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Like most people who have received eternal life, you might have often doubted if you are genuinely saved or perhaps not feel like anything has changed. Without a convincing assurance of salvation, it is unlikely your Christian life would experience the more profound things of God.
The doctrine of assurance is foundational to helping the new believer understand the new life and accommodate other truths that would build the life. The good news is that the Bible lets believers know if they are genuinely saved.
Foundations for Assurance
There are biblical foundations to assure salvation that every new believer MUST know. I use the word “must” because this forms the solid foundation for a fruitful Christian living. The Bible shows us that it is possible to have the assurance of the eternal life we have received from God.
There are three foundations for the assurance of salvation we will look at in this piece.
1. God’s Assurance To The Believer
There is no other way to blot out your lack of assurance apart from God’s word. God’s word takes authority over any man’s word. Though man is prone to lie, God cannot lie (Heb 6:18).
Whenever there are doubts in the heart of a believer, God’s word should be our final destination. Though men may write the books in the scriptures, let us not forget that they were inspired explicitly by God (2 Tim 3:16).
So what does God’s word say about salvation? The scriptures make it clear that God’s way of salvation is through a person, Jesus Christ.
First, let us look at the assurance we have in John 3:16. It says, For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
Here we see a condition God gave for anyone to whom He will give eternal life. The condition states the recipient only needs to believe that He gave His Son to die for the sins of the whole world.
Romans 10:9 reiterates and expands on the condition stated in John 3:16, that 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.
God has done His part in salvation. The question to you is, have you heard the gospel, confessed with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believed in your heart that God raised Him from the dead?
If you have done all these, it means you also have done your part in God’s salvation, which should settle every doubt in your heart.
Thirdly, the apostle John sums up the assurance in 1 John 5:12-13.
He who has the Son has ]life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. 13 These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.
John’s statement reassured the believers that they have eternal life. This is a fact that we must keep believing to remove all doubts.
As we have seen from these verses, the word of God is the authority to give the objective truths regarding our salvation.
2. The Holy Spirit Bears Witness
When a person believed and responded to the gospel of Christ, regeneration took place. This means the Holy Spirit now inhabits the believer to commence the work of renewal.
The believer’s spirit is now one with God’s Spirit enabling him to hear God and respond. Not only does the word of God assure us of our salvation, but we also have the Holy Spirit bear witness in our spirit that we are saved.
When people receive the gospel, they may not feel anything has happened to them. However, a change happened in our spirit. The feeling comes from our soul (mind, will, and emotion), while God’s regeneration happens in our spirit.
In Romans 8:16, the Bible says, The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,
The Spirit will bear witness that we are a child of God when we have believed.
3. Our Love For God’s Family
An actual test of salvation is that we love the brothers and sisters in Christ, and we always sense a desire to fellowship with them. A saved person experiences a sincere brotherly affection for other believers around him.
1 John 3:14 – We know that we have passed out of death into life because we love the brothers, He who does not love abides in death.
This is not the kind of love the world professes, which is superficial and selfish, but a love of God that has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit given to us. (Romans 5:5).
Reasons You Lack Assurance Of Salvation
Here are some reasons you may doubt your salvation;
1. Not Acknowledging The Eternal Life Experience
The day a person decides to repent and follow Jesus Christ is a momentous day that should be remembered. Regeneration took place on that day; the kingdom of darkness lost a soul, and heaven rejoiced. Most people do not remember this day because they did not feel the experience. It is not a feeling but a reality that is spiritual.
We can liken the new birth experience to our natural birth.
For every true believer, the day is a new birthday that God came into our hearts. It marks the beginning of the assurance that we are now found in His purpose.
2. Lacking Confidence In The Process
The gospel is foolishness to those who are perishing. People wonder how simple it is to hear the gospel, believe in their hearts that God raised Jesus Christ on the third day, and confess with their mouths Jesus as Lord. This is the simplicity of the gospel. The aim of the gospel, when preached, is to touch the heart of the hearer so there can be belief, confession, and repentance.
3. Living In Sin
When a new believer continues living the old life after receiving the gospel, there would be doubts about salvation. The old life is a life of sin and rebellion against God, which doesn’t respond to the will of God. If a new believer is not adequately taught about the new life realities after the new birth experience, they will continue in their old ways leading to a life of sin and death
4. Lacking Sound Biblical Doctrine
A new believer must be well taught in sound biblical doctrine to establish them in the faith. Without a sound new testament teaching, the assurance of faith will be lacking, which will lead to doubts about their salvation.
5. Not Studying God’s Word
The word of God is given to every believer to know God personally. We established earlier the authority in the word of God for the benefit of every believer. When new believers stray from God’s word, they slip easily into their old ways and feel unsaved.
The Importance of Assurance of Salvation
Assurance of salvation is crucial because it sets the believers on a solid foundation that provides comfort and peace of mind. A lack of assurance is easily exploited by satan to take away their joy and make their Christian life miserable.
It creates the peace of mind in God through Christ Jesus that provokes thanksgiving and our love for Him, for we love Him because He first loved us. Assurance gives us the boldness that he loves us because He sent His only Son to die for us.
Martyn Lloyd-Jones said: “If I am without assurance, I am like an animal in its cage. I cannot move from my spot. And yet, if I am assured, I am free. I can go anywhere.”
More Scriptures Verses On Assurance Of Salvation
Here are more scriptures on assurance of salvation for your meditation.
- John 1:12 – But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name.
- Ephesians 1:13 – In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise,
- Romans 10:9-13 – that 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. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.” 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. 13 For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.“
- John 14:6; – Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
- Acts 10:43; – To Him all the prophets witness that, through His name, whoever believes in Him will receive remission of sins.“
- Acts 16:31; – So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.”
- 1 John 5:10; – He who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself; he who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed the testimony that God has given of His Son.
- John 3:36; – He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”