Fruits of Salvation
How do we tell true Christians from those who have
yet to receive salvation? The Bible, which we Christians believe to
be the Word of God, suggests it clearly: Salvation manifests.
While we affirm that a display of good works and virtues does not lead to salvation, it is our firm conviction that the saving grace of Jesus Christ turns a person from being a sinner into a wonderful new creation.
This article, however, does not seek to throw judgment on how other Christians behave but only encourages an evaluation of how we apply Christian virtues in our daily lives.
Among these virtues are love, faith, righteousness, humility, compassion, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, selflessness, self-control, temperance, respect, hospitability, thankfulness, charity, forgiveness and purity of heart. The apostle Paul said: “Overall these virtues, put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
Salvation is a result of our faith in Jesus Christ, the Son of God who assumed a bodily form and offered Himself as a sacrifice for our sins.
For God so loved the world He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16)
All men have sinned against God, starting from the fall of Adam and Eve from the Paradise.For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23)As it is written, there is no one righteous, not even one (Romans 3:10).
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23)
Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved (Acts 4:12).Jesus Christ said:I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6)
Yet to all who received Jesus Christ, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God. (John 1:12)
That if you confess with your mouth, Jesus is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. (Romans 10:9)
If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. (I John 1:9)
When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins. (Colossians 2:13)
Salvation is a pure grace from God. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9) He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy (Titus 3:5 in part).
Having believed, you were marked in Him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession to the praise of His glory. (Ephesians 1:13-14)
The Holy Spirit moves our body to follow the will of God and recognize the truth. He is our Counselor, who lives in us. “The Holy Spirit convicts the world of guilt, in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment.” (John 16:8)
The indwelling of the Holy Spirit turns us into a new creation. “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” (2 Corinthians 5:17) Being a new creation, we demonstrate the virtues of Jesus Christ. “The fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things, there is no law. (Galatians 5:22-23)
Under the control of the Holy Spirit, we will secure our salvation until the coming of the Lord. He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ. (Philippians 1:6)
Paul exhorts Christians to live as new creation and abandon the ways of the sinful world. Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness. (2 Timothy 2:13) Do not offer parts of your body to sin, as instruments of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life, and offer the parts of your body to Him as instruments of righteousness. (Romans 6:13)
There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them. (2 Timothy 3:1-5)
Flee the evil desires of youth, and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. (2 Timothy 2:22) If you know that He is righteous, you know that everyone who does what is right has been born of Him. (I John 2:29)
Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. (Romans 12:1-2 in part)
The Bible has emphasized the importance of loving God and our fellow men. But if anyone obeys God’s word, God’s love is truly made complete in Him. This is how we know we are in Him. (I John 2:3-5) We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers. Anyone who does not love remains in death. (I John 3:14)
Jesus said: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic. (Luke 6:27-29) His command: Love each other as I have loved you. (John 15:12) Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you that you may be sons of your Father in Heaven. (Matthew 5:44)
How can we show our love? John said: Let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth. (I John 3:18) Since love comes from God, we have the power to love one another and defeat the sins of the world. And His commands are not burdensome, for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only He who believes that Jesus is the Son of God. (I John 5:3-5)
This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down His life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity in him, how can the love of God be in him? (I John 3:16-18). About love, Jesus said, Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. (John 15:13-14)
God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in Him (I John 4:16). Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. (I John 4:7-8).
Paul said that he is nothing without love (I Corinthians 13:2). Paul described love this way. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. (I Corinthians 13:4-8)
Paul cited other virtues that are expected from true Christians, although the next passage particularly refers to the elders of the Church. Now the overseer must be above reproach, the husband of but one wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. (I Timothy 3:2-3)
He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him with proper respect. If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church? (I Timothy 3:4)
Therefore as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And overall these virtues, put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. (Colossians 3:12-15)
And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. (Colossians 3:17) Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men. (Colossians 3:23)
All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. (I Peter 1:5) Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. (Ephesians 4:2) God has called us to live in peace. (I Corinthians 7:15)
Below is a suggested prayer:
God, the most high, I praise You for Your Holiness. I acknowledge that I am a sinner and could not do anything by myself to reach your righteousness. Forgive me, Lord. Though I deserve death, You love me so much that You sent Your Son Jesus Christ to die for my sins instead. I thank You for sending Jesus Christ from Heaven, so that He can give me a new life. I accept the grace of your salvation through Jesus Christ. From now on, I accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior and allow Him to prevail upon my will so that I can manifest His virtues in my daily activities. Glory to You, our God in the highest. I pray, in the name of our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen!
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