This is Part 7 in our series on “Athens or Jerusalem? Establishing the Spiritual Heritage of Jesus’ Followers”
The concept of salvation in Christianity has mostly been concerned with the world to come. As though taken right out of a chapter from Plato’s Hellenistic philosophy, the true pleasures of life are in the spirit realm, reserved for the afterlife where we are no longer bound by our bodies and a corrupt physical world. For much of Christianity, salvation is reserved for after death when we are redeemed from this present world.
Salvation for the Hebrews is different. Salvation is not primarily a way of getting away from this world, but the power and presence of God that is needed to transform one’s personal life and society here in this life. Unlike Greek Platonism, the Hebrews did not separate between the body and spirit of man, and so they experienced salvation in the here and now for the whole person. Salvation is not just an invisible spirit...
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