Why the ‘Heirs of Salvation’ Means Much More Than You Think

by | Feb 17, 2022 | Evangelism & Missions

One of the most powerful names for God’s people is found only once in the Bible:

But to which of the angels, did He say at any time, “Sit on My right hand until I make Your enemies Your footstool?” Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for those who shall be heirs of salvation? (Hebrews 1:13-14 MKJV)

Evidently, one of the primary functions of the angels of God is to supply provision and protection to those who inherit salvation from God. This is heaven’s focus and it means much more than most believers have ever imagined.

The word “salvation” is found 162 times in the New King James Version of the Bible (118 times in the Old Testament and 44 times in the New). Though used in a variety of ways, it always means deliverance. For instance, when the children of Israel stood at the edge of the Red Sea, Moses cried out:

“Stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which He will accomplish for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall see again no more forever” (Exod. 14:13).

When Paul was incarcerated, he wrote the Philippian church:

“For I know that this shall turn to my salvation through your prayer, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ” (Phil. 1:19, KJV).

In both cases, salvation meant something different than deliverance from sin. The children of Israel were delivered from the Egyptian army. Paul was delivered from prison and from Jewish zealots who had been trying to kill him. For the “heirs of salvation,” this word primarily means deliverance from sin, from satanic plots, from the curse of Adam, from the curse of the Law and, ultimately, from death, hell and the grave.

The Threefold Nature of Salvation

We human beings have a triune nature: spirit, soul and body. Parallel to this, our salvation is also threefold:

– We were saved from the penalty of sin (when our spirits were regenerated and renewed in the Holy Spirit—2 Tim. 3:5).

– We are being saved from the power of sin (as we daily experience deliverance from soulish battles of the mind, will and emotions—James 1:21, Phil. 2:12).

– We will be saved from the presence of sin (when we are delivered from the bondage of our flesh, either at death or when the living are translated at the coming of the Lord).

God Our Savior

Under the Old Covenant, salvation was primarily “of the Jews” (John 4:22). Now, under the New Covenant, God would have “all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Tim. 2:4). After Mary conceived of the Holy Spirit, the angel commanded Joseph, “You shall call His name JESUS, for He will save His people from their sins” (Matt. 1:21, NKJV). How appropriate! For the name Jesus (Heb. Yeshua) means “salvation,” or in essence, “God manifested as a Savior.”

The same voice that insisted under the Old Testament times, “Beside Me there is no Savior” still states under the New Testament, “I am the door. If anyone enters through Me, he will be saved.” (Isa. 43:11, NKJV; John 10:9, DLNT). The Yahweh of the Old Testament is the Jesus of the New Testament and He still sends forth the urgent appeal:

“Turn to Me, and be saved, all you ends of the earth! For I am God, and there is no other” (Isa. 45:22, ISV).

The Nature of Salvation

No one can earn salvation. It cannot be achieved by character development, religious works or man-made rituals. We never become “good enough” to be saved. We simply reach out with faith, humility and sincerity, and gratefully receive what God delights to give:

“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not of yourselves. It is the gift of God, not of works, so that no one should boast” (Eph. 2:8-9, MEV).

Parents should expect this gift to overflow the lives of their offspring as well, for God’s salvation is “from generation to generation” (Isa. 51:8). He has already promised, “I will contend with him who contends with you and I will save your children” (Isa. 49:25; read Luke 19:1-10).

Thank God, it’s not difficult to be saved. Mysterious, mystical formulas are not required. Years of self-abasement and self-discipline are not demanded to qualify. It is so utterly simple:

“Whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved” (Rom. 10:13, NKJV).

The Many Sides of Sozo

The main Greek word translated “save” is sozo, found 115 times in the New Testament. Interestingly, in the MEV, it has also been translated healed, preserve and will be well. Some specific examples include:

The demoniac at Gadara—”He who had been possessed by demons was healed (sozo)” (Luke 8:36, MEV).

Paul’s expectation—”The Lord will deliver me from every evil work and will preserve (sozo) me for His heavenly kingdom, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen” (2 Tim. 4:18, MEV).

The disciples of Lazarus—”Lord, if he is sleeping, he will be well (sozo)” (John 11:12).

These three examples reveal that salvation is not just limited to forgiveness of sins; it involves healing, preservation, wellness and wholeness in our entire being. Hebrews 7:25 also states that Jesus is “able to save (sozo) to the uttermost those who come to God through Him, because He at all times lives to make intercession for them.”

Ultimate Salvation

Thank God the day will come when “all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God” (Isa. 52:10). The dead in Christ will rise and living believers will be translated at the coming of the Lord. At that glorious moment, we will experience complete salvation: glorified “in a moment” (1 Cor. 15:52). For those looking for His return, He shall “appear the second time without sin unto salvation” (Heb. 9:28, KJV). We will then be thrust into the next phase of God’s purposes in this vast, magnificent universe.

When time will merge with eternity, what ecstasy will be ours as we join the white-robed, palm-waving throng on the sea of glass mingled with fire! Surrounded by the angels who helped us on our journey, we will joyously shout that ultimate declaration of triumph: “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!”” (Rev. 7:10). {eoa}

Mike Shreve has taught on the theme of our spiritual identity for over 30 years, giving sons and daughters of God the comfort and empowerment of knowing who they are “in Christ.” This powerful insight is featured on a weekly podcast on cpnshows.com, a weekly TV program on It’s Supernatural Network (ISN) both titled “Discover Your Spiritual Identity,” and a Charisma House book titled Who Am I?: Dynamic Declarations of Who You Are in Christ. A product of the Jesus Movement Era, Mike Shreve has traveled evangelistically in the United States and overseas since 1970 with an emphasis on healing and the prophetic. You may also want to subscribe to his second podcast on comparative religion titled “Revealing the True Light” and visit his website and YouTube channel.

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