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Re: "...Mormon / LDS view"[edit]

To include Mormons in the christian section of the article is incorrect. The only group discussed in that article who would claim otherwise are the mormons themselves. Mormons pull some common ideas from Christianity, but then so do Voodoo and Santeria. So if Mormons are included in the Christian section, then the two aforementioned religions should be included as well. The other option would be to create a new section (I would have no idea what to call it). That section could include (for lack of a better word) "fringe" groups who hold to doctrines that are so far removed from christian belief that the the doctrines nullify each other. ... The point made regarding 'without works faith is dead' is fallacial. Those verses do not refer to salvation, they refer to sanctification. It is true that after salvation our work is not yet done. After salvation the process of being made holy starts (i.e., sanctification). We are called to strive for holiness ("Be holy, as your Father in Heaven is holy."), and this process can only start once the barrier of sin is removed...

This next point is not really related directly to the topic, but it refers to comments made about the topic...

If I was trying to make a point regarding salvation to a Jew, I would have to speak from the Old Testament for it to carry any weight with him/her, since Jews don't recognize the New Testament.. By the same token, a mormon trying to make a doctrinal point to Christians would need to use the Old and New Testaments only. Using the book of mormon to support an argument made to a Christian does not carry any weight, since we believe that Joseph Smith made it all up. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Virtua67 (talkcontribs) 01:27, 18 June 2008 (UTC)

What?! Let's not think too muck like Sheri Shepard from the view. --Firefly322 (talk) 14:54, 15 July 2008 (UTC)
"To a Jew": It would depend on whether or not the "Jew" was a Christian. But generally speaking what passes for Judaism is not based on the OT/Tanach, but on the Talmuds, particularly from the Mishnah. But since the whole Bible is the Word of God & thus has convicting power, you can use the entire Bible with anyone. (EnochBethany (talk) 15:14, 13 November 2011 (UTC))

Anonymous Christian[edit]

Need to add something on Anonymous Christian--Firefly322 (talk) 16:00, 15 July 2008 (UTC)

Arminianism section change suggested[edit]

Arminianism section of the Salvation article appears to me some misinformation.

"However, John Wesley taught that continued backsliding could inevitably lead to loss of faith, and consequently salvation, if left uncorrected."

This was not Wesley's position. Wesley's clearly taught that committing sin was the grounds for loss of faith which is lose of salvation. Lose of faith didn't require continued sin accord to him.

I will drop back a bit later with citations for what I think is the correct position and what I suggest the article should be changed to. In the mean time perhaps there can be some input on this. bobmutch (talk) 02:35, 15 August 2008 (UTC)

Judaism changes by SLR and me[edit]

This edit shows the removal by Slrubenstein of an introductory paragraph to the Judaism section written by me. Wheras my version tries to be categorical and logical in treating the concept within Judaism, Slr's version simply states that "Death and the question of life after death are not contral[sic] concerns in Judaism." I don't know if this is actually true, though I know Slr will come up sooner or later with a source to support this statement. Certainly Judaism has the concept of Olam Haba, and the Mishnah states, "this world is like a lobby before the World-To-Come. Prepare yourself in the lobby so that you may enter the banquet hall." SLr has not provided a source yet, so sourcing must not be the issue. Hence, he apparent dislikes using the basic abstract categorizations of salvation's dominant aspects, or even the relation of salvation to Judaism itself — which would appear to belie its inclusion in this article. Note, his statement "not particularly c[e]ntral" does not indicate that it lacks importance. Further, he redirects his own language with a "nevertheless" introduction to Pharisee-derived treatments, which appear to be quite, for lack of a better term, universalist in nature. Slr, why the redirection? I'm sure there is a better, more encyclopedic way of handling it. -Stevertigo 22:54, 9 March 2009 (UTC)

Does not the Mishnah assert that you are damned if you deny the resurrection? 'l Israel have a portion in the world to come, for it is written: 'Thy people are all righteous; they shall inherit the land forever, the branch of my planting, the work of my hands, that I may be glorified.' But the following have no portion therein: one who maintains that resurrection is not a biblical doctrine, the Torah was not divinely revealed, and an Apikoros ("heretic").' (EnochBethany (talk) 15:17, 13 November 2011 (UTC))

Lede changes by SLR[edit]

I like SLR's decision to split a compound sentence into two, and qualify the judgment concept as belonging to particular religions. My only issue here is the removal of the link to conceptions of God, and this is largely due to the fact that its quite often more appropriate to refer to "x's concept of God" rather than to "the God of x" where x indicates a religion. Its a bit of a tangential issue within this context, but as a rule I would prefer to make a habit of linking to the concepts article. -Stevertigo 22:57, 9 March 2009 (UTC)

Special Salvation[edit]

I changed this to a less damning explanation, removing some POV words. Let me know if it is generally accepted. Joshua Ingram (talk) 00:09, 24 April 2009 (UTC)

Hi Josh. The statement you refer to says
"The concept of special salvation refers to all theological doctrines that assert a one true faith, and that others will not be saved."
You seem to suggest that there should be a qualifier at the end, and while I may disagree with your choice of concepts and the language used to describe them, I may not disagree with the idea that there might be some qualification added there. But changing the statement to..
"The concept of special salvation refers to all theological doctrines that assert a one true faith, and that others will not be saved, unless they repent."
"The concept of special salvation refers to all theological doctrines that assert a one true faith, and that others will not be saved, unless they repent of their sins."
..doesn't work and here is why: This article deals with the general concept of salvation [from death], as adminstered by God. We aren't at this point dealing with more subtle aspects such as "salvation from sin," which obviously does require "repentance." Thus "repentance" is used here as a condition, not just good advice to get one unslaved from sin, and thus "salvation as long as one repents of sin" falls under the concept of "conditional salvation," not special salvation.
And more importantly, the usage of "repentance" in this context would put it within particular theological frameworks wherin it is just a theological codeword for "change your religion" and otherwise has little actual meaning. To explain, consider that according to certain concepts, belief in any "non-[particular religious tradition]" is a "sin." In this context, "repentance" does not refer to "repentance of sin" but rather to "repentance of belief," to which is applied the concept of "conversion of faith." Asserting that salvation is attached to a particular belief system is actually quite "special."
Joshua wrote: "[The current text] sounds like predestination."
It has nothing to do with predestination; that deals with free will. This deals with who gets saved and how. In the most universal sense, "getting saved" requires being good. That is all. In "special salvation" concepts, the requirements are more particular; one has to have the right Bible, the right underwear, etc. Thus your choice of the term "repentance" or even "repentance of sin" would be only inaccurate, if it actually even fit into the categorical descriptions we are using to describe "salvation" and who recieves it. So if you can deal with the above, and then consider another way to expand upon the section, I will give it my honest consideration. Regards. -Stevertigo 08:14, 25 April 2009 (UTC)-Stevertigo 08:14, 25 April 2009 (UTC)
After reading your explanation, I'm starting to agree with you, except for the part about "'getting saved' requires being good." But that is POV on my part, and shouldn't be included (my bad). However, I do think something needs to be added. Maybe "others will not be saved, unless they meet the requirements of a specific one true faith"? Joshua Ingram 12:11, 25 April 2009 (UTC)
Well the general idea that most people have is that really bad people cannot be saved. True, its not always just a matter of "good" and "bad," but those are the very generalized concepts. The language "..others will not be saved, unless they meet the requirements of [that] specific.." is exact, albeit keep in mind it's a general formula attaching one's own belief to one's own prescription for the fate of someone else. The "special" category simply covers all beliefs which are rather particular and not generalistic or unversalist such as that such consider salvation [as] based on one's 'deeds in life' (sin), indicating the "content of their character," (goodness, evil). These are not particular at all, and it would be hard to find any religion that didn't promote the view that good and evil deeds are directly relevant to God or Heaven.
Beyond that is the concept of good and evil character, such as effects how someone might get along (or not) in Heaven, even well after "salvation" (such that affects their "ultimate salvation"). That one is interesting, and different theologies deal with it differently. Anyway, regards, -Stevertigo 20:32, 26 April 2009 (UTC)

Fictional redemption[edit]

An example of redemption using Darth Vader. Seriously? (talk) 04:54, 24 April 2009 (UTC)

I removed it, at least for now, even while considering that it might belong in a future "salvation in fiction" section. It's an extremely good example of science fiction treating salvation, and even better, it's an example where the apparent salvific result is not at all faithful to either truth or reality. Though Lucas, to his credit, was trying to deal with the impossible paradoxes regarding the salvation of some among his generation, and in any case his fictionalized product isn't any more unrealistic than many religions' special salvation doctrines. -Stevertigo 18:44, 7 June 2009 (UTC)

AP edits[edit]

The following paragraphs were added by User:Afaprof01. I removed it for now, to discuss it on its merits. AfP also removed the "purpose" paragraph and I restored it to the lede, and will discuss its issues here as well.

Salvation in its nature must answer to the plight of humanity as it actually is. It must offer individuals redemption from slavery to sin, forgiveness from guilt, reconciliation for alienation and "renewal for a marred image of God." <ref name="Stagg"> . ''New Testament Theology.'' Broadman Press, 1962. ISBN 0805416137</ref>{{Rp|80|date=June 2009}}

World religions share the notion that humanity needs salvation from its present condition since humanity does not manifest its purpose of existence. Author Ernest Valea says three important aspects must be analyzed in assessing the meaning of salvation in those religions:

  • the resources needed for attaining salvation
  • the actual way of getting saved and
  • the meaning of being saved. <ref name="Valea"/>

{{quote|…some religions claim that salvation can be attained by using only inner human resources. They demand the use of meditation, accumulation of wisdom, asceticism, rituals, good deeds, etc. Other religions state that humans can be saved only through the grace granted by an external personal agent. This agent can be God, a ''bodhisattva'', an ''avatar'', etc. One’s duty is to recognize the impossibility of being saved by one's own efforts, and therefore accept grace unconditionally. <ref name="Valea">Valea, Ernest. "Salvation and eternal life in world religions." Comparative Religion. 13 June 2009.</ref>}}

There are a few problems with the text. It is sourced, for one, but to whom? More importantly, while it has elements of conceptuality that are necessary for inclusion in a lede, it gets into specifically nuanced and loaded concepts that are not encyclopedic, and must be attributable to the authors alone. Ledes can and thus must be written in a conceptual, general, flow-chart way, such as to outline all of the relevant concepts, with a little bit about how they interrelate, without getting into particular details and notions.

What we can do, however is deal with some of the concepts. The one that stands out is redemption, and this is something that I admit is a bit lacking in the current version. The important thing here is to deal with the concept of redemption as its usually linked to salvation —not just quoting particular statements as expressed from the point of view of particular theologies —many of which have certain issues, such as that they may implicitly assert divine precedence, ownership, or even others' inadequacy or dispensation. -Stevertigo 21:41, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

Stagg, Frank turned red due to my error. I neglected the parentheses in the title. The correct Wiki link is Frank Stagg (theologian).
A critic of a lede should consider rewriting it rather than summarily replacing it with unsourced new material.Afaprof01 (talk) 04:38, 17 June 2009 (UTC)
Responses by SV.

Good to know Frank has an article! Baptist apparently. Now how about Ernest Valea? And is this comment about "critic of a lede" coming from someone who just added a bunch of POV commentary to the lede, and removed certain non-commentary like things from it? Your concept of sources is only valid if you consider WP:WEIGHT, and it is due to weight that I deal with conceptual articles in a conceptual way. This is not to say that statements shouldn't have sources, but rather to say that articles about concepts require a conceptual approach that does not allow quotations of particular individuals to dominate in the place of good NPOV writing that covers the topic. I note that you have not taken up my olive branch about dealing with the "repentance" and "redemption" issues. You should do that promptly.

And even though your selections were somewhat generalistic, there are also special-theology issues with them, such that prohibit them from dominating the lede, regardless of how "sourced" the quotes are. Special theology views, for example, present certain conceptual paradoxes that are difficult to deal with in accord with (holy) NPOV. The first is the dubious notion that God loves just them, and noone else. Another fishy notion within special theologies claims that anyone can be saved if they just "repent," or "believe" —there have been real human demons that just don't deserve "salvation," regardless of whether they do either.

And in any case, going back to article issues, does this terse "repent" concept indicate a repentance of sin, or (more particularly) repentance of sinful acts, or (even) repentance of "sinful belief" (ie. "you need to convert to our religion now")? Many theologians are notable for their conceptual facility, but in any case to associate salvation::repentance of sin → conversion to the way we think is not particularly clever, interesting, or NPOV, and therefore needs to be isolated.

A while ago, Josh (above) wanted to amend a phrase thusly (underlined):

"The concept of special salvation refers to all theological doctrines that assert a one true faith, and that others will not be saved, unless they repent".

I noted that this view about conditional salvation upon "repentance" is often tied to a view of salvation upon "conversion of belief." Thus making it problematic, let alone unsuitable. In other words it turns a general conceptual statement into a special salvation concept. Again, special salvation concepts don't belong in the lede, or anywhere else without qualification, classification, categorization, and containment.

So in the lede we have to be extremely conceptual only, and using a concept cloud might work well here to deal with that. No coloration or leanings toward particular theolgies is allowed —we have to separate particular theologies from the concept of salvation, period.

You also raised an issue about my edit with regard to the angels clause saying "Removed "angel" erroneous statement. Angels never were human beings. They are specially created beings. cf. Psalm 8:5." A wonderful comment on your part to be sure because it addresses several conceptual problems on your part, and only one on mine. Mine first:

  1. There is an issue with the phrase as it previously was written, and needs to be clarified, probably in the form of questions that deal with its two dimensions: 1) Do former human beings become angels? 2) If so, is this transmigration an "automatic" or "manual" process?
  2. Your assertion that the statement you removed was "erroneous" is an opinion based on an interpretation, and deferring to your view alone would violate NPOV. In fact it shows your view to be *Adventist, and a particularly uncommon one at that. Your citation of Psalm 8:5, while interesting, is too interpretive to be regarded without question (what in the Bible isn't?), and, coincidentally, cannot be sensibly inferred from the passage. I quote Psalm 8 in full:
  1. O LORD, our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth! who hast set thy glory above the heavens.
  2. Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength because of thine enemies, that thou mightest still the enemy and the avenger.
  3. When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained;
  4. What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?
  5. For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour.
  6. Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet:
  7. All sheep and oxen, yea, and the beasts of the field;
  8. The fowl of the air, and the fish of the sea, and whatsoever passeth through the paths of the seas.
  9. O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth!
  • Note: "made [man] [..] lower than the angels" does not directly imply that "the angels" were also similarly "made," rather it means simply that man (on Earth) is put in a station that is "a little lower" than that of "the angels" (in Heaven). In fact "the angels" in this context is a poetic term, and the phrase, passage, and even book of Psalms itself should be interpreted to some degree from a poetic view.
  • Further, the concept that human beings —made of "clay" and "spirit" —are only "a little lower" than "the angels" should also tell you something that contradicts the view you espouse. In any case, the concept of angelology ←→ salvation needs to be dealt with, not just because most people have a very straightforward fetus → person → angel concept in their theology, but because deferring to your view alone would violate NPOV. Where exactly, by the way, do Adventists say people go when they get "saved?"-Stevertigo 07:59, 17 June 2009 (UTC)


Responses from AFAProf01

Thank you, User:Stevertigo, for taking the time to explain your reasoning. I must admit to finding some of your comments terse and sarcastic and don't believe I deserved that.

I don't know anything about Adventists and can't answer your question.

Re: angels. Am in total disagreement that such misinformation that is completely unsourced and is at best urban legend should be in this article, much less in the lede. The claim of "most people" belief does not justify placement. I cannot find even one citation to back up that proportion. I've always found "most people" to be a Weasel Phrase. Unless the following credible sources are wrong, then the severe criticism you leveled on my effort is uncalled-for:

  • Angels are regarded as supernatural beings organized before God in a hierarchy (e.g., Dan. 7: 10; 9: 21). <ref>W. R. F. BROWNING. "angels." A Dictionary of the Bible. 1997. 17 Jun. 2009 .</ref>
  • "Angels" (i.e., "messengers" of God) we ordinarily understand a race of spiritual beings of a nature exalted far above that of man, although infinitely removed from that of God—whose office is "to do him service in heaven" (Smith Bible Dictionary)
  • "Angel": name of spiritual beings created by God but superior in nature to man. Some ancient Church fathers held that angels were created "before the heavens and all material things." (A Catholic Dictionary By William Edward Addis, Thomas Arnold p.25)

Seems like you are more concerned about your legalistic views of microcosms (viz., angels when you put a totally unsourced and spurious by all but folk lore standards) and gag at gnats in the name of NPOV violations. At some point, a greater good mentality needs to prevail when someone with good intentions tries to move the intro off the proverbial dime and it ignites an uncalled for flare of accusations of wrong intentions and ineptness.

I believe you to be a very talented and knowledgeable editor. I hope it's my misperception and not your intent that I sense a real negative, critical attitude in your comments (to me and to others). I am not overly sensitive and have fairly thick skin as an academician, but to me your critiques have been quite offensive. I respectfully request a change in your approach to sincere efforts. I'm a volunteer just as you are.

Meanwhile, let's do our best to end up with the best lede possible and believe the best of editing colleagues until someone proves us wrong.

  • Be welcoming
  • Be polite
  • Assume good faith
  • Avoid personal attacks

Regards, Afaprof01 (talk) 22:32, 17 June 2009 (UTC)

Responses (Afaprof01 in quotes, me after)

  • "Thank you, User:Stevertigo, for taking the time to explain your reasoning."- Thank you Afapro, for joining me in discussing your changes. You (AfP) listed a few civility concepts. Keep in mind that prompt and open discussion of your edits is one of them.
  • "I must admit to finding some of your comments terse and sarcastic and don't

believe I deserved that." - I disagree. I undid your changes because they were untenable, and asked you to discuss them. You then chose to restore your changes instead of dealing with me directly. I usually keep my sharpness in appropriate degree to the requirements of the situation.

  • "I don't know anything about Adventists and can't answer your question." - Your degree of theological understanding suggests otherwise, such that would likely include a similar understanding of the major denominational variances. But I will not argue with your claim.
  • "Re: angels. Am in total disagreement that such misinformation that is completely unsourced and is at best urban legend should be in this article, much less in the lede." - Keep in mind that we are discussing the "salvation" of human beings from death. This is the concept. If you are from a particular theological background, such that rejects the concept of an afterlife, and thus you use the term "salvation" itself to mean only "salvation from the slavery of sin," then I suggest you consider this a warning, that I will seek to have you blocked for a week to give you time to consider our concepts of neutrality, and whether or not you can write in a manner that is compatible with them. Consider for a moment WP:CLOUD. At issue is whether the current wording is accurate, or whether certain concepts don't fit, or have other issues. This is not just a manner of expressive writing. The cloud is a way for people to collaborate in writing a neutral article.
  • "The claim of "most people" belief does not justify placement." - It does, for the simple reason that "most people" are not idiots (WP:AGF), and two, this encyclopedia is written for "most people," not those who hold particular theological notions.
  • "I've always found "most people" to be a Weasel Phrase. Unless the following credible sources are wrong, then the severe criticism you leveled on my effort is uncalled-for" - Again, you are trying to use special and only tertially notable sources in combination with attacks on my arguments as a way to promote your particular views. Its not going to happen.
  • "I cannot find even one citation to back up that proportion." - Nonsense, and I've dealt with this above. Salvation, in this concept refers to people going to "Heaven", ("Heavenly salvation") wherin the term "angels" appears to be somewhat relevant. You give a few example of sources that deal what might be called "proto-angels":
  1. "Angels are regarded as supernatural beings organized before God in a hierarchy (source above)": - Scriptural source?
  2. "(i.e., "messengers" of God) we ordinarily understand a race of spiritual beings of a nature exalted far above that of man, although infinitely removed from that of God—whose office is "to do him service in heaven" (Smith Bible Dictionary)" - Note that "race" here is a bit obtuse, and gets into specious angel-mythological territory like the nephillim etc.
  3. "name of spiritual beings created by God but superior in nature to man. Some ancient Church fathers held that angels were created "before the heavens and all material things." (A Catholic Dictionary) - Note that "some ancient Church fathers" =/= Scripture.
  • "Seems like you are more concerned about your legalistic views of microcosms (viz., angels when you put a totally unsourced and spurious by all but folk lore standards) and gag at gnats in the name of NPOV violations." - Hm. I know there is a point here, but I cannot figure it out. Perhaps you could restate it in more clear terms?
  • "At some point, a greater good mentality needs to prevail when someone with good intentions tries to move the intro off the proverbial dime and it ignites an uncalled for flare of accusations of wrong intentions and ineptness." - This sounds like a threat, and if any comments I have made about removing your additions have sounded like personal attacks, I apologise. But in reality, you are not going to win any arguments about "greater good" if you don't discuss your additions, and can't keep them at a high-level of conceptualness, such as to fly over any localising theologies.
  • "I believe you to be a very talented and knowledgeable editor." - Thank you. I likewise sense in your choice of additions a serious thoughtfulness for the subject matter, and indeed, I consider your submission to be quite relevant. Please separate my criticism of your behaviour, from your editing, and these from rejecting the relevance of your expressed theological views.
  • "I hope it's my misperception and not your intent that I sense a real negative, critical attitude in your comments (to me and to others)." - Do not confuse "negative" with "critical," "attitude" with "conduct," and "comments that are directed at concepts" with "attacks on your person."
  • "I am not overly sensitive and have fairly thick skin as an academician, but to me your critiques have been quite offensive." - Please indicate any personal attacks I have made to the appropriate dispute resolution forum.
  • "I respectfully request a change in your approach to sincere efforts. I'm a volunteer just as you are." - This is my request for you as well. And I am not a "volunteer," I am a lifer. -Stevertigo 00:56, 18 June 2009 (UTC)
Response from AFAProf01

I made an AGP effort and now end up with your "warning, that I will seek to have you blocked for a week to give you time to consider our concepts of neutrality, and whether or not you can write in a manner that is compatible with them." I choose not to play your game any further. It is sheer arrogance.

Does this mean you don't want to discuss your edits with regard to redemption on their merits? I was actually looking forward to that. For purpose of disclosure, there was an error in the statement that you quoted that I just now corrected, with underline. Otherwise, I am sorry to see you have taken such an obtuse approach, such that I have to refer you to NPOV for review at your discretion. The warning, while perhaps overplayed, simply indicated that you are operating under certain inaccurate conceptions about how sources and NPOV writing interact, such that all of this discussion has been only to serve the advancement of your views. The angel issue was serendipitous, as it revealed your agenda. Again, if you have an issue with my comments, we can take this to a WP:DRR if you like. -Stevertigo 01:50, 18 June 2009 (UTC)

Christian salvation doctrine vs so called "Christian mysticism"[edit]

The article says: "In Christianity Jesus is the source of salvation and faith in his saving power is stressed."

I agree.

Please help me stress this point in article Christian mysticism. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Torchrunner (talkcontribs) 02:30, 13 September 2009 (UTC)


The first paragraph applies to Christians perhaps but not to Jews. In fact, I do not think salvation is a major issue in Judaism. I would make this article focus on the concept in Christianity. The concept is not universal, or doesn't ean the same thing to all peoples, so this is the place for a content fork - if someone wants to write about salvation in other religions they can, but this article is strong only with regards to Christianity, so why not play to its strengths. Slrubenstein | Talk 20:55, 17 September 2009 (UTC)

I agree. The article is problematic for several reasons. Overall, there is an attempt to kumbaya all religions under the umbrella of salvation by defining it in a certain way. This sleight-of-hand is supported by reliance on secondary sources, such as MacMillan Dictionary of the Bible and Jewish Encyclopedia. Offhand, I don't recognize any Jewish *primary* sources in the references. Third, this article is very obviously against the WP principle of proportionality, which advises that the length of text in a section should match the proportional significance of that section to the topic as a whole -- is there anyone who doubts that Christianity dominates this article?
As noted by the commentator (above) on Islam, as well as my Oxford American Dictionary, salvation is essentially redemption from sin. If there is no concept of original sin (or original samsara in the case of Buddhism), then salvation is not an essential part of the religion. Redemption via the Jewish Messiah does not mean the same thing as salvation, as evidenced by the Jewish Encyclopedia article cited on this WP page.
The reader of WP would be served better by a clearer contrast between religions that are classified as "soteriological" (e.g., Christianity, Buddhism) and those which are not. This distinction crops up several times in the article (e.g., general statement about Jews focusing more on "here and now"), but is drowned out by the lead and general tone that "of course, all religions believe in salvation". L'shanah tovah. Martindo (talk) 22:32, 18 September 2009 (UTC)
I wonder if Judaism considers salvation to be something that occurs annually or repeatedly (which would fit in quite nicely with what gets uttered during High Holiday services, at least in the Reform version with which I am familiar). L'shanah tova to you too. (talk) 03:47, 20 September 2009 (UTC)

Hard for me to imagine. I have seen reform prayerbooks and like conservative and orthodox, they are about judgment. The High Holidays has God reviewing our actions over the past year to weigh the good and the bad and then to judge us. Our bad actions fall into two classes: against others, and against God. We can plea for mercy for our wrongs to God, and God forgives (but mercy and forgiveness are not the same thing as salvation). Of course, God cannot forgive us for wrongs committed against other people; during the High Holiday period we have to seek them out and ask forgiveness fom them personaly. This is not considered salvation either, een though it counts on the books as much as wrongs against God. Slrubenstein | Talk 10:51, 20 September 2009 (UTC)

I've commented on my wlog. -Stevertigo (w | t | e) 05:51, 11 October 2009 (UTC)

Removing Judaism and noting contradictory definitions of 'salvation' for someone else to edit[edit]

(Retitled from "Removing Judaism and Noting Contradictory Definitions of 'Salvation' for Someone Else to Edit" -SV )

I'm just going to go ahead and remove Judaism from the article, the concept of 'salvation', especially as defined in the article, is simply absent from Judaism. There is no original sin which Jews need salvation from, there is no savior through which salvation may occur, and there is no eternal damnation as the punishment for not having salvation - Judaism doesn't even have a hell. While there is the concept of reward and punishment, that can hardly be considered the same thing as 'salvation' to anyone being somewhat objective.

To define it as an avoidance to a spiritual death is simply misleading - and contradicts with the usage of the word in the very next paragraph.

  1. salvation is the concept that God or other Higher Power, as part of Divine Providence, "saves" humanity from spiritual death or eternal damnation by providing for them an eternal life
  2. humanity needs salvation from its present condition since humanity does not manifest its purpose of existence and therefore in some sense is "lost."

How is the usage the same in those two quoted sentence fragments? If they were to be combined: Since humanity "does not manifest its purpose of existence" then G-d "'saves' humanity from spiritual death or eternal damnation by providing for them an eternal life" - clearly illogical. Why would the lack of a spiritual death mean the same thing as humanity not living (or dying?) up to its expectations and therefore needing to be found? Without trying to shoehorn Judaism into an inappropriate article, I'll let others decide which definition they would like to use in defining their own concepts. (talk) 16:00, 12 October 2009 (UTC)

Well done. I just cut Islam from the lead, pending someone with better knowledge of that religion to take a swipe at the Islam section.

The key concept presented in the lead, in the sense of applying to more than one religion, is that the soul is "lost" at birth due to nature of human existence. It is an ORIGINAL condition for an individual that has nothing to do with moral responsibility or sin/redemption in the sense of action/inaction producing sin. Martindo (talk) 09:28, 14 October 2009 (UTC)

Granted, God creates a context that to some unusual degree requires subjective submission. But this does not mean that we are not to describe and treat basic and essential concepts of theology in an objective way. That objectivity has some corollary with universalism and inclusivism (even to include Dharmic religious concepts) does not contradict any principle other than subjective and localizing ones, and therefore does not negate the necessity for us to be objective. In this context, salvation has a meaning of transcendentalism, in addition to its meaning in the context of love.
I think that Afaprof1 and Martindo are forgetting where they are and running amok with the Christian theology. That Slrubenstein and others seem to agree with keeping theological concepts separated in accord with nomenclature and other ethno-subjective divisions, does nothing at all to negate how our principles of NPOV/objectivity must operate on this article. It is only within localized subjective concepts that 'Judaism/Islam has nothing to do with salvation' or that 'Jews/Muslims don't need to "be saved"' (compare 'Jews/Muslims don't get saved').
Note also that the anonymous editor uses the term "contradictory definitions" (all caps) here, while a bit mistated (ie. "an avoidance to a spiritual death"), relating mostly to Afaprof1's rewrite that tried to incorporate some of the objective language in my previous writing into his largely subjective-oriented treatment. -Stevertigo (w | t | e) 03:46, 22 October 2009 (UTC)
Not sure what merits the term "running amok". I trimmed some of the non-Christian references (see discussion below), but Christian concepts were already abundant (if not overwhelming) when I first encountered this page a few weeks ago. Please keep the discussion focused. Martindo (talk) 03:54, 25 October 2009 (UTC)
OK. Fair enough. Most of that "overwhelming" Christian treatment was due to Afaprof1. That Slrubenstein and you think his direction was proper and thus contribute to that "overwhelming" issue by removing Judaism and Islam, and perhaps the Dharmic religious as well, is the issue I'm dealing with. Martindo wrote: "Please keep the discussion focused?" - I am. I am focused on objective neutrality and universalism, while the rest of you are apparently focused on subjective localism. The latter has only weight in numbers, not in objectivity. -Stevertigo (w | t | e) 21:26, 25 October 2009 (UTC)

It's three and a half years later, and the lead on the article still refers to Judaism. Having grown up Jewish, I can assure you that the concept isn't part of the Jewish mainstream, if it exists at all. I'd take it out right now, but I don't want to get into an argument, or edit war. However, I would appreciate if if whoever wrote that sentence either justifies it or removes it because it's Just Plain Wrong.JDZeff (talk) 01:51, 21 April 2013 (UTC)

It may be fair to say that in contemporary Judaism, certainly in the Reformed and Reconstructionist branches, believe in the concept of salvation or in any kind of Resurrection has been de-emphasized, however, this does not appear to be the case in Orthodox or Karaite Judaism, at least not in a manner sufficiently unambiguous to warrant Judaism being removed entirely. Additionally, all available evidence suggests that the Pharisees at least believed fervently in the concept of resurrection, and of salvation as the fruits of vigorous adherence to the Torah, and in this respect they differed from the Sadducees. It also strikes me that removing the section on Judaism from the article might be anti-Semitic, especially if one abstracts salvation to the point of referring to the fruits of faith that all religions promise; in Western society, where the vocabulary we use to discuss religion is largely shaped by Christianity, using Judeo-Christian terminology to understand the benefits promised through other religions, in the same manner that Christianity offers the promise of salvation, strikes me as being entirely reasonable. That said, polemics should be avoided, and those without a direct theological understanding of the issues involved should not comment. I removed a sentence from the paragraph on Judaism which stated that Judaism differs from Christianity in believing in corporate rather than individual salvation; if JDZeff is right, Judaism doesn't believe in salvation at all (although the evidence I've seen suggests that it does); however, certainly, that was a misleading comparison to make to Christianity (and indeed, it probably wasn't a Jew who made it), for as all serious scholars of religion know, Christianity does not uniformly adhere to the view of individual, personal salvation exemplified in the West, there is also an alternative interpretation of shared, collective salvation (an ecclesiological view, if you will), which regards the Church in the same way it was argued the Jewish faith regards Israel. There is an extreme need, therefore, for tolerance, impassioned analysis of historical doctrines (which may, in the case of Judaism, be less prevalent today), and loving interfaith dialogue on this page. I personally would not be opposed if there were even a section on atheism, since many atheists have espoused a Utopian view of a purely atheistic society, that resembles a religious conviction in Salvation, Nirvana, et cetera. But let us neither descend into rabid wars of religion, nor omit or paper over historical details of religions that might be at odds with how those religions are largely practiced in a contemporary context. Wgw2024 (talk) 02:07, 5 November 2013 (UTC)


(From User:Stevertigo/Log, 23:50, 9 October 2009 (UTC))

While I appreciate the humor in the title of the thread, the idea proposed by Slrubenstein is one that needs to be dealt with. In essence, he is either saying that "salvation" is either an exclusively Christian concept (fact?) or something that has nothing to do with Jews, or else he's saying that articles in general cannot be objective and conceptual - such that first treat the most general and universal meaning of a term. User:Afaprof1 has largely Christianized that article, and Slrubenstein's argument there that the article should further "play to its strengths" is an editorial error (and probably also some kind of liturgical pun).

The concept (whatever it's called: "atomism?" "dissolutionism?") is essentially that Wikipedia should be made up of scattered and discrete articles - one for each different ethno-cultural concept - and disregard treatment of basic universal conceptualizations that tie such concepts together. The objective definition of salvation is not "salvation from sin [through the atoning blood of Jesus Christ (who makes scarlet robes as white as the lamb)]" - that's a Christian definition. The definitive objective meaning is simple and twofold:

  1. "salvation from biological death [via transcendence to an afterlife]"
  2. "salvation from spiritual death [via the transcendence of sin]."

Theologically speaking, there's also some kind of conditional, contingent relationship between them. ;-) But that's basically it. Within these two concepts we must deal categorically with the basic conceptual types: Absolute, Universal, Conditional, and Special [salvation]. Objectivity can work wonders. -Stevertigo (w | t | e) 23:38, 9 October 2009 (UTC)

Disagree, though I appreciate your attempt at a unifying principle (in which case, where is the proportionality among religions in the article's text?).
The concept of *original* sin (or original samsara) is different from ordinary sin encountered from one's own actions (external) or attitudes (internal). Original sin basically means the person is born worthless or condemned until he or she (a) believes in Jesus (in some sects, regardless of any change of behavior) or (b) goes through a long cycle of births to discover his/her buddha nature. This is VERY different from Hinduism, Judaism, Islam, and various other religions. As I said on Talk, it would be VERY useful to make such a soteriological distinction on the WP page if the attempt to refer to all religions persists. Martindo (talk) 12:34, 11 October 2009 (UTC)
  1. Martindo wrote: "Disagree, though I appreciate your attempt at a unifying principle (in which case, where is the proportionality among religions in the article's text?)." - What is it you are disagreeing with? Are you disagreeing with Wikipedia's neutral point of view/objectivity principles? Are you disagreeing with my suggestion that these principles can be applied to this topic? Are you disagreeing with the way I employ simple objective categorical conceptualization to break this concept down into its fundamental constituents? Keep in mind also that Afaprof1's version, which he asserted as a replacement for my version, is largely subjective and localist in its approach. -SV
  2. "The concept of *original* sin (or original samsara) is different from ordinary sin encountered from one's own actions (external) or attitudes (internal)." - Your usage of "original sin" and your clever neologism "original samsara" is obfuscative and localistic. The meaning of "original" in "original sin" itself comes largely from Christian theology, and though it has some merit in conceptualizing human being as by nature different and therefore incongruous to divine being, it is not a categorical concept for "salvation." -SV
  3. "Original sin basically means the person is born worthless or condemned until he or she (a) believes in Jesus (in some sects, regardless of any change of behavior) or (b) goes through a long cycle of births to discover his/her buddha nature." - Yes, I understand that you are promoting a Christian theological concept here. I am promoting objectivity and NPOV, which demand categorization and conceptualization. -SV
  4. "This is VERY different from Hinduism, Judaism, Islam, and various other religions." - At no point have I rested any concepts on any issue of "original sin" or any other localized theology. Why then are you raising the issue except either as a red herring or else to be argumentative and make conversation? -SV
  5. "As I said on Talk, it would be VERY useful to make such a soteriological distinction on the WP page if the attempt to refer to all religions persists." - For NPOV/objectivity purposes alone, we don't make distinctions of the "soteriological" kind, just as we don't make them of the "eschatological," or "dispensational" kind. -Stevertigo (w | t | e) 03:32, 22 October 2009 (UTC)
  1. I disagree that atomism is some kind of dangerous tendency in WP and that universalism is somehow privileged as more objective. Unification is admirable, but not at the expense of presenting differences that are significant and would be helpful to WP readers. BTW, I noticed that you (SV) sidestepped my parenthetical question about proportionality. --Martindo
  2. Because the article is much bigger than what you have commented on, with abundant text on other religions. I'm commenting on the article as a whole, not just your approach to it. --Martindo
  3. I am not "promoting" the concept of original sin, merely pointing out that it is inherent in the notion of salvation, particularly in attributing salvific intent retroactively to various religions. I think we can resolve the categorization issue (see below). --Martindo
I think this dispute can be resolved by reframing the content along the lines Stevertigo suggests: Absolute, Universal, Conditional, and Special. Please take a shot at it, SV. Perhaps it would be simpler to start a new section that covers ALL religions named on this page, and show how they can be described in terms of one or more of the four subcategories. If there is consensus favoring that approach, then the entire article could be restructured so that "original sin", the notion of the *nature of humanity*, and other topics are clearly covered in one (or more) of the four "objective" subcategories. I'm not against a universalist viewpoint being expressed; I'm only against assuming that the concept of salvation is significant in all religions in terms of how they view the nature of humanity. Martindo (talk) 04:07, 25 October 2009 (UTC)
I appreciate that. Please read the article version from June, before Afaprof1 came along and edited it. I do commend Afaprof1 for, in spite of problems in his discussion, doing a good job of trying to integrate my objective elements (per above) into the subjective elements he has some insight into.
I do however see things a bit differently than I did just a few months ago - ideas that come from my own subjective experience that cause me to give greater respect to Afaprof1's way of handling the subject of salvation, as well as Slrubenstein's and others' stipulations that Judaism and other religious be excluded. From an objective point of view, however, these insights fall largely under a concept of "earned salvation" - to which "granted salvation" is its natural complementary opposite. These are two important dimensions to consider, in addition to the above ones - though these ones notably overlap. In the "earned salvation" concept, salvation has an active motivating force that calls people from a precarious state - one in which their sin is binding them to a terrible fate. As such this motivating force serves to corral people en masse into a concept of submission to God and to his powers of forgiveness for sins. In Christianity, Jesus symbolizes this atonement - in the shape of a divine being with human understanding - and, conceptual problems aside, God takes over from there.
It is true that in common usage "salvation" is Christianized, but still the ambiguity between salvation from death and salvation from sin is both deeply universal and quite relevant to an objective approach. Granted, the salvation from death concept might be better conceptualized as "transcendentalism," but the problem here is that the ambiguity is theological and intertwines the two words in variously subtle ways in accord with a local conceptualization. In Judaism for example, the emphasis is not on finding atonement for sins, but on not committing them in the first place. This kind of purity is something that's hard to instill in the masses (in fact that's why Judaism does not gain universal usage), but it's a still theologically distinct paradigm from "salvation" in its Christian usage. So in that context Slrubenstein's point is a seriously legitimate and interesting one, even if it does not in this context override objective conceptualization.
So, I think we can make progress toward reconceptualizing the article a bit more toward the objective form, but we likewise must give regard to Afaprof1's nuance within the context of the "earned" salvation concept. Regards, -Stevertigo (w | t | e) 21:57, 25 October 2009 (UTC)


Martindo responded on my talk - with my responses:

  1. "The June version does seem conceptually organized along the lines you mention and I supported in my most recent comment on Talk." - OK. Thanks for checking it out. -SV
  2. "However, the first paragraph of the lead is vague if not turgid -- too many concepts crammed in too far in advance of their definitions in context." - I might agree, and we can definitely work on it. -SV
  3. "I think the lead should start simple and literally "lead" the WP user further into the details of the article." - I am parsing this criticism in a couple ways: The first is simple - that your impressions may not be accurate to what others read, or else might be exaggerated and therefore mitigated via rather simple editing. The second is that "simple" in this context doesn't say too much - doing a basic conceptual breakdown should be "simple" enough, and the word we use for things that get a bit too simple is called "simplistic." -SV
  4. "Also, be cautious about what WP calls "weasel" words, such as unsupported "most"." - Please explain. "Most" is not always a weasel word ('most Christians belong to denominations that follow Nicene/Trinitarian doctrine'), so while you qualified it, I don't quite know what youre referring to here without specific context. (Sorry, cafe internet limits me from pulling up the text). -Stevertigo (w | t | e) 16:49, 3 November 2009 (UTC)

First a note of thanks, Stevertigo, for cleaning up the numbering of my counter-counter-comments. Now, here's the weasel from the June version whose URL you give above:

The purpose of salvation is debated (compare purpose of life), but in general most theologians agree that God devised and implemented His plan of salvation because He regards human beings as His children and loves them.

Who are the "most theologians"? Come to think of it, the whole sentence should have been flagged as citation needed.

I'm a little confused to see my responses to your log and user talk page quoted here. It probably is a good idea to keep all the Talk in one place, so why did you create the log? Martindo (talk) 22:56, 3 November 2009 (UTC)

The purpose of creating my Wlog was to deal conceptually with certain issues that transcend specific and particular talk pages and topics. I reserve the right to cross-post any of my own topic-specific comments to relevant talk pages. For purposes of continuing topical discussion in a more open way, I believe it is not unreasonable to do the same with comments there that have relevance to discussions attached to specific topics.
I agree that the excised quote has problems, but the issue is not that its a weasel, its that its incorrect - the issue of "purpose" may in fact be "love," but its a bit esoteric, and dealing with his regard for human beings as children is unnecessarily complicating and needs separate treatment. And note that even if a statement is incorrect, it may still have value as a placeholder for an important concept that needs treatment and development.
So in this case, poorly written or not, the essential issue is that life, in its divine conceptualization, has salvation as one of its fundamental mechanisms, and that salvation has a purpose within life - one that has some correspondence to the concept of a purpose for life itself. We need not get too much into that "purpose," but we do need to link to the purpose of life article. -Stevertigo (w | t | e) 07:16, 4 November 2009 (UTC)

Footnote 29[edit]

Noticed that it is no longer valid.

Gentoo-Michael (talk) 02:54, 15 December 2009 (UTC)

Church/Churches of Christ: capitalization rules[edit]

Re: an editor's concern about capitalizing the “c” in "Church of Christ" or "Churches of Christ." IT SHOULD BE CAPITALIZED IN A WIKIPEDIA ARTICLE. The following comes from a Church of Christ source:

Some shrink from capitalizing the “c” in Church of Christ.... “Names of particular associations and proper names resulting from membership in these associations are capitalized.” (Walsh, Plain English Handbook p. 87.) ...Alexander Campbell said when the same charge was made of him, “When communicating with those who do not understand the language of Canaan, we must accommodate our style to their education.”

On this point G. C. Brewer wrote: "Some unthinking brethren seem to hold that to spell church with a small “c” avoids making a title or proper name of the phrase ‘church of Christ.’ ...When the sense is plainly a designation—a telling of “what” church is intended—then the phrase is used as a proper name..., to use a small initial letter in a proper name is to violate the rules of grammar. (The Autobiography of G. C. Brewer, p. 138.)


Afaprof01 (talk) 03:28, 26 December 2009 (UTC)


One’s duty is to recognize the impossibility of being saved by one's own efforts, and therefore accept grace unconditionally.

This idea of relinquishing personal responsibility in favor of believing solely in a supernatural power has been heavily criticized by many, yet I see none of this criticism in the article. Is this an oversight? Viriditas (talk) 06:00, 19 May 2010 (UTC)
The idea of "salvation" derives from a different source than the idea that a race of space aliens saves people. Perhaps what you meant is that relying on God alone puts the onus on God, rather than on oneself, and this creates problems such as the assumed salvation. That is a good point, but its a broader topic than can be contained here. It could be seeded here, but what would that seed be? -Stevertigo (w | t | e) 20:02, 17 June 2010 (UTC)


The lede currently reads:

"The world's religions hold varying positions on what it means from an eternal perspective to become saved, the actual way to get saved, and the resources needed to attain salvation."

I added a {{clarify}} tag to "resources needed" because that language is jargon and doesn't appear to mean much in this context, or else is subtly POV in its design, perhaps referencing one or more of the Five solas as relevant to this topic.

Its a particular theological position that people must gain qualifications for salvation, and that the properties of such attained qualifications can be then called "resources." The position itself is notably valid, but the language "resources" comes only from that POV. So even though the passage (a quotation of Valea) reads fluidly and appears to be universalist, it isn't, and doesn't belong in the lede.

As used in this context, "resource" means "personal resource" which is a term for some personal quality - character, knowledge, capacity - which facilitates something else. Charisma, for example, can be said to be a personal "resource" which facilitates greater socialization and to some degree interpersonal relationships (though this is debatable). "Salvation" is something that God provides. You can cobble together the intelligences of all the theologians in the world, and they still won't have any capacity to provide salvation. Thus theology is not itself a "resource" for salvation. And the qualities which are not strictly in the bounds of theology which are "resources" for salvation - love, peace, good works - are not "resources" at all, but personal qualities. So, the term is at best Valea's casual jargon, coming from a point of view which regards salvation as a theological achievement, rather than a gift. It needs to be put in context as coming from such POV, or else it needs to be put elsewhere. -Stevertigo (w | t | e) 17:30, 17 June 2010 (UTC)

It was far too wordy! I trimmed it greatly and in the process took out your tag. The trimmed text is clear enough for a lead section. Binksternet (talk) 18:27, 17 June 2010 (UTC)
FFR, provide a diff: [1]. Its usable. PS: Note the issue though was not that it was "wordy" but that it was POV. -Stevertigo (w | t | e) 18:44, 17 June 2010 (UTC)

grace through one's will or through God's will?[edit]

The following sentence is obviously not the point of view of every religion, on the meaning of salvation, which this page is about, so I've moved it from the lede to this place on the Talk page.

"One’s duty is to recognize the impossibility of being saved by one's own efforts, and therefore accept grace unconditionally.[1]"

One obvious exception would be the idea of salvation in Buddhism, which this page does seem to incorporate. Even if it is going to be just about the Christian idea of salvation then it needs to be reworded to reflect that this is a view point of Christians, rather than a statement about life in general with a 'should' in it, as if Jay-Z were to say, "Get money, get money," and then it were found on Wikipedia that, "One's duty in life is to get money, get money."

Another big reason for this quote being moved here is that not all Christians believe that salvation occurs by the means of one giving up to God, and this has been a discussion for some time, as to whether salvation comes through one's own efforts or by the grace of God, and by acceptance of God. This argument would need to be mentioned somehow for an idea like this to be present on this page. I think this would be a productive direction for this to go in. makeswell (talk) 23:59, 31 July 2010 (UTC)

Okay so this page, Semi-pelagianism discusses the issue in more depth, perhaps somebody would add it to Salvation. makeswell (talk) 00:02, 1 August 2010 (UTC)

Reason for changes to Arminian view[edit]

There is one obvious misrepresentation with the Arminian section used in this article. Using Calvinist authors to express Arminian beliefs would OK, if they accurately described what Arminians hold to. Unfortunately, Steele, Thomas, and Quinn do not accurately describe Arminianism when they write: "The serious effects of the fall did not leave humanity in a state of total spiritual helplessness. (A position known as Semi-pelagianism)." This statement is simply false, especially if anyone has read from the Works of James Arminius or John Wesley. Even Reformed Calvinists, such as Robert A. Peterson and Michael D. Williams, acknowledge that Arminianism is not Semi-Pelagian. They write,

Does the antipathy between Calvinism and Arminianism suggest that Pelagius, the arch-opposite of Augustine, is the proper ancestor of Arminianism? Calvinists have often sought to paint Arminianism in Pelagian colors. Associating your opponent with a position that the historic faith has repeatedly judged heretical can only help one’s cause. However, the allegation that Arminianism is Pelagian is unfortunate and indeed unwarranted. From Jacob Arminius and the ‘Remonstrance Articles’ on, the Arminian tradition has affirmed the corruption of the will by sin and the necessity of grace for redemption. Arminianism is not Pelagianism….The Semi-Pelagians thought of salvation as beginning with human beings. We must first seek God; and his grace is a response to that seeking. The Arminians of the seventeenth century, however, held that the human will has been so corrupted by sin that a person cannot seek God without the enablement of grace. They therefore affirmed the necessity and priority of grace in redemption. Grace must go before a person’s response to the gospel. This suggests that Arminianism is closer to Semi-Augustinianism than it is to Semi-Pelagianism or Pelagianism. (Why I Am Not An Arminian, 39)

The myth that Arminians are Pelagian or Semi-Pelagian is dispelled by Arminian Scholar Roger Olson in his book Arminian Theology: Myths and Realities (see Myth #6). Olson dispels 10 myths that continue to circulate in popular literature or by word of mouth. He dispels these myths by tracing the Arminian position as espoused by Jacobus Arminius, Simon Episcopius, John Wesley, 19th Century Methodists, and 20th Century Evangelical Arminians. Olson offers a historical mode of argumentation: he identifies the tradition of genuine Arminian thought, distinguishing it from Calvinism on the one side and its supposed bad reputation on the other. This historical approach allows the classical authors to speak for themselves through copious quoting, and accordingly initiates the reader into the Arminian tradition. A must read for anyone wanting to accurately articulate Arminian theology.

Another misrepresentation (but only subtle) found in this article was the phrase: "The Arminian emphasis on free will, or more properly free choice, is important in salvation." Classical Arminians have not emphasized free will as it pertains to salvation, rather, they have emphasized (first and foremost) God's free grace (prevenient grace) given to all sinners, and God's loving intention to provide salvation to all sinners. See Myth #4 and #7 in Olson’s book for documentation of this. It is fair, reasonable, and scholarly, to allow Calvinist and Arminian scholars/theologians to explain their own theological position. Of course, this requires that we do the hard work of reading from their primary writings. Because of these two misrepresentations, I have changed the section on Arminianism. I have copied a section from Arminianism in Wikipedia (with minor editing) that better represents Arminian beliefs. ThanksClassArm (talk) 20:26, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

Liberal/liberation theology section[edit]

That section closely echoes material written by the same editor in collective salvation, which is up for deletion for being massively POV against liberation theology, social justice, etc. (see Wikipedia Talk:WikiProject Christianity#Problem article and the relevant AfD discussion). While I recognize that collective salvation is part of modern Christian conversation, I think the claims in the section here are too broadly generalized to be accurate representations of views of salvation in liberal Christian thought. Notice the snide comment in the opening sentence that emerging and progressive churches "claim" to be part of Christianity. I'd delete the entire section, but I'd like to see what others think is salvageable. Thanks, Aristophanes68 (talk) 00:38, 7 July 2011 (UTC)

I don't have access to the sources not available online, but those I can read don't mention salvation at all. Even worse, they don't say all of what they're cited for, either. The section seems a rather dubious mix of off-topic original research, synthesis and misused sources, possibly with a POV problem thrown in for good measure. And is it just me, or is that first sentence's grammar broken? Huon (talk) 01:45, 7 July 2011 (UTC)
I have removed that section for now. We can surely write something about salvation in liberation theology (well, I can't because I wouldn't even know where to look for reliable sources on the subject), but this wasn't even the beginning of a good section on that topic. Huon (talk) 16:22, 11 July 2011 (UTC)

Salvation in Islam[edit] just re-added a lenghty section on salvation in Islam that's devoid of any secondary sources, with an edit summary of: "You may choose to walk into the nearest mosque and verify this yourself. You must keep in mind that not everyone speaks english, and not evey information exists in all languages." First of all, the English Wikipedia does allow non-English sources if no English sources are available, per WP:NONENG. Secondly, I doubt that there are no English sources on salvation in Islam; Google Books provides lots of results; unfortunately they don't necessarily agree with what we say. For example, this one argues that "salvation" isn't that important a concept in Islam at all, with a single occurrence in the Qu'ran (which 99's lengthy text conveniently omits). Thirdly, "go ask in a mosque" does not satisfy Wikipedia's policy of verifiability. Huon (talk) 02:52, 15 July 2011 (UTC)

I understand the sensitive nature of wikipedia's collaborative editing nature, and hence its guidelines , thus I will not disagree or agree with you I am afraid. As for the points you raised, proper English sources are indeed scarce, if available, at all concerning Islam. Unfortunately, this is the case even with those English sources written by Arab Muslims. The reason being is that these books are written for ease of comprehension in mind. You have to keep in mind that the Islamic scripture is in Arabic, not any other language. If you know Arabic, pick any book on Islamic jurisprudence (shariah), books that contain everything from washroom etiquettes to finance and economy, and you will find that they are all concerned with referencing the scripture, before they are concerned about referencing other sources. Do not misunderstand, these books usually mention the points of view from all schools of thought (conflicting as they may be), but they MUST reference all pertaining scripture, otherwise they are complete rubbish. Even when referencing other sources, these sources themselves must have referenced the scripture.

The other point to keep in mind, is that there is NO English Quran, or English Hadith; these are only translations of the Quran and Hadith to the best ability of the writers, and they will never be free from the faults and biases of the respective authors. In other words, any Islamic book referencing translations would be frowned upon. Hence, it is impossible to write a proper Islamic book, whether of law, or philosophy, or a concept, without including Arabic at all. Again these are NOT my ideas, ask any learned Muslim person, and he will tell you the same thing. Islam is strictly Axiomatic (fundamentalist), like mathematics. Why? Because it is strictly Monolithic. A Muslim worships God, not some author, hence he is only really concerned with the scripture. Even with fatwa, all scholars mention the scripture. If you are really interested, learn Arabic, find a mosque and read from its library, then come back and correct me if I am wrong.

Did you know that the Islamic scripture is only the Quran (God's word according to Muslim belief), and the authority of the Hadith (Prophet Muhammed's word) had to be established from the Quran? I hope you are seeing how strict it is. I hope now you understand why proper English sources are scarce, if existent at all. Of course, if you want something to get by, there are many, but if you want English books of proper treatise on the subject, books that honesty would allow there use as secondary sources, there are virtually none.

As for the point concerning salvation, yes indeed the way salvation is mentioned in Christianity has no meaning in Islam, there is no disagreement there. This is why at the beginning of the section about Islam it is explained to be about the "eventual entrance to heaven", which pertains to points three and four of the introduction.

One final point, I only ever made edits on Wikipedia to Muslim sections, not Christians sections, not Hindu sections, not whatever. I am not questioning your morals. As a matter of fact I only responded because of the complete opposite, I left the article after my last "undo" edit thinking "forget it, it will be removed again", only to my surprise find it today still there.

We live in an ever so open a world, yet ever so disconnected. Keep that in mind when you think about that Wikipedia guideline.-- (talk) 15:08, 22 July 2011 (UTC)

Unfortunately I come back again today after more than a year, and find the section about Islam yet again butchered, misleading, and in its critical parts completely wrong. I gave you truth, I explained to you, and I were patient, but you rather wallow in your own ignorance. Let the scholar of the subject write about the subject, the physicist about physics, the mathematician about mathematics, the Christian about Christianity, the Muslim about Islam. Is Integrity much to ask? Gone are the days when a man walked his words. Or is it perhaps distrust? Truly a thief bars his doors. But perchance it is not more, for we will reap what we saw. I promised myself a time ago to engage not again in this game, for not it but its players. You are left to yourselves and your hands' produce. -- (talk) 01:52, 22 August 2012 (UTC) (Note that I am "", and this is not a response to user "Huon"'s comment)

Sons of Core image[edit]

The article contained an image of the sons of Core. On the one hand, Core (or Korah) and his sons are not mentioned at all in the article text, and the image caption did not explain their relevance. On the other hand, I doubt whether not being killed by God can be called "salvation". Thus I have removed the image. Huon (talk) 19:46, 10 August 2011 (UTC)

Critical thinking[edit]

Should not encyclopædiæ be secular? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:24, 23 October 2011 (UTC)

By our policy on a neutral point of view, Wikipedia should. How do you feel this article violates neutrality? Are there any parts where a religious view is endorsed instead of described? Huon (talk) 16:44, 23 October 2011 (UTC)

Lead: Sources and rewrite[edit] removed two sources from the lead as "non-accepted". They were:

  • Wallace, A J; Rusk, R D. Moral Transformation: The Original Christian Paradigm of Salvation. New Zealand: Bridgehead. pp. 179–196.  Unknown parameter |yaer= ignored (help)
  • Valea, Ernest. "Salvation and eternal life in world religions". Comparative Religion. 

I couldn't find out much about the first except a blog comment according to which it is self-published and the authors have no formal theological education. That would probably indeed make it a less than optimal source, though the content currently sourced to Wallace and Rusk was apparently uncontroversial; left it in the article.

Ernest Valea, on the other hand, apparently is a well-known and well-cited "theologian and comparative religion scholar", as a quick Google Scholar search showed. While his personal website is, of course, self-published, he is an expert writing on the area of his expertise, and there is no reason why such a source should not be acceptable.

Furthermore, while I understand 82.15's desire to turn the list in the lead into running text, I don't think his edit, which introduced several paragraphs of unsourced content which partly contradicted sourced content, was actually an improvement. For these reasons I have reverted him. Huon (talk) 22:54, 5 November 2011 (UTC)


The 1st problem with this topic is to define "Judaism." Does the term exclude the Tanach? IMHO, yes. However, also IMHO, one can discuss SALVATION IN THE MISHNAH. Here for starters is a quote from Kurt Michaelson from the internet:

"In E.M.B. Green’s book, The Meaning of Salvation, he describes the perspective of salvation by a particular group of Jewish people in the days of the Old Testament, the Sadducees.
"The Sadducees were men of strong political influence that came from a family lineage of religious nobility and wealthy property owners. In the governing of affairs, they were not very cooperative people, often stubborn, yet conservative in their temperament, which both of these characteristics were unusual among this group of individuals.
"The Sadducees understanding of salvation, in the first century is from the following Mishnah tractate, “Salvation for Israel lies in cooperation with the ruling powers. You may not like the Romans, but it is folly to oppose them. Politics is the art of the possible. And so long as we hold power in Israel we shall endeavor to keep her from the madness revolt which those hot-headed zealots are always urging. If the Pharisees like to dream of hopes of an after-life, where the tables are turned and all the righteous saved, good luck to them. We are concerned with the harsh realities of life as it is.”[7]
"This gives the reader a better understanding regarding the questioning of Peter and John concerning the authority they had to perform miraculous signs or speak about salvation, the liberty, deliverance or safety (salvation) of the Jewish people.
"People in our present day society have a similar mentality, like the Sadducees, concerned only with the present difficulties of life without concern for the after-life, which is quite similar to that of an atheistic worldview. Yet, the Talmud (Mishnah) tractate Sanhedrin 10:1-3 and Talmud tractate Rosh Hashana 16b and 17a are convincingly filled with references to judgment and reward in the afterlife, with even a few stories of those who went there and came back to tell others about it. The Talmud insists that a convert be warned that most of the reward and punishment will not be in this world and should be quickly disillusioned. Such is the perspective of many people in the present as well of those who are non-Jewish also." -- Again, IMO, it is utter hogwash to claim that in Judaism an after-life is not an important topic. For it seems to me outrageous to define Judaism as something that excludes the Mishnah; for crying out loud! It may be true that for the average person who considers himself Jewish in modern society, the afterlife & Gehenna are unimportant; but that is another question. The reader is encouraged to Google on the topic: Gehenna (Greek γέεννα), Gehinnom (Hebrew: גהנום/גהנם) & Yiddish Gehinnam. (EnochBethany (talk) 15:43, 13 November 2011 (UTC))

EnochBethany's changes[edit]

I just reverted some of EnochBethany's recent changes to the article. In particular:

  • Capitalization in "Yahweh, the god of Israel": Here, "god" is a description, not a name, and it should not be capitalized.
  • Abrahamic religions: The claim that "One cannot prove that either Islam or Judaism (i.e., Talmudism) is Abrahamic" strikes me as rather strange. We have an entire well-sourced article on the concept, and all that is necessary to be "Abrahamic" is the acknowledgement of Abraham as an important figure in one's religion. Both Islam and Judaism do so.
  • For the claim that OT salvation is just the same as NT salvation I would like to see a better source than a random website. The text which EnochBethany replaced seems a mostly correct summation of Brueggemann, at the very least more correct than what EnochBethany put in its place.

Huon (talk) 16:39, 14 November 2011 (UTC)


"Analogous concepts within other religions, such as nirvana and moksha, are not in fact equivalents to the concept of salvation, not least because these latter concepts are not reliant upon divine agency." This article is misinformed. Likewise, there is a severe and disparate argument on soteriology, which this article claims is directly related to salvation. The text regarding Buddhism on the soteriology article is far from accurate either. If we are going to accept that salvation necessitates a reliance upon a divine agency (a restriction that I would dispute) Buddhism still asserts salvation in Pure Land Buddhism which uses a direct reliance upon a divine agency - Amitābha Buddha. The history of pure land salvation within Buddhism is antique, and may be reliably traced back to India.

Therefore 'salvation' as a term is not exclusive to abrahamic religion, even within the constraint of being reliant upon divine agency.

The constraint of reliance upon divine agency[edit]

The dictionary gives two definitions of salvation - neither of which assert the constraint of reliance upon divine agency.

  • Preservation or deliverance from harm, ruin, or loss
  • Theology: deliverance from sin and its consequences

One could argue that sin itself implies divine law, and that the Karma of the Dharma religions has no eye (and therefore one cannot sin in a Dharma religion), but let's use WP as a source: "A sin is an act that violates a known moral rule in a religion". (20040302 (talk) 11:09, 16 November 2011 (UTC))

While I tend to agree, do you have any reliable sources to that effect? Huon (talk) 14:03, 16 November 2011 (UTC)
WP:RS regarding salvation in Pure Land Buddhism[edit]

Paul Williams, Mahayana Buddhism, Routledge 1989 ISBN 0-415-02537-0

p251: The most widespread of cults devoted to Buddhas is that of Amitabha or Amitayus. In contemporary Japanese Buddhism it accounts for more practitioners than any other Buddhist tradition, and in these forms in practice it most nearly approaches a devotional monotheism.

ibid, p259: Through the power of Amitabha even the worst sinner [...] can attain to the Pure Land (Amitabha's pure land)

ibid, p259: Once one abandons recourse to one's own resources all activities can be seen as Other Power, the salvific activity of Amitabha working through us. But reciting his name in accordance with the sutra exemplifies Amitabha's power to save most fully.

(20040302 (talk) 09:44, 17 November 2011 (UTC))

WP:RS "salvation reliant upon divine agency"[edit]

The current article needs WP:RS to back up it's assertion. As I pointed out, there is no basis for the existing argument. Likewise, the article starts with In theology - well, WP isn't solely concerned with theology. It certainly isn't solely concerned with Abrahamic theology. (20040302 (talk) 09:44, 17 November 2011 (UTC))

worldwide view[edit]

The existing introduction (the one favoured by User:Huon) as well as being unrepresentative of a worldwide view of the subject does not have appropriate references. This was noted some time ago and subsequently ignored by this user. Thanks to User:20040302 for appending tags to these. The academic study of soteriology states that salvation is a foundational concept present in the majority of the worlds great religions. According to the Oxford English Dictionary that which is saved is the soul (from sin and its consequences) and it does not necessarily imply divine agency. Soteriology advocates that salvation refers to the end-point or goal of religious practise and is synonymous with the liberation experienced by the saint. From the point of view of metaphysics it refers to the subjective experience of timelessness (eternity) that arises when the psyche has become free from the conditions (called samskaras or sankharas in Indian religion) which limit it in ordinary consciousness. (talk) 22:01, 23 November 2011 (UTC)

Unfortunately, my reversion to the intro of November 5th (do check it out) has been automatically reverted by an automated program called Cluebot. Instant karma or the will of the Lord? (talk) 22:13, 23 November 2011 (UTC)

Article lede[edit]

I have restored the lede back to a version previous to major edits by The diff can be seen here. I welcome discussion on this issue and note that the current version has serious issues which need addressing. The version created by User:81.106.. was too reliant on a Christian-ese concept of sin, and salvation from such sin, that it misses the point that salvation in action is primarily a salvation from the imminent death of the body. Only in its secondary meaning is salvation a salvation from sin. -Stevertigo (t | c) 01:42, 21 April 2012 (UTC)

I'm rather sceptical of that version; there is a reason several of its foornotes are tagged as "not in citation given". I'm also not aware of the "primary meaning" of salvation from the imminent death of the body; I probably misunderstand what you mean. Could you clarify that? Huon (talk) 02:18, 21 April 2012 (UTC)
There are two basic definitions of salvation: Salvation from biological death, and salvation from sin. I opposed the addition of numbers three and four because they both essentially echo the first two. -Stevertigo (t | c) 02:43, 21 April 2012 (UTC)
User does not like my revert to an older version, and rolled back my edits. As he has not made any attempt to explain himself here, I have restored my edits, and have messaged him encouraging him to discuss these edits here on the talk page. -Stevertigo (t | c) 20:48, 21 April 2012 (UTC)
In response to a second reversion by Stevertigo it is necessary to respond to the two charges levelled against the new introduction. Steve (I believe that is your name) has said that the current article disregards 'the issue of salvation from biological death'. I must confess that i am unaware of such a thing as 'salvation from biological death'. Except perhaps cryogenic suspension but that does not belong to the realm of conventional soteriology. Eternal life (which is, of course, the goal of a practising Christian) is not 'salvation from biological death' as the reverted version states. Eternal life is form of spiritual existence after death. It is important to understand that Christians like other religious people do not believe that our consciousness (our self) is a 'by-product' of the biochemical activity of the brain and nervous system. Although it is clearly connected to the activity of the brain it is not entirely dependent on the brain for its existence. Whether you believe that or not (although Near-death experiences do seem to provide some support to this contention) this is what religious people (not just Christians) believe. As for the accusation that the edits are christian-ese it should be noted that i am one of the two or three people who have argued that the existing article is too focused on the Abrahamic religions. Salvation is a concept common to every major world religion. It was I who introduced eastern conceptions of salvation into the article. However, among all the major religions there is the same basic idea: The self or soul or consciousness survives the death event and your actions in this life will determine your fate after your body has ceased biological functions. In other words all the major religions believe that the consciousness or soul (yes, even Buddhism) separates from the body at death and goes on a journey to the next world (whether that be heaven, hell or a new biological existence). And all the major religions assert that you can atone for your wrong deeds in this life to prevent unfortunate things happening to you afer death. When you are 'safe' from such a destiny then you are 'saved'. It is not necessary to focus too much on the word 'saved'. Soteriology tell us that moksha and nirvana are soteriological formulations (another thing which is wrong with the version that you are reverting to). Therefore it is perfectly acceptable to say that moksha and nirvana are concepts of salvation within Indian religions. In summary I don't think the version you are reverting to is accurate, scholarly or providing a world-wide view of the subject. regards (talk) 23:22, 21 April 2012 (UTC)
I too have never before heard of a religious idea of "salvation from biological death"; our sources don't mention any such thing, and I'd say practical experience should tell us that biological death is a certainty. Even when a religion believes in some form of eternal life - and for some subsets of Christianity that's eternal life in a resurrected body - that's still only after biological death, not instead of it. There are some exceptions where immortality without biological death is indeed believed possible or achieved (the latter only in mythological beings, of course), but I'm not aware of any such associated with salvation. Huon (talk) 00:09, 22 April 2012 (UTC)
Thank you both for giving your insights. I understand that in a Christian context, the issue of salvation deals entirely with sin, and the concept of biological death is answered by the concept of resurrection. In Christian context, immortality (see my edits here) is guaranteed hence the matter of biological death is rendered moot. But in reality, salvation is not a concept owned by Christianity, and not all Christians believe everyone who can be saved is saved, Christian or not. So its because of Christian conditionalism (conditional or "special" salvation doctrines) that we have to start with the basics - part of what "salvation" means is the salvation from biological death, hence biological death is nothing but "[one's] body falling off like a discarded garment." (Nisargadatta Maharaj). So even though biological death is nothing in Christian context, most people have some concept of it anyway and hence we should address it. Note that many if not most Christians regard the resurrection as an apocalyptic event - something that happens sometime in the future. This presents a certain kind of problem that alters the concept of resurrection and divine immortality. -Stevertigo (t | c) 00:38, 22 April 2012 (UTC)
Could you provide a reliable source discussing salvation in that context? Huon (talk) 01:28, 22 April 2012 (UTC)
It would appear that Christian doctrine is somewhat unclear (from a technical point of view) about what happens after death and Christians do not have clear answers about it. There are many problems in the concept of the resurrection of the dead. Frankly, this proposed future event strikes as an inefficient and unnecessary way of doing things on the part of an omniscient and omnipotent creator. However, although this certainly does bear on the question of a Christian's ultimate destiny I still don't think it bears on the question of their salvation. As far as I understand, before this future event, souls go to heaven, hell, purgatory or limbo. These places are populated by souls not bodies. The soul separates from the body at death and goes to hell, heaven, purgatory or limbo depending on what you did in your life. For a Christian, therefore, attaining salvation means that your soul goes to heaven after your physical body has been carted off to the crematorium. Whether this happens or not depends on how many and what kinds of sins you committed and whether you took the time to atone for them. But the introduction to this article is not about christian doctrine per se so I don't think we should worry about christian conditionalism which could go in the main body of the article. The intro, I venture, should be about the concept of salvation as is understood in the religions of the world and in that sense we are fortunate in that there is remarkable uniformity on the fundamental principal that salvation is the condition of being saved from the consequences of sin whether that be suffering and eternal transmigration (Indian religion) or torment in hell (the abrahamic religions). Our job here as editors is to take the generally accepted views of current scholarship and present the general consensus according to a world-wide view of the subject backed up by authoritative sources. Soteriology really is an academic field and courses are taught on soteriology in hundreds of universities throughout the world. It is the conclusions of that field of enquiry that we should be reporting here. I still don't see what you are objecting to in the edit you are reverting. (talk) 02:34, 22 April 2012 (UTC)
I agree with your basic premise that salvation is largely a concept of redemption from sin. But there are two kinds of death, the death of the body - the kind common people talk about - and the death of the soul - the kind that really counts. The point im making is that for salvation to redeem one from the death of the soul, we must deal first with the question of the body, even if Christian soteriology is all over the place as far as explanations go. Especially because Christian soteriology is all over the place. When used in agnostic terms, "death" refers to the death of the body and to the psyche - there is nothing left, because agnostics deny the existence of the soul. When used in religious terms, the death of the body does not destroy the psyche because the soul still lives in God.
This need to deal with death arises out of a need to deal with the death concept itself in religious terms. In fact I was the one who first edited the lede of the death article to include a religious concept of death as a concept that transcends the scientific/agnostic view. Thats the essential audience I like writing for - not for the Christian who already believes in the resurrection, but for the agnostic who wants to know how and why he can live eternally. Now what we could do is make better usage of the resurrection article - tying this article into that one, along with the immortality article. These three things are inextricably linked and need to reference each other. Naturally this article must deal with the salvation of souls as being conditional upon sin, so in that regard, I agree with you. But the issue of death must be treated highly, as death is the window into the transcendental. If you like you can go ahead and restore your version of the lede, and we can work from there. Regards, -Stevertigo (t | c) 03:07, 22 April 2012 (UTC)
That sounds like original research to me. Can you provide a reliable source that discusses salvation in the context of biological death, or vice versa? Huon (talk) 11:12, 22 April 2012 (UTC)
Ive already given the answer to that - the term is resurrection. But not everybody knows that - the topic of resurrection must be addressed here. -Stevertigo (t | c) 23:02, 22 April 2012 (UTC)
PS:Oskar Baker writes: "In the first place, these two are inseparable. Salvation includes resurrection." -Stevertigo (t | c) 23:59, 22 April 2012 (UTC)
Firstly, that's Oscar M. Baker, not Oskar. Secondly, I have no idea where he wrote that. A Google search for that quote produced some random websites; it does not seem to be part of Baker's book, Dispensational outline of the books of the New Tesament. It might have been written in Baker's self-published Bible study paper, which would probably not be considered a reliable source by Wikipedia's standards. Thirdly, I'm rather surprised to see you cite a Christian writer to make this article less "Christian-ese". Finally, our article on resurrection does not mention salvation (nor Baker). I think we'd need better sources than that to add the proposed content to this article; if Baker is the best we have, it seems a fringe position within Christianity. Huon (talk) 00:42, 23 April 2012 (UTC)
Heres the link to the Baker article: [2]. Please tell me if it qualifies as a reliable source, or as a fringe theory. Note you can find it via Google if you frame the search string in double quotes (as "string"). Like I said before, we can work to tie together the salvation and resurrection articles, as there is some relation there. While salvation exists for the living at anytime, the question of salvation for the dead is a central topic of discussion (and debate) in theology. Im certainly not opposed to using Christian writers as sources, my only stipulation being that what we write here not be in Christian-ese. -Stevertigo (t | c) 01:47, 23 April 2012 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── That's indeed from Baker's Bible study paper, Truth for Today. For all I can tell, it was self-published by Baker, and I don't think he is an "established expert on the topic of the article whose work in the relevant field has previously been published by reliable third-party publications", the criterion given in WP:SPS for a self-published source to be considered reliable. And while that may not be relevant to his beliefs on salvation and resurrection, Baker seems to have been one of the main adherents of hyperdispensationalism, which is described as a "niche doctrine". That does not inspire much confidence. If this is a central topic of discussion in theology, surely there are papers published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals? Those would be much better sources. Huon (talk) 02:32, 23 April 2012 (UTC)

All hyperdispensationalism means is that someone regards Paul as the seminal apostle in the Christian church. Granted, it may be robbing Peter to pay Paul. ;) It shouldnt be too hard to find some more sources - I'll pursue that end when I have time. Regards, -Stevertigo (t | c) 09:08, 24 April 2012 (UTC)
PS: "It is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment." (Hebrews 9:27) Via Theopedia [3] -Stevertigo (t | c) 23:01, 24 April 2012 (UTC)
Scripture is a primary source, not a secondary source. Interpretation of scripture without a reliable secondary source to back it up is original research (basically, if you and I disagree on interpretation of scripture and neither of us has a reliable source to fall back on, there's no way to verify whose interpretation is correct or the mainstream interpretation). Theopedia seems to be user-submitted content, which is usually not deemed reliable (just as Wikipedia does not consider itself a reliable source). I also doubt whether a decidedly evangelical Christian source is the best choice to define salvation for this general article. Huon (talk) 23:34, 24 April 2012 (UTC)
I understand. "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 6:23. -Stevertigo (t | c) 06:02, 25 April 2012 (UTC)


The current lede states:

Salvation, in religion, is the saving of the soul from sin and its consequences.[1] It may also be called "deliverance" or "redemption" from sin and its effects.[2]

This intro raises a few questions:

  1. Are souls alone saved, or can people also be saved?
  2. What are the possible consequences of sin? Is death a possible consequence?
  3. Is the death of the body relevant, or is there another kind of death?
  4. Does salvation happen before death, after, or both?

Regards, -Stevertigo (t | c) 05:52, 6 May 2012 (UTC)

Firstly, I don't think the idea of salvation distinguishes between "people" and "souls". I don't think anybody advocates a person can be saved without its soul being saved. On the other hand, I don't think a person can avoid being saved (in the theological sense) when its soul is saved. With the possible exception of the ancient Egyptians I'm not aware of any religion where such a distinction would even make sense. And while salvation in the cult of Osiris would be an interesting sub-topic, I don't know any reliable sources for it.
Secondly, while there is the famous line "the wages of sin is death", to my knowledge this is usually not taken literally. After all, people who are supposedly free of sin also tend to die; biological death is not a distinguishing feature of sinners. But more importantly, salvation saves the soul from all consequences of sin, with the aftereffects of death - be they eternal torture in hell or an unpleasant reincarnation - most significant.
Thirdly, I don't think the death of the body is relevant to the various doctrines of salvation. Otherwise it would be conclusive evidence that no one obtains salvation, which to my knowledge is not what any of the religions with an opinion on the matter teach. Whether there is another type of death depends on the religion in question; I don't think nirvana is interpreted as "death" of the soul, whereas I believe the line from Romans I gave above is usually interpreted as death of something other than the body (or just as "separation from God"). But that's not really relevant to salvation because "death of something other than the body" would be just one more of the unpleasant aftereffects of biological death.
Fourthly, whether salvation happens before or after death (or both) once again depends on the religion in question. I believe the most prominent example of salvation after death is given by the LDS church, where it is the entire point of their post-mortem baptism efforts. On the other hand, many evangelical Christian denominations teach that one can attain salvation while alive by accepting Jesus Christ as saviour. The beliefs of Pure Land Buddhism seem similar; Amida Buddha saves people for being sufficiently devoted in life, and I don't think there's a chance to change one's mind when dead (one would just get reborn and would have to try harder in the next reincarnation). This too might make a worthy addition to our article, but once again I unfortunately do not know reliable sources discussing this issue. Huon (talk) 10:41, 6 May 2012 (UTC)
Im writing this on a phone so ill keep this short. Romans 6:23 is clear enough, death is a possible consequence for sin. By "death" the scripture is talking about the only death that counts - the death of the soul. Your comments lead one to think that your views are otherwise, that when you talk of death you are talking about the death of the body. Regards-Stevertigo (t | c) 20:56, 6 May 2012 (UTC)
PS: The point is, that when stating that salvation is saving people's souls from sin, hence they are saved from sin's consequences, the natural question is "what are sin's consequences?" The article should answer such natural questions promptly. Not all sins are the same, but we should be able to agree that some sins have hell and/or death as their consequence, hence Romans 6:23. And by "death" we mean the true death, the death of the soul. I threw in the question about whether salvation happens before or after death as a kind of macguffin - I wanted to see how you answer it. Biological death is the kind of death people often talk about, but spiritual death is ostensibly the more important. This article's subject matter allows us to discuss spiritual death as a consequence of sin. Note also that salvation (in certain religions) correlates immensely with eternal life. Mass correlation there. Salvation hence isnt just saving people from sin, it has bearing on both eternal life and eternal death. In religious terms, salvation is at the crossroads of eternal life and eternal death. Hence IMHO both concepts need to be introduced here, for the article to have a well-rounded lede. Again, salvation points to sin, sin points to death. And conversely salvation also points directly at the concept of eternal life. Regards, -Stevertigo (t | c) 08:09, 7 May 2012 (UTC)
I'm a little confused. Weren't you arguing above that salvation prominently included salvation from biological death? Have I misunderstood you somewhere, or have you changed your opinion? Unfortunately we do not have a good article on "spiritual death" or "death of the soul" or something of that kind - none that I could find, at least, though spiritual death in Christianity comes close. And while salvation is indeed related with death and eternal life in certain religions, that's not universal. Salvation (Christianity) may be a better place to discuss aspects of salvation unique to Christianity in greater detail than we do already. Detailing the possible consequences of sin here might prove useful for our readers, preferably in the entries on the various religions. But if I read our current article correctly, not even Christians agree on what exactly salvation entails, and I don't know any good sources detailing this issue. If you know some, please go ahead. Huon (talk) 19:53, 7 May 2012 (UTC)
The article's topic introduces the issue of sin, and sin introduces death, the spiritual kind. Mentioning spiritual death is sometimes confusing, hence we are obligated to disambiguate spiritual death from the typical biological kind. -Stevertigo (t | c) 03:05, 8 May 2012 (UTC)
When the article mentions Romans, it links to soul death. The lead explains that "death" in the context of salvation isn't biological death (though I'd like to see some reliable source for that statement). Don't you think that's sufficient? What exactly do you propose? Huon (talk) 08:54, 8 May 2012 (UTC)
I'm going to get back to your specific question when I can. Just as a note, the article lede links to reincarnation (easter-egg style link should be changed). If we link to reincarnation, we should also link to resurrection per due weight. And again, if salvation's purpose is relevant to this article, eternal life/immortality should link also. -Stevertigo (t | c) 03:23, 14 May 2012 (UTC)
Ive done a round of major edits to religious-topical articles, to bring them up to some standard, some of which relate to this topic and should link from this one. These include immortality, resurrection, divinity, truth, and sin,. With that at a point of hiatus, I should be able to give this article a little attention again. -Stevertigo (t | c) 05:13, 24 May 2012 (UTC)

Changes to the lead[edit] has changed the lead in an attempt to clarify the distinctions between Protestant and Catholic doctrines of salvation. However, before his edits that paragraph contrasted the Christian views to the Islamic views, and the Islamic position has now been ascribed to Catholic and Orthodox Christianity. I doubt that's correct. And while there are subtle differences between the different branches of Christianity, I don't think they're important enough for the lead of this article which should focus on salvation in general, not just salvation in Christianity. Huon (talk) 17:44, 28 October 2012 (UTC)

Salvation vs. Redemption[edit]

The section on Christianity says this: "Redemption is synonymous with salvation to Christians." This is actually a false (misrepresentative) statement, since the Roman Catholic Church (the largest single Christian denomination on Earth) makes a distinction between redemption and salvation. This is one of the defining characteristics of RC versus Protestant theology. The statement should be amended to say that the two are synonymous to "many" Christians, and the alternate view should be explained and given. I am not sure what sources would be good for citation, but it wasn't too hard for me to find Catholic sources as well as other Christian sources. It's also curious that, as the previous section indicates, the lead on the article had been changed to reflect differences between Protestant and Catholic views but the Christianity section omits the Catholic view. (talk) 00:38, 23 May 2013 (UTC)

Islam section[edit]

A fair number of Muslims think that non-Muslims won't necessarily go to Hell. For example; and and there are other people who say it also but I've just given 2 examples. A number of Muslims say that only God knows who will go to Heaven and who won't. Something's going to have to be done. (talk) 17:54, 9 June 2014 (UTC)

Retard section[edit]

This is one of the worst articles on Wikipedia, populated by retarded Christian fanatics. Try some etymology first. And not your dictionary dot com retarded sh!t, you stupid fukking christian inbreds. Then put your childrens' mythology in a 'retard' section after that.


  1. ^ Cite error: The named reference Comparative was invoked but never defined (see the help page).