Ignorance and Salvation

True and false Salvation ( Sermon link by Pastor Jeff Arthur Elizabeth Baptist Church.)

The most notorious false prophet in the world is the vain hope, which men take up for their salvation. It prophesies peace, pardon, and heaven as the portion of one who was never God’s heir. But the day is coming, and soon, when this false prophet will be confounded. Then the hypocrite will confess he never had any real hope for salvation except an idol of his own imagination; and the religious man will throw off his profession, by which he deceived himself, and appear naked in his sinfulness. It is enough to make us carefully search our own hearts and find out what our hope is built upon.

Now hope of the right kind is well grounded. “Be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you” (1 Peter 3:15). All Christians, no matter how weak, have grounded their hearts in Scripture for the hope they profess. What entitles you to inherit God’s kingdom without a promise from Him? If someone should say that your house and land was his, would you give him your property just because he demanded it? Yet many hope to be saved who can give no better reason than this.

Just as a saint conquers fear by asking his soul why it is disquieted, a similar question can throw the bold sinner from his prancing hopes. “What reason do you find in the whole Bible for you to hope for salvation, when you live in the ignorance of God?” Certainly his soul would be as speechless as the man without the wedding garment was at Christ’s question. This is why some dare not let themselves think about salvation—they know this thought would make a disturbance in their conscience that will not be stilled quickly. Or if they do ask, it would be like Pilate, who asked Christ what was truth but had no intention of waiting for His answer.

—William Gurnall


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