-4 and I Peter 1:18-21). Though it took thousands of years, the promise began to be realized when Jesus was born of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14 and Matthew 1:18-25). Jesus then fulfilled the will of our Father by living, teaching, being sacrificed, risen the third day, and ascending into Heaven (Matthew 16:21, Mark 8:31, Mark 10:33-34, Acts 2:23-36, and Romans 5:6-8).

During the times most know as the Old Testament, the message of salvation in Jesus Christ was not very clear. It was foretold, but was also mysterious. Now, as the word of God states, we see Jesus (Hebrews 2:9), whom they desired to see but could not in times past (I Peter 1:1-12). That which was a mystery has been made known (Ephesians 3:1-11). Now, a message is meaningless if it cannot be confirmed to be true. Thus, the study we are about to jump into is very important. Not only is the message of salvation in and through Jesus declared unto us, but it was also confirmed. First, it was confirmed by those that heard Jesus.

It Was Confirmed By Witnesses That Heard Jesus

Jesus told His disciples that they were His witnesses (Luke 24:45-48). He told them to bear witness because they had been with Him from the beginning of His work on earth (John 15:24-27 and Acts 1:1-8). They did just what Jesus asked them to do. They did act as witnesses of His word and His works after He departed this world. Notice: “This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses… And killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses... And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all… The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree. Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins. And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him… And we are witnesses of all things which he did both in the land of the Jews, and in Jerusalem; whom they slew and hanged on a tree: Him God raised up the third day, and shewed him openly; Not to all the people, but unto witnesses chosen before of God, even to us, who did eat and drink with him after he rose from the dead. And he commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is he which was ordained of God to be the Judge of quick and dead… That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;)” (Acts 2:32, Acts 3:15, Acts 4:33, Acts 5:30-32, Acts 10:39-42, and I John 1:1-2).

Even after some time had passed, there were a great number of witnesses that could testify of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ (I Corinthians 15:3-6). The work of our Lord was not held secret while He was on earth (John 18:20). God also showed these witnesses signs, wonders, miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost.

They Witnessed Supernatural Things

Jesus was not an ordinary man. Jesus was able to heal those that were grievously ill (Matthew 8:5-13). He did not just heal one ill person, but many who had various injuries and illnesses (Matthew 8:14-17, Matthew 12:15, Matthew 12:22, Matthew 14:14, Matthew 15:30, Matthew 19:2, Matthew 21:14, Mark 3:10, Luke 5:15, Luke 6:17-18, Luke 9:11, Luke 14:1-4, John 5:1-15, John 9:1-41, etc.). Jesus healed people that the physicians could not help (Mark 5:24-34). Jesus raised the dead (Mark 5:35-42 and Luke 7:11-17). His raising of the dead wasn’t just someone who had passed for five minutes either. Lazarus was dead four days when Jesus brought him back from death (John 11:1-57).

Jesus worked miracles, wonders, and signs (Acts 2:22). Jesus gave signs that showed His foreknowledge (Matthew 26:24-56). He foretold of things to come, such as the destruction of Jerusalem, which was beyond His physical lifetime (Matthew 24:1-34). Jesus sent the Holy Ghost to His Apostles (Acts 2:1-18) as He promised them (John 7:39, John 14:25-26, and John 16:13). The Apostles continued to prove what they preached was the truth by miraculous works the Spirit empowered them to do (Acts 3:1-19, Acts 5:1-16, Acts 9:32-43, Acts 12:1-24, Acts 13:4-12, Acts 14:6-10, Acts 16:16-40, Acts 19:11-20, Acts 20:7-12, and Acts 28:1-10). These works were done to confirm that their words were the truth (Mark 16:15-20). Thus, God showed His word to be true by witnesses and supernatural acts.

Conclusion

God has had the message of salvation delivered to mankind and confirmed through the various measures we have learned about in this study. God raised Jesus from the dead and showed Him openly and such was preached (Acts 13:26-39). Now that we have these confirmed words, let’s continue in them as they did at the first (Acts 2:42).

Volume 17 – Issue 35 - May 14th, 2017