Friday, June 8, 2007

Ephesians 1: Saved for God's benefit

Verse 6 introduces a truth that will be repeated a few times in Ephesians – we are redeemed and adopted “to the praise of his glorious grace.” This is not to discount God’s love for us or to in any way reduce the value that He sees in us, but the simple fact is that salvation is, first and foremost, about Him. We are saved that we may glorify Him. We are saved so that He may display His grace to the universe. We are saved for His benefit.

It seems that the whole question of meritorious works should be settled by this point. If we could in any way contribute to our salvation, it would detract from the credit that He receives for it. If nothing else is learned from the OT, this should be clear – God Almighty does not share His glory.

For my own name's sake I delay my wrath; for the sake of my praise I hold it back from you, so as not to cut you off. For my own sake, for my own sake, I do this. How can I let myself be defamed? I will not yield my glory to another. (Isaiah 48:9, 11 NIV)
Our God is jealous for His glory, so we can say that we are saved for good works, but we cannot say we are in any shape, form, or fashion saved by good works.

More on Ephesians 1

No comments: