Sunday, August 7, 2011

Assurances of Salvation - P3

True Christians love to pray, obey and be with God's p
Assurance of salvation is the Christian's level of confidence in knowing that they know that they know they are Christians.  In today's blog we continue by noting three additional fruits, or grace driven attitudes that should be evident in the person's life who claims Christ as their own.  If the reader would like to review the wider context of this discussion, please look at the last two blogs of this series to review how you can evaluate the genuineness of Christian faith in your own life.

1. True Christians love to approach Christ in prayer
1 John 2:1 tells us: "My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous".  What is an advocate?  It is someone who is willing to represent our concerns to one who can do something about it.  Knowing that God can hear me, and knowing that I can hear God, can make prayer transform into something that I look forward to.  Note what David states in Psalm 42:3: "My soul thirsts for God, for the living God; When shall I come and  appear before God?"  David could not wait to pray.  True Christians will grow over time to appreciate Christ in prayer. 

2. True Christians love to obey God
1 John 2:3 notes - "By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments."  Do I find obeying the Lord a drudgery or a delight?  Undoubtedly Christians experience up and down times in their Christian walk, where some days seem easier to obey God than others.  Yet it is in the area of following the Lord's leading where I truly gain the confidence of assurance.  For if I walk out the light God grants me in a given area of obedience, God pledges to grant me greater light to walk by (please compare 1 John 1:7-8).  It has been well said by older saints that one the one hand, we are saved by grace alone through faith alone apart from works.  However, following our committment of faith, we are being saved by a faith that is never alone.  1 John 5:3 states plainly: "For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome."

3. True Christians love being with other Christians
1 John 2:10-11 makes this observation - "The one who loves his brother abides in the Light and there is no cause for stumbling in him. 11 But the one who hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going because the darkness has blinded his eyes."  The verbs underlined in this verse indicate a "continual, ongoing, persistent attitude".  More often than not the Bible measures the genuineness of one's love for Christ by how much on-going love they have for other Christians.  Why?  Because loving the brethren gives us practice for loving those who are not Christians.  If anything, loving other Christians is the most basic level of expressing God's love to other people. 

Unless hindered by circumstances out of one's control (such as illness or emergency), the Christian will ache in their heart whenever they miss church.  Grace-driven motives makes church attendance not a matter of a check-off list item, but rather an event whereby I reinforce my love for Jesus by being around other Christians.  Hebrews 10:25 states - "and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, 25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near."  

Come back tomorrow, dear reader, as we will look at further assurances of salvation described by 1 John.  May the Lord bless you this Lord's day. 

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