Verses Leading To Salvation
Larry A. Smail

This study will detail verses with information for attaining salvation through the words of scripture. Much confusion over this vital knowledge is found within the church system. A brief history of Christ’s ministry and the apostle’s ministry will be mentioned here to set the stage for today’s dispensation for obtaining salvation.

1. What was Jesus’ primary message during his ministry?

Christ’s primary message was to fulfill the covenant promises given by God to the patriarchs so many years in the past. This is part of the Abrahamic Covenant of Genesis 12: 1-3 and other chapters. The Lord promised, in part, through the seed of Abraham that a blessing would occur for all families of the earth. This blessing would be a Savior to redeem the curse upon mankind and give individuals an opportunity for salvation.

Christ constantly spoke about the “kingdom of God or the kingdom of heaven.” This IS, in fact, the GOSPEL, or the GOOD NEWS, OF THE KINGDOM. As stated often within our studies, one should underline or highlight every place in the first five books of the New Testament where the above-mentioned words are written. In order to fulfill the covenant promises, Jesus was, also, ministering for Israel to believe just who he was…and that was their Messiah; their Promised One; Wonderful Counselor; their King, Prince of Peace…. The Apostle Paul clarifies this in Romans 15: 8, when he wrote: “…Christ became a servant (Or a Minister) to the circumcised (Jewish People or Israel) to show God’s truthfulness, in order to confirm the promises given to the patriarchs, (Abraham, Isaac, Jacob) and in order that the Gentiles might glorify God for his mercy…” Historically, once Israel left Egypt, God very quickly told the budding nation the following:

Exodus 19: 5-6 states, “…if you (Israel) obey my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be my own possession among all peoples…you shall be a kingdom of priests and a holy (Set apart) nation.” (Or the Chosen people)

Isaiah 49: 6 states this speaking of Israel, “I will give you (Israel) as a light to the nations, that my SALVATION may reach to the end of the earth.”

This was what Jesus meant when he told the disciples, “… to go therefore and make disciples of all nations…” But first, the disciples needed to have Israel believe who Christ was along with the kingdom restored. At that time, Israel would become that kingdom of priests to go to the Gentiles.

History tells us Israel failed constantly. They lost their kingdom. The nation of Israel became under Gentile dominion for many, many, many years.
Israel rejected Christ’s message to have their King and Kingdom. They didn’t BELIEVE!!!! Their unbelief led to Christ’s death on the cross. Three days and three nights later Christ was raised back to life!

2. What was the message after the cross and resurrection?

Acts 1: 3 records the resurrected Christ as being on earth for forty days and speaking of the “Kingdom of God!” Jesus’ message was still the same. In Acts 1: 6, the disciples asked Christ, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” The importance of this kingdom to the Jewish people cannot be understated. The Jews lost their kingdom and the magnificent Solomon’s temple way back in 586 B.C. under King Nebuchadnezzar of the Babylonian Empire. The hope of their kingdom restoration was of vital importance. The kingdom is just as vital to modern Jews today! They are waiting for their Messiah today, as well. The Jews have increased their plans to have their third temple now that they are back in the land of Israel since 1948. One may say, Israel has some of their land back. The Jews still need their temple and King.

3. What was the disciples’ message during their ministries?

The best example is found in Peter’s sermons of Acts 2 and 3. Peter was preaching to Jews in Jerusalem about who Christ was, his death on the cross and the resurrection and the covenant promises to Abraham. Remember, the covenant promises were for the Jews. In verse 36, Peter reminded these Jews by saying, “Let “all the house of Israel” therefore know assuredly that God has made him that God has made him both Lord  and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.” The Jews, now troubled over the events, wanted to know what they should do now. Peter told them to; “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus for the forgiveness of sins and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” (These Jews were to repent of their unbelief as to who Jesus was which led to the crucifixion. They were to then be baptized as per Jewish law as a type of cleansing or purification. If they believed, then the nation would be in a position to take salvation to the Gentiles and have their King and kingdom.) The disciples started the Jewish church of believers, yet they were still law-keeping. Important for study!

By studying the Jerusalem Council of around 50 A.D. it is easy to see there is a difference. The disciples were to continue with their kingdom message to the Jews and Paul was to stay with the Gentiles. Christ while on earth, in Matthew 10: 5-6 told the twelve to, “Go nowhere among the Gentiles, and enter no town of the Samaritans, but go rather to the LOST SHEEP OF ISRAEL.” Verse 7 added; the disciples were to preach that the KINGDOM OF HEAVEN WAS AT HAND. (Jesus, scripturally, never said anything to change that course of action and it is easy to see just how Jewish his disciples remained. After all they were to work to have Israel believe. Jesus, at this time, was still here on earth during his ministry years, and the kingdom promises could have been reality if the Jews would have believed! Scripturally speaking, the disciples held true to staying with the Jews with a couple exceptions with Peter. More later on this difference. See Acts 15 and Galatians 2 to study this conference or council.

4. What caused Israel’s rejection before and after the cross?

In the simplest term…ISRAEL REJECTED CHRIST THROUGH THEIR UNBELIEF! Paul wrote in Romans 8-11 about Israel’s failure through their unbelief as to who Christ was. He wrote in Romans 11: 25 of Israel’s hardening of their hearts. Paul, also, added “until the full number of the Gentiles come in.” Israel will be given another opportunity to believe the gospel of the kingdom during the tribulation, also known as, the Time of Jacob’s Trouble. (Jeremiah 30: 7) The Jewish remnant at that time will believe! Zechariah 12: 10 tells us, Israel will mourn for Christ the one they pierced. ISRAEL WILL BELIEVE!

5. What was the turning point with God’s plan with Israel?

Acts 7 gives us the story of the Holy Spirit, inspired, Jewish believer named Stephen. He was murdered by the Jews for his belief of Christ being their Promised One. Immediately in Acts 8 Saul (Later Paul) was introduced. Big changes would be coming. Israel’s future would be spiraling downward from this time until the Romans destroy Jerusalem and the temple in 70 A.D. Israel would cease to exist as a nation. Remember since 586 B.C. Judah and Israel were under Gentile control.

6. So, what now? What was to be the next part of God’s plan? Who was to be the one during this next dispensation?

Paul would be called out of his Jewish zealous ways by the RISEN CHRIST. Romans 1: 1 states, Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an APOSTLE, SET APART for the GOSPEL OF GOD which he promised beforehand through his prophets in the holy scriptures.” Paul added…”according to the Spirit of holiness by his RESURRECTION FROM THE DEAD, Jesus Christ our Lord, through whom we have received GRACE and apostleship to bring about the obedience of FAITH for the sake of his name AMONG ALL NATIONS…”
Israel lost the chance to be the nation of priests to carry God’s word to the Gentiles. Paul would begin taking the word to the Gentiles now, but without Israel.

Also, in Galatians 1: 1, Paul wrote he became an apostle not through man, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised him from the dead. He added in verses 11-12: “…the gospel which was preached by me is not man’s gospel. For I (Paul) did not receive it from man nor was I taught it, but it came through a revelation of Jesus Christ.” (The RISEN CHRIST)

7. What is this gospel of grace and how does one obtain grace?

There are two primary places in Paul’s words that detail the process of obtaining salvation. Romans 10: 9-10 the apostle wrote: “…because, if you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For man believes with his heart and so is justified, and he confesses with his lips and so is saved. One needs to humble themselves in prayer and truly believe from within their innermost being.

A second place in scripture is 1 Corinthians 15: 1-4. Paul wrote: “Now I would remind you, brethren in what terms I preached to you the gospel, which you have received, in which you stand, by which you are SAVED, if you hold it fast-unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that CHRIST DIED FOR YOUR SINS IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE SCRIPTURES, THAT HE WAS BURIED, THAT HE WAS RAISED ON THE THIRD DAY IN ACORDANCE WITH THE SCRIPTURES…”

This is the GOSPEL OF GRACE given freely for those who believe Jesus was raised from the grave unto life. This is promised through those who receive and believe Paul’s words with FAITH! (Paul added in 2 Corinthians 4:3 words about the lost. He said the gospel is hid to those who are lost or perishing.)

8. What is faith?

Hebrews 11:1 tells us: “faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Hebrews 11: 6 adds: “Without faith it is impossible to please God.”

9. What is the difference between the Gospel of the Kingdom and the Gospel of Grace?

The gospel of the kingdom preached by Christ while on earth and the disciples was simply believing who Christ was and the kingdom would become reality for the nation of Israel. Israel could have had their kingdom if they would have accepted Christ as their Promised One. After the cross, Israel could have had their King and kingdom if the nation would have turned around from their unbelief as to who Christ was. Neither option occurred in Israel’s history. (Notice the difference between these two gospels. The kingdom gospel had to have all of Israel believe. With grace, an individual can be saved.)

The kingdom will be reality on earth at Christ’s second coming.

The Gospel of Grace is to believe, after the fact, of Christ’s death, burial and resurrection with complete faith and the Holy Spirit will dwell within and mercy and grace is granted. Any person who has truly believed and has received grace through faith should see a change within as the process towards being Christ-like permeates their being.

Romans 4: 3 states Abraham believed what God said and that faith was reckoned to him as righteousness.

However, works should be come part of the grace experience, but works will not grant salvation!


The Lady’s slippers are a most beautiful and unique wildflower. Pennsylvania has three species and I believe all are endangered in many areas. This specie of flower has growth and survival demands seldom duplicated by home flower gardens. Therefore they should NEVER BE TRANSPLANTED!  They take a very long time to regenerate even in their element. If one discovers their growth in a woodlot enjoy their beauty only.

The specie of Lady’s Slipper in my area of Pennsylvania is the Pink lady’s Slipper.  Another name for this flower is Moccasin-Flower. This plant requires very acid soil or bogs to survive. I know of a few local sites. The site where I took these photos was discovered by myself some thirty years ago. The area was around a half acre in size. This recent trip to relocate and photograph these flowers remained approximately the same size of half and acre to maybe three-fourth of an acre. Like I said, DO NOT REMOVE!

  The Yellow Lady’s Slipper is  found in bog areas and mossy swamps. I have, yet, to find any locally. There are a few sites in western Pennsylvania. There are two  sub-species in the Yellow lady’s Slipper.

The Showy Lady’s Slipper  is found in northwestern Pennsylvania in acid bog sites. This special is white with pink.




I took some photos of Canada mayflowers and Fire-Pinks as I searched this evening for the Lady’s Slippers.

Canada Mayflower


Fire Pink


After we left Jumonville Glenn we proceeded to head northerly towards Cucumber Falls and Ohiopyle, Pennsylvania. The first visit was at the beautiful Cucumber Falls. This waterfall is about thirty feet high. The falls gets the name because the water source is Cucumber Run. Laurie and I walked downstream to see the Yough River. (Pronounced Yawk. This is the common term used to describe the Youghiogheny River.)

Later we visited Ohiopyle to walk the park and watch the rapid waters. We enjoyed just some time setting on a bench and watching the fast waters quickly explode over many rocks.


Some photos of the Youghiogheny River



Railroad bridge




Braddock’s Monument

This is part three of the Fort Necessity trip from Washington’s attack on the French force at Jumonville Glen, his defeat by the French at Fort Necessity concluding with some information about the English general Edward Braddock.  The French and Indian War lasted many years within Pennsylvania. The Delaware and Shawnee living at, what is now, Kittanning, Pennsylvania would begin launching raids of terror across Pennsylvania, Maryland and Virginia following the event of Braddock’s defeat.

Braddock’s Road and the marker showing where the remains were found in 1804.


Washington’s humiliating defeat at Fort Necessity had some effects on the various players of this beginning of the French And Indian war. First, the  French began to believe the English wasn’t about to be the obstacle they once believed them to be. Secondly, the various tribes of western Pennsylvania were evaluating these recent results. Most were hoping to remain neutral, but I believe most, also, realized staying out of the war of France and England would be impossible.

The English in 1755 had their best commander within America’s borders. General Edward Braddock was a military man of 45 years of service. His mission in America was to send English forces to attack the French at several forts destroying their presence in the Allegheny region. He would spearhead the attack against the French at Fort Duquesne. (Present-day Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.) He proudly admitted his task would be easily completed. After all, he had 2400 soldiers of the great English army at his disposal. One must realize that, at this time,  England had the most powerful military in the world.

Braddock had a great flaw in character. He was an arrogant man with lots of power and he abused it.  One of the beliefs he had followed with statements once arriving in America dealt with his low opinion with the American militias. At a meeting with Delaware Chief Shingas in attendance went poorly for the general, albeit he didn’t know it and/or he just didn’t care.  He made statements that the Indian forces were no match to the powerful English army. He, also, said no Indian should have ownership of any lands. Shingas was angered! He, also, believed Indian warfare techniques of no concern.

General Braddock began to move northeasterly towards Fort Duquesne. The road had to be widened as he progressed. As he approached to around eight miles of the fort on July 9th, a sudden explosion of musketry and whooping and hollering became everywhere within the depths of the forest. The blood-curling screams of the Indians and shots from the shadows  quickly eroded the English into a mass of dead, dying and wounded men. Others ran in terror in retreat often times throwing their muskets to the ground.

The men in retreat couldn’t be changed. George Washington tried to regain control of the men. Braddock was mortally wounded. Washington had two horses shot out from under him and had four musket balls rip holes in his uniform, but he was untouched. The retreat continued. Braddock eventually died a few days later and was buried on the road so the Indians wouldn’t find and mutilate the body.


Close-up of panel

The battle began with approximately 1460 troops. Causalities were approximately 900. The Indians once they understood their victory began plundering and scalping. If the Indians would have ignored their ways of war and followed the army they would have annihilated the entire force.  Causalities for the French were around 43 men and 27 causalities for the natives.

Most Indian historians believe this rout was the determining event for the Delaware and Shawnee Indians joining allegiance with the French soldiers. Shingas lived in Kit-Han-ne and, no doubt, after this managed to persuade the others of present-day Kittanning, Pennsylvania to ally with the French. Shingas may have participated in the Braddock event as well as others from Kit-Han-Ne. History doesn’t tell us. The battle at Kit-Han-ne happened on September 8th, 1756.

Workers working on Braddock’s Road in 1804 discovered the remains believed to have been the general.  The body was moved and reinterred nearby where the present monument stands.

I can’t help to wonder what the general’s last thoughts were in those few days prior to his death. I wonder if he come off his high horse of arrogance to see the reality of Indian warfare. I guess we will never know.

General John Forbes gained the forks of the rivers from the French n 1758. The fort would be named, Fort Pitt later to be known as Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.




Fort Necessaity

I can’t say with any degree of certainty when I first heard of Fort Necessity, but I know I was only a young fellow. I was captivated to learn of this somewhat local event and to realize that the one and only George Washington was actually involved. I really didn’t have a true grasp of the importance of this time.

One sad reality for me, with hindsight, was the fact as to how little was taught about the French And Indian War in schools. I imagine few hear about this great war in today’s educational system. As in the last entry about Jumonville Glen I will not placing a complete detailed report as to everything of the times. Like I said one can discover more into this subject easily if further interested. There are books galore of this battle and the French and Indian War.

   Laurie and I finally  took time to visit the site I have had in my mind for many, many years.  We hiked around some, too  and had a private picnic lunch towards  noon way back in the woods above the site. Indians, French and English soldiers, probably, have walked exactly where we had our lunch.

Lieutenant Colonel George Washington had discovered a marshy, grassy area and allowed this as a point to work out of. Much fodder could be had for livestock.  The area would prove to be a disaster.

On May 27th, 1754, Indians reported of a French force of soldiers encamped nearby. The young Washington went through the night to encounter them in the following morning. The following morning shots were fired and the French were defeated. the French and Indian War had begun, but I doubt anyone knew just how these few shots would be remembered in history. (This event was listed in the previous entry.)

Washington realized the French would feel a need to counter-attack and removed his men back to the Great Meadows. Here earthenware trenches would be made and a quickly-erected fort of necessity was built. Hence the name of Fort Neccessity! Additional men came to the site in early to mid-June giving Washington command of over 400 men.

The fort was a small circular fort erected hastily by placing logs upright with points on the top. A small building was erected within the fort to hold gun powder, rum and other perishables. The interior circumference of this fort was about 155 feet and would only, at best, protect about fifty soldiers. Earthwork trenches, outside the fort, were built to allow soldiers to be concealed behind the ground but they were only about two feet high because the water table was reached by digging deeper.

Improvements were made at the fort whenever realizations were spotted and the wait began. The troops were exhausted and lacked a lot of food.

Washington’s force

would be outnumbered something like three to one. Incessant rains began  pounding the area. There was sickness, desertions and injuries further lessening the number of fighting soldiers, too. The site of the fort now was becoming a muddy, swamp-like bog creating many problems within. Gun powder was becoming wet making firearms impossible to shoot. Seneca Half King Tanacharison knew the fight here was a foolish venture thus he and his warriors slipped away.

  The attack from the French and allied Indians came into reality on July 3rd, 1754 as volleys were fired and positioning began. The French and allied  Indians began shooting cattle, horses and dogs, as well as, any troop  when an opportune shot arose. As time moved along, Washington realized about a third of his troop were causalities. Others became drunk because they believed their time was short. They broke into the stores of rum. Washington knew he was in a dire position. Indians would want to tear them apart once this battle reached a certain point of despair. He needed to sue for peace with the French.

Later, however, that evening the French offered discussion of a surrender and Washington agreed. A serious problem erupted  concerning the signing of the papers, but the extent would not be realized immediately. Those papers for surrender announced Washington had assassinated the French officer at Jumonville Glen. The issue came to be due to translations and the interpreter not understanding the French language as needed, but further questions came to be later on this issue. Once this was realized, and after Washington had signed the paper, the young officer denied that statement. The French would use the letter as a propaganda tool against the English.

Washington and his remaining men left the Great Meadows free on July 4th, 1754.  English General Edward Braddock would be annihilated  near this site the following July in 1755.



George Washington



Area of French encampment. This would be the view Washington would have seen upon his approach.

Western Pennsylvania is rich with history. This fact is especially accurate when one considers some eighteenth century events. Much was happening and changing beginning within the 1740 time span. A British statesman named Horace Walpole would describe an event of the time as “The volley fired by a young Virginian in the backwoods of America set the world on fire.”  That young Virginian was a man named, George Washington.

My story will be brief, but I urge anyone interested in learning all aspects of these times to further their minds. There is a treasure of information available for details.

The French began descending the Allegheny River Watershed coming south out of Canada. Their goal was to establish claim to the valuable lands west of the Allegheny Mountain range of Pennsylvania. Their secondary goal was to obtain as many Indian tribes as allies as they could. They wanted their trade with them to outgrow English trade. French officer Celeron placed messages of ownership in lead plates at various locations in 1749. (Indians would remove many of these to melt down the lead for musket balls.) Soon French forts were built at strategic locations including a fort at the forks of the Allegheny and Monongahela Rivers.  The fort’s name was Fort Duquesne. Today this site is Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

The Indians wanted the trade with the whites, but they did not want any established settlements. The Pennsylvania Colony believed these lands to be their lands as did Virginia. The English wanted these lands for their lands, as well.  Any potential problems here?


The French tried to escape between these rocks only to met the warriors.

Out of Virginia the Governor Robert Dinwiddie sent a twenty-one year old named George Washington  to ascend the Allegheny River area to deliver a letter to the French. The letter’s intent was to convince the French to abandon their plans. This was so important that this mission was in the winter of 1753….not the best time to be maneuvering the wilds of western Pennsylvania.

The plan failed as the French politely rejected the orders and Washington returned to Williamsburg, Virginia with their reply.

Lieutenant Colonel George Washington returned  to the area in 1754 to evict the French out of Fort Duquesne. He had a force of men with him as he established a site at what was the Great Meadows. This site had the grasses needed to help feed the livestock.

Indians reported to Washington of a French force nearby. Washington and some men along with some allied Seneca Indians under their leadership of the Half-King, Chief Tanacharison moved in to encounter the French. The French were at a location with a huge rocky outcrop that would be known as Jumonville Glen.  There was no war at this time only some friction so the French officer named Jumonville didn’t place any sentries as Washington moved in on the morning of May 28, 1754. He came to the encampment from the south. Another officer, Captain Stephen moved into position above the rock outcrop and the ten or so Indians moved in from the north.

Suddenly a shot rang out. Nobody knows who fired that first shot, but an exchange of musketry exploded. The entire skirmish lasted for about fifteen minutes in total. The French tried to escape to the north and met up with the Seneca. Jumonville shouted for a cease-fire which happened. He, while reading in French, began to convey their orders were simply to deliver a diplomacy letter to the English demanding they leave the area. However, Tanacharison who understood French stopped the reading with a tomahawk to the officers head killing him instantly.  A report states he washed his hands in the officer’s brain. The Indians began killing and scalping the wounded and prisoners. Washington had a rough time stopping the Indians from killing the surviving troops. One French soldier escaped to Fort Duquesne. The Seneca chief was getting the war he so desired.

The shot, whomever fired it, would be the one responsible for the beginning of the French and Indian war in America. There would be no turning the tides of war at this point.

The site was named after the French leader who died on site.

The French view towards Washington’s approach.

The next entry here will be of Fort Necessity and Washington’s first defeat.


The painting



Flier for Ford City Library display.



Display at Crooked Creek event.

To say my weekend was full might be an understatement. First, my cousin called me Thursday to tell me of the passing of a dear friend. His name was Vearl “Pete” Lookabaugh. We had been friends for some forty years. He was quite a friend and I will miss him. Some issues with funeral times occurred. Friday evening I was to be at the Outdoor Discovery Center (ODC) at Crooked Creek Park. Vearl’s funeral service was only six o’clock to eight Friday evening. I would not be able to attend. A Saturday committal service was to be ten to eleven. I had commitments on Saturday, too. I needed to do some adjustments.

So, Friday I needed to remove some of my historical paintings from the Ford City Library and set them up with others at the ODC building. (The   paintings had been at the library for about a month.) After setting them up and enjoying a BBQ meal from the group I was to speak to my talking engagement began. The subject matter for my talk was through their request. the topic was about the attack at the Indian village of Kit-Han-Ne. (Present-day, Kittanning, Pennsylvania.) The group had plenty of comments and questions and I didn’t get home until after nine.

The following morning I was to be at the Armstrong County historical Society’s museum to be available for a Civil war encampment event. My task was to bring in my original acrylic painting called, “THE WHEATFIELD-WHIRLPOOL OF DEATH.”  A stated above I needed some adjustments with my time so I delivered the paining and easel to the museum early on Saturday morning before going to the library.

This painting depicts the 62nd Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry at the battle of Gettysburg called the Wheatfield. (Click on historical for my blogs and you can get some details of this battle event.)

Saturday morning continued with going to the St. Michael’s Lutheran Church where the service was to be held. Fortunately, my friend had been relocated for additional viewing.to this church. The funeral service didn’t tell this information to me. I stopped by giving my respect to the family and saying goodbye. I made it to the museum around noon or so.

   The museum encampment was a success. Both days had a stream of interested patrons. I spent much time in the museum with the Indian Room. this room is my baby so to speak. I really enjoyed talking with the people educating them about events of our native Indians. I spent some time talking with others about the painting.

The members of the 62nd living history group did an excellent job setting up the Civil war Room. If this is something you are interested in please make plans to visit the museum soon. the museum is opened on a limited time so call first.

To contact the museum call: 724-548-5707. Address is: P.O. Box 735, 300 North McKean Street, Kittanning, PA 16201.

To find out more about the local to Armstrong County area, 62nd Pennsylvania living historians group call Bob “Slim” Bowser at 724-545-1330.

My ancester, Henry Blystone. He marched under General Sherman.












Civil War Room


Native American Room


Document Room features a letter penned by George Washington.



Military Room