The BIBLE VIEW #857 — Being Sure

In This Issue:
I’m Sure
How to Know If You Are Saved
The Old Account Was Settled Long Ago

Volume: 857    May 1, 2022
Theme: Being Sure

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I’m Sure
Bill Brinkworth

One hears many “I think I am saved” and “I hope I am”s.  However, a long time ago, I settled on “I am sure I am saved and bound for Heaven.”  Countless others also have been able to make that same claim.

The assertion of one’s salvation must be centered on one’s being convinced that the Bible is the Word of God and that He preserved it so we could know His will and way.  If God’s source of truth is not settled, then there is nowhere else to gain the peace in knowing one’s eternal destiny.  

One must be convinced that what the Bible says is straight from God’s lips to those who recorded it for Him.  Once the authority and validity of what God dictated are established and that it has been preserved for us, obedience to it is the next step.

Security of an eternity in Heaven cannot be relied on by what a person or religion says.  Unless it aligns with God’s Word, what a religion claims, no matter how many followers it has, can be false and dishonest

I first read and acknowledged that I was a sinner.  There was no question about it.  I knew my past and heart that it was wicked and did what it thought was right or pleasurable.  I was reminded and convicted of my transgressions against God as I read.
“As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:” Romans 3:10
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” Rom.  3:23

Soon, I discovered that there was a terrible price to pay for my wickedness and sinning against a mighty and Holy Creator.  I did not want to pay for it, so I continued searching the Scriptures to find if there was a way to avoid the punishment due to me.  There was.
“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Rom. 6:23

I found it!  God’s “way” had nothing to do with what I could do.  I could not take back my transgressions against a holy God.  Neither was there any way I could pay for my sin.  No amount of good deeds could save me or anyone!
“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.”  Ephesians 2:8-9
Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,” II Timothy 1:9

As I studied, I found that there was a way to have all my sins — past, present, and future — forgotten and forgiven by God.  That way was to realize Jesus had already paid for my sins.  All I had to do was believe by faith that God’s only Son was the only one worthy enough to pay for my great sin-debt.  The Word of God said it, so I believed it and then asked and trusted Christ as my Saviour from an eternity in the Lake of Fire.

After that great step of faith, total assurance came.  A change in my life occurred.

Prayers got answered.  I had prayed most of my life and did not recall an answered petition.  I thought that was how it was to be.  We asked but seldom got answers to requests.  However, after being saved, that changed. 

God had done the impossible countless times.  When there was no hope to get necessary solutions to troubles I faced, I could depend that He would do what was best.  HE NEVER let me down.  Believing His answers to be coincidences soon were seen as foolish explanations.  He was real, and my prayers reached His throne room, where He thought me worthy enough to help and answer my requests.

More assurance that the Word of God was preserved, reliable, and trustworthy came as He helped me through the many challenges I faced.  As I relied on His promises, any doubts that God’s Word was the only tangible source of truth vanished. 

After obeying what God commanded in the Bible, more changes occurred in my life.  Behavior that did not bother me in the past was recognized as unfruitful and often sin.  Those past actions were no longer desired and often purposedly avoided and halted.

As I yielded to God’s commandments,  I could see how he used me to do things that I would never have done in a thousand years.  Conversations with others about the Saviour and God’s goodness yielded fruit I never expected or imagined.  Without knowing the person’s situation, I often said exactly what they needed to encourage them to turn to the Saviour.  I knew that it was not me that helped, but the Lord was working through me to minister to others.

More opportunities of service to the Lord were made available.  I accepted the challenges to do what God led me to do.   Priorities shifted from selfishness to the importance of others and their needs.  After a while, I noticed I did not have to worry about my own needs as He would meet them. 

There have been struggles and challenges, but now I see that they were necessary to help me grow.  Through it all, I must claim that God has changed my life.  I am a new creature, although I still stumble and fall, and let the Lord down so many times.   
“Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Matthew 26:41 Also Mark.  14:38.

I have heard similar testimonies from Christians from all over the world.  Being born again by God’s grace changes a believer.   We are certainly not perfect, but the changes prove He is real and still working in our lives.
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” II Corinthians 5:17

Although your journey through this life is most likely different than mine, can you still claim that you are convinced you are a child of God and on the way to Heaven?  Have you been saved?

“So when the devil throws your sins in your face and declares that you deserve death and Hell, tell him this,  ‘I admit that I deserve death and Hell, what of it?  For I know One who suffered and made satisfaction on my behalf.  His name is Jesus Christ, Son of God, and where He is, there I shall be also.”
— Martin Luther

How to Know If You Are Saved
Bill Brinkworth

After one is born again (John 3:3), it is often questioned, “Am I really saved?  How can I know for sure?” I John 3 helps answer some of those questions and doubts.

  • The first proof is “Whosoever abideth in him [Jesus] sinneth not …” (I John 3:6).  A typical reaction after reading that verse would be one of panic, “Oh no, I have sinned since I have been saved; therefore, I must not be saved.” 
    “Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him.” I John 3:6

    That is not what is being addressed there.  Throughout the New Testament, it has been established that we can still sin even after we’re saved (Romans 3:10, 23). In I John 2:1, Christians are commanded not to sin, but if they do, they have an advocate (a person who defends one’s case in a court of law) in Christ. Why would we need an advocate if we did not sin?
    “My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:” I John  2:1

    There also is a long list of righteous men that sinned, including Moses, Lot, David, and Peter. The soul may be saved, but the flesh they were born with will still sin if the spirit is not allowed to control it.

    In I John 3:6, “sinneth” refers to a continuance in sin. It implies a continuing practice of transgressing God’s commandments. When people are saved, they may sin, but they do not want to. If they do, they feel miserable until they get it right. The Holy Spirit in their spiritual hearts does not want to commit iniquity.  Sometimes the flesh lets that Spirit down, but a saved person will not want to sin!
  • Another proof is that a child of God will love the new family he is adopted into; he will love his Christian brothers and sisters.
    “We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren.  He that loveth not his brother abideth in death.” I John 3:14
  • A compassionate heart (I John 3:17-19, 23) is also evidence of one’s salvation.  The indwelling Spirit of God attempts to take our minds off of ourselves and put them on the needs and concerns of others. He gives us the desire to help others.
    “And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment.” I John 3:23
  • A child of God can ask the Lord for help, and he will receive it; an unsaved person does not have that opportunity.
    “And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.” I John 3:22
  • Those that think one can be saved and do whatever one wants most likely have never experienced the conviction of the Holy Spirit.  One that is saved will want to keep God’s commandments. It will trouble him if he does not.
    “And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him.  And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.” I John 3:24

Salvation is not an “I think I am” or “I hope so” experience.  According to the scriptures, it is a know-so conviction in one’s heart (I John 3:19, 24, I John 5:13).
“These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.” I John 5:13

The Old Account Was Settled Long Ago
Hymn by Frank Graham

There was a time, I know,
When in the book of Heaven,
An old account was standing
For sins yet unforgiven;
My name was at the top
And many things below,
I went unto the Keeper,
And settled long ago.

Long ago, long ago,
Yes, the old account was settled long ago;
And the record’s clear today,
For He washed my sins away,
When the old account was settled long ago.