I feel certain that we have all asked or been asked this question at some point in our lives. I can think of a few times. Like during the ultrasound when you are pregnant – It’s a girl! Are you sure? Or when eating some new food with Justin – is it hot? No, not really…Are you sure? Or “sitting” behind a boat on skies. Ready? Yep! Are you sure?
I would also venture to say that in life we have had times when we are SURE that one thing was going to happen, but then something else happens which shakes our assurance and makes us doubt. But the question we pose this week is does God really want us to have assurance of our salvation? And if He does, then what proof does He give us in His word? You see, when we ask the question “Are you sure?” we have some uncertainty about whatever it may be and possibly even some fear. But God changes us and molds us; not by fear, but through love – secure love. J.D Greer says in his book Stop Asking Jesus into Your Heart that “your spiritual life will not really ever take off until you have the assurance of salvation. Until you KNOW that you are His and He is yours, your obedience will be limited.” We need to KNOW of the God whom we are leaving this world for. We need to KNOW of the resurrection in order to take up our cross. Oh and I love this – “It is the JOY of KNOWING beyond doubt that you belong to God that makes all of these things possible.” JOY!!!!!!
So how do we know? We must be convinced that the something we are risking it all for actually exists. If we are going to jump off a cliff with only a rope to hold us we have to make sure that the rope exists.
“Yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist.” 1 Corinthians 8:6
“For His invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.” Romans 1:20
You cannot be assured of your salvation until you are confident that “Jesus will support the full weight of your soul”. You cannot say “no” to sin until you realize that God has said “yes” through Jesus. You cannot suffer persecution in this world until you are certain where you stand with God. Make this verse yours as a believer in Christ:
“For I KNOW whom I have believed that is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day” 2 Timothy 1:12
You must believe and know that God made a radical commitment to you. You must do good works for God, not so that God will approve of you, but because you “deeply and truly love the One that is commanding you.”
“I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may KNOW that you have eternal life. This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we KNOW that He hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of Him.” 1 John 5:13-18
So, how can we apply assurance to unity? Religion commands us to change our behavior, but it cannot change our hearts. Only the gospel, the one TRUE gospel (There is one body and one Spirit just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. Ephesians 4:4-6 – remember?) and the assurance it yields goes deep enough to actually change the warped nature of our hearts. We are only transformed into glory when we are overwhelmed at the glory of Christ’s sacrifice for us. Do you know Jesus as your Lord and Savior today? Are you confident that He completed the work on the cross? Do you daily try to live for Him? Then KNOW that you are saved! Are you sure? Absolutely! Donna
References: the Bible and Stop Asking Jesus into Your Heart by J.D. Greer