One of the most common questions people in our churches have is, “How can I know for sure if I’m really saved?” That’s NOT a silly question. If there really is life after death — and the Bible tells us there is — then there is nothing more important than knowing for sure that you have eternal life in heaven.
So how can you know?
— Some people say, “Well, if you ‘made a decision’ at some point in your life, then you can know that you’re saved. But Jesus said in Matthew 7, “NOT everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven.” So you can’t know you’re saved just because you’ve “made a decision” some time and claimed that Jesus was your Lord.
— Other people say, “Well, if you were baptized, you can know.” But Paul talks in I Corinthians 10 about how they were “all baptized,” but “nevertheless, with most of them God was not well-pleased.” In other words, people are not saved just because they’ve been baptized.
So how CAN you know? Thankfully God’s word gives us the answer to this. And one of the best places where we can test ourselves and get assurance for our salvation is in the Book of I John which we read a few days ago in our Daily Bible Reading. I John 5:13 gives us the purpose of the book. It says: “These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, in order that you may KNOW that you have eternal life.” So John says the central purpose of this book is to give Christians the assurance of their salvation. And it does that by giving us a series of tests throughout this book, about some of the things which will be present in the life of a person who is genuinely saved. So as a person reads these tests, they should either be COMFORTED, because they see that these things are really present in their life and they are really a Christian, or they should be CONVICTED, because they don’t really see them in their life, and they will realize they are not really saved. Which is it for you? Let’s look at some of the tests God gives us here in I John, of the genuine Christian. Will this COMFORT you, or CONVICT you? Continue reading