“Jonah prayed unto the Lord his God out of the fish’s belly” (Jonah 2:1), saying, among other things (Verses 2-9), “Salvation is of the lord.” (Verse 9). The Hebrew writer declared “eternal salvation unto all them that obey him” (Jesus). (Hebrews 5:8, 9). Zacharias, father of John the baptizer (Luke 1:13), “filled with the Holy Ghost, and prophesied, saying,” God had “visited and redeemed his people, and hath raised up an horn of salvation….” (Verses 67-69). Zacharias appealed to the holy prophets (Verse 70), “To perform the mercy promised to our fathers, and to remember the holy covenant; The oath which he sware to our father Abraham.” (Verses 72, 73). He would “give knowledge of salvation unto his people by the remission of their sins….” (Verses 77-79).
Since the Hebrew writer, speaking under the influence of the Holy Spirit (2 Peter 1:20, 21) said Jesus saves those who obey Him (Hebrews 5:8, 9), and since Paul told “the saints in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi” (Philippians 1:1), to “work out your own salvation with fear and trembling” (Philippians 2:12), it is to the word of God that one must go to determine what one must do to work out one’s salvation. Peter declared of Jesus, “thou hast the words of eternal life.” (John 6:68). What does the Lord say one must do to have eternal life?
First, Deity (God) only is able to provide salvation. God sent and “gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.” (John 3:16, 17). Jesus is the only One who is able to save. (Acts 4:12). He left heaven, making “himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men”, dying and being raised to save lost man. (Philippians 2:5-13). The Holy Spirit through chosen ones revealed the message of salvation. (2 Peter 1:20, 21; Acts 28:25-28).
Attention is now turned to “the simplicity that is in Christ.” (2 Corinthians 11:1-3). Jesus said, “The first of all commandments, is, Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord”, and that we are to love God supremely. (Mark 12:29, 30). One must first hear to believe, for “faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:17). There can be no faith short of hearing the word of God.
Upon hearing the word preached (Acts 8:35), one should believe with all one’s heart (Acts 8:36, 37), because faith is necessary to salvation. (Romans 5:1; Ephesians 2:8-10). Faith is necessary to being saved, but not faith alone. (James 2:14-26, especially, verses 17, 20, 24, and 26). The need for hearing the word of God has already been shown to be necessary to salvation. Therefore, hearing and faith eliminates either one only. The same will be true of things following.
The one who believes with all the heart should at this time be ready and willing to repent of any and all sin committed up to this point. Jesus said, “I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.” (Luke 13:3, 5). One who believes in the Godhead (Romans 1:20) cannot continue to do the things described as “works of the flesh.” (Galatians 5:19-21; Romans 1:18-32). Anyone who comes to Jesus to be saved must repent of sin (Acts 17:30, 31), that is, have godly sorrow for doing things contrary to God’s will, and ceasing to do them. (2 Corinthians 7:9-11).
Once one hears the word of God, learns of the need to obey the Lord, and genuinely repents of sin, that one is ready to say the sweetest thing one will ever say, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.” (Acts 8:37). Philip, preaching Jesus, told the eunuch that he had to make the confession of his faith before he could go any further (Acts 8:36-37), that is, before he could be baptized. Jesus had taught the necessity of such a confession. (Matthew 10:32, 33). Paul had reminded the saints at Rome (Romans 1:1, 7) that salvation required faith and confession. (Romans 10:9, 10).
As soon as the eunuch confessed Jesus Christ as the Son of God, Philip “commanded the chariot to stand still: And they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him. And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing.” (Acts 8:37-39). He went on his way rejoicing because he had been saved (Acts 2:38; Mark 16:16) by being buried with the Lord in water baptism, where he contacted the saving blood of Jesus (Romans 6:1-5), and he was added to the Lord’s glorious Church. (Acts 2:41, 47; 1 Corinthians 12:13; Ephesians 5:25-27; 1:22, 23). He had “obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered unto you. Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.” (Romans 6:17, 18, 1-5). The eunuch was baptized to obey a command (Acts 10:48), because he still had sins to be washed away. (Acts 22:16). He also realized that he could not see the kingdom of God without being born of water and of the Spirit. (John 3:1-5, 23). He understood that he would be saved when he was baptized, that the Holy Spirit said, “baptism doth also now save us.” (1 Peter 3:20, 21; Cf. Genesis 6-8).
Dear reader, the foregoing is straight from the pages of your Bible. They are the words of God, who is the Savior. When Jesus promised to build His Church, He asked His disciples who men thought he was. They erroneously said He was John the Baptist, Elijah, Jeremiah, or one of the prophets. (Matthew 16:13, 14). However, Peter, speaking what God said, gave the correct answer, “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. (Matthew 16:16, 17). Following the doctrines and commandments of men will result in one’s worship being vain, worthless. (Matthew 15:7-9). On the other hand, Jesus said, “the words that I speak unto you are spirit, and they are life.” (John 6:63).
Have you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine of Christ, or have you been misled to do what mistaken people have taught you? Remember, Jesus is the Savior. What He says is what must be done. An honest and sincere wrong doctrine is not what one should want or follow. Have you examined yourself lately to see if you have obeyed man or God? (2 Corinthians 13:5) Have you obeyed the gospel of Christ? (Romans 1:16). If you have questions about your faith, please do not hesitate to call the one who gave you this tract, or write or call the name at the end of this short work. Do so immediately! We are talking about the most important thing there is, your soul.