Our understanding of living in the kingdom of God necessitates we look at our often narrow understanding of salvation. When salvation is thought of only in term of a past experience and a one-time moment of “decision” we make, salvation gets cut off from life in the present. Do not misunderstand me, there is a moment of salvation whereby we are forgiven of our sins and justified before God. However, it seems historically, as evidenced in our churches, that the gospel of justification alone is not enough to generate authentic transformation. What is needed, rather, is a more robust understanding and the need to reconsider salvation as being less about a moment in time and more about entering into a “life with God” friendship and apprenticeship for living life in the kingdom of God.
What if salvation is also a life a way of living each moment of my day with God? Dallas Willard puts it this way, it is “the daily life we receive from God.”
Salvation, therefore, is not only a moment in the past, and a present on-going reality in the resent, it also contains ultimately a future deliverance— through this ongoing journey with Jesus in which I’m becoming more like Him.
Phil. 2:12, 13 highlights this ongoing present work of God in salvation, “Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.”
What does salvation look like in your life today?