Sermon PastorBryon August 25, 2019
A Sunday School teacher wanted to drive home the point that you can’t earn your way into heaven. He asked his class,
Teacher – “If I sold my house and my car, had a big garage sale and gave all my money to the church, would that get me into Heaven?”
Class – “NO!” the children all answered.
Teacher – “If I cleaned the church every day, mowed the yard, and kept everything neat and tidy, would that get me into Heaven?”
Class – Again, the answer was, “NO!”
Teacher – “Well, then, if I was kind to animals, good to my children, and loved my wife, would that get me into Heaven?”
Class – Again, they all answered, “NO!”
Teacher – “Well, then how can I get into Heaven?”
A five-year-old boy shouted out, “YOU GOTTA BE DEAD!”
Smart kid. Yes, if you want to reach the afterlife, it usually happens after…life.
Many Christians experience their spiritual lives as a roller coaster of emotion. Some days they feel like they really understand the gospel, but other days it doesn’t sit right with them—either because of sin in their lives, or unanswered questions, or the fear that “I don’t really know Christ” … or even because of a bad night’s rest! These believers don’t usually doubt Jesus, but they wonder if something is missing. Shouldn’t things be different? More pointedly, shouldn’t they be different?
Would you say you have confidence in your salvation or do you find yourself questioning whether you’re saved or not?
In 2 Corinthians 5:6-8 Paul said, “Therefore we are always confident and know that as long as we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord. 7 For we live by faith, not by sight. 8 We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord.”
Paul was confident in his salvation and lived his life as such. The reason for his confidence wasn’t because of any self-attained measure of success, but because he believed, had faith that his salvation was secure.
There is nothing like the stability and spiritual confidence in the life of a saved person. It’s empowering and helps us to not only maintain the course but when we fall that confidence motivates us to get back up and keep pressing forward.
Today we are going to examine scripture to see what it says about our salvation and learn why we can be confident in our salvation.
Scripture: 2 Corinthians 5:14-21
14 For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus: that if One died for all, then all died; 15 and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.
16 Therefore, from now on, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him thus no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 18 Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, 19 that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.
20 Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. 21 For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him
Paul wrote this Scripture which is the second letter to the Corinthians later on in his ministry. This was a seasoned Paul, the man who had experienced many trial and persecution for his faith. He seemed to always be a man of great convictions but by the time he writes this letter we are hearing from an older much wiser apostle Paul.
Of all his letters none are more personally revealing of his heart than 2 Corinthians.
Stepping through Scripture
Christ’s love is our driving force and as Christians because of what he did for us we have died to our old life. He said because one died for all, then all died. What he did on the cross was for everyone. As if we all went to the cross. In God’s eyes we were on the cross and the sin debt is paid.
In verse 15 it says that since he died for all we who are alive should live for him.
Galatians 2:20 states it like this, “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.”
Verse 17-19 teaches us as Christians we have become new creatures and that old things have passed away. Because of what Jesus did for us on the cross we (Christians) no longer have our sins counted against us. In fact as stated in verse 21, what Christ did for us made us righteous, holy and sanctified in God’s eyes.
How can I have assurance in salvation?
Because the Bible teaches us assurance
“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. 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.”
Ephesians 1:13-14 In Him you also, after hearing the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and after believing in Him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory.
Because the Spirit confirms our salvation
Romans 8:16 The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God,
Galatians 5:17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh. These are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please.
Another way you can know you are saved is this; you have an ongoing battle between having faith in Christ and being pulled back into the world. You see, lost people don’t have that battle. No to say they aren’t in a spiritual battle because they are. It’s just not the same battle. Usually they don’t recognize it as a spiritual battle. When you struggle with guilt because you know you’re not living a Christian life it is a sure sign that the spirit of God that lives inside of you is convicting you.
On top of that, lost people don’t question their salvation. That’s an spiritual attack to confuse you and throw you off.
Having assurance in your salvation is a crucial element in your Christian walk. It can make the difference between a strong steadfast walk and riding the Christian roller coaster. Always questioning your salvation also opens the door to doubt, confusion and anxiety. Trust in God and the work he’s doing in you.
Remember the promise in Philippians 1:6, “Be confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.” Or until the day you are in heaven.