Arminian Today

A Jesus-Centered Arminian Blog

The Gospel in Matthew 1:21

“She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.”
– Matthew 1:21

Christmas is all about the gospel of Jesus Christ.  The focus of Christmas is upon Christ.  It is not about angels or about Mary or about Joseph but the nativity is all about the incarnation of the Son of God (Isaiah 7:14).  The Christmas story lays out the wonder of the gospel of Christ.

We see this clearly in Matthew 1:21.  We see:

1.  The Savior by Name.

There is only one way to salvation and that is through the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ.  We are not saved by good works.  We are not saved by religion.  We are not saved by belief.  We are not saved by faith in faith.  We are saved by God’s grace through faith in Jesus Christ (Ephesians 2:8-9).  The wonder of the gospel is that Jesus finished the work of salvation for us (John 19:30).  Jesus is our salvation before God (1 Corinthians 1:30-31).  Jesus is our everything (Colossians 3:3-4).  Jesus is the only name by which we can be saved (Acts 4:12).  There is no salvation apart from faith in Him (John 3:15).  His name alone saves (John 14:6).  The Savior is clearly named here in Matthew 1:21:  you shall call His name Jesus.  The name Jesus means “the Lord saves.”  The Lord God delivers us through the Lord Jesus.

2.  The Savior Who Saves.

Jesus saves us but He does so specifically from sin.   Notice that Matthew does not say that Jesus saves us in our sins.  He saves us from our sins.  He delivers His people from sin.  The power of sin is broken as well as the penalty of sin (Romans 6:11-14, 23).  When Jesus saves a person, He saves them from sin and He delivers them unto God.  We are new creations in Christ, the old is gone and the new has come (2 Corinthians 5:17).  Jesus doesn’t save us and then allow us to abuse His grace through willful rebellion against Him (Jude 4).  1 John 2:3-6 reads:

And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may know that we are in him: whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.

To walk as He walked.  We are to be a people of holiness through Him (1 Peter 1:15-16).  None of us are able to overcome sin by our own power but we can do so in Christ Jesus (Galatians 5:16-17).  Jesus grants us the power to overcome sin and to live for His glory alone.  1 John 3:6-9 establishes this clearly:

No one who abides in him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen him or known him. Little children, let no one deceive you. Whoever practices righteousness is righteous, as he is righteous. Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil. No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God.

It is clear from 1 John 3:6-9 that we must not abide in sin while claiming to follow Christ.  This simply cannot be.  We cannot say that Jesus is our Savior if we are not saved from our sins.  Revelation 21:7-8 teaches us that those abiding in sin will not inherit the kingdom of God.  Jesus calls us to be born again (John 3:3) and when He saves a person, He enables them to be free from sin and its power (John 8:31-38).  He is a mighty Savior who is fully able to deliver us (1 Corinthians 10:13).  After all, He ever lives as our intercessor (Romans 8:31; Hebrews 7:25).  He is more than able to deliver His people from sin (1 Thessalonians 5:23-24).

Written by The Seeking Disciple

12/19/2012 at 1:38 AM

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