We are spending a whole month talking about “The Joy of Assurance”. This is so important, I wish we had MORE time on the subject. I talk to so many Christians that say things like:
Well, I just hope there is a place for me in heaven.
I am hoping I go into heaven. I guess I’ll find out when I get there.
I just hope I’ve done enough for God to let me into heaven.
-------------Have you heard these? Have you said/thought anything like this?
God WANTS you to be confident in your salvation. 1 John 5:13 says I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life. (emphasis mine)
God wants you to know, to walk in full confidence. So why do Christians still struggle with this? Take a look at this to prep you for Sunday:
Five Reasons People Lack Assurance of Their Salvation
1 - Some people just do not fully understand the Gospel.
“Security” is the objective truth - the Bible makes it clear that if you have received Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, nothing can take that from you! (John 10:28, among many other verses)
“Assurance” is subjective - the confidence that you personally have that you possess salvation.
Assurance can only come when you agree with what God says about the security of your salvation. And that is a clear truth of the Gospel - if you have received Jesus, you are saved. Forever. Sin, guilt, shame, condemnation - history.
2 - Some people just can’t accept forgiveness.
“I am too bad to be saved,” says the person who doesn’t wrap his heart around the love of God in Christ. Some people really struggle with this, because deep down, we know we don’t deserve God’s love.
But OH - to His glory, He gives His love! It’s an act of grace - undeserved, unmerited favor! But instead of listening to what God says, we give our ear to the accuser of the brethren: Satan.
3 - Some struggle with sin so much that they wonder if they have a new nature at all.
If you are in sin, you will not be in assurance. Don’t misunderstand. Sinning does not take your salvation, but it does take your confidence away. It is hard to feel triumphant when we act defeated, even God has pronounced us ultimately triumphant.
4 - Some don’t know the exact time of their salvation.
You have heard the dazzling testimonies. “Yes! At 9:04 PM on April 17, I received Jesus.” That is so cool. But some people don’t remember the exact moment like that. And that causes them to doubt.
I have a missionary friend that was born in a place where they don’t exactly keep birth records. It’s kind of funny - he isn’t sure how old he is. But because he doesn’t know his birthday, does that mean he has doubts as to whether he is even alive?
Some people have been raised in a Christian home, and feel like they have always believed. Don’t downplay it if you were discipled in the home - that’s the way God intends the home to work, anyways.
5 - Some don’t see the hand of God in their trials.
Some people doubt because they go through a hard season and feel like God wasn’t right there with them.
“Where is God when I needed Him? How can I be a Christian?”
But believe it - the strongest proof of salvation is tested faith. You know your faith is legit when you go through trials and come out the other said saying, “Yet I will praise Him!”
Romans 5 and James 1 both teach that trials test, and strengthen, your faith.
So how can you grow in assurance? Join us this Sunday, August 25, at HBC for the answer to that!
p.s. - If you come to Harvest this Sunday, I doubt you will have doubts afterwards