Even knowing many readers of my post settled the issue of their salvation a long time ago, I nevertheless want to reflect on it for their encouragement and the benefit of those who haven’t. At times those familiar with the subject use terms not understood by people unfamiliar with them. Hopefully, this will put the cookies on the lower shelf.

The first instruction to follow is to repent.  Repentance is pictured by a person standing in a circle facing outward as they hold hands with those on each side of them.  Christ stands in the center of the circle.  Facing away from Him, each sees his own shadow and cannot see his fellow persons on each side properly.  To repent is to turn and face Christ.  One’s shadow is behind, the repentant now faces Christ, and can see his fellow persons properly. 

Older theologians defined saving faith in terms of three words: NOTITIA, that is knowledge. Before one can believe in Jesus for the gift of salvation they need knowledge regarding it. He the sinless one died for us the sinful ones, the just one died for us the unjust ones, the holy one died for us the unholy one. Knowing that does not constitute salvation, but is essential to it.

ASSENSUS, that is intellectual assent, that is, believe these facts. FIDUCIA, that is trust and personal commitment. Do you have all three?  Don’t stop short of the third. Commitment completes salvation and results in obedience to Jesus.

One doesn’t need to remember those terms, but never forget their meaning.

The expression “to obey” and the word “faith” both come from the same root. “Faith,” pistis, means “firm persuasion.”  The expression “to obey” comes from pisteuo  and speaks of acting out of firm persuasion. Thus, we are to live out our conviction. This does not mean we are saved by works, but we are saved to work.

Another way of picturing salvation might include you and me becoming friends and me enjoying an overnight visit by you. The next morning you come down with sweat on your brow complaining of severe pain on your right side. I know little of medicine, but I know those are signs of appendicitis. 

I say my good friend is Dr. Robinson, a surgeon and expert in appendicitis. His office is 234 Oak Street and his phone number is 774-978-4523. Do you believe that? That is Notitia. Your response is Yes. Great, you are well, the pain is gone. That is Assensus.

No, you are not yet saved. You must let me take you to the emergency room where Dr. Robinson greets us, admits you, and has prep work done. Then you must trust the Dr. By submitting to him for surgery. That is fiducia, a personal commitment, salvation.