By Elder Sylvester Hassell
Because Primitive Baptists recognize that the word “saved” in scriptures always means “deliverance from harm or ruin,” we believe that many Scriptural occurrences of “saved” has reference to a temporal salvation from some danger here on Earth. Recently, it was falsely alleged that Primitive Baptists make a distinction between eternal salvation and eternal life. This is not the case, we simply recognize that not every “saved” text has eternal salvation under consideration. The following short writing is by Sylvester Hassell and discusses any possible distinction between Eternal Life and Eternal Salvation. -Editor
The Gospel Messenger–February 1897
I can see no real difference in meaning between these two scriptural phrases, except that the term salvation is more general, and includes life. Certainly all persons who love the one have the other. Those who have spiritual life need, and will receive, the salvation of that life, for that life is eternal, and therefore cannot perish or end. Christ gives His people eternal life and saves them from their sins. Life itself is salvation or deliverance from death. God is able, in an instant, to give eternal life or salvation to an unborn infant, a driveling idiot, a raving maniac, a benighted heathen or a dying adult. No other being but God can bestow this priceless gift; and He may bestow it, and no other being, not even the recipient, be aware of it at the time; but it will be certain afterwards to bear the beautiful bloom and the rich fruit of holiness and love, either in the present state or in the paradise of God.