There’s more to salvation than you may have been taught. Belief isn’t all it takes. Now before you label me a heretic and cult leader, keep reading.
According to the words of Jesus, there’s another element. Here’s what Jesus said…
Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to the whole creation. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that disbelieveth shall be condemned (Mark 16:15–16).
See the two elements there? Element 1 is to be born again through trust in Christ and His work for you. Yes, that’s all it takes to be made into a new human. See…I don’t deserve those labels :).
But to be “saved,” that takes going further.
Christ is Lord of a new system of order
Element 2 is committing to living as the new human you’ve become in a new environment with other new humans. This is what baptism symbolizes.
The concept of baptism has morphed into this 2nd step people take sometime after they believe that’s become designed to tell others about their decision and commitment to Him. It’s known as a public display of your trust in Christ.
Now I’m not saying that’s not important. It certainly is, and the baptisms I’ve been to where this is the intent have been beautiful. But what baptism is supposed to represent goes further than that.
Here’s what Watchman Nee says about it in the book Love Not The World…
[Salvation] is concerned not so much with sin and hell, or holiness and heaven, but with something else. Salvation, we shall see, is related to the kosmos, the world. This whole cosmic pattern is peculiarly at odds with God the Father.
The world’s system of order we were all born into is not the system of order we were made for. Christ is not Lord of it. He had to come to earth to re-establish what He had purposed in the beginning. He had to rescue us not just from our sin and its consequences, but from the world’s ways of doing things.
His work included bringing humanity out of the world’s system and into God’s ways of doing things where He is Lord.
Salvation is an exit
Nee goes on to point out how the flood narrative about Noah and his family in Genesis was a precursor to this…
The real point for us is that they were the only people to come out from that corrupt system of things, that world under water. Salvation is essentially a present exit from a doomed order which is Satan’s. Speaking figuratively, therefore, when you go through the waters of baptism everything belonging to the former system is cut off by those waters, never to return. You alone emerge.
For you it is a passage into another realm, a world where you will find a dove and the fresh leaves of olive trees. Not only does your own history as a child of Adam end in your baptism; your world also ends there.
Baptism is the acceptance of Jesus’ rescue mission to “drown the world’s system.”
Salvation is death
So you can be born again and not saved. What is meant by that is…you can believe in Christ and be made a new human, but be still immersed in the world’s ways and pursuits. If this is the case, you should feel uncomfortable. If you were given and received a full and complete gospel of the Kingdom, the world’s ways should make little sense to you anymore.
Salvation involves taking the step of leaving the world’s system behind. This is when the Kingdom comes. It comes when a decision is made not to mess around anymore. You no longer have eyes for the world. You’ve moved on and resolved that you are now dead to it.
Through this death to it, you are saved from it (and its consequences).
This is the third post in the Enemy Blueprints series. Go here to read the rest of the posts in the series.