Appendix A Terminology Of Salvation

1. Regeneration.

This is the new birth, the beginning of spiritual life for every believer (John 3:3-8). When divine life is imparted, the Holy Spirit enters the believers body. This miracle is achieved through the hearing and believing of God s Word (Romans 10:17; Ephesians 1:13; 1 Peter 1:23), by the working of the Holy Spirit (John 3:5-6; Titus 3:5) and by our response to God of believing the truth (2 Thessalonians 2:13).

2. Reconciliation.

This is the bringing together of those who have been separated (2 Corinthians 5:18-20). One has pointed out that the idea of reconciliation in this verse is that of gaining the pardon of an offended king.

3. Redemption.

This means to deliver by paying a price (Romans 3:24; Hebrews 9:12). Believers were once the slaves of sin and uncleanness (Romans 6:17-20), the curse of the Law’s terrible judgment (Galatians 3:13; Galatians 4:5), fear of impending death (Hebrews 2:15) and Satan’s power (Colossians 1:13; Colossians 2:15; Hebrews 2:14-15). Now we have been made free in Christ (John 8:36) because He has paid the price with His own precious blood (1 Peter 1:18-19).

4. Atonement.

This refers to all that the Lord Jesus accomplished on the cross as the ground of salvation. Atonement is for all who will come to God (2 Corinthians 5:14-15; 1 Timothy 2:5-6; Hebrews 2:9). The Old Testament word meant primarily “to cover” but also indicated that sacrificial work by which God found full satisfaction in meeting the claims of His justice because of our sin. The Jewish Day of Atonement (Leviticus 16:33-34), today called Yom Kippur, is an example of the Old Testament use of the word. Romans 5.T1 uses “atonement” in the King James Version, but there it should be translated “reconciliation.” Hebrews 2:17 could be rendered “make atonement.” A similar word, “expiation,” is used in RS V and other translations of this verse. (See also “propitiation.”)

5. Justification.

This is a Divine act whereby a holy God pronounces the sinner who believes in Christ to be righteous before Him and acquits him from all charges, apart from any merit of his own. This is done “freely” by His grace (Romans 3:24). It is to be noted that this is a declaration of God, not an experiential thing (Romans 4:4-5; Romans 5:1; Galatians 2:16; Galatians 3:11). Justification is by grace, by faith and by His blood, without works and apart from the Law. Justification by works, referred to by James (James 2:14-24), is a demonstration of the reality of faith already possessed. This is not a justification unto salvation but an outward display of faith by action following salvation.

6. Imputation.

This means “to reckon” or “to put to one’s account” by a judicial act of God. It is illustrated in Philemon 18. God put our sins upon Christ at the cross and He put Christ’s righteousness upon us as believers (2 Corinthians 5:19, 21).

7. Mediator.

A middle man is needed to bring together a holy God and sinful men. This is the “daysman” for which Job longed (9:33) and which Christ proved to be (1 Timothy 2:5; Hebrews 8:6; Hebrews 9:15; Hebrews 12:24).

8. Propitiation.

The word is related to “mercy” or “mercy-seat,” which was the place where the sacrificial blood was sprinkled before God in the Old Testament sanctuary (Romans 3:24-25; Hebrews 9:5-7; 1 John 4:10). Through Christ’s work, not that of man, God has become favorable to us and the claims of justice have been satisfied. The man who prayed the sinner’s prayer cried, “‘God, be propitious to me’“ (Luke 18:13 NASB, marginal reading).

9. Sanctification.

This has been described as that relationship into which men enter by faith in Christ (Acts 26:18). “Sanctify” means “to set apart” (1) from the defiling and sinful elements of this life and (2) unto the sacred purposes of God. Positionally in Christ we have already forever been sanctified in Him (Acts 20:32; 1 Corinthians 6:11; Hebrews 10:10; Jude 1). This was even true of the sinful Corinthians (1 Corinthians 1:2; 1 Corinthians 5:1-2). All believers are sanctified by being in Christ and hence are called “saints,” or “holy ones,” by reason of that union with Him. There is, however, another use of the word in a progressive sense. The Holy Spirit continues a sanctifying work in believers’ lives, and we should respond to these efforts to mold us into the image of God’s dear Son (Romans 8:29). We are called to be in practice what we are in position.