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Assurance of Salvation

Q: I said the sinner’s prayer, but I don’t know if I did it right. How can I really know for sure that I’ll go to Heaven when I die?

A: You mean you didn’t get the golden, wallet-sized pass in the mail already? You know, the one that gets you through the gates with no waiting in line when you die? No? Well, don’t worry about it… neither did the rest of us! In fact, nobody ever gets a certificate signed by God and delivered by an angel that guarantees their admittance into Heaven. Why? Because salvation is spiritual! And although most of us would love to have something physically tangible (such as a divine certificate or pass) to ensure our salvation, God has chosen to keep salvation spiritual… making it accessible only through a spiritual substance called faith.

By faith, we believe that God’s Word is true. By faith, we acknowledge and agree that Jesus is God’s only Son, and through His death on the cross and resurrection from the grave, we have redemption from sin and eternal life in Heaven. Your faith in Jesus as Lord is your “golden pass” to Heaven!

To make sure that you’re saved, all you have to do is read the qualifications for salvation in John 3:16 and Romans 10:9-10. There it says, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16) Then, Romans 10:9-10 says, “If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus, and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart, one believes unto righteousness and with the mouth, confession is made unto salvation.”

So, ask yourself: “Have I done what these scriptures say? Do I still believe in Jesus? Do I still believe that Jesus rose from the dead? Do I still call Jesus, Lord?” If so, then you have absolutely nothing to worry about. You are saved!

The Word of God is full of scriptures that will encourage and enlighten you about God’s plan of salvation through Jesus Christ. If you’re wondering if Jesus accepted your prayer of salvation, read John 6:37. If you want to know what you got in return for your sins, read Colossians 1:14. If you want to find out how you came to be a Child of God, read John 1:12. If you want reassurance about eternal life, read 1 John 5:11-13. If you want to know what happened within you when you said the sinner’s prayer, read 2 Corinthians 5:17. And finally, if you’re feeling alone and on your own, read Hebrews 13:5. The Word is filled with scriptures to help you feel confident in your salvation.

Q: How can I really be sure of my salvation when I don’t even feel like a Christian?

A: You can’t use your feelings to gauge your salvation. Your mind didn’t get saved when you did and neither did your emotions. It was your spirit that was re-created! That’s why you can praise Jesus in church one minute and go out in the parking lot and feel like killing the guy who parked behind you!

Your feelings change every day, every hour, every minute. They can’t be trusted with something as valuable as salvation! If so, you’d be in and out of hell so much, you wouldn’t know what to do! And that is not God’s plan for your life. His plan is that you… “might have life, and might have it abundantly!” (John 10:10) God isn’t moved by the chaos of feelings. He’s moved by faith.

Today you might not feel saved at all. But if you did what Romans 10:9-10 says, you’re saved whether you feel saved or not! Think of it like this: You may not feel like getting up and seeing the sunrise tomorrow, but it doesn’t really matter. It will. I don’t care if somebody spent all night trying to deceive you into thinking that it won’t. That sun is coming up tomorrow morning. It’s a fact! You can count on it!

God’s Word is more dependable than the sun He created. When He says something, it becomes a fact! His Word is always the last word. The devil might have been working overtime trying to convince you that you never really got saved, but he’s a liar. (John 8:44) If God said that all you have to do to be saved is confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, then it’s a fact! You can count on it!

God is a Spirit and His ways are spiritual, not physical. Feelings are physical, not spiritual. And although He created you as an emotional creature, your every feeling isn’t ordained by Him. As you continue to renew your mind to the Word of God, you will find that it is easier to determine when your feelings are steering you wrong. Just remember, feelings are temporary and they change constantly. But God never changes. (Hebrews 13:8) And the new, re-created spirit that now lives in you is a part of Him that isn’t likely to change either.

So, the next time you find yourself gauging your salvation by your feelings again, stop! The next time the devil tries to throw doubt about your salvation into your mind, stop! Turn the tables on your own unsaved mind and the devil by speaking out some of the Scriptures you read above. Do it out loud if you have to! Begin to exercise your faith in this area and pretty soon, you won’t have a doubt in the world that Jesus is your Lord!

Q: What if I sinned after I said the sinner’s prayer? Could I have lost my salvation then?

A: Although many Scriptures in the Bible say you must repent of sin, the only time you need to worry about losing your salvation is when you no longer believe in your heart that God raised Jesus from the dead and you no longer confess with your mouth that He is Lord. Salvation comes when we receive. So, the only way you could possibly “lose” your salvation is if you deliberately reject Jesus as your Lord and Savior. And that is a pretty strong thing to do.

So, the question is: Have you stopped believing that Jesus is God’s Son and that He was raised from the dead? Have you deliberately rejected Jesus as lord? Probably not. If you had, you would be “speaking lies in hypocrisy, having your conscience seared with a hot iron,” like 1Timothy 4:2 says, and you wouldn’t really care about the status of your salvation.

It is more likely that the devil is just casting doubt on the work God has done within your heart. Satan may be using your recent sin as a way to heap condemnation on you, telling you that since you’ve committed a sin, you couldn’t possibly still be saved. He uses guilt and condemnation to lie to you about God’s grace. What a snake! The devil will use anyway he can to steal your faith in God and make you feel like a worthless piece of trash. But you aren’t!! You are a born-again Child of God and forgiveness is available to YOU!

1 Peter 3:18 tells us that Jesus suffered once for all sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit. And Romans 5: 8-9 tells us, “But demonstrates His own love towards us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.”

These Scriptures show us that Jesus died a brutal death on the cross so that all sins could be washed away. For you, that includes the sins you did ten years ago and the ones you might have just committed ten minutes ago. His blood can even take care of the ones you haven’t done yet! You see, God knew that we would mess up every now and then. (Romans 3:23) That’s why He created such a fail-proof plan. But He doesn’t expect us to abuse His grace or wallow around in sin. He wants our conscience and our lives clean!

So, if you’ve sinned, all you have to do to have those sins off your conscience and the slate wiped clean is to go before the Lord in prayer and repent. Don’t ever let sin or guilt keep you from going to The Throne of Grace. Prayer is the place where you get rid of that awful stuff! How do you repent? By doing what 1 John 1:9 says! There it tells us, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

By admitting the sin to God, asking for His forgiveness and making a quality decision not to do that sin again, you are fulfilling the requirement of repentance. The Lord will immediately draw on the blood that was shed by Jesus on the cross and use it to cleanse you of all sin. Then, He will erase the sin from His memory and never hold it against you anymore. It’s that easy!

But remember, like Brother Jesse says, “Salvation is free, but it definitely didn’t come cheap. It cost Jesus His life.” The salvation that you have today came at great expense to God and to His Son Jesus. God gave up His precious Son to be slaughtered for all mankind’s sins Jesus left His rightful place in Heaven to endure such death, just for you. So, be honorable and treat Him with love and respect. Don’t abuse His goodness and grace by using His forgiveness as an excuse to keep on sinning. (Romans 6)

Today, make a quality decision in your heart to change your ways into His ways! Begin to pray and read your Bible daily. Get into a good Bible-believing church where you can surround yourself with believers who can help you grow in the Word. Pray that the Lord will send you a godly friend who will help to disciple you during this early stage of your walk with Jesus. “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is good and acceptable and perfect. “ (Romans 12:2)

You don’t have to feel overwhelmed with the responsibility of changing overnight. Just take it day by day and be faithful with what you know. Pretty soon, you’ll be so full of confidence and zeal, you’ll be telling everyone you meet how “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life!” (John 3:16) You’ll be the one convincing others of just how easy it is to receive God’s gift of salvation!!