Saved by Grace

Author: John Bunyan


I come now to the third particular, namely, to shew you who they are that are to be saved by grace.

1. Not the self-righteous; not they that have no need of the physician: The whole have no need of the physician, said Christ: "I come not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance," Mark 2:17. And again,

"He hath filled the hungry with good things,

and hath sent the rich empty away," Luke 1:53.

Now, when I say, not the self-righteous nor the rich, I mean not that they are utterly excluded, for St. Paul was such an one; but he saveth not such without he first awakeneth them to see they have need of being saved by grace.

2. The grace of God saveth not him that hath sinned the unpardonable sin. There is nothing left for him but a certain fearful looking for of judgment, which shall devour the adversaries, Hebrews 10:26, 27.

3. That sinner that persevereth in filial impenitency and unbelief shall be damned, Luke 13:3, 5; Romans 2:2-5; Mark 16:15, 16.

4. That sinner whose mind the God of this world hath blinded, that the glorious light of the gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, can never shine unto him, is lost, and must be damned, 2 Corinthians 4:3, 4.

5. The sinner that maketh religion his cloak for wickedness, he is a hypocrite, and, continuing so, must certainly be damned, Psalm 125:5; Isaiah 33:40; Matthew 24:50, 51.

6. In a word, every sinner that persevereth in his wickedness shall not inherit the kingdom of heaven: "Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolators, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, or covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

"Let no man deceive you with vain words; for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience," 1 Corinthians 6:9, 10; Ephesians 5:6.

Question But what kind of sinners shall then be saved?

Answer Those of all these kinds that the Spirit of God shall bring to the Father by Jesus Christ. These, I say, and none but these, can be saved; because otherwise sinners might be saved without the Father, or without the Son, or without the Spirit.

Now, in all that I have said, I have not in the least suggested that any sinner is rejected because his sins, in the nature of them, are great: Christ Jesus came into the world to save the chief of sinners. It is not therefore the greatness of, but the continuance in, sins that indeed damneth the sinner: but I always exclude him that hath sinned against the Holy Ghost. That is not the greatness of sin that excludeth the sinner is evident,

1st. From the words before the text, which do give an account of what kind of sinners were here saved by grace; as, namely, they that were dead in trespasses and sins; those that walked in their sins

"according to the course of this world, even according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience; among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of the flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others," Ephesians 2:2, 3.

2dly. It is evident also from the many sinners that we find were saved, by the revealed will of God; for in the word we have mention made of the salvation of great sinners, where their names and their sins stand recorded for our encouragement. As,

1. You read of Manasseh, who was an idolator, a witch, a persecutor, yea, a rebel against the word of God, sent unto him by the prophets; and yet this man was saved, 2 Chronicles 33:2-13; 2 Kings 21:16.

2. You read of Mary Magdalen, in whom was seven devils. Her condition was dreadful, yet she was saved, Luke 8:2.

3. You read of the man that had a legion of devils in him. O how dreadful was his condition! and yet by grace he was saved, Mark. 5:1, 19.

4. You read of them that murdered the Lord Jesus, and how they were converted and saved, Acts 2:23.

5. You read of the exorcists in Acts 19:13; how they closed with Christ, and were saved by grace.

6. You read of Saul the persecutor, and how he was saved by grace, Acts 9:15.

Objection But thou sayest, I am a backslider.


1. So was Noah, and yet he found grace in the eyes of the Lord, Genesis 9:21, 22.

2. So was Lot, and yet God saved him by grace, Genesis 20:36; 2 Peter 2:7, 8, 9.

3. So was David, yet by grace he was forgiven his iniquities, 2 Samuel 12:7-13.

4. So was Solomon, and a great one too, yet by grace his soul was saved, Psalm 89:28-34.

5. So was Peter, and that a dreadful one, yet by grace he was saved, Matthew 26:69, 70, 72, 74; Mark 16:7; Acts 15:7-11.

6. Besides, for further encouragement, read Jeremiah 3:33:25, 26, 51:5; Ezekiel 36:25; Hosea 16:1-4. And stay thyself, and wonder at the riches of the grace of God.

Question But how shall we find out what sinners shall be saved? all it seems will not: besides, for aught that can be gathered by what you have said, there are some saved as sinful as others who were damned (setting him aside who hath sinned the unpardonable sin.)

Answer True, there are some saved as bad as those that were damned. But to this question.

1. They that are effectually called are saved.

2. They that believe on the Son of God shall be saved.

3. They that are sanctified and preserved in Christ Jesus shall be saved.

4. They that take up the cross daily, and follow Christ, shall be saved.

Take a catalogue of them thus:

1. "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved," Mark 16:16; Acts 16:31.

2. "Confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, and thou shalt be saved," Romans 10:9.

3. "O justified by the blood of Christ, and thou shalt be saved," Romans 5:9.

4. "Be reconciled to God by the death of his Son, and thou shalt be saved by his life," Romans 5:10.

5. "And it shall come to pass that whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved," Romans 10:13. See some other scriptures.

(1) "He shall save the humble person," Job 22:20.

(2) "Thou shalt save the afflicted people," Psalm 18:27.

(3) "He shall save the children of the needy," Psalm 72:4.

(4) "He shall save the souls of the needy," Psalm 72:13.

(5) "O thou, my God, save thy servant that trusteth in thee," Psalm 86.:2.

(6) "He will fulfill the desire of them that fear him; he will hear their cry, and will save them," Psalm 145:19.

But, sinner, if thou wouldst indeed be saved, beware of these four things:

1. Beware of delaying repentance. Delays are dangerous and damnable: they are dangerous, because they harden the heart; they are damnable, because their tendency is to make thee outstand the time of grace, Psalm 95:7; Hebrews 3 to 12.

2. Beware of resting in the word of the kingdom, without the Spirit and power of the kingdom of the gospel; for the gospel, coming in word only, saves nobody; for the kingdom of God, or the gospel, where it comes to salvation, is not in word but in power, 1 Thessalonians 1:4, 5, 6; 1 Corinthians 4:20.

3. Take heed of living in a bare profession, a life that is provoking to God: for that is the way to make him cast thee away in his anger.

4. Take heed that thy inside and outside be alike, and both conformable to the word of his grace. labor to be like the living creatures which thou mayest read of in the book of the prophet Ezekiel, whose appearance and themselves were one, Ezekiel 10:22.

In all this I have advertised thee not to be content without the power and the Spirit of God in thy heart; for without him thou canst not partake of the grace of the Father or Son, but wilt certainly miss the salvation of thy soul.


Download Options

Title: Saved by Grace

Select an option:

*Note: A download may not start for up to 60 seconds.

Email Options

Title: Saved by Grace

Select an option:

Email addres:

*Note: It may take up to 60 seconds for for the email to be generated.

Chicago: John Bunyan, "3. Who Are They That Are to Be Saved by Grace?," Saved by Grace, ed. George Offor in Saved by Grace, the Works of John Bunyan (London: Blackie and Son, 1856), Original Sources, accessed August 8, 2022,

MLA: Bunyan, John. "3. Who Are They That Are to Be Saved by Grace?." Saved by Grace, edited by George Offor, in Saved by Grace, the Works of John Bunyan, London, Blackie and Son, 1856, Original Sources. 8 Aug. 2022.

Harvard: Bunyan, J, '3. Who Are They That Are to Be Saved by Grace?' in Saved by Grace, ed. . cited in 1856, Saved by Grace, the Works of John Bunyan, Blackie and Son, London. Original Sources, retrieved 8 August 2022, from