Wednesday, October 31, 2012

How Do You Know If You're Saved?

So I was having a conversation with someone close to me today and they expressed a measure of disdain with my assertion that it was possible to know with great confidence whether one was saved from eternal punishment.

But I must confess that I believe salvation is, in essence, a straight-forward proposition.  We believe that Yeshua has the power to forgive our sins and that if we ask Him for forgiveness and we genuinely repent and try to follow Him that He will forgive us of our sins and spare us from eternal punishment.

I believe I'm a sinner---present tense.  I sin every day.  But I TRY to not to sin.  I ask Yeshua's forgiveness for my transgressions and I make every effort to better myself.  Thus, I'm confident that I will be saved from eternal punishment and that I will dwell in the Messianic Kingdom in the world to come.

5 comments:

  1. "Salvation is by grace through faith" - I get it. But knowing we are saved is not merely a matter of faith. That famous passage goes on to say, "created for good works...that we should walk in them" (Ephesians 2:8-10)

    When Yeshua was asked how to identify false professions He responded "By their fruit you'll know them." (Matthew 7:16-20; 12:33)

    And brother James said that unless the faith has been demonstrated by good works, it is very likely dead, useless faith. (James 2:17, 26)

    We need both nach'am and shuv; contrition that leads to actual change.
    2 Corinthians 7:10 HCSB 10 For godly grief produces a repentance not to be regretted and leading to salvation, but worldly grief produces death.

    We don't become immediately sinless in the practical sense, but if there is not some small, steady movement in the right direction, then all our protestations of salvation, "name it and claim it" theology is simply bunk.

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    1. But you have people, like the one in the above story, who feel unlovable, people who have been rejected (or worse) by their earthly father. For them it is difficult to recognize those "small, steady movements in the right direction" because they're perpetually focused on their shortcomings.

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  2. Salvation means "removed from the clutches of the enemy" and is completed by entering in at the straight gate. It is a process many will try fail. It is something given by grace through faith, but it requires we fight through to the end, never giving up, hating the flesh and loving to follow the Ruach. Luke 13:24

    Nothing is more discouraging and harmful to our faith than habitual sin. Half-hearted attempts to overcome sin will not result in eternal life. Forsaking everything to follow Messiah while putting the deeds of the flesh to death, cutting off the hand that offends and plucking out the eye and casting it from us......doing all that is required of us and declaring in truth we are unprofitable servants....enduring to the end....few there be that find it!

    There is an exercising unto godliness that is required to gain the kingdom by the power of the word and the Ruach haKodesh the message of which is ignored in the assembly of Laodicea. The flesh is lazy and the unconverted mind produces lies such as "we have need of nothing" and we do not understand we are blind, naked, wretched and poor.

    1 Peter 4:17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?

    18 And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?

    19 Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.

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  3. This is why the Scriptures teach us: Romans 12:3 HCSB For by the grace given to me, I tell everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he should think. Instead, think sensibly, as God has distributed a measure of faith to each one.

    We are told not to think more highly of ourselves than we should but sensibly. Contrapositionally, we should not think less of ourselves than we should but sensibly.

    Our worth is not derived from what we have made of ourselves, but from what Hashem has done for us and in us. We are fallen sinners, yet we were still created in Hashem's image. In Ephesians 2:10, where it says we are His "workmanship" the Greek word there is poeima, which would imply His poem, His masterpiece, His work of art.

    We need to bring such people to Ephesians 1:18 and teach them that it's important to acknowledge that we have this intrinsic worth because of what the Lord has done and who He made us to be. It is not a worth acquired by us - something we did or did not do to deserve "worthiness". Our works are an offshoot, a byproduct, of salvation. We work BECAUSE we are saved, not IN ORDER TO be saved.

    1 Corinthians 6:20 teaches us that the One who bought us with a price knows our true worth. The price He paid for us is Jesus. If we were to place price tags on ourselves, each one would read “Jesus”; we are “worth Jesus” to God because that is what He paid for us through Jesus’ death on the cross to pay for our sins. That is God’s statement of our value.

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  4. "But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Messiah Yeshua our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life." Titus 3:4-7

    Did Paul intend this testimony as a general theological proposition, or rather as a description of the personal experience of followers of Yeshua that he knew?

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