Hawking Jesus by Herman Hoeksema

Jesus actually and fully saves

By this proposition I mean that Jesus does not offer salvation but works it. His name is Jesus, because through Him salvation has become, not a possibility, but a reality. He is called Jesus, because He is Jesus. The name Jesus, Joshua, Jeh-oshua, signifies: Jehovah-saves. In Him Jehovah, our Triune Covenant God, is revealed as the God of our salvation. Therefore He receives His name by a special injunction from heaven: Thou shalt call His name Jesus.

And the reason for this name is also expressed by the heavenly messenger:

“Because He shall save His people from their sins.” Note: He shall save His people. He shall not throw out a lifeline which you may, perhaps, grasp, that He may pull you to safety; or which you may, at your pleasure and folly, sneer at and refuse to grasp, so that you perish in the raging sea. No, He shall save. He shall not beg you to allow Him to save you, to come to Him, to accept Him, to let Him in, so that you may make it possible for Him to realize His name, Jesus. His name is Jesus, for He shall surely save His people from their sins.

What is salvation? It is that work of the God of our salvation whereby He lifts us from our present misery into the glory of His heavenly kingdom and covenant.

What is our misery from which we must be saved? What is the natural state and condition from which Jesus lifts us into eternal glory? Is it to be compared to the condition of a drowning seaman struggling with the waves, whom you may save by calling to him to take hold of the lifeline? No, he is a man who is already drowned. Not drowning but drowned is the word that describes his condition. Not dying but dead. Salvation is no rescuing of the dying, but raising of the dead.

Still more. That death is spiritual death. And spiritual death means that our nature is become so corrupt that we are enemies of God and cannot be of ourselves anything else than enemies of the Fountain of Life. We will not, we cannot, and we cannot will anything but sin. We are in darkness. We are perverse of mind and heart. We are corrupt in all our thoughts and desires and ways. We are blind, deaf, dead. We are alive unto iniquity and dead unto righteousness. We are children of our father the devil rejoicing to do his will. We are hateful and hating one another. And in that condition we are enslaved as willing slaves. Our will is not free, except to do evil. We are shackled by sin and death and we could not even will to let anyone break those shackles.

Yet more. We are in this condition because we are all under the guilt of sin. Sin makes guilty, for God is just and He is angry with the sinner every day. We are born in sin. And we increase our guilt daily. Hence, we have no other right than to be damned. We have no right to life. We lie under the sentence of death.

Such is our state and condition by nature. Such is the testimony of the Holy Scriptures. For the Word of God declares that by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin, and so death passed upon all men (Rom. 5:12); and that by the offense of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation (v. 18). The Scriptures declare that by nature we are carnally minded and do mind the things of the flesh, that the carnal mind is enmity against God, for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be, and that they that are in the flesh cannot please God (Rom. 8:5-8). The Bible teaches that all are under sin, that there is not one that doeth good, not one righteous, not one that understandeth and seeketh after God; that all have gone astray; that their throat is an open sepulcher; that they use deceit with their tongues; that the poison of asps is under their lips; that their mouth is full of cursing and bitterness, their feet swift to shed blood; that destruction and misery are in their ways; that they have not known the way of peace; and that there is no fear of God before their eyes (Rom. 3:9-18). Holy Writ pictures the natural man as being full of unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness, envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; that men are backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boastful, inventors of evil things; disobedient to parents, without understanding, covenant-breakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful (Rom. 1:29-31). The natural man, according to the divine Word, is foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving diverse lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another (Titus3:3). He is dead in trespasses and sins (Eph. 2:1). By nature he is a child of wrath (Eph. 2:3); he is darkness (Eph. 5:8). He is so dead that except through faith in the Son he shall not see life, the wrath of God abideth on him (John 3:36). They are children of their father the devil and will do their father’s lust (John 8:44). – Source

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