ASSURANCE OF SALVATION
"And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life,
and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life;
and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.
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."
(1 John 5:11-13)
Do you have a biblical assurance of salvation?
There are some things in life that we want to be really sure about. One of them is our salvation. We especially want to know our eternal destiny. Maybe you have doubts about your salvation. The Bible warns that many are deceived about this crucial matter. Perhaps you are like the elderly man who said to Dr. H.A. Ironside, "I will not go on unless I know I'm saved, or else know it's hopeless to seek to be sure of it. I want a definite witness, something I can't be mistaken about!" Ironside replied, "Suppose you had a vision of an angel who told you your sins were forgiven. Would that be enough to rest on?" "Yes, I think it would. An angel should be right." Ironside continued, "But suppose on your deathbed Satan came and said, 'I was that angel, transformed to deceive you.' What would you say?" The man was speechless. Ironside then told him that God has given us something more dependable than the voice of an angel. He has given His Son, who died for our sins, and He has testified in His own Word that if we trust Him, all our sins are gone. Ironside read 1 John 5:13, "that ye may know that ye have eternal life..." Then he said, "Is that not enough to rest on? It is a letter from heaven expressly to you." God's Spirit used that to bring assurance to the man's heart. — Dr. H. A. Ironside
In the New Testament and especially in the Epistles, "full assurance" is mentioned three times.
FIRST: "Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith" (Hebrews 10:22). It is the confidence of a believer that he is saved without any doubt. It is the result of believing what God says in the Bible. "He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36). He is absolutely sure that this promise of God is true because God does not lie. In other words, his confidence is based on God's promises and not on his emotional experiences.
SECOND: "The full assurance of hope unto the end" (Hebrews 6:11). The hope of the Bible is not the same as man's "wishing hope." The Christian's "hope" is "an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast..." (Hebrews 6:19). The full assurance of hope is the result of believing and accepting God's Word. This confidence will keep the believer to the end.
THIRD: "All riches of the full assurance of understanding..." (Colossians 2:2). This full assurance is God's reward to Christians who study His Word. It starts with His plan of salvation as proclaimed in the gospel of the grace of God. When one who believes and begins to understand God's Word, he comes to the point where he can enjoy all the blessings and "riches of the full assurance of understanding."
It is different knowing that you are saved than hoping that you are saved. The apostle John wrote to assure God's people about their salvation and eliminate any doubt they may have: "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" (1 John 5:13). He uses the Greek words "ἵνα εἰδῆτε," which mean to know, to see, to have surely seen. The verse gives you the assurance that you have eternal life. You are saved, period.
You may ask, "How can I know?" Because God promised eternal life to all, who believe in Jesus Christ. He died not only to forgive your sins but to give you full assurance of going to heaven. The following are a few of God's promises:
• "Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?" (John 11:25-26).
• "And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand" (John 10:28-29).
• "For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Romans 8:38,39).
• "Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ" (Philippians 1:6).
• "And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. 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" (1 John 5:11-13).
• "All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. And this is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day" (John 6:37, 39).
• "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life" (John 5:24).
• "Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification" (Romans 4:25).
• "There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit" (Romans 8:1).
• "For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God" (Romans 8:15,16).
We have to believe what God says to us. If we do not, we will pay the price. Evangelist Dwight L. Moody said, "Now, I find a great many people who want some evidence that they have accepted the Son of God. My friends, if you want any evidence, take God's word for it. You cannot find better evidence than that. You know that when the Angel Gabriel came down and told Zachariah, he should have a son, but Zachariah wanted a further token than the angel's word. He asked Gabriel for it, and Gabriel answered,
'I am Gabriel, who stands in the presence of the Lord.'
Because Gabriel had never been doubted, he thundered out this to Zachariah. But Zachariah wanted a further token, and Gabriel said, 'You shall have a token: you shall be dumb till your son shall be given you.'" — CCEL
Several years ago, our church had revival meetings with a famous evangelist. A Catholic Priest attended one of the meetings. He was an educated man and had even memorized all the New Testament, but he was lost spiritually. He admitted he was lost, but he did not have the courage to accept the Lord by faith as his personal Savior even though many leaders of our church encouraged him to do so. Sadly, he came and left a lost sinner, instead of a redeemed child of God. This happened because he did not believe what God said in the Bible even though he knew the scriptures and had them memorized.
It is wonderful to read and know the scriptures. However, even the devil knows the scriptures, as well as many people from other religions, but they are not saved. Regarding the story about the Catholic priest, we understand that only knowing the scriptures cannot save us. We have to believe and accept Jesus Christ as our personal Savior as the scriptures teach us very clearly.
"That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved" (Romans 10:9).
Numerous times, I ask people who claim that they are Christians, "Are you born again? Do you have the assurance of your salvation? Do you have a personal relationship with God?" The people who are not true Christians answer with many different statements that do not have anything to do with the question I asked. They say something like, "I have been baptized,"
"My parents were Christians, and I am," "I once said the sinner's prayer and I feel I am a Christian," "I am going to a Christian church," or "I think I am a Christian, but I have some doubts."
Sadly, all these people are not sincere followers of Jesus Christ, and we see them continue to live in sin, to love the world, and not obey God's commandments. These people deceive themselves and think that they are Christians, but they are not according to the Holy Scriptures. Pastor Steven J. Cole said, "If you do not know God personally, you are not saved." Many people know a lot of things about God but do not know God. It is much different knowing about God than to know God. It is much different, knowing Psalm 23 than to know the Shepherd.
I hope you have the confidence to say as the blind man who was healed by Jesus "one thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see" (John 9:25). Joyful is the soul that can truly say, "One thing I know, is that I used to be blind (spiritually) and now I can see (spiritually)!" or "One thing I know, is that I used to be lost and now I am saved!" Apostle John used the word "know" 177 times in his writings because he dealt with the truth and reality. The gospel of John is the most assuring book in the Bible. Read it if you have doubts.
Christians must live by Bible principles and not by their feelings. They do not have to feel that their sins have been forgiven, but they have to know by faith that they have been forgiven because God says so in His Word. There is no more powerful testimony than that which is drawn from your own experience. I hope all of us have that experience so we can say, "I have the assurance of my salvation," "I know that I have eternal life," and "I know God personally through Jesus Christ." Also, to say as Job said in Job 19:25, "I know that my redeemer liveth,..." and with the apostle Paul in 2 Timothy 1:12, "I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day."
Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine;
Oh, what a foretaste of glory divine!
Heir of salvation, purchase of God,
Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood.
This is my story, this is my song,
Praising my Savior all the day long.
This is my story, this is my song,
Praising my Savior all the day long.
— Hymn by Frances J. Crosby, 1873
by Ted Matamis, copyright © 2019. All rights reserved.
“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...”
—1 John 5:13
"And the testimony is this, that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has the life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the life. These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life." (1 John 5:11-13)
"Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life." (John 5:24)
"Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to make you stand in the presence of His glory blameless with
great joy." (Jude 1:24)
"The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God." (Romans 8:16)
"Therefore He is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them." (Hebrews 7:25)
"My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand."
"Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption." (Ephesians 4:30)
"Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes has eternal life." (John 6:47)
"For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 8:38-39)
"Let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water." (Hebrews 10:22)
"For this reason I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep that I have committed to Him until that Day." (2 Timothy 1:12 )
"What is your assurance of salvation? The promise of God's Word. If God says it, that settles it, because God cannot lie. You can trust the promise of God's Word."
—Pastor, Rick Warren
"I believe hundreds of Christian people are being deceived by Satan now on this point, that they have not got the assurance of salvation just because they are not willing to take God at His word." — Evangelist, D.L. Moody
"If any man is not sure that he is in Christ, he ought not to be easy one moment until he is sure. Dear friend, without the fullest confidence as to your saved condition, you have no right to be at ease, and I pray you may never be so. This is a matter too important to be left undecided." — "Prince of Preachers," Charles Spurgeon
"When you are not sure of your salvation, it is very easy to get discouraged and to backslide." — Bible Teacher, Zac Poonen
"To be assured of our salvation is no arrogant stoutness. It is faith. It is devotion. It is not presumption. It is God's promise."— Theologian, Philosopher, and Bishop, Augustine
"In these two things the greatness of man consists, to have God so dwelling in us as to impart his character to us, and to have him so dwelling in us that we recognize his presence, and know that we are his, and he is ours. The one is salvation: the other the assurance of it." — English Divine, Frederick W. Robertson
"When I cannot enjoy the faith of assurance, I live by the faith of adherence." — Minister and Author, Matthew Henry
"Assurance after all is no more than a full-grown faith; a masculine faith that grasps Christ's promise with both hands - a faith that argues like the good centurion, if the Lord "speak the word only," I am healed. Wherefore then should I doubt? (Matthew 8:8)."— Anglican Bishop, J. C. Ryle
"Assurance is the fruit that grows out of the root of faith." — Clergyman, Stephen Charnock
"I suppose many do not understand themselves, when they say they want assurance; for what better assurance would you have than the word of God? If you have his word, and take his word, you need no better assurance." — British Architect, Ralph Erskine
"O most glorious God ... Direct my thoughts, words and work, wash away my sins in the immaculate blood of the Lamb, and purge my heart by thy Holy Spirit.... Daily frame me more and more into the likeness of thy Son Jesus Christ.... Thou gavest thy Son to die for me, and hast given me assurance of salvation... " — President, George Washington
"The opposite of sight and feeling is faith. Now it is the soulish person who gains assurance by grasping the things which can be seen and felt; but the person who follows the spirit lives by faith, not by sight."
— Chinese Christian Teacher and Evangelist, Watchman Nee
"There's no sight like seeing the light from Calvary kiss a human face as it fills the heart with the assurance of Divine forgiveness." — Evangelist, Gipsy Smith
"Prayer crowns God with the honor and glory due to His name, and God crowns prayer with assurance and comfort.
The most praying souls are the most assured souls." — Preacher and Author, Thomas Brooks
Do you have assurance of eternal life?
Sometime when you're in an airport, observe the difference between passengers who hold confirmed tickets and those who are on standby. The ones with confirmed tickets read newspapers, chat with their friends or sleep. The ones on standby hang around the ticket counter, pace and smoke, smoke and pace.
The difference is caused by the confidence factor. If you knew that in fifteen minutes you would have to stand in judgment before the Holy God and learn your eternal destiny, what would your reaction be? Would you smoke and pace? Would you say to yourself, "I don’t know what God's going to say--will it be 'Welcome home, child,' or will it be 'Depart from me; I never knew you'" - Too Busy Not To Pray, Bill H.
You May Know
"You may know that you have eternal life" (1 John 5:13).
Many believers lack the assurance of their salvation. Oftentimes this is due to a failure on the part of other believers to adequately instruct and follow-up the new converts. It is extremely important after one is saved that he faithfully study the Scriptures so he "may know" he is saved.
One who has sincerely received Christ need never doubt his salvation. The Bible assures us that we "are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation" (1 Peter 1:5). This is because God has "begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead" (1 Peter 1:3).
It seems that the word "know" is one of John's favorites. He uses it no less than 177 times in his writings. He was not one to dwell on uncertainty — he dealt with facts. We need to do the same. We are not to wonder about our salvation, but believe and thank God for it. Martin Luther was asked one time if he "felt" that his sins were forgiven. "No," he replied. "I don't feel that they are forgiven. I know they are because God says so in His Word."
God's Word makes it clear that nothing other than the sacrifice of Christ is sufficient for salvation. If anyone is to be saved, there is only one way: we must come to God through Christ, and receive salvation as a free gift. It is not what we do that saves us, but what Christ has done. "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us" (Titus 3:5). — Adapted from Living Confidently by J. Allen Blair.
A man once came to D. L. Moody and said he was worried because he didn't feel saved. Moody asked, "Was Noah safe in the ark?" "Certainly he was," the man replied. "Well, what made him safe, his feeling or the ark?" The inquirer got the point. "How foolish I've been!" he said. "It is not my feeling; it is Christ who saves!" — D.J.D
After John Wesley had been preaching for some time, some one said to him, “Are you sure, Mr. Wesley, of your salvation?”
“Well,” he answered, “Jesus Christ died for the whole world.”
“Yes, we all believe that; but are you sure that you are saved?”
Wesley replied that he was sure that provision had been made for his salvation.
“But are you sure, Wesley, that you are saved?”
It went like an arrow to his heart, and he had no rest or power until that question was settled.
Many men and many women go on month after month, and year after year, without power, because they do not know their standing in Christ; they are not sure of their own footing for eternity.
Latimer wrote Ridley once that when he was settled and steadfast about his own salvation he was as bold as a lion, but if that hope became eclipsed he was fearful and afraid and was disqualified for service. Many are disqualified for service because they are continually doubting their own salvation.— Moody’s Anecdotes, Page 101-102
Regarding salvation and assurance, there are three groups of people:
1. those who are secure but not sure;
2. those who are "sure" but not secure; and
3. those who are secure and sure.
Category one are conscientious believers in Christ who are saved but lack assurance.
In category two are professing Christians who say, "Even though I'm living in sin, I'll make it. After all, 'once saved, always saved!'"
The third group are born-again believers who enjoy a warm, secure relationship with Christ each day.
The objective basis of our salvation is the finished work of God’s Son on the cross. The subjective basis for our assurance is our believing the truth about Christ (I John 2:2,4; 2:15; 5:1), loving the brethren (I John 3:14, 18, 19, 4:7-8), and obeying Christ's commandments (I John 2:3-5). — Source unknown
"I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep
that which I have committed unto Him against that day"
(2 Timothy 1:12)
Hold on. Jesus is with you. He will never let you go!
of Salvation is through
Admit that you are a sinner, and you need God's forgiveness.
Trust only in Christ to save you.
Believe that Jesus died on the cross for your sins.
Turn (repent) from your sins, and accept Jesus into your life by faith
as your Savior to receive eternal life, living hope and assurance of salvation.
Faith is not believing something hard enough to make it happen — that is positive thinking.
Faith is not feeling, it is believing. Faith is not doing, it is resting.
Faith is not trying, it is depending on Christ alone as a helpless sinner.
I hope you have assurance of salvation.
If not, it is the right time to think seriously to settle your eternal destiny before it is too late.
Assurance of Salvation is only through Jesus Christ.
No one can save you, except Jesus Christ.
"Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved" (Acts 4:12).
"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast" (Ephesians 2:8,9).
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