How Do I Know That I Have Salvation?
"In reply Jesus declared, "I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again" (John 3:3).
"Dear Dr. Sala," writes a listener, "I'm 26 years of age, and at this point in my life, I have such an empty feeling. I'm a member of a Baptist Church (which I haven't been to for at least a month). I'm trying to reach for something but I don't know what!! I'm spiritually weak. Is there a time in our lives when we become stumped--you don't know which way to go? If you are able to answer these questions, please reply."
A second letter struck a kindred note, as a friend wrote, "I have asked God to save me, but my faith is very weak when I get worried. Then it is as if I don't believe in God. I am afraid my faith is so small God has not saved me. With this little faith, can God save me? As long as I have problems, I can't believe. Please help me!"
Perhaps you can relate to the heart-cries of those two friends. Way down in your heart you would like to believe, but so many things have happened, you have begun to wonder if something is wrong with you, or if it will work for you at all. Hold on, friend. Today's program is just for you.
God only knows how many folks live with doubts in their heart. Questions abound such as, "Is my faith strong enough?" "Why can't I get on top of my temptation?" "Why doesn't God speak to me as He does to other people?" And the bottom line, of course, is that the doubts and questions rob you of your peace, and definitely the assurance of your salvation. You don't know if God would receive you at all, should you die and stand knocking at heaven's gate.
Based on what our two friends told me, I have more confidence that God has heard them than they do. Do you know why? I have greater confidence in the promises of God and know the Word better. But how much do you have to know to have the assurance that you are on good terms with God?
First, settle some issues once and for all. Issues like this: Would God lie to you? Will He keep His word? Did He really mean what He said when the prophets of old, recorded His Word? Simple questions, but vitally important. Long ago Moses wrote, "God is not a man, that he should lie, nor a son of man, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill?" You'll find those words in the Old Testament book of Numbers, chapter 23.
The New Testament says, "If you will confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus Christ and believe in your heart God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved" (Romans 10:9). The question then is, "As you know how, did you believe in your heart and verbally confess Christ as your Savior?" If you did, then God will honor His Word. Simply put, you can know that you are His child. John says, "He who has the Son has life and he who has not the Son of God has not life" (1 John 5:12). It is simple.
But how do you explain the doubts and questions? In some cases, we depend on feelings rather than the facts from God's Word. Our emotions are an unstable barometer of reality and you can't depend on them. At other times Satan does use doubts and questions to convince us that it may work for others but not for us. At other times we ask, "How could I really be God's child and have the problems that I have?" not understanding that God promises to take us through the deep waters, not always deliver us from them. You can know that you are born again and you can have that knowledge today.
Resource reading: John 3: 1-21