Salvation

Salvation (Latin: salvatio; Ancient Greek: σωτηρία, translit. sōtēría; Hebrew: יָשַׁע‎, translit. yāšaʕ;[1] Arabic: الخلاص‎, translit. al-ḵalaṣ) is being saved or protected from harm[2] or being saved or delivered from a dire situation.[3] In religion, salvation is the saving of the soul from sin and its consequences.[4]

The academic study of salvation is called soteriology.

Meaning

In religion, salvation is the saving of the soul from sin and its consequences.[5] It may also be called "deliverance" or "redemption" from sin and its effects.[6] Historically, salvation is considered to be caused either by the grace of a deity (i.e. unmerited and unearned); by the independent choices of a free will and personal effort (i.e. earned and/or merited); or by some combination of the two. Religions often emphasize the necessity of both personal effort—for example, repentance and asceticism—and divine action (e.g. grace).

Abrahamic religions

Judaism

In contemporary Judaism, redemption (Hebrew ge'ulah), refers to God redeeming the people of Israel from their various exiles.[7] This includes the final redemption from the present exile.[8]

Judaism holds that adherents do not need personal salvation as Christians believe. Jews do not subscribe to the doctrine of original sin.[9] Instead, they place a high value on individual morality as defined in the law of God — embodied in what Jews know as the Torah or The Law, given to Moses by God on biblical Mount Sinai.

In Judaism, salvation is closely related to the idea of redemption, a saving from the states or circumstances that destroy the value of human existence. God, as the universal spirit and Creator of the World, is the source of all salvation for humanity, provided an individual honours God by observing his precepts. So redemption or salvation depends on the individual. Judaism stresses that salvation cannot be obtained through anyone else or by just invoking a deity or believing in any outside power or influence.[10]

The Jewish concept of Messiah visualises the return of the prophet Elijah as the harbinger of one who will redeem the world from war and suffering, leading mankind to universal brotherhood under the fatherhood of one God. The Messiah is not considered as a future divine or supernatural being but as a dominating human influence in an age of universal peace, characterised by the spiritual regeneration of humanity.

In Judaism, salvation is open to all people and not limited to those of the Jewish faith; the only important consideration being that the people must observe and practise the ethical pattern of behaviour as summarised in the Ten Commandments. When Jews refer to themselves as the chosen people of God, they do not imply they have been chosen for special favours and privileges but rather they have taken it upon themselves to show to all peoples by precept and example the ethical way of life.[10]

When examining Jewish intellectual sources throughout history, there is clearly a spectrum of opinions regarding death versus the afterlife. Possibly an over-simplification, one source says salvation can be achieved in the following manner: Live a holy and righteous life dedicated to Yahweh, the God of Creation. Fast, worship, and celebrate during the appropriate holidays.[11] By origin and nature, Judaism is an ethnic religion. Therefore, salvation has been primarily conceived in terms of the destiny of Israel as the elect people of Yahweh (often referred to as “the Lord”), the God of Israel.[8] In the biblical text of Psalms, there is a description of death, when people go into the earth or the "realm of the dead" and cannot praise God. The first reference to resurrection is collective in Ezekiel's vision of the dry bones, when all the Israelites in exile will be resurrected. There is a reference to individual resurrection in the Book of Daniel (165 BCE), the last book of the Hebrew Bible.[12] It was not until the 2nd century BCE that there arose a belief in an afterlife, in which the dead would be resurrected and undergo divine judgment. Before that time, the individual had to be content that his posterity continued within the holy nation.[8]

The salvation of the individual Jew was connected to the salvation of the entire people. This belief stemmed directly from the teachings of the Torah. In the Torah, God taught his people sanctification of the individual. However, he also expected them to function together (spiritually) and be accountable to one another. The concept of salvation was tied to that of restoration for Israel.[13]

During the Second Temple Period, the Sadducees, High Priests, denied any particular existence of individuals after death because it wasn't written in the Torah, while the Pharisees, ancestors of the rabbis, affirmed both bodily resurrection and immortality of the soul, most likely based on the influence of Hellenistic ideas about body and soul and the Pharisaic belief in the Oral Torah. The Pharisees maintained that after death, the soul is connected to God until the messianic era when it is rejoined with the body in the land of Israel at the time of resurrection.[12]

Christianity

Heusler Allegory of Salvation
Allegory of Salvation by Antonius Heusler (ca. 1555), National Museum in Warsaw.

According to the Gospel of John, Jesus said "salvation is from the Jews."[14] This is in accordance with the Jewish concept of salvation, and is a possible reference to Isaiah 49:6.[15]

Christianity’s primary premise is that the incarnation and death of Jesus Christ formed the climax of a divine plan for humanity’s salvation. This plan was conceived by God consequent on the Fall of Adam, the progenitor of the human race, and it would be completed at the Last Judgment, when the Second Coming of Christ would mark the catastrophic end of the world.[16]

For Christianity, salvation is only possible through Jesus Christ. Christians believe that Jesus' death on the cross was the once-for-all sacrifice that atoned for the sin of humanity.[16]

The Christian religion, though not the exclusive possessor of the idea of redemption, has given to it a special definiteness and a dominant position. Taken in its widest sense, as deliverance from dangers and ills in general, most religions teach some form of it. It assumes an important position, however, only when the ills in question form part of a great system against which human power is helpless.[17]

Allegory of Salvation by Wolf Huber (cca 1543)
Allegory of Salvation by Wolf Huber (ca. 1543), Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna

According to Christian belief, sin as the human predicament is considered to be universal.[18] For example, in Romans 1:18-3:20 the Apostle Paul declared everyone to be under sin—Jew and Gentile alike. Salvation is made possible by the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus, which in the context of salvation is referred to as the "atonement".[19] Christian soteriology ranges from exclusive salvation[20]:p.123 to universal reconciliation[21] concepts. While some of the differences are as widespread as Christianity itself, the overwhelming majority agrees that salvation is made possible by the work of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, dying on the cross.

At the heart of Christian faith is the reality and hope of salvation in Jesus Christ. Christian faith is faith in the God of salvation revealed in Jesus of Nazareth. The Christian tradition has always equated this salvation with the transcendent, eschatological fulfillment of human existence in a life freed from sin, finitude, and mortality and united with the triune God. This is perhaps the non-negotiable item of Christian faith. What has been a matter of debate is the relation between salvation and our activities in the world.

— Anselm Kyongsuk Min[22]:p.79

The Bible presents salvation in the form of a story that describes the outworking of God's eternal plan to deal with the problem of human sin. The story is set against the background of the history of God's people and reaches its climax in the person and work of Christ. The Old Testament part of the story shows that people are sinners by nature, and describes a series of covenants by which God sets people free and makes promises to them. His plan includes the promise of blessing for all nations through Abraham and the redemption of Israel from every form of bondage. God showed his saving power throughout Israel's history, but he also spoke about a Messianic figure who would save all people from the power, guilt, and penalty of sin. This role was fulfilled by Jesus, who will ultimately destroy all the devil's work, including suffering, pain, and death.

— Macmillan Dictionary of the Bible.

Variant views on salvation are among the main fault lines dividing the various Christian denominations, both between Roman Catholicism and Protestantism and within Protestantism, notably in the Calvinist–Arminian debate, and the fault lines include conflicting definitions of depravity, predestination, atonement, but most pointedly justification.

Are you saved - bumper sticker
A bumper sticker asking if one has found salvation

Salvation, according to most denominations, is believed to be a process that begins when a person first becomes a Christian, continues through that person's life, and is completed when they stand before Christ in judgment. Therefore, according to Catholic apologist James Akin, the faithful Christian can say in faith and hope, "I have been saved; I am being saved; and I will be saved."[23]

Christian salvation concepts are varied and complicated by certain theological concepts, traditional beliefs, and dogmas. Scripture is subject to individual and ecclesiastical interpretations. While some of the differences are as widespread as Christianity itself, the overwhelming majority agrees that salvation is made possible by the work of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, dying on the cross.

The purpose of salvation is debated, but in general most Christian theologians agree that God devised and implemented his plan of salvation because he loves them and regards human beings as his children. Since human existence on Earth is said to be "given to sin",[Jn 8:34] salvation also has connotations that deal with the liberation[24] of human beings from sin, and the suffering associated with the punishment of sin—i.e., "the wages of sin are death."[Rom. 6:23]

Christians believe that salvation depends on the grace of God. Stagg writes that a fact assumed throughout the Bible is that humanity is in, "serious trouble from which we need deliverance…. The fact of sin as the human predicament is implied in the mission of Jesus, and it is explicitly affirmed in that connection". By its nature, salvation must answer to the plight of humankind as it actually is. Each individual's plight as sinner is the result of a fatal choice involving the whole person in bondage, guilt, estrangement, and death. Therefore, salvation must be concerned with the total person. "It must offer redemption from bondage, forgiveness for guilt, reconciliation for estrangement, renewal for the marred image of God".[25]

Mormonism

According to doctrine of the Latter Day Saint movement, the plan of salvation is a plan that God created to save, redeem, and exalt humankind. The elements of this plan are drawn from various sources, including the Bible,[26] Book of Mormon, Doctrine & Covenants, Pearl of Great Price, and numerous statements made by the leadership of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church). The first appearance of the graphical representation of the plan of salvation is in the 1952 missionary manual entitled A Systematic Program for Teaching the Gospel.[27]

Islam

In Islam, salvation refers to the eventual entrance to Paradise. Islam teaches that people who die disbelieving in God do not receive salvation. It also teaches that non-Muslims who die believing in the God but disbelieving in his message (Islam), are left to his will. Those who die believing in the One God and his message (Islam) receive salvation.[28]

Narrated Anas that Muhammad said,

Whoever said "None has the right to be worshipped but Allah" and has in his heart good (faith) equal to the weight of a barley grain will be taken out of Hell. And whoever said, "None has the right to be worshipped but Allah" and has in his heart good (faith) equal to the weight of a wheat grain will be taken out of Hell. And whoever said, "None has the right to be worshipped but Allah" and has in his heart good (faith) equal to the weight of an atom will be taken out of Hell.

— Muhammad Sahih al-Bukhari, 1:2:43

Islam teaches that all who enter into Islam must remain so in order to receive salvation.

If anyone desires a religion other than Islam (submission to Allah), never will it be accepted of him; and in the Hereafter He will be in the ranks of those who have lost (all spiritual good).

— Quran, sura 3 (Al Imran), ayat 85

For those who have not been granted Islam or to whom the message has not been brought;

Those who believe (in the Qur'an), those who follow the Jewish (scriptures), and the Sabians and the Christians,- any who believe in Allah and the Last Day, and work righteousness,- on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve."

-[29]

Tawhid

Belief in the “One God”, also known as the Tawhid (التَوْحيدْ) in Arabic, consists of two parts (or principles):

  1. Tawḥīdu r-Rubūbiyya ( تَوْحيدُ الرُبوبِيَّة): Believing in the attributes of God and attributing them to no other but God. Such attributes include Creation, having no beginning, and having no end. These attributes are what make a God. Islam also teaches 99 names for God, and each of these names defines one attribute. One breaks this principle, for example, by believing in an Idol as an intercessor to God. The idol, in this case, is thought of having powers that only God should have, thereby breaking this part of Tawheed. No intercession is required to communicate with, or worship, God.[30]
  2. Tawḥīdu l-'ulūhiyya (تَوْحيدُ الأُلوهيَّة): Directing worship, prayer, or deed to God, and God only. For example, worshiping an idol or any saint or prophet is also considered Shirk, though prophets and saints may be asked for guidance or to pray for them.

Sin and repentance

Islam also stresses that in order to gain salvation, one must also avoid sinning along with performing good deeds. Islam acknowledges the inclination of humanity towards sin.[31][32] Therefore, Muslims are constantly commanded to seek God's forgiveness and repent. Islam teaches that no one can gain salvation simply by virtue of their belief or deeds, instead it is the Mercy of God, which merits them salvation.[33] However, this repentance must not be used to sin any further. Islam teaches that God is Merciful.

Allah accepts the repentance of those who do evil in ignorance and repent soon afterwards; to them will Allah turn in mercy: For Allah is full of knowledge and wisdom. Of no effect is the repentance of those who continue to do evil, until death faces one of them, and he says, "Now have I repented indeed;" nor of those who die rejecting Faith: for them have We prepared a punishment most grievous.

— Qur'an, sura 4 (An-Nisa), ayat 17 [34]

Allah forgiveth not that partners should be set up with Him; but He forgiveth anything else, to whom He pleaseth; to set up partners with Allah is to devise a sin Most heinous indeed.

— Qur'an, sura 4 (An-Nisa), ayat 48 [35]

Islam describes a true believer to have Love of God and Fear of God. Islam also teaches that every person is responsible for their own sins. The Quran states;

If ye reject (Allah), Truly Allah hath no need of you; but He liketh not ingratitude from His servants: if ye are grateful, He is pleased with you. No bearer of burdens can bear the burden of another. In the end, to your Lord is your Return, when He will tell you the truth of all that ye did (in this life). for He knoweth well all that is in (men's) hearts.

— Qur'an, sura 39 (Az-Zumar), ayat 7 [36]

Al-Agharr al-Muzani, a companion of Mohammad, reported that Ibn 'Umar stated to him that Mohammad said,

O people, seek repentance from Allah. Verily, I seek repentance from Him a hundred times a day.

— Prophet Mohammad Sahih Muslim, 35:6523

Sin in Islam is not a state, but an action (a bad deed); Islam teaches that a child is born sinless, regardless of the belief of his parents, dies a Muslim; he enters heaven, and does not enter hell. Sahih al-Bukhari, 2:23:467

Narrated Aisha, that Mohammad said, "Do good deeds properly, sincerely and moderately, and receive good news because one's good deeds will not make him enter Paradise." They asked, "Even you, O Allah's Apostle?" He said, "Even I, unless and until Allah bestows His pardon and Mercy on me." Sahih al-Bukhari, 8:76:474

Five Pillars

There are acts of worship that Islam teaches to be mandatory. Islam is built on five principles. Narrated Ibn 'Umar that Muhammad said,

Islam is based on (the following) five (principles):

  1. To testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and Muhammad is Allah's Apostle.
  2. To offer the compulsory prayers dutifully and perfectly.
  3. To pay Zakat to poor and needy (i.e. obligatory charity of 2.5% annually of surplus wealth).
  4. To perform Hajj. (i.e. Pilgrimage to Mecca)
  5. To observe fast during the month of Ramadhan. Sahih al-Bukhari, 1:2:7

Not performing the mandatory acts of worship may deprive Muslims of the chance of salvation.[37]

Indian religions

Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism share certain key concepts, which are interpreted differently by different groups and individuals.[38] In these religions one is not liberated from sin and its consequences, but from the saṃsāra (cycle of rebirth) perpetuated by passions and delusions and its resulting karma.[39] They differ however on the exact nature of this liberation.[39] Salvation is called moksha[39] or mukti which mean liberation and release respectively. This state and the conditions considered necessary for its realization is described in early texts of Indian religion such as the Upanishads and the Pāli Canon, and later texts such the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali and the Vedanta tradition.[40] Moksha can be attained by sādhanā, literally "means of accomplishing something".[41] It includes a variety of disciplines, such as yoga and meditation.

Nirvana is the profound peace of mind that is acquired with moksha (liberation). In Buddhism and Jainism, it is the state of being free from suffering. In Hindu philosophy, it is union with the Brahman (Supreme Being). The word literally means "blown out" (as in a candle) and refers, in the Buddhist context, to the blowing out of the fires of desire, aversion, and delusion,[42][43] and the imperturbable stillness of mind acquired thereafter.[42]

In Theravada Buddhism the emphasis is on one's own liberation from samsara.[43] The Mahayana traditions emphasize the bodhisattva path,[43] in which "each Buddha and Bodhisattva is a redeemer", assisting the Buddhist in seeking to achieve the redemptive state.[44] The assistance rendered is a form of self-sacrifice on the part of the teachers, who would presumably be able to achieve total detachment from worldly concerns, but have instead chosen to remain engaged in the material world to the degree that this is necessary to assist others in achieving such detachment.[44]

Jainism

In Jainism, salvation, moksa and nirvana are one and the same.[45][46] When a soul (atman) achieves moksa, it is released from the cycle of births and deaths, and achieves its pure self. It then becomes a siddha (literally means one who has accomplished his ultimate objective). Attaining Moksa requires annihilation of all karmas, good and bad, because if karma is left, it must bear fruit.

See also

References

  1. ^ "Yasha: to deliver". Biblehub.com.
  2. ^ Salvation. Dictionary.com. Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House, Inc. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/Salvation (accessed: January 08, 2013).
  3. ^ "salvation - religion". Encyclopædia Britannica.
  4. ^ "The saving of the soul; the deliverance from sin and its consequences". OED 2nd ed. 1989.
  5. ^ "The saving of the soul; the deliverance from sin and its consequences" OED 2nd ed. 1989.
  6. ^ Wilfred Graves, Jr., In Pursuit of Wholeness: Experiencing God's Salvation for the Total Person (Shippensburg, PA: Destiny Image, 2011), 9, 22, 74-5.
  7. ^ "Reb on the Web". Kolel: The Adult Centre for Liberal Jewish Learning. Retrieved November 1, 2010.
  8. ^ a b c Salvation, Judaism. [1] Accessed 4 May 2013
  9. ^ "How Does a Jew Attain Salvation?" [2] Accessed: 4 May 2013
  10. ^ a b Malekar, Ezekiel Isaac. "THE SPEAKING TREE: Concept of Salvation In Judaism". The Times of India. [3] Accessed: 4 May 2013
  11. ^ "How do I achieve salvation according to Judaism?""Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-07-04. Retrieved 2013-05-04.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link) Accessed: 4 May 2013
  12. ^ a b Krell, Marc A. "Afterlife and Salvation". Religion Library: Judaism. [4] Accessed 4 May 2013
  13. ^ "Jewish views of salvation, faith and freedom".
  14. ^ BibleHub John 4:22
  15. ^ BibleHub Isaiah 49:6
  16. ^ a b [5] Accessed 4 May 2013
  17. ^ "Redemption." Christian Classics Ethereal Library at Calvin College. July 2, 2009. [6]
  18. ^ Romans 5:12
  19. ^ "Christian Doctrines of Salvation". Religion facts. June 20, 2009. http://www.religionfacts.com/christianity/beliefs/salvation.htm
  20. ^ Newman, Jay. Foundations of religious tolerance. University of Toronto Press, 1982. ISBN 0-8020-5591-5
  21. ^ Parry, Robin A. Universal salvation? The Current Debate. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing, 2004. ISBN 0-8028-2764-0
  22. ^ Min, Anselm Kyongsuk. Dialectic of Salvation: Issues in Theology of Liberation. Albany, N.Y.: State University of New York Press, 1989. ISBN 978-0-88706-908-6
  23. ^ Akin, James. "The Salvation Controversy." Catholic Answers, October 2001
  24. ^ "CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: Salvation".
  25. ^ Stagg, Frank. New Testament Theology. Broadman Press, 1962. ISBN 0-8054-1613-7. pp.11-13,80
  26. ^ See for example Matthew 13:43, John 14:2 ,2 Corinthians 12:2 , 1 Corinthians 15:40-41 , Genesis 2:4-5 , Genesis 2:7 , Job 38:4 , Ecclesiastes 12:7 , Jeremiah 1:5 , Zechariah 12:1 , and Hebrews 12:9
  27. ^ https://rsc.byu.edu/archived/go-ye-all-world/missionary-training-and-practices/5-missionary-materials-and-methods#_edn69
  28. ^ The Facts On Islam, By John Ankerberg, John Weldon, Dillon Burroughs, p.37 [7]
  29. ^ "Center for Muslim-Jewish Engagement". Archived from the original on 2015-05-09.
  30. ^ Quran 2:186
  31. ^ Quran 3:85
  32. ^ Quran 12:51–53
  33. ^ Answering Islam: The Crescent in Light of the Cross, by Norman L. Geisler, Abdul Saleeb, p.128 [8]
  34. ^ Quran 4:17
  35. ^ Quran 4:48
  36. ^ Quran 39:7
  37. ^ Fast Facts® on Islam.
  38. ^ Sherma & Sarma 2008, p. 239.
  39. ^ a b c Tiwari 1983, p. 210.
  40. ^ Sherma & Sarma 2008.
  41. ^ V. S. Apte. A Practical Sanskrit Dictionary. p. 979.
  42. ^ a b Richard Gombrich, Theravada Buddhism: A Social History from Ancient Benāres to Modern Colombo. Routledge
  43. ^ a b c Snelling 1987.
  44. ^ a b Joseph Edkins, Chinese Buddhism (1893), p. 364.
  45. ^ Jaini, Padmanabh (2000). Collected Papers on Jaina Studies. Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass Publ. ISBN 81-208-1691-9.: "Moksa and Nirvana are synonymous in Jainism". p.168
  46. ^ Michael Carrithers, Caroline Humphrey (1991) The Assembly of listeners: Jains in society Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0521365058: "Nirvana: A synonym for liberation, release, moksa." p.297

Sources

  • Braden, Charles Samuel (1941). Man's Quest for Salvation: An Historical and Comparative Study of the Idea of Salvation in the World's Great Living Religions. Chicago & New York: Willett, Clark & Company.
  • Brandon, S. G. F., ed. (1963). The Saviour God: Comparative studies in the concept of salvation presented to Edwin Oliver James by colleagues and friends. New York: Barnes & Noble.
  • Brueggemann, Walter (30 September 2002). "Salvation". Reverberations of Faith: A Theological Handbook of Old Testament Themes. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press. pp. 184–6. (Presentation)
  • Sharpe, Eric J.; Hinnells, John R., eds. (1973). Man and his salvation: Studies in memory of S. G. F. Brandon. Manchester: Manchester University Press. ISBN 0-7190-0537-X.
  • Sherma, Rita D.; Sarma, Aravinda (2008), Hermeneutics and Hindu Thought: Toward a Fusion of Horizons, Springer
  • Snelling, John (1987), The Buddhist handbook. A Complete Guide to Buddhist Teaching and Practice, London: Century Paperbacks
  • Tiwari, K.N. (1983), Comparative Religion, Motilal Banarsidass

External links

Arminianism

Arminianism is a branch of Protestantism based on the theological ideas of the Dutch Reformed theologian Jacobus Arminius (1560–1609) and his historic supporters known as Remonstrants. His teachings held to the five solae of the Reformation, but they were distinct from particular teachings of Martin Luther, Huldrych Zwingli, John Calvin, and other Protestant Reformers. Jacobus Arminius (Jakob Harmenszoon) was a student of Theodore Beza (Calvin's successor) at the Theological University of Geneva. Arminianism is known to some as a soteriological diversification of Protestant Calvinist Christianity; to others, Arminianism is a reclamation of early Church theological consensus.Dutch Arminianism was originally articulated in the Remonstrance (1610), a theological statement signed by 45 ministers and submitted to the States General of the Netherlands. The Synod of Dort (1618–19) was called by the States General to consider the Five Articles of Remonstrance. These articles asserted that

Salvation (and condemnation on the day of judgment) was conditioned by the graciously-enabled faith (or unbelief) of man;

The Atonement is qualitatively adequate for all men, "yet that no one actually enjoys [experiences] this forgiveness of sins, except the believer ..." and thus is limited to only those who trust in Christ;

"That man has not saving grace of himself, nor of the energy of his free will," and unaided by the Holy Spirit, no person is able to respond to God's will;

The (Christian) Grace "of God is the beginning, continuance, and accomplishment of any good," yet man may resist the Holy Spirit; and

Believers are able to resist sin through Grace, and Christ will keep them from falling; but whether they are beyond the possibility of ultimately forsaking God or "becoming devoid of grace ... must be more particularly determined from the Scriptures.""These points", note Keith D. Stanglin and Thomas H. McCall, "are consistent with the views of Arminius; indeed, some come verbatim from his Declaration of Sentiments. Those who signed this remonstrance and others who supported its theology have since been known as Remonstrants."Many Christian denominations have been influenced by Arminian views on the will of man being freed by Grace prior to regeneration, notably the Baptists in the 16th century, the Methodists in the 18th century and the Seventh-day Adventist Church in the 19th century. Some falsely assert that Universalists and Unitarians in the 18th and 19th centuries were theologically linked with Arminianism. Denominations such as the Anabaptists (beginning in 1525), Waldensians (pre-Reformation), and other groups prior to the Reformation have also affirmed that each person may choose the contingent response of either resisting God's grace or yielding to it.

The original beliefs of Jacobus Arminius himself are commonly defined as Arminianism, but more broadly, the term may embrace the teachings of Hugo Grotius, John Wesley, and others as well. Classical Arminianism, to which Arminius is the main contributor, and Wesleyan Arminianism, to which John Wesley is the main contributor, are the two main schools of thought. Wesleyan Arminianism is often identical with Methodism. Some schools of thought, notably semipelagianism—which teaches that the first step of Salvation is by human will—are confused as being Arminian in nature. But classical Arminianism holds that the first step of Salvation is solely the grace of God. Historically, the Council of Orange (529) condemned semi-Pelagian thought (as well as Supralapsarian Calvinism), and is accepted by some as a document which can be understood as teaching a doctrine between Augustinian thought and semi-Pelagian thought, relegating Arminianism to the orthodoxy of the early Church fathers.The two systems of Calvinism and Arminianism share both history and many doctrines, and the history of Christian theology. Arminianism is related to Calvinism historically. However, because of their differences over the doctrines of divine predestination and election, many people view these schools of thought as opposed to each other. The distinction is whether God allows His desire to save all to be resisted by an individual's will (in the Arminian doctrine) or if God's grace is irresistible and limited to only some (in Calvinism). Put another way, is God's sovereignty shown, in part, through His allowance of free decisions? Some Calvinists assert that the Arminian perspective presents a synergistic system of Salvation and therefore is not only by Grace, while Arminians firmly reject this conclusion. Many consider the theological differences to be crucial differences in doctrine, while others find them to be relatively minor.

Baptism

Baptism (from the Greek noun βάπτισμα baptisma; see below) is a Christian rite of admission and adoption, almost invariably with the use of water, into Christianity. The synoptic gospels recount that John the Baptist baptised Jesus. Baptism is considered a sacrament in most churches, and as an ordinance in others. Baptism is also called christening, although some reserve the word "christening" for the baptism of infants. It has also given its name to the Baptist churches and denominations.

The usual form of baptism among the earliest Christians involved the candidate's immersion, either totally (submerged completely under the water) or partially (standing or kneeling in water while water was poured on him or her). John the Baptist's use of a deep river for his baptising suggests immersion: The fact that he chose a permanent and deep river suggests that more than a token quantity of water was needed, and both the preposition 'in' (the Jordan) and the basic meaning of the verb 'baptize' probably indicate immersion. In v. 16, Matthew will speak of Jesus 'coming up out of the water'. Phillip and the Eunuch also went down and came up out of water (Acts 8:38–39). Baptism is likened unto a burial in Romans 6:3. "Dip" is translated from baptō (βάπτω). The traditional depiction in Christian art of John the Baptist pouring water over Jesus' head may therefore be based on later Christian practice. Pictorial and archaeological evidence of Christian baptism from the 3rd century onward indicates that a normal form was to have the candidate stand in water while water was poured over the upper body. Other common forms of baptism now in use include pouring water three times on the forehead, a method called affusion.

Martyrdom was identified early in Church history as "baptism by blood", enabling the salvation of martyrs who had not been baptized by water. Later, the Catholic Church identified a baptism of desire, by which those preparing for baptism who die before actually receiving the sacrament are considered saved. As evidenced also in the common Christian practice of infant baptism, Christians universally regarded baptism as in some sense necessary for salvation, until Huldrych Zwingli (1484–1531) denied its necessity in the 16th century.Quakers and the Salvation Army do not practice baptism with water. Among denominations that practice baptism by water, differences occur in the manner and mode of baptizing and in the understanding of the significance of the rite. Most Christians baptize "in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit" (following the Great Commission), but some baptize in Jesus' name only. Much more than half of all Christians baptize infants; many others regard only believer's baptism as true baptism.

The term "baptism" has also been used metaphorically to refer to any ceremony, trial, or experience by which a person is initiated, purified, or given a name.

Calvinism

Calvinism (also called the Reformed tradition, Reformed Christianity, Reformed Protestantism, or the Reformed faith) is a major branch of Protestantism that follows the theological tradition and forms of Christian practice set down by John Calvin and other Reformation-era theologians.

Calvinists broke from the Roman Catholic Church in the 16th century. Calvinists differ from Lutherans on the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist, theories of worship, and the use of God's law for believers, among other things. As declared in the Westminster and Second Helvetic confessions, the core doctrines are predestination and election. The term Calvinism can be misleading, because the religious tradition which it denotes has always been diverse, with a wide range of influences rather than a single founder. In the context of the Reformation, Huldrych Zwingli began the Reformed tradition in 1519 in the city of Zürich. His followers were instantly labeled Zwinglians, consistent with the Catholic practice of naming heresy after its founder. Very soon, Zwingli was joined by Martin Bucer, Wolfgang Capito, William Farel, Johannes Oecolampadius and other early Reformed thinkers. The namesake of the movement, French reformer John Calvin, converted to the Reformed tradition from Roman Catholicism only in the late 1520s or early 1530s as it was already being developed. The movement was first called Calvinism, referring to John Calvin, by Lutherans who opposed it. Many within the tradition find it either an indescriptive or an inappropriate term and would prefer the word Reformed to be used instead. Some Calvinists prefer the term Augustinian-Calvinism since Calvin credited his theology to Augustine of Hippo. The most important Reformed theologians include John Calvin, Huldrych Zwingli, Martin Bucer, William Farel, Heinrich Bullinger, Peter Martyr Vermigli, Theodore Beza, and John Knox. In the twentieth century, Abraham Kuyper, Herman Bavinck, B. B. Warfield, J. Gresham Machen, Karl Barth, Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Cornelius Van Til, Gordon Clark, and R. C. Sproul were influential. Contemporary Reformed theologians include J. I. Packer, John MacArthur, Timothy J. Keller, David Wells, and Michael Horton.

Reformed churches may exercise several forms of ecclesiastical polity; most are presbyterian or congregationalist, though some are episcopalian. Calvinism is largely represented by Continental Reformed, Presbyterian, and Congregationalist traditions. The biggest Reformed association is the World Communion of Reformed Churches with more than 100 million members in 211 member denominations around the world. There are more conservative Reformed federations such as the World Reformed Fellowship and the International Conference of Reformed Churches, as well as independent churches.

Divine grace

Divine grace is a theological term present in many religions. It has been defined as the divine influence which operates in humans to regenerate and sanctify, to inspire virtuous impulses, and to impart strength to endure trial and resist temptation; and as an individual virtue or excellence of divine origin.

Government of National Salvation

The Government of National Salvation (Serbian: Влада народног спаса / Vlada narodnog spasa; German: Regierung der nationalen Rettung), also referred to as the Nedić's government (Недићева влада / Nedićeva vlada) and Nedić's regime (Недићев режим / Nedićev režim), was the second Serbian collaborationist puppet government, after the Commissioner Government, established on the German-occupied territory of Serbia during World War II. It was appointed by the German Military Commander in Serbia and operated from 29 August 1941 to October 1944. Unlike the Independent State of Croatia, the regime in the occupied Serbia was never accorded status in international law and did not enjoy formal diplomatic recognition on the part of the Axis powers.The GNS enjoyed some support. The Prime Minister throughout was General Milan Nedić. The Government of National Salvation was evacuated from Belgrade first to Sofia than to Budapest and later to Kitzbühel in the first week of October 1944 before the German withdrawal from Serbia was complete.

Grace in Christianity

In Western Christian theology, grace has been defined, not as a created substance of any kind, but as "the love and mercy given to us by God because God desires us to have it, not necessarily because of anything we have done to earn it", "Grace is favour, the free and undeserved help that God gives us to respond to his call to become children of God, adoptive sons, partakers of the divine nature and of eternal life." It is understood by Christians to be a spontaneous gift from God to people "generous, free and totally unexpected and undeserved" – that takes the form of divine favor, love, clemency, and a share in the divine life of God.It is an attribute of God that is most manifest in the salvation of sinners. Christian orthodoxy holds that the initiative in the relationship of grace between God and an individual is always on the side of God.

In Eastern Christianity too, grace is the working of God completely, not a created substance of any kind that can be treated like a commodity.

The question of the means of grace has been called "the watershed that divides Catholicism from Protestantism, Calvinism from Arminianism, modern [theological] liberalism from [theological] conservatism." The Catholic Church holds that it is because of the action of Christ and the Holy Spirit in transforming into the divine life what is subjected to God's power that "the sacraments confer the grace they signify": "the power of Christ and his Spirit acts in and through [each sacrament], independently of the personal holiness of the minister. Nevertheless, the fruits of the sacraments also depend on the disposition of the one who receives them." the Sacred Mysteries (sacraments) are seen as a means of partaking of divine grace because God works through his Church. Catholics, Eastern Orthodox and Protestants agree that faith is a gift from God. Ephesians 2:8; "For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God." Protestants almost universally believe that grace is given by God based on the faith of the believer. Lutherans hold that the means of grace are "the gospel in Word and sacraments.” That the sacraments are means of grace is also the teaching of John Wesley, who described the Eucharist as "the grand channel whereby the grace of his Spirit was conveyed to the souls of all the children of God". Calvinists emphasize "the utter helplessness of people apart from grace." But God reaches out with "first grace" or "prevenient grace". The Calvinist doctrine known as irresistible grace states that, since all persons are by nature spiritually dead, no one desires to accept this grace until God spiritually enlivens them by means of regeneration. God regenerates only individuals whom he has predestined to salvation. Arminians understand the grace of God as cooperating with one's free will in order to bring an individual to salvation. According to Evangelical theologian Charles C. Ryrie, modern liberal theology "gives an exaggerated place to the abilities of people to decide their own fate and to effect their own salvation entirely apart from God's grace." He writes that theological conservatives maintain God's grace is necessary for salvation.

Northern Alliance

The Afghan Northern Alliance, officially known as the United Islamic Front for the Salvation of Afghanistan (Persian: جبهه متحد اسلامی ملی برای نجات افغانستان‎ Jabha-yi Muttahid-i Islāmi-yi Millī barāyi Nijāt-i Afghānistān), was a united military front that came to formation in late 1996 after the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (Taliban) took over Kabul. The United Front was assembled by key leaders of the Islamic State of Afghanistan, particularly president Burhanuddin Rabbani and former Defense Minister Ahmad Shah Massoud. Initially it included mostly Tajiks but by 2000, leaders of other ethnic groups had joined the Northern Alliance. This included Abdul Rashid Dostum, Mohammad Mohaqiq, Abdul Qadir, Asif Mohseni and others.The Northern Alliance fought a defensive war against the Taliban government. They received support from Iran, Russia, Turkey, India, Tajikistan and others, while the Taliban were backed by Pakistan. By 2001 the Northern Alliance controlled less than 10% of the country, cornered in the north-east and based in Badakhshan province. The US invaded Afghanistan, providing support to Northern Alliance troops on the ground in a two-month war against the Taliban, which they won in December 2001. With the Taliban forced from control of the country, the Northern Alliance was dissolved as members and parties joined the new establishment of the Karzai administration.

Preacher (comics)

Preacher is an American comic book series published by Vertigo, an imprint of DC Comics. The series was created by writer Garth Ennis and artist Steve Dillon with painted covers by Glenn Fabry.

The series consists of 75 issues in total - 66 regular, monthly issues, five one-shot specials and a four-issue Preacher: Saint of Killers limited series. The entire run has been collected in nine trade paperback editions. The final monthly issue, number 66, was published in October 2000.

Predestination

Predestination, in theology, is the doctrine that all events have been willed by God, usually with reference to the eventual fate of the individual soul. Explanations of predestination often seek to address the "paradox of free will", whereby God's omniscience seems incompatible with human free will. In this usage, predestination can be regarded as a form of religious determinism; and usually predeterminism.

Prevenient grace

Prevenient grace (or enabling grace) is a Christian theological concept rooted in Arminian theology,. It is divine grace that precedes human decision. In other words, God will start showing love to that individual at a certain point in his lifetime.

Prevenient grace is embraced primarily by Arminian Christians who are influenced by the theology of Jacob Arminius or John Wesley. Wesleyan Arminians believe that grace enables, but does not ensure, personal acceptance of the gift of salvation. Wesley typically referred to it in 18th-century language as prevenient grace. In current English, the phrase preceding grace would have a similar meaning.

Salvation Army Team Emergency Radio Network

The Salvation Army Team Emergency Radio Network (SATERN) is a network of volunteer amateur radio operators that provide emergency communications between Salvation Army posts, and pass messages with health and welfare information between the Salvation Army and the general public.

The group is open to amateur radio operators of all license classes, and of any (or no) religious faith. SATERN routinely operates on VHF and HF ham bands, but may operate any mode on any amateur radio frequency during an event.

During the Northeast blackout of 2003 the group was active in Upstate New York as well as the Salvation Army headquarters in Manhattan.Also when the F-5 hit Joplin Missouri. May 5 2011. The S.A.T.E.R.N. Units were activated also. They Provided Communications and helped with the distribution of Water,Ice,Personnel items,Food and Medical care. Food Trucks were dispatched to many effected areas to provide meals to victims and Emergency Workers and Law Enforcement and assistance was given to victims that would show up. Not to mention the distribution network provided Clothing and shelter for many people. The Salvation Army was providing the Shelter and in house eating facilities.

Salvation in Christianity

Salvation in Christianity, or deliverance, redemption is the "saving [of] human beings from death and separation from God" by Christ's atonement for sin, and the justification following this atonement. Christians partake in this redemption by baptism, repentance, and participating in Jesus' death and resurrection.

The idea of Jesus' death as an atonement for human sin goes back to the Hebrew writings, and was elaborated in Paul's epistles and in the Gospels. Early Christians regarded themselves as partaking in a new covenant with God, open to both Jews and gentiles, due to the sacrificial death and subsequent exaltation of Jesus Christ.

Early Christian notions of the person and sacrifical role of Jesus in human salvation were further elaborated by the Church Fathers and mediaeval writers in various atonement theories, namely the Patristic ransom theory and recapitulation theory, adhered to by Eastern Orthodox Churches and other Eastern Christian Churches; the 11th century satisfaction theory, adhered to by the Roman Catholic Church, and its Protestant derivation, the penal substitution theory; and the 11th century moral influence theory, which is favored within Liberal Protestantism.

Variant views on salvation are among the main fault lines dividing the various Christian denominations, including conflicting definitions of sin and depravity (the sinful nature of humankind), justification (God's means of removing the consequences of sin), and atonement (the forgiving or pardoning of sin through the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus).

Sola fide

Sola fide (Latin: by faith alone), also known as justification by faith alone, is a Christian theological doctrine commonly held to distinguish many Protestant churches from the Catholic Church, as well as the Eastern Orthodox Churches and Oriental Orthodox Churches.

The doctrine of sola fide asserts God's pardon for guilty sinners is granted to and received through faith alone, excluding all "works". All mankind, it is asserted, is fallen and sinful, under the curse of God, and incapable of saving itself from God's wrath and curse. But God, on the basis of the life, death, and resurrection of his Son, Jesus Christ alone (solus Christus), grants sinners judicial pardon, or justification, which is received solely through faith. Christ's righteousness, according to the followers of sola fide, is imputed (or attributed) by God to the believing sinner (as opposed to infused or imparted), so that the divine verdict and pardon of the believing sinner is based not upon anything in the sinner, but upon Jesus Christ and his righteousness alone, which are received through faith alone. Justification by faith alone is distinguished from the other graces of salvation. See the ordo salutis for more detail on the doctrine of salvation considered more broadly than justification by faith alone.

Lutheran and Reformed churches have held to sola fide justification in opposition to Roman Catholicism especially, but also in opposition to significant aspects of Eastern Orthodoxy. These Protestant churches exclude all human works (except the works of Jesus Christ, which form the basis of justification) from the legal verdict (or pardon) of justification. According to Martin Luther, justification by faith alone is the article on which the Church stands or falls. Thus, "faith alone" is foundational to Lutheranism and Reformed Christianity, and as a formula distinguishes it from other Christian denominations.

However, theological discussion in the centuries since the Reformation and Counter-Reformation has suggested that the differences are in emphasis and concepts rather than doctrine, since the Roman Catholics or Orthodox do not in fact hold that works are a basis of justification or a means of salvation, and most Protestants do in fact accept the need for repentance and the primacy of grace. See § Lutheran World Federation and the Roman Catholic Church and § Lutheran-Orthodox Joint Commission below. Further, many Protestant churches actually hold more nuanced positions such as sola gratia, sola fide or justification by faith (i.e., without the alone). According to a 2017 survey conducted in Western Europe by the Pew Research Center, "fewer people say that faith alone (in Latin, sola fide) leads to salvation, the position that Martin Luther made a central rallying cry of 16th-century Protestant reformers." Protestants in every country surveyed except Norway are more likely to say that both good deeds and faith in God are necessary for salvation.Some scholars of Early Christianity are adherents of the New Perspective on Paul and so believe sola fide is a misinterpretation on the part of Lutherans and that Paul was actually speaking about laws (such as Circumcision, Dietary laws, Sabbath, Temple rituals, etc.) that were considered essential for the Jews of the time.In the General Council of Trent the Catholic Church cautioned against an extreme version of sola fide in canon XIV on self-righteousness and justification without repentance, declaring: "If any one saith, that man is truly absolved from his sins and justified, because that he assuredly believed himself absolved and justified; or, that no one is truly justified but he who believes himself justified; and that, by this faith alone, absolution and justification are effected; let him be anathema." However, since the first of Luther's 95 Theses was a call to repentance, opposing this canon to actual Lutheran theology is problematic.

Christian theologies answer questions about the nature, function, and meaning of justification quite differently. These issues include: Is justification an event occurring instantaneously or is it an ongoing process? Is justification effected by divine action alone (monergism), by divine and human action together (synergism), or by human action (erroneously called Pelagianism)? Is justification permanent or can it be lost? What is the relationship of justification to sanctification, the process whereby sinners become righteous and are enabled by the Holy Spirit to live lives pleasing to God?

Soteriology

Soteriology (; Greek: σωτηρία sōtēria "salvation" from σωτήρ sōtēr "savior, preserver" and λόγος logos "study" or "word") is the study of religious doctrines of salvation. Salvation theory occupies a place of special significance in many religions.

In the academic field of religious studies, soteriology is understood by scholars as representing a key theme in a number of different religions and is often studied in a comparative context; that is, comparing various ideas about what salvation is and how it is obtained.

Terminator (franchise)

The Terminator series is an American science-fiction action franchise created by James Cameron and Gale Anne Hurd. The franchise encompasses a series of films, comics, novels, and additional media, concerning battles between Skynet's synthetic intelligent machine network and John Connor's Resistance forces with the rest of the human race. Skynet's most well-known products in its genocidal goals are the various terminator models, such as the T-800 (Model 101), who was portrayed by Arnold Schwarzenegger from the original Terminator film in 1984, and similar units he also portrayed in the later films. By 2010, the franchise has generated $3 billion in revenue.

Terminator Salvation

Terminator Salvation is a 2009 American military science fiction action film directed by McG and written by John Brancato and Michael Ferris. It is the fourth installment of the Terminator film series, and stars Christian Bale and Sam Worthington, with Anton Yelchin, Moon Bloodgood, Bryce Dallas Howard, Common, Michael Ironside, and Helena Bonham Carter in supporting roles. In a departure from the previous installments, which were set between 1984 and 2004 and used time travel as a key plot element, Salvation is a post-apocalyptic film set in the year 2018, fourteen years after the events of 2003's Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines. It focuses on the war between Skynet's machine network and humanity, as the remnants of the world's military have united to form the Resistance to fight against Skynet's killing machines. Bale portrays John Connor, a Resistance fighter and central character to the franchise, while Worthington portrays cyborg Marcus Wright. Yelchin plays a young Kyle Reese, a character first introduced in The Terminator, and the film depicts the origins of the T-800 (Model 101) Terminator.

After a troubled pre-production, with The Halcyon Company acquiring the rights for the franchise from Andrew G. Vajna and Mario Kassar and several writers working on the screenplay, filming began in May 2008 in New Mexico and ran for 77 days. Terminator Salvation was released on May 21, 2009 by Warner Bros. Pictures in North America and by Columbia Pictures internationally, and grossed over $371 million worldwide and received mixed reviews. A fifth installment in the film franchise, Terminator Genisys, was released in 2015.

The Salvation Army

The Salvation Army (TSA) is a Protestant Christian church and an international charitable organisation. The organisation reports a worldwide membership of over 1.7 million, consisting of soldiers, officers and adherents collectively known as Salvationists. Its founders sought to bring salvation to the poor, destitute, and hungry by meeting both their "physical and spiritual needs". It is present in 131 countries, running charity shops, operating shelters for the homeless and disaster relief and humanitarian aid to developing countries.

The theology of the Salvation Army is derived from that of Methodism, although it is distinctive in institution and practice. A peculiarity of the Army is that it gives its clergy titles of military ranks, such as "lieutenant" or "major". It does not celebrate the rite of Baptism and Holy Communion. However, the Army's doctrine is otherwise typical of holiness churches in the Wesleyan-Arminian tradition. The Army's purposes are "the advancement of the Christian religion ... of education, the relief of poverty, and other charitable objects beneficial to society or the community of mankind as a whole".The Army was founded in 1865 in London by one-time Methodist circuit-preacher William Booth and his wife Catherine as the East London Christian Mission, and can trace its origins to the Blind Beggar tavern. In 1878 Booth reorganised the mission, becoming its first General and introducing the military structure which has been retained as a matter of tradition. Its highest priority is its Christian principles. The current international leader of The Salvation Army and chief executive officer (CEO) is General Brian Peddle, who was elected by the High Council of The Salvation Army on 3 August 2018.

The Vampire Diaries (novel series)

The Vampire Diaries is a young adult vampire horror series of novels created by Alloy Entertainment (book packager). The story centers on Elena Gilbert, a young high school girl who finds her heart eventually torn between two vampire brothers, Stefan and Damon Salvatore.

Universal reconciliation

In Christian theology, universal reconciliation (also called universal salvation, Christian universalism, or in context simply universalism) is the doctrine that all sinful and alienated human souls—because of divine love and mercy—will ultimately be reconciled to God. The doctrine has generally been rejected by Christian religion, which holds to the doctrine of special salvation that only some members of humanity will eventually enter heaven, but it has received support from many prestigious Christian thinkers as well as many groups of Christians. The Bible itself has a variety of verses that, on the surface, seem to support a plurality of views.Universal salvation may be related to the perception of a problem of Hell, standing opposed to ideas such as endless conscious torment in Hell, but may also include a period of finite punishment similar to a state of purgatory. Believers in universal reconciliation may support the view that while there may be a real "Hell" of some kind, it is neither a place of endless suffering nor a place where the spirits of human beings are ultimately 'annihilated' after enduring the just amount of divine retribution.The concept of reconciliation is related to the concept of salvation—i.e., salvation from spiritual and eventually physical death—such that the term "universal salvation" is functionally equivalent. Universalists espouse various theological beliefs concerning the process or state of salvation, but all adhere to the view that salvation history concludes with the reconciliation of the entire human race to God. Many adherents assert that the suffering and crucifixion of Jesus Christ constitute the mechanism that provides redemption for all humanity and atonement for all sins.

Unitarian Universalism is a religious movement which emerged in part from the Universalist Church, but it no longer holds any official doctrinal positions, being a non-creedal faith. Universal reconciliation, however, remains a popular viewpoint among many congregations and individual believers including many that have not at all associated with said church.

An alternative to universal reconciliation is the doctrine of annihilationism, often in combination with Christian conditionalism. Some Christian leaders, such as influential theologian Martin Luther, have hypothesized other concepts such as 'soul death'.

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