Can You Be Sure?

17940-bigthumbnailWe all struggle with sin.  Its a fact.  Anyone who says they have no sin is a liar.  As I continue to walk with the Lord, I realise just how deep that taproot goes…to our very hearts.  Sin will never be fully excised from our hearts as long as we are in this world.  Don’t believe me?  Then yours is the sin of self-righteousness, and we as Christians know that we have no righteousness of our own.  We have the righteousness of Christ, if we are now in Him.

I see videos and read articles all the time that I think are very damaging to the struggling believer.  A person who is born again is going to spend the rest of his life doing battle with sin.  No, we are not to just accept it but to fight it, and yet there are some sins that you may never stop struggling with.  I read a wonderful transcript of a discussion that John MacArthur had with Phil Johnson and Richard Mayhue.  I found some wonderful things in that transcript, things which encouraged me greatly.  The discussion was about election and predestination, a doctrine which I believe to be true.  There are more than enough Scriptures which speak of this: Romans 8:29,30 says “Because those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.  And those whom He predestined, these He also called; and those whom He called, He also justified, these He also glorifed”.  Are we going to thwart the will of God?  I think not. 

John MacArthur makes a paricularly interesting point:  “And yet there are people – and this has happened to me many times – who say: I guess I am just not chosen.  And that comes from people who, for the most part, make some kind of commitment to Christ, but just can’t live a life that serves the Lord.  They just can’t get over some besetting sin.  They just – they can’t, you know, get out of some bad relationship or over some pornography or – I don’t know what it is, its varying things.  There are sins that beleager certain people.  And you know, they make this confession; I want to be saved and I – so they finally get to the point where they are just absolutely exhausted with this battle that they are fighting.  And they’ll say, you know, maybe I’m just not chosen.  And the truth of the matter was, you know, I would drive him back to Romans 7 and have him read what Paul said: The things i want to do I don’t do; the things I don’t want to do, I do.  Oh, poor me, I’m not chosen.  No.  I mean, its only a question of degree.  We’re all in the same battle.  I mean we could all come to the conclusion, I must not be chosen.  I must not be chosen, I can’t get over the proverbial hump here.  When do I – when do I hit the slide?  You know, when do I stop climbing this thing and start sliding?  Well, it isn’t going to happen.  You know, you don’t want to second-guess your salvation, which manifests itself in a love for Christ and a longing to be what you can’t be to some degree.”

You know, I started out this article with the intention of doing something completely different, but I felt compelled as I was writing it to share this with you, because I found it gave me enormous relief.  The older we get, the more sin bothers us, and the more we want to conquer it once and for all.  I can tell you this from experience…it isn’t going to happen.  That is the very reason Christ died for us!  And if the Father gave His Son for us, what will He withhold from us?  God wants you to be saved.  It is His desire that you be saved, and we cannot thwart the will of God!  I cannot stress this enough.  Don’t buckle under the pressure of videos and articles and preachers telling you that you must be spotless to enter the Kingdom, because you are already in if you are a lover of Jesus Christ.  By all means, don’t give in to your sin, keep fighting it, but no matter what your particular Goliath is, it is not, never ever going to keep you from being with Christ.  We do not enter the Kingdom because of our works, but because of what Christ did for us.  I am never going to allow these Pharaseeistic teachers to ever convince me that I have any reason to doubt what Christ said: that any man that comes to Him He will in no wise cast out.  He will not do it!  God is love, and He has set His sights on us.

There is nothing that can ever separate us from the Love of Christ.  If we love and follow Jesus, then we are His, and He will never abandon us.  I beg all the children of God to stop doubting their salvation.  Nobody ever entered heaven out of fear of going to hell – God has chosen us, and we are His.

What we need to do more than anything is to praise Him, because if you are a true believer, it is Christ’s atoning work on the cross which saves us; His shed blood which covers our sin.  No, this is not a license to sin, but it is assurance that in the great scheme of things, the matter is settled.  There is therfore now no comdemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.

Amen!

julietsm

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6 Responses to “Can You Be Sure?”

  1. Again, great to see your blog back Juliet. As a new born again Christian I perhaps have not worried about this as much as Christians who have been followers of Christ for a longer time period. Yet there are innumerable places in the Bible were it is quite obvious that God has chosen us and opened our eyes. And as God knows exactly what is in the deepest part of our heart, mind and spirit He would not allow this awakening to occur; and seen as God knows our true heart, no matter what failings which we might still suffer with through sin in our life, He knows that we are indeed his children and trying to do our best not to sin.

    Of course this doesn’t give one the right to say “OK, I am saved, so I can do anything now because I am still going to heaven”! Sorry my friend! Once you become a child of His again you would never want to think like this at all, and God would keep your eyes, heart and soul clouded. A true child of God would want to emulate Christ as much as possible, even though we know this could never be the case and through sin we would fall well short, but you would want to follow Christ’s example none the less.

    James 1:17-18; “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. Of His own will He brought us forth by the of the truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures”

    Matthew 22:14; “For many are called, but few are chosen”

    2 Timothy 2:19; “Nevertheless the solid foundation of God stands, having this seal: “The Lord knows those who are His,” and, “Let everyone who names the name of Christ depart from iniquity.”

    The words are pretty clear and understandable when you read them.

    Keep up the great words and inspirations Juliet! God Bless you sister!

    Amen indeed!

  2. Juliet,

    Thanks again for your encouraging reply to me on you tube. I followed you here and was pleasantly surprised. 🙂

    I became a believer in my 30s and I struggled with addictions and sin to the point you mentioned. What I found is that was exactly the key. I got to the point where I hated myself for myself repeating the same thing I swore I would never do and I just gave up. I indulged myself for a period in despair but then something very strange happened… I died to self.

    See I was viewing my walk with God as a self improvement program. It’s not – it’s a re birth from the dead program. Letting go is hard – most of what I have let go of has my claw marks on it. But when you let go – then Christ can take over. Today I am still amazed that things I used to crave no longer tempt me. But I had nothing to do with it – not therapy – not self help books – none of it. Just surrender. So sometimes that struggle is a necessary to teach us that we can not do it. We must rely on Jesus.

    No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. (1 cor 10:13)

    In Christ,
    Cris

  3. Hi mate,

    I just came across your blog from google, struggling with the concept of sin and how I could be saved despite this. I am young (having just become an adult in the eyes of the law) but in terms of following God and Christ, I am old – having grown up in the Christian household, having faithful parents and a loving church community. And over the past years, I had noticed exactly what you were mentioning – I was stuck in a huge guilt trip over pornography, and I’d always fall over, and pray for forgiveness… and then fall over just the next day.

    In time, this really wore out my belief – it was like, I believed in God, I believed Christ was the Son of God, but it was useless – it had no effect on the world; it had no effect on my addiction; I was continuing to live but was seeing no change. I began to question how God was in this world – and all the atheist/agnostic questions started firing at my mind, and I had pretty much lost hope. I wanted to live like Christ – and really tried (and am still trying :D) to; but this sin was just hounding me, making me feel like I was leading a double life. Like I was being holy and godly and bearing the 9 fruits of the spirit and everything on the outside – and inside, it felt like I was such a hypocrite.

    Anyway, your post has given me hope, and given me the ability to continue fighting. I will continue to live for God, knowing I am saved, and that it is where my heart is that matters.

    God bless 🙂

    • My friend, I just reread your comment and I cannot tell you how very thrilled I am that something I wrote gave you encouragement. That is the very reason I began writing this blog; I felt compelled to encourage the brethren.
      You sound very mature spiritually. I wasn’t even born again until I was in my late twenties, even though I always believed in God, prayed to God, and felt the presense of God. My family of atheist ‘intellectuals’ and artists thought I was a bit dull in the mind. Straight A’s meant nothing to them, it was my belief that made them despise me. Now they are gone, all of them. And my heart is inconsolable knowing that not a one of these Jewish atheists was saved.
      So it has become my mission to share my own struggles and triumphs with others, in the hopes that perhaps you and they might not have to undergo all the running and struggling that I did…
      I had almost abandoned my blog altogether, having been targeted by some very hateful people who spam my blog constantly and tell me the ugliest things.
      And here is your post, like a flower blooming in the desert.
      Don’t let anyone kid you; once found you can never be lost again. Jesus knew everything you ever did before He saved you, including your worst sins.
      He has given you everything you need to be saved. NOTHING can seperate us from the love of Christ.
      …Including our sin. His precious blood covers our sins. Would God have revealed the truth to you to only, in the end, say “Sorry kid, but you didn’t make the cut”.
      Just remember:
      “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not of your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”
      Everyone struggles, although most don’t like to admit it. Paul himself was a mature believer when he wrote Romans 7.
      Ah, but the very first verse in Romans 8 is:
      “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus”.
      Never forget that, my dear brother.
      Never!

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