Last year Evangelist Douglas Hammett published a book titled The Five Pieces of Salvation: Responding to the Gospel God’s Way. He is adept at marketing, and thus I found myself with a copy. 🙂 However, though I sent the book to two or three individuals with whom I had Bible studies, I had not read the entirety until recently. It is an excellent and simple explanation of salvation based on the Word of God. Whether you are searching for your own relationship with God or looking to explain clearly to a lost soul how to be saved, this book is a must-read!
Piece 1: Recognize Your Sin. He starts by pointing out the holiness of God. A most excellent focus for one who is searching for God. A foundational understanding of God’s holiness drives home the point that we all fall short of His perfection and justly deserve His condemnation. Finally, instead of using the Ten Commandments, as often is the case when seeking to elicit Holy Spirit conviction in a person’s life, Bro. Hammett distills the law as Jesus did in Matthew 22:35-39. No person on this earth can honestly claim to have always loved God and his neighbor in heart and in actions.
Piece 2: Repent of Sin. Here is a contrast of godly sorrow and worldly sorrow. Then, he gives a very clear and concise explanation of Biblical repentance which is beneficial both to a lost person and a saved person trying to explain it to a lost person. Check it out!
Piece 3: Refuse Self-Effort. I notice similarities in this section (as well as others) to the Salvation Bible Basics study (also authored by Doug Hammett.) God views our righteousnesses as filthy rags. Baptism, church membership, reading the Bible, and prayer have no part in securing our redemption. Here is where the sins of the heart are brought in, as elaborated by Jesus in Matthew 5:21-22, Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire. Also, the point that one offense against the law condemns the party as guilty of the entire law (James 2:10.) The segue into the fourth section mentions the crossroads of refusing your efforts in favor of the work of Christ on the cross.
Piece 4: Rely on Jesus Christ. This section reminded me that (if my memory serves me correctly) this book was written specifically with African culture in mind. Yet, the truth applies to all cultures. No person can mediate your salvation for you except Jesus Christ. The name of Jesus, Savior, is pointed out as the basis of trust for salvation. Only reliance on the fact that Jesus is one’s Savior brings forgiveness from God. Christ’s exchange of our sin for His righteousness ends this section with hope. What an amazing truth to keep in our minds!
Piece 5: Receive Jesus Christ. Bro. Hammett brings light to John 1:13, Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. “Blood” refers to salvation based on family heritage, “the will of the flesh” is self-reformation, and “the will of man” would be any other person trying to accept God’s salvation for you. Receiving is from the heart. One welcomes Christ with open arms when asking Him to become his Savior. A lot is discussed in the middle part of this section: making Jesus one’s Lord, agreement of both the mouth and the heart, and a thought-provoking take on why Jesus must have risen from the dead. (I’ll let that one remain a gem for those who read the book.) Lastly, the “roadmap” to salvation is laid out in simple terms: hear, understand/believe, trust. The great promise? Everlasting life, no condemnation, being spiritual alive, and a relationship with Almighty God!
Don’t hesitate to invest in this book for yourself or those to whom you are ministering. (I have no conflict of interest—no proceeds come to me. The book is available for purchase here.)
Laura started attending Lehigh Valley Baptist Church as a child when her family moved to the area. For years, her primary passion was in nursing and furthering her education. In the midst of pursuing a medical degree, God changed her plans and she married Jonathan Snow (read their story here). Now, she has discovered a special fulfillment from being a wife and a mother! Truly, God’s ways are always for our good and for His glory.