When I was a pastor, Dr. Earl Radmacher once came and spoke in my church. I introduced him as the author of numerous Christian books, the editor of the best-selling NKJV Nelson Study Bible, and the president emeritus of Western Seminary. At that time, one of his most recent books had been Salvation, which is part of the Chuck Swindoll Leadership library, and is a book I highly recommend.
After this introduction he got up to teach and began with a word of prayer. He said this:
Father, I thank you for bringing me to speak to these men and women today, and I pray that as I speak to them, many of them would be saved this hour, and I pray also, that you would save me this hour as well. Amen.
I knew this was coming because this is something Dr. Radmacher often did when he spoke in churches, but it was still enjoyable to glance around at the people in the church and watch them open their eyes and blink in confusion at each other. You could almost hear their thoughts: “Did I just hear what I thought I heard? Did this author, preacher, seminary president, and Bible scholar just ask to get saved? Did our pastor invite one of those unsaved liberal Bible scholars we’ve heard rumors about into our pulpit today?”
Dr. Radmacher went on to explain that his prayer was not only genuinely spoken, but was also an opening illustration for what he wanted to teach.
He truly did want to get saved that hour as he spoke—saved from preaching or teaching anything that might be in error. He also wanted
his hearers to get saved—saved from believing some wrong things about the word “salvation.”
He went on to show what the words “save” and “salvation” mean in Scripture, and how many tricky and confusing passages can be immediately cleared up simply by recognizing that when the text talks about “being saved” it is not talking about gaining eternal life or going to heaven when you die, but has some sort of other deliverance in view.
We looked at this idea yesterday, and I have one more post about it tomorrow, but having read this post today, can you say that this post saved you from believing something wrong about the word saved?
As for myself, I hope I was saved in this post from including any typos… There always seems to be one or two in every one of my posts… 🙁