I have been overwhelmed at work as of late and not added to my devotional series on God’s Goodness for quite a few days now. I will finish it – I promise. I wanted to take a break today, however, to share with you a topic that recently resurfaced at Fundamental Baptist Forum which I had shared in June 2006. As I re-read it, the blessing was stirred again and I wanted to share it with you.
I took these notes on a message preached by Evangelist Hal Webb at our revival in June 2006. It was an awesome message! It was the first time I had ever seen a check list, so-to-speak, of how to prove your own salvation. We’ve all been there, haven’t we? Moments of doubt arise within us at times of spiritual failures and defeats. Also, we’ve all met people who live like the devil but claim to be saved. They prayed a “prayer-ette” and thought this gave them insurance against hell. The born again creature is a new creature with new desires, desires for righteousness – if this is not true, then God is a liar. But God does not lie – man does. God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; (Rom 3:4a)
Re-reading my notes blessed me so much that I expanded on it and added verses. I have put it in my Bible so that I can share that with those who “think” they are saved but their lives don’t show it. I hope it is a blessing to you!!!
Six Ways to Prove That I Am Saved:
1. I have no desire for habitual sinning in my life. If I smoke, my desire will be to quit and I will succeed with Christ’s help. If I struggled with lying, my desire will be to stop and I will be under conviction each time I do so.
Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. (1 Jo 3:9) Our soul is converted at the time we are saved. This soul is no longer bound by sin but free. It is the “house,” our flesh, which desires to sin. That is why we battle sin in this body. No one explained that better than Paul himself in Rom. 7:14-15, For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin. (14) For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. (15)
The born again believer will hate the fact that he has sinned. 1 Jo 3:9 is not talking about the flesh but the soul. Our flesh is corrupt and will not enter Heaven. It is our soul which will enter. God sees Christ’s blood upon us – He sees His Son when He looks at us. As Paul battled, our own soul battles daily with the flesh. The more we feed this flesh with the Word of God and the things of God, the flesh will sin less.
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (1 Jo 1:9
2. I have a personal belief in Jesus Christ. I truly believe He is God Who left Heaven to come to earth; in His virgin birth; His sinless life on earth; He is the Messiah of mankind Who shed His blood on the cross of Calvary for my sins; He was buried and on the third day, He arose from the dead; He ascended into Heaven and now sits at the right hand of the Father awaiting His return to reign on earth.
Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him. (1 Jo 5:1)
I was raised catholic and I learned about Jesus Christ. However, I never knew Jesus Christ. I had a head knowledge of who He was but I did not possess Him in my heart so He was just knowledge to me. It did not phase me in the least to use His name in vain. I did not have a desire to even “think” on Jesus Christ. However, after I was saved, I had a deep desire to get to know everything about Him. I could not stop reading the precious milk of the Word – the Gospels! I would call my spiritual mother almost daily with new things I had discovered and was excited to tell her what God had shown me in His Word! All these were golden nuggets to me and I was energized each time I read one!
3. I live righteously.
If ye know that he is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of him. (1 Jo 2:29)
I will have a different holy life. Do I try to please Christ every day? Do I find myself trying to please Him? Am I doing His will? Do I avoid evil? The greatest joy in life is the joy of serving Christ.
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. (2 Co 5:17)
Those who doubt their salvation can many times attribute this doubt to a lack of righteous living or doing God’s known will. Pastor Eugene Zorbas, of Tabernacle Baptist Church, preached a message on a similar topic last week. He said that being a Christian is not about keeping a list of rules but it is all about developing a relationship with Jesus Christ. The better our relationship, the better the results will be – keeping those rules because of your relationship with Him. Your desire will be to please Him with righteous living.
4. I will have a love for fellow Christians.
We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death. (1 Jo 3:14)
I can tell I’m saved by the crowd I choose to hang around with. Am I eager about Christian things? Do I desire to be around other Christians more than my worldly friends?
After I got saved, I wanted to be with other believers. I was so anxious to attend church for the first time just so I could share with others who believed as I believed!
I also discovered that this new nature caused my old friends to feel uncomfortable. It was not too soon after that they did not wish to “hang around” me any longer. As well, I did not enjoy being around them either. Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? (2 Co 6:14)
5. I’m overcoming the world.
For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. (1 Jo 5:4)
There’s always some Christian you know that “everything in their life is always going wrong”! Are they overcoming their circumstances? This is not to say things won’t go wrong, but what is their attitude as they go through these circumstances? Are they overcoming or are they defeated?
These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. (Joh 16:33) Jesus said that we shall have tribulation – not maybe. Christian, we will have tribulation in our life time here. However, Jesus said to be of good cheer! The Christian who does not overcome his circumstances does not fit here. That Christian has a “poor, pitiful me” attitude and is defeated already. However, Jesus said to be of good cheer! If it was not “do-able,” would Jesus have told us to be of good cheer? Of course not. Jesus went on to say “I have overcome the world.” Now put that with the following verse: I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. (Phi 4:13)
This is the Christian’s recipe for overcoming the world – through Jesus! Look at this example with me: A man had two dogs which he raised since they were puppies. They were kept in separate parts of the property away from each other. One dog was fed good dog food and nurtured with love and care. The other dog was given bits which would fall from the table. The nurtured dog was solid – sound muscular structure – and full of energy. The other dog was scrawny – his rib cage was noticeable – and he had no zest at all. One day, the two dogs were roaming free on the property and met each other for the first time. As their instincts took over, a territorial battle took place. Who do you think won the battle? Yes, the strong and nurtured dog won.
It is the same with Christians. If we feed our flesh with worldly things, we will be weak when it comes to spiritual battles. However, if we feed our spiritual nature with the Word and righteous living, we will be strong, ready and prepared for battle.
The world’s opinion is not to be my standard of living. My standard is the Word. I am not to please the world but I am to please the Lord, Jesus Christ.
1 John 2:15-16 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. (15) For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. (16)
6. I will have a desire for purity.
We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not. (1 Jo 5:18)
I am to care for my soul and protect it from evil. The flesh desires to sin. So protect yourself from evil. Whichever you “feed” the most will thrive in your life. If you feed your soul more, you will desire to be pure. If you feed your flesh more, you will desire the lusts of the flesh. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. (1 Jo 2:16)
Hate the evil, and love the good, and establish judgment in the gate: it may be that the LORD God of hosts will be gracious unto the remnant of Joseph. (Amo 5:15)
Abstain from all appearance of evil. (1Th 5:22)
I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me. (Psa 101:3)
Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. (Eph 5:16)
Lay hands suddenly on no man, neither be partaker of other men’s sins: keep thyself pure. (1Ti 5:22)
Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. (Phi 2:12)
I’m so glad I was brought to read this again this morning. Once again, I was blessed by Brother Webb’s words from a year ago!