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The Biblical Worldview on Salvation | Having a One-on-one Relationship With God

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
October 20, 2022 3:00 am

The Biblical Worldview on Salvation | Having a One-on-one Relationship With God

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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October 20, 2022 3:00 am

Where does your electricity come from in your home? The electric company, right? You’re connected directly. Your neighbor is connected directly. You’re not running an extension cord over to the neighbor’s to power up your lights (at least I hope not). Well, we each need a direct spiritual connection to our Heavenly Father. And today on A NEW BEGINNING, Pastor Greg Laurie points out how that sheds light on Paul’s injunction to “work out our own salvation.” Glad you’re along today for Pastor Greg’s Worldview Series.

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A New Beginning is the daily half-hour program hosted by Greg Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Southern California. For over 30 years, Pastor Greg and Harvest Ministries have endeavored to know God and make Him known through media and large-scale evangelism. This podcast is supported by the generosity of our Harvest Partners.

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You're listening to A New Beginning with Greg Laurie, a podcast supported by Harvest Partners. For more ways to deepen and challenge your spiritual walk, enroll in Pastor Greg's free online courses.

Sign up at Sometimes we can allow people to take the place of God in our life. A husband chooses to not go to church because his wife doesn't go anymore. Or maybe the kids don't go to church because their parents don't go anymore. Listen, you need your own relationship with God. Pastor Greg Laurie points out God wants a one-on-one relationship with each of us. Even if others don't, we need to focus on the Lord.

Only you can work out your salvation. Where does your electricity come from in your home? The electric company, right? You're connected directly. Your neighbor is connected directly. You're not running an extension cord over to the neighbors to power up your lights.

At least I hope not. Well, we each need a direct spiritual connection to our Heavenly Father. And today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie points out how that sheds light on Paul's injunction to work out our own salvation.

Glad you're along today for Pastor Greg's Worldview series. So let's look at Philippians 2 verse 12. Therefore, my beloved, as you've always obeyed not, as in my presence only, but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God who works in you both to will and do of His good pleasure. Work out your own salvation. What does that mean?

It means only you can work out your salvation. Wouldn't it be nice if you could hire someone to work out for you? You say, you know what? I don't want to work out. Why don't you go work out for me? But you can't do that. You have to go work out for yourself. So work out your own salvation. This is not something someone else can do in your place.

This is something you must do for yourself. It's a personal choice. But Paul throws in an interesting thought here in verse 12. Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed not only in my presence but more in my absence. So basically Paul is writing to the believers here in Philippi from a prison.

He has been arrested. And he can't go and be with them as he was in the past. And so he misses them and they miss him. So basically he is saying, now guys I am not with you but I still want you to work out your own salvation. I think the New Living Translation is helpful here where Paul says, dearest friends, you were always so careful to follow my instructions when I was with you. But now that I am away you must be even more careful to put into action God's saving work in your lives.

So here is what Paul is saying in effect guys. You need to grow up spiritually. You can't build your spiritual life on me. Don't even for a moment think you guys can go into spiritual cruise control if I am not personally there for you because it is God that works in you.

Not Paul. I am not doing the work in your life. God is doing the work in your life. Now I bring this up because sometimes we can allow people to take the place of God in our life. A husband chooses to not go to church because his wife doesn't go anymore.

Or maybe the kids don't go to church because their parents don't go anymore. Listen. You need your own relationship with God. Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. You say, but Greg my parents were hypocrites or I saw a hypocrite at church. Yeah get over it.

Grow up. Put your faith in Christ and follow Him. So Paul is saying it can't be all about me being there with you because I want to always be there with you. But the Lord always will be there with you. So work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.

As I misunderstand this Paul did not say work for your own salvation because salvation is a gift of God. And by the way this is a gift that grows more valuable with the passing of time. It is not that it becomes more valuable.

It always was. But we are just discovering the value of it. Because the salvation God gives us saves us from our past, our present, and our future. First it saves us from our past. The sins we have committed.

The wrongs we have done. It is removed. It is taken away. It is erased.

We have been given a clean slate as I pointed out. But now it saves us from our present. The power of sin in my life.

I have God's power to overcome it. And lastly it saves me from a future judgment. So that is why the Bible calls it such a great salvation. You see the value of it more and more with the passing of time. And so Paul says, work out your salvation.

Don't work for it. It is a gift to you from God. Ephesians 2 says, by grace you have been saved through faith not of yourselves. It is the gift of God.

So what does it mean? It is interesting the verb that Paul uses carries the meaning of work to full completion. Work to full completion your salvation. There is work involved in the Christian life as I play out, as I discover what God has done for me. It doesn't say sit out your own salvation. It says work out your own salvation. Going back to the analogy of a gym. You go and you work out to get into better shape.

The more you do it the better the results will be. Maybe it is because you are having issues. The other day I literally thought I might be close to having a heart attack. And the reason is I was feeling pressure on my chest. And so then I Googled symptoms of heart attack. It says pressure on your chest. And the pressure grew stronger as soon as I read that.

Literally. And then it said nausea. And I was nauseated the second I read it. I am nauseated. So I am going to see my doctor. So I called him up.

I have got to come over right now. And I came over and he hooked me up from EKG and he said, Craig you are absolutely fine. And then about a week later I got the bill and I did have a heart attack. So what happened was I had been playing racquetball. I used to do that years ago.

I started playing again. Because I hate cardiovascular. I hate treadmills. I hate stationary bicycles and all that pedaling. And so racquetball is fun because I will go to any length to chase a stupid ball around a court.

And it is a good workout. I sweat a little bit more. And also what I do is I fall. And I hit the wall really hard chasing the ball. And that is why I felt the pressure on my chest.

But I am ok for now. But you know sometimes you have to check up on those things and your doctor will say, you need an exercise regimen. So you go to the gym.

But here is the problem. Weird people hang out in gyms. You know what I am talking about. There are just strange people. There is a person who sweats all over everything. What is with that? Are you one of those people? Please stand up.

I want to talk to you. One of those sweaters. I mean seriously you know they get it from the equipment. Whatever it is. And there is just perspiration all over the floor. It is like can you like take a towel and wipe up after yourself. You know. Or there is a guy that screams every rep because he is lifting too much weight. Stop it. But still you need to get in there and do what you can.

So you work out to get in shape. And the same is true of the spiritual life. I am not working for it. God has given me the salvation.

It is mine. But work it out or discover what it actually means for me. In fact the phrase that Paul uses here for work out is a phrase that is also used to explain working a mine. You know going into a mine and extracting the silver or the gold or whatever is in the mine. Many years ago in California we had the California Gold Rush and there wasn't a lot of gold in this state. There is gold in them that are hills it was said. So people came from around the country and even the world to find their fortune. And the gold was soon gone.

I think people thought it was just like laying around on the streets you know. But they had to go into the mines and work at it in hopes of maybe discovering the mother lode. So Paul is saying it is like a mine. Go in there and discover all God has done for you. Extract it. Live it out. Understand it.

Appreciate it. Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. Now what that means is with self-distrust. So I come with a reverence for God and a distrust of myself.

I can't do this on my own strength. And Paul explains it. Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling for it is God that works in you both to willing to do with his good pleasure. Some people say well God does it all and I do nothing. Others say I do it all and God does nothing.

Both of those views are wrong. God does it through you as you mine it and discover it for yourself. Work out your own salvation with self-distrust for it is God that is working in you. In a moment Pastor Greg points out how we can respond to our spiritual adversary when he tries to convince us that we're not really saved.

Good insight coming up in just a moment. Emails, letters, and phone calls from listeners are so encouraging to us and they let us know the effectiveness of these studies. Pastor Greg I wanted to relate an extraordinary experience my Bible study group shared recently.

We're studying your tell someone online class material and had come to the fifth week called what is the gospel. Our usual study leader was ill and asked me to lead the group of 15 or 20 which by the way includes two very experienced pastors. I was hesitant and felt very insecure but agreed to fill in. Just as we were getting started a young lady walked into the meeting room and sat down to join us. I'd not seen her at church for several years and to my delight she participated in the discussions and soaked in the message of the gospel as you presented it. Afterward while we were enjoying refreshments I noticed that our pastor and the young lady were talking off to the side and within a few minutes he announced to the group that she had accepted Christ right then and there. We were able to love her congratulate her and welcome her and then we found just the right resources that she might need and began to get her connected with other believers. Pastor Greg I'm so thankful that you included that chapter as it was exactly what this young lady needed to hear. Thank you and your team at Harvest for all that you do. What an encouraging story of how God's word touched this young woman's life. If you or someone you know have had their life changed because of the ministry of harvest would you let Pastor Greg know?

Just drop them an email greg at harvest dot org. Again that's greg at harvest dot org and check out all of Pastor Greg's free online courses at courses dot harvest harvest dot org. Well we're taking a close look at Philippians 2 verse 12 today which tells us to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling.

Here's Pastor Greg once again. Now when it says work it out with fear and trembling I don't want you to think that Paul is suggesting that one can lose their salvation because I believe once you're saved you're saved that's why we call it eternal life and not temporary life. And that's why you don't have to get saved again and again and again and again. You don't have to be born again again again again again again. You're born again once. Now you can make a recommitment to Christ if you need to.

But once you have eternal life it's a gift to you from God. And I bring this up because sometimes even believers who have known the Lord for years will doubt their own salvation. And you need to know that the devil loves to challenge what God has said. Don't forget in the Garden of Eden he came to Adam and Eve and he said did God really say what you thought God said. He challenged the Word of God.

And he'll do the same to young Christians especially. Right after they believed he'll say do you really think you're saved. Do you really think Christ has come into your life. And it is then that I must stand on the promises of God. This is bringing that biblical worldview.

Not my emotions because my emotions can mislead me. I don't feel saved today. Maybe I lost my salvation last night. No no it's still there. It's still the gift of God.

It still belongs to you. And it is then that I come back to Scripture. Scripture is like 1 John 5 10. It says anyone who believes in the Son of God has this testimony in his heart. Romans 8 16 says his Spirit bears witness with our spirit that we are the children of God. John 5 24 Jesus says I tell you the truth whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and shall not be condemned.

He's crossed over from death to life. And really my favorite assurance verse 1 John 5 says these things we write to you that believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life. So when the devil comes and says you're not saved you say to the devil I know I'm saved because the Bible says these things we write to you that believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life.

And sometimes I will quote Scripture out loud to remind myself. Even Jesus did that. Remember when he was tempted in the wilderness and the devil said to him why don't you turn this rock into a piece of bread. Jesus says it is written man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.

Satan says why don't you fall down and worship me. And Jesus says it is written you shall worship the Lord God in him only shall you serve. The point is you come back with Scripture. That is what I mean when I say think biblically. Let everything go through the grid of Scripture. Not your emotions. This is something God has given to you. So we may wonder well can you lose salvation once you have it.

I already said I don't think you can. So what about those people that make a profession of faith and say they are saved and we even see some evidence or so it would seem initially but then a month later two months later maybe six months later they just walk away and they never come back. So is that someone who was saved who is now unsaved. I would suggest to you if a person walks away and never comes back they were never saved to begin with. Here is how you know who the real Christians are.

It is where they end up. Christians can go astray. Christians can be prodigal sons and daughters can't they. But God will call them and if they are real believers they will always come home again and if they never were believers they will never come home because it never was their home.

We are told over in 1 John 2 19 they went out from us but they did not really belong to us for if they had belonged to us they would have remained with us for their going out showed that none of them ever belonged to us. So sometimes people will make a profession of faith that is based on emotion. Jesus talked about this in the parable of the sower. In Mark 4 16 He said those that receive the seed that goes on ground that is embedded with rocks so it shoots up but it doesn't take root. He says these are those that hear the word of God with great enthusiasm but there's shallow soil of character so when the emotions wear off or some difficulty arrives there's nothing to show for it. So these are the people that were never really believers at all.

It was just the whim of an emotion. So don't work for your salvation. Work out your salvation. And what an incredible gift it is. And all you have to do is receive it. I just flew back from Hawaii visiting our church there and I had to get a plane ticket and I printed it out. And I boarded my flight and they always check your ticket. I want to make sure you are in the right seat. You cannot board a flight without a ticket.

I use this analogy a number of years ago at a Harvest Crusade and I was asking people do you have your ticket to go to heaven. And Stella who was then a little girl my granddaughter heard me say this and she had a flyer that was given to her when she went in the event and she held it up and yelled out to me. I couldn't hear her. She was so far away. I have my ticket papa she said.

It was so cute. But really do you have your ticket? You say well what do you mean my ticket? Do you know that you are saved? You might say well I think so. Hey I think you will know it. And if you don't know it maybe you aren't. And I don't want you to leave this service today without knowing beyond the shadow of a doubt that your sin is forgiven.

You say okay how does this happen again. Remember Acts 13 says, this man Jesus gives forgiveness of sins and whoever trusts in him is freed from all guilt and he is declared righteous. So have you put your trust in Jesus.

Again Scripture says whoever will call upon the name of the Lord will be saved. I have used this illustration before but there was a time I was out with my son Jonathan in the ocean and we got caught in a little riptide. He was a young guy at this point. And I was kind of keeping him above the surface and I couldn't believe I am in a riptide because the irony is I am like literally 12 feet from the shore. So I am thinking I can't get in a riptide this close to the shore.

But I am. And I can't get my feet on the ground. And I am getting pulled out.

And it is becoming a problem. And I see a lifeguard and I thought there is no way on God's green earth I am going to yell for help this close to shore. And I am getting pulled out and this lifeguard sees me and she realizes I am in trouble and she starts swimming toward me. She has got her little preserver.

She is swimming. I am going oh no this is so humiliating. And finally I got my feet on the shore. I said I am ok. I am ok. Thank you. Thank you. And I walked in you know though if you are going to get rescued I would rather get rescued by a girl lifeguard than a guy right.

Well if there is mouth to mouth involved you want it to be a girl. That is all. I am just kidding. But here is the point. I was too proud to call out for help. That is how a lot of us can be. Maybe men especially.

But sometimes all of us. Oh I don't need to be saved. I am good.

No you aren't. You are not good at all. Your situation is worse than a person in a burning building or in a combat zone.

Your situation is worse than a person caught in a riptide. If you don't have Jesus Christ living in you right now bottom line you are headed to a certain judgment in hell. And God does not want that.

That is why He sent Jesus Christ died to save sinners like you and me. And you can be saved today. Forgiven of all your sin. Put all of your past behind you. Have a fresh start. A clean slate. Think about it.

And then have the power you need in your life to live the life God has called you to live. It can all happen. And it doesn't take years. It doesn't take months. It doesn't take days. It doesn't take hours.

It can happen just like that if you will just call out to Him. So we are going to close in prayer. And I am going to extend an invitation to anyone here. If you don't know Jesus Christ as your own Savior and your Lord and your friend He can come into your life right now and forgive you of all of your sin and give you that fresh start you longed for and give you the guaranteed hope of heaven.

If you don't know this for sure let's get this settled right here. Let's all pray. Father thank you for the incredible gift of salvation.

It is really the gift that keeps on giving. And I pray for any here or listening wherever they are if they don't know you yet. If they have not called upon your name yet would you help them to do that right now. I pray your Holy Spirit will speak to their hearts. In Jesus name I pray.

Amen. Pastor Greg Laurie with an important word of prayer. And if you would like to make a change in your relationship with the Lord Pastor Greg will help you with that in just a moment before today's edition of A New Beginning comes to a close. You know Pastor Greg sometimes we may discover a Christian friend of ours may have some questions on the basics of the faith and we could all use a resource that would help answer those questions and help them build a solid foundation for their walk with the Lord.

You have a resource like that available don't you? Yes I do Dave it's called the New Believers Guide to Effective Christian Living. This is a simple small book it's very understandable and basically I lay down the basics of spiritual success. If you want to go forward spiritually this is going to help you. By the way these are trues and principles you never outgrow.

You need to return to them again and again and again. We talk about things like discovering God's will, how to pray effectively, how to share your faith, how to know the will of God, how to study the Bible and much much more. The cool thing is you could read this in one sitting. It's almost like we're just sitting down and talking together over a cup of coffee and I'm just breaking down the basics of the Christian life for you or for whoever you give this book to. So order your copy of the New Believers Guide to Effective Christian Living. You might even want to order a few extras it's a great resource to have on hand.

Yeah that's right it's small enough to keep in a pocket or in a purse or in the glove compartment of your car. Let this help you in your own personal ministry and we want to send a copy of this your way to say thank you. Thank you for praying for us and for investing so these daily studies can continue. It's only possible through listener support so thanks for letting us hear from you today. Again when you give be sure to ask for the New Believers Guide to Effective Christian Living.

You can call us at 1-800-821-3300 that's a 24-hour phone number 1-800-821-3300 or write a new beginning Box 4000 Riverside California 92514 or go online to And then here's Pastor Greg once again. Let me close with this thought would you like Jesus Christ to come into your life? Would you like your sin forgiven?

Would you like to fill the hole in your soul? Would you like to go to heaven when you die? If so just stop what you're doing and pray this prayer with me. You can pray it out loud if you like you can pray it in the quietness of your heart if you choose but pray this prayer. This is a prayer of asking Jesus Christ to come into your life.

Pray these words Lord Jesus I know that I'm a sinner but I know that you're the savior who died on the cross for my sin and rose again from the dead. I turn from that sin now and I choose to follow you from this moment forward. Thank you for hearing this prayer and answering this prayer in Jesus name I pray amen.

Hey did you just pray that prayer? If so I want to congratulate you and be the first to say welcome to the family of God. Yeah that's right you have a whole new life in front of you now and to help you begin living this new life Pastor Greg would like to send you some free follow-up resources called the New Believers Growth Packet.

It'll help you get started in living your life for the Lord. Can we send it to you? Just ask for the New Believers Growth Packet. You can call us at 1-800-821-3300. We're here to take your call anytime around the clock.

That's 1-800-821-3300. Our mailing address is A New Beginning, Box 4000, Riverside, California 92514. Or go online to and click on Know God. Well next time Pastor Greg brings good insight on adopting the biblical worldview on fear and worry. Join us here on A New Beginning with pastor and Bible teacher Greg Laurie. The preceding podcast was made possible by Harvest Partners, helping people everywhere know God. Learn how to become a Harvest Partner, sign up for daily devotions, and find resources to help you grow in your faith at
Whisper: medium.en / 2022-11-20 19:23:21 / 2022-11-20 19:33:39 / 10

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