Can I “Know” I am saved?

1 John 5:13 reads, “These things are written that you may know that you have eternal life.”  Is this really what this text is telling those who read the message? Can I know at any given moment if I stand saved or lost before God?  When I examine my life I see a life that is very much imperfect.  I know the mistakes I make.  I look deep within and know that I do not deserve salvation.  How can I make the context of 1 John apply to my life?

I was teaching the book of 1 John in a Wednesday night class a few months ago.  We were discussing the wonderful promises God makes through the inspiration of John.  As I was teaching the class one of the students mumbled something under his breath.  What he said was this.  He said, “I wish I could believe that.”  At times the promises of God are almost too good to be true!  I see the man in the mirror and know the shortcomings in his life.  Why would God save me?

We make a mistake in our view of salvation.  We believe our salvation rests on our ability to be good.  The facts are simple, I cannot be good enough that God will owe me anything.  Certainly God will never owe me salvation.  I am only righteous if God declares that I am righteous.  I am only good if God says I am good and I am only saved if God chooses for me to be saved.  As we look at chapter five of 1 John we read these words, “And this is the testimony, God has given us eternal life;  and this life is in His Son.  He who has the Son has life;  he who does not have the son of God does not have life.”  The next words God inspires John to write are these, “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you might know that you have eternal life.”  Our salvation does not depend on our righteousness.  Our salvation depends on whether we have the Son or not.  If we have the Son we have life eternal.  If we do not have the Son we do not have life.

I am saved because of what God has done.  If I have faith in His promises and accept those promises into my life I have both the Son and eternal life.  If I fail to believe the promises and reject the Son I have nothing.  If you miss every other point that I have made understand this point: I obey God because of what He has promised, I do not obey in order to obtain the promises of God.  This point matters.  If I am obeying in order to obtain I can never be certain I have done enough.  I will never know I am secure.  If I obey because of what He has done I will always know because God is always more than good enough.  Think on these things!!

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5 Responses to Can I “Know” I am saved?

  1. Wayne McDaniel says:

    Dell,
    Thank you for once again affirming the hope of every heart that looks to Jesus to save us from our sins.

    I have come to think of the two hearts portrayed by Jesus in his parable of the Pharisee and the Publican (Luke 18:9-14). All of us speak of ourselves like one or the other.

    Psalm 65:4, Phil.1:6, 1 Thes. 5:23-4.

  2. Thanks Wayne, I am going to deal with a similar subject at camp this year. I look forward to our meeting.

  3. Jan says:

    For so many years I was taught I was in one minute and out the next. I kept thinking, “This can’t be right”. Thanks you for clearing up so many things for me. I am so thankful that God is my Judge and not man. Thanks Dell–Keep making us think for ourselves!

  4. Haley T. says:

    I have a hard time saying I KNOW I’m going to Heaven because I also KNOW I’m not good enough to be there! But…like you say (and the Bible) we aren’t going because we’re good enough! We’re going because of Jesus’ blood that covers us after we obey the Gospel (and continue to obey to the best of our ability)!

    My prayer is always this “Lord, I know I’ll never be good enough to join You in Heaven but I pray that You will help me spend the rest of my life trying anyway!” 🙂

  5. Jan and Haley, Isn’t it good that God is good for us. If God can determined sin, He can also choose not to recognize it in my life. God is sooo good!

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