What is Salvation?

There are some who look upon salvation as something they have received in the same way as they might receive a present by parcel post. It was good and kind of the Lord, and an evidence of His love to them, to send it to them. They had but to receive it, and had nothing to pay for it, for He paid the full price upon the cross, and now it is theirs. But though they have it, He, the Saviour, they imagine, like a friend who sends a present to them, remains at a great distance from them. This is an utterly false conception of the grace and ways of God, and accounts for much of the joylessness and retrogression of many converted people.

When the heart of Zacchaeus began to hunger for something better than gold, he climbed into a tree to see Jesus. It is more than likely that he could not then have given articulation to his deep longing, but Jesus knew it, and answered it in those words which must have filled the tax-gatherer with amazement, "Zacchaeus, make haste and come down, for today I must abide at thy house." And when the Lord reached the threshold of that hitherto godless and joyless house, He said, "This day is salvation come to this house." But why and how had salvation come there? It was because He, the Saviour, had come. Salvation is in Him, He is it; and in having Him we have salvation, and every other priceless blessing that God can give. He does not send salvation, He brings it; and where He is received there He abides, saying, "I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee" (Heb. 13:5). It is as though He said, "I have sought you so long, and love you so well, that never again will I allow you out of my company and care!" This is salvation — blessed, present, every day, and all-the-way salvation. It means to be protected, cared for, and upheld by the ever-present and infinitely tender Saviour, who has suffered for our sins, endured all our judgment, broken the dominion of the devil, and lives — yes, LIVES — as the Victor over death, for those who trust in Him.

Bless, bless the Conqueror slain,
  Slain in His victory;
Who lived, who died, who lives again
  For thee, His church, for thee.

What a living, blessed, joyful, pulsating matter salvation becomes when it dawns upon the soul that it is in Christ Jesus; that it is ours because He is ours and we are His; that we are joined to the Lord by everlasting bonds, and bonds that no device of the devil nor power of hell can sever. Nothing less than this would suit Him, and meet our need. Anything else is but a human conception of a divine reality.