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Author Topic: Can we be absolutely SURE we are saved?  (Read 2155 times)
aw
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« on: April 22, 2004, 10:15:46 AM »

Absolutely! God does not ofer a salvation that we should ever be in doubt about. If we understand that salvation is a completely free and unearned, unmerited gift received by simple faith in Christ, then we have the basis for assurance. We can boldly say, "I know IN WHOM I have trusted and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which has been entrusted to Him. (2 Tim 2:12)

God loved us even when we were sinners and scripture reveals that, "To him the WORKETH not, but BELIEVETH on Him that JUSTIFIETH the UNGODLY, his faith is counted for righteousness." (Romans 4:5)

We have every scriptural reason in the world to believe that we are saved because it rests upon the works and grace of God. It is GOD who JUSTIFIES the ungodly.

Be assured of your salvation my brother/sister,

aw
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michael_legna
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« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2004, 11:01:02 AM »


Quote
Absolutely! God does not ofer a salvation that we should ever be in doubt about. If we understand that salvation is a completely free and unearned, unmerited gift received by simple faith in Christ, then we have the basis for assurance.

Yes if salvation was by faith alone - a simple one time mental decision to accept Christ in just His role as sacrificial lamb you might have assurance of salvation.  But that is not how we accept the free gift.  To truly believe in Him we need to accept Him in all His roles and that includes picking up our cross DAILY and following Him.  Our cross and our following Him are not complete until our days end, so we cannot know if we will do it everyday until we die.  What happens if we do not do it every day?  He tells us that if we choose this life over following Him we will lose our eternal life.

Luk 9:23-26  And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.  For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it.   For what is a man advantaged, if he gain the whole world, and lose himself, or be cast away?   For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he shall come in his own glory, and in his Father's, and of the holy angels.

Quote
We can boldly say, "I know IN WHOM I have trusted and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which has been entrusted to Him. (2 Tim 2:12)

I think you have the wrong verse reference -

2 Tim 2:12  If we suffer, we shall also reign with him: if we deny him, he also will deny us:

Perhaps you meant -

2Ti 1:12  For the which cause 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 which I have committed unto him against that day.

Note that this says if we suffer.  We always have the free will to decide to choose the comforts of this world (choosing to save our earthly life and not suffer) over Him.  if we do that we lose the salvation you think we are so certain of.

Quote
God loved us even when we were sinners and scripture reveals that, "To him the WORKETH not, but BELIEVETH on Him that JUSTIFIETH the UNGODLY, his faith is counted for righteousness." (Romans 4:5)

This is a statement against those who would work to merit salvation, not against those who keep their faith alive and perfect it through works of love.  We can see this by just reading the verse prior -

Rom 4:4  Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.

See Paul is preaching against those who want to earn their salvation, not against those who respond lovingly toward God and their neighbor for the gift.

As I have said before following Christ's instructions on how to accept and hold onto the gift in no way merits the gift for us but it is still required otherwise Christ wouldn't have bothered to tell us to do all these things.

Quote
We have every scriptural reason in the world to believe that we are saved because it rests upon the works and grace of God. It is GOD who JUSTIFIES the ungodly.

Then you should provide them as the ones you offer do not show that and the ones I have provided clearly state that we must continue in proper doctrine to the end to have properly accepted the gift and be saved.
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« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2004, 11:31:08 AM »

Michael,
You finally got one thing right- it was 1 and not 2 in the reference. I suspect that if you would concentrate as much on discerning spiritual truths as you do in your feeble attempts at attacking me, you might get more things right.

You see, it is GOD who justifies the UNGODLY. Now, if you wish to believe, and teach others to do the same, that the Cross is insufficient, and that God offers a salvation that does not offer assurance also, then you are going to be answerable to Him.

Again, your brand of theology offers no assurance of salvation whatsoever, and in fact, is completely replete with multipliciy of ambiguity as to how it is maintained. You offer only some vague, nondescript, and uncertain ideas that a person is "SUPPOSED TO DO SOMETHING!" Salvation is always presented in scripture as being UNTO good works that were before ordained that we should walk in them. No work of man is ever said to be salvific as that would violate the very definition of GRACE. God never contradicts Himself.

You cannot delieneate salvation with any of its ramifications and offer "0" explicit spiritual truths as to how it is gained or maintained.

It is COMPLETELY a WORK of God on man's behalf, and since you believe that there is a JUDGMENT TO CONDEMNATION for believers, you are going to have to answer to God for it. You see, the true believers will be judged only as to rewards, but those who present their WORKS, are doing so with the only result being how severe their eternal punishment will be.

"As many as received HIm, to them GAVE He power to become the sons of God, even to them that BELIEVE on His name;

which were BORN not of blood, nor of the will of flesh, nor of the WILL OF MAN, but OF GOD." (John 1:12,13)

I do appreciate your post as it can serve as a good example of exactly what NOT to believe and how satan attempts to rob believers of the joy of their salvation. If you keep going, you can touch all of the bases and then true believers can be even more sure of their salvatrion and will be better equpped to handle the false doctrines you have presented.

aw
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michael_legna
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« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2004, 02:03:38 PM »


Quote
You see, it is GOD who justifies the UNGODLY. Now, if you wish to believe, and teach others to do the same, that the Cross is insufficient, and that God offers a salvation that does not offer assurance also, then you are going to be answerable to Him.

We are both going to be answerable to Him.  I have no concerns over facing Him on this issue as it is directly from the Bible as I have shown with referenced verse while you have relied on statements of your own opinion alone.

Quote
Again, your brand of theology offers no assurance of salvation whatsoever, and in fact, is completely replete with multipliciy of ambiguity as to how it is maintained. You offer only some vague, nondescript, and uncertain ideas that a person is "SUPPOSED TO DO SOMETHING!"

There is no ambiguity – we are told to love God and our neighbor (just as I have shown in referencing these verses earlier) to fulfill all the law.  This together with our faith represents a proper acceptance of the gift.  We know it is not by faith alone as if I have faith without love I am nothing.

1Co 13:1-3  Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.  And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.  And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.

Do you really think that if salvation was by faith alone that love would be greater than faith?

1Co 13:13  And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.

There is no assurance because we can stop loving God and stop loving our neighbor and then we are left again with your solution faith alone, a dead faith the kind the demons have a tremble.

Quote
Salvation is always presented in scripture as being UNTO good works that were before ordained that we should walk in them.

No that is not true that is just your claim, and again you don’t support it with scripture.

Here are some verses that say salvation is dependent on us accepting it properly through works.  I will wait to see if you can provide any verses that support your position.

Do the Will of the Father
Matt 7:21, Rom 2:13

Love God and Mankind
Luke 10:25-28, Mat 25:31-46

Keep the Commandments
Mat 19:16-17, Mar 10:17-19, Mat 5:19-29, 1John 3:15, Luke 18:18-22  

Repent   
2Co 7:10  

Eat His Body and Drink His Blood
John 6:54  

Be Humble
Matt 5:3, Luke 18:9-14  

Suffer Persecution for Righteousness
Matt 5:10  
   
Lose Attachment to Our Earthly Life
Matt 16:25, Mark 8:35, Luke 9:24, Luke 17:33, John 12:25, Mar 10:28-30  

Follow Christ
John 10:27-28  

Live a Godly Life
2Peter 2:6, Rom 8:1  

Be Converted
Mat 18:3-4, Mat 19:14, James 5:20, 1John 3:20-21,  

Emulate the Saints
Rom 11:14  

Obey the Gospel
1 Peter 1:2, 1 Peter 4:17-18, 2 Thes 1:8, Heb 5:9, James 1:21

Control Our Words
Matt 12:37  

Endure or Continue
Matt 10:22, Matt 24:13, Mark 13:13, 1 Tim 2:15, 1Ti 4:16, Rom 2:7  

Work Out Our Salvation
1 Tim 6:12, 1Ti 6:19, Phi 2:12  

Be Baptized
1 Peter 3:20-21, Mark 16:16, John 3:5
   
We have to believe in His name   
Act 4:12, 1 Cor 6:11     



 
Quote
No work of man is ever said to be salvific as that would violate the very definition of GRACE. God never contradicts Himself.

I am not saying that man’s works are salvific anymore than you are saying our faith is salvific.  We are discussing how to accept the free gift properly, not whether faith alone or faith and works save us because we both know neither scenario does.   Once again you try to steer the discussion off of the real topic to distract and make your case appear less weak.

Quote
It is COMPLETELY a WORK of God on man's behalf,

If that were the case – if God does it all for us then we would not even have to believe and we would all be saved – and we both know that isn’t true, so your last statement is wrong and so is what you base on it.

Quote
and since you believe that there is a JUDGMENT TO CONDEMNATION for believers, you are going to have to answer to God for it.

I never said that in fact I spent a good section of my last post pointing out that there is no condemnation for believer but there is a judgment.  It may seem like a subtle difference to you but I am sure if you think about it long enough you will see it eventually.

Quote
You see, the true believers will be judged only as to rewards, but those who present their WORKS, are doing so with the only result being how severe their eternal punishment will be.

Again you claim this but offer no proof that the judgment will be ONLY for rewards.  If you want to pronounce doctrine you should be prepared to offer scripture to support it unless you expect people to take your word instead of seeking the truth in God’s.

Quote
"As many as received HIm, to them GAVE He power to become the sons of God, even to them that BELIEVE on His name; which were BORN not of blood, nor of the will of flesh, nor of the WILL OF MAN, but OF GOD." (John 1:12,13)

Yes we have to “receive Him”.  He stands at the door and knocks (Rev 3:20) but we have to open the door.  We are involved in our own salvation.   We have to believe and using your definition - we have to believe in our heart – we have to internalize it, write His teaching on the fleshy tablets of our heart (2 Cor 3:3).  We must make them part of our life to truly have believe in Him.  We have to accept all His teachings not just a limited subset and that means we have to obey the Gospel (2 Th 1:8 and 1 Pet 4:17).

More than that we have to accept Christ in all His roles, not just as sacrificial lamb.  We have to accept Him as Lord and King and shepherd and that means obey and follow Him.
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« Reply #4 on: April 22, 2004, 11:13:45 PM »

Michael,
Just exegete Ephesians 2:8-10, "For by grace are you saved, through faith, and that not of yourselves it is the gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast."

aw
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« Reply #5 on: April 25, 2004, 11:11:36 PM »

Michael,
Just exegete Ephesians 2:8-10, "For by grace are you saved, through faith, and that not of yourselves it is the gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast."

aw

But using that within the context of Iakovos (James) we know that we are saved through faith, but not through faith alone.  It is always with works.  
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« Reply #6 on: April 26, 2004, 09:36:52 AM »

So I'm curious about something... I've been following two threads over the last few days, both referencing salvation as either completely unmerited, unearned, and totally given by God OR attainable only by the works that one does.

I can't even begin to debate at the level of discussions taking place through these threads but I do have a few simple questions that I'd like answered. I'll preface by saying this: I believe there is only ONE truth, it can't be both ways. Salvation is either FREE or it ISN'T.

Question #1 - Was the death of Jesus Christ on the cross, in itself, sufficient enough to buy my salvation?

Question #2 - Was I saved the moment I confessed my sins to Him, believing in Him, asking Him for forgiveness and salvation? If not, go to the next question...

Question #3 - Of all the works listed as necessary to attain salvation, how many or for how long must I do these before I can be saved?

Question #4 - How exactly should I tell Jesus that his grace alone isn't sufficient but that I will complete HIS incomplete work by adding to it with MY works?

I've read over these two threads over and over and I keep getting this feeling of hurt and sadness when I think that somehow, someone out there, is trying so hard to accomplish good works, not from the gratitude and love they have for Him but instead because they are believing that if they do enough, work hard enough, they will attain the grace and mercy that was already there to begin with.

God Bless,

-Samson
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« Reply #7 on: April 26, 2004, 09:54:29 AM »

If a person isn't sure he's saved, all he has to do is ask God to show him. Then once he's sure he knows Christ personally, then he will KNOW he's saved.
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« Reply #8 on: April 26, 2004, 10:59:40 AM »

So I'm curious about something... I've been following two threads over the last few days, both referencing salvation as either completely unmerited, unearned, and totally given by God OR attainable only by the works that one does.

I can't even begin to debate at the level of discussions taking place through these threads but I do have a few simple questions that I'd like answered. I'll preface by saying this: I believe there is only ONE truth, it can't be both ways. Salvation is either FREE or it ISN'T.

Question #1 - Was the death of Jesus Christ on the cross, in itself, sufficient enough to buy my salvation?

Answer: Of course it was. paul summarizes the gospel of the grace of God for salvation in 1 Cor 15:1-7. It is simply the death, burial, and resurrection of the Lamb of God who took away the sins of the world.





Question #2 - Was I saved the moment I confessed my sins to Him, believing in Him, asking Him for forgiveness and salvation? If not, go to the next question...

Answe: Actually, you didn't even have to confess your sins, but is is okay if you did. You may have prayed, but you didn't have to. You may have been water baptized, but you did not have to. Did you accept Him personally as your Lord and Saviour? Of course, and He requires nothing else. However, you are going to go on to a wonderful and fulfilling life and do those WORKS which you were crerated to do before the foundation of the world. (Eph 2:10) Some of those going about trying to APPEASE God, attempting to earn salvation in any way by any works whatsoever are in for a very rude awakening.



Question #3 - Of all the works listed as necessary to attain salvation, how many or for how long must I do these before I can be saved?

Question #4 - How exactly should I tell Jesus that his grace alone isn't sufficient but that I will complete HIS incomplete work by adding to it with MY works?

Answer: Just tell Him thank you and that you love Him. He has works for the 2 of you to do that will fulfill your life and bring Him glory and all the while enjoying His company. Think of prayer as a coversation between 2 people who love each other and are the very best of friemds. He will guide your steps.

I've read over these two threads over and over and I keep getting this feeling of hurt and sadness when I think that somehow, someone out there, is trying so hard to accomplish good works, not from the gratitude and love they have for Him but instead because they are believing that if they do enough, work hard enough, they will attain the grace and mercy that was already there to begin with.

Reply: It is indeed very sad, because those works can only rise to the level of FILTHY RAGS.

aw

God Bless,

-Samson
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« Reply #9 on: April 26, 2004, 11:27:47 AM »

1Jo 5:4   For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, [even] our faith.
1Jo 5:5   Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?

1Jo 5:10   He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son.
1Jo 5:11   And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.
1Jo 5:12   He that hath the Son hath life; [and] he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.
1Jo 5:13   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.

that ye may know.........eido (perfect, active)
1) to see
a) to perceive with the eyes
b) to perceive by any of the senses
c) to perceive, notice, discern, discover
d) to see

The perfect tense in Greek corresponds to the perfect tense in
English, and describes an action which is viewed as having been
completed in the past, once and for all, not needing to be
repeated.

The active voice represents the subject as the doer or
performer of the action. e.g., in the sentence, "The
boy hit the ball," the boy performs the action.

that ye "have".....echo (present, active, indicative)
1) to have, i.e. to hold
a) to have (hold) in the hand, in the sense of wearing, to have (hold) possession of the mind (refers to alarm, agitating emotions, etc.), to hold fast keep, to have or comprise or involve, to regard or consider or hold as
2) to have i.e. own, possess

The present tense represents a simple statement of fact
or reality viewed as occurring in actual time. In most cases
this corresponds directly with the English present tense.

IF one is born again, then they have overcome the world, and that overcoming (victory) is faith. Who has that faith and thus overcomes? Whosoever believes that Jesus is the Son of God.

The one who believes has a witness IN himself (the Holy Spirit). Whoever does NOT believe on the record given by God of His son is a liar.

What is the record? That we HAVE BEEN GIVEN
 didomai (inceptive aorist, active, indicative)
1) to give
2) to give something to someone
a) of one's own accord to give one something, to his advantage
1) to bestow a gift
b) to grant, give to one asking, let have
c) to supply, furnish, necessary things
d) to give over, deliver

ETERNAL (aionios, from age to age, forever)
LIFE (zoe; life a) of the absolute fulness of life, both essential and ethical, which belongs to God, and through him both to the hypostatic "logos" and to Christ in whom the "logos" put on human nature)

John is emphatically declaring that those who believe (by faith) have been saved (action once completed and does NOT need to be repeated) and given eternal life.

Rom 11:29 For the gifts and calling of God [are] without repentance. Grin
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« Reply #10 on: April 26, 2004, 12:28:22 PM »

A wonderful and accurate presentation. Thank you for taking the time to share.

aw
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« Reply #11 on: April 26, 2004, 02:12:48 PM »

Thank you AW.

Just a final comment.

God says "come, let us REASON together". That means that He wants us to use our faculties, our ability to learn and discern, and to rely on some things that He has established in this world...and among those things are logic.

In logical argumentation, there is a thing called Occam's Razor (or Ockham's). It is an analytical tool that, like the razor it is called, cuts precisely and accurately.

Simply put, Occam's Razor says that if there are two ways, or arguments, both of which arrive at the same conclusion, the the simpler of the two arguments is not only the most precise, but the most well defined, the less ambiguous, and thus the most logical (and true).

We keep hearing and seeing presentations of what constitutes salvation that involve (1) simplicity defined as by faith (belief, pistueo) alone. That is how it is so stated by Paul with "ye are saved by grace thru faith....and not of works....". It is also stated as such by Jesus several times; "he who believeth (pistueo) on me shall NOT die, but have eternal life..."

(2) a combination of belief (pistueo) PLUS a continuing series of actions that constitute a "proof" of that belief, but with a question mark about actual salvation until the moment of death. Salvation is then conditioned upon and dependant upon the successful completion of a number of poorly defined activities (taking up your cross, works meet for repentence, etc.).

Both arguments arrive at a similar conclusion....eternal life (salvation).

Apply Occam's Razor, and see what is left.
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« Reply #12 on: April 26, 2004, 02:29:37 PM »

I've BOOKMARKED your web page- will get back later. Would you agree with "Walking in the Spirit" as being about the same as "Living BY MEANS OF the Spirit?"

aw
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« Reply #13 on: April 26, 2004, 04:59:54 PM »

How can salvation not be a free gift? How in the heck can we earn it? Good deeds do NOT come from man because if a man isn't saved first, then his works are to glorify himelf rather than to glorify God. How is that good? Good works come FROM the love that God gives us, not to EXTRACT love from God. They come from the thankfulness, gratitude, and joy of our salvation! Otherwise, they're done to make US look holy so that God will love us. Who of us is holy or will EVER be holy? How many works, or deeds make us holy? What is the magic number? Who says? That is Jesus's whole point! If we could become good on our own, we wouldn't NEED Him at all! Jesus says; "No one is good but God alone." Thinking we are good enough to be saved is not only the sin of pride but then we couldn't receive His forgiveness!! That is why salvation comes first. THEN out of gratitude come the fruits of the spirit which are joy, love, peace, hope, patience and self control. Those fruits are to GIVE BACK what He gave us. They come from genuine love and produce genuine love inside us. They are then not done to show WE'RE holy but out of thankfulness from our hearts. Then there is no selfishness, only genuine good works.
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« Reply #14 on: April 26, 2004, 05:23:01 PM »

Quote
THEN out of gratitude come the fruits of the spirit which are joy, love, peace, hope, patience and self control.
Thass right!!

Quote
Those fruits are to GIVE BACK what He gave us.


Amen!

Quote
They come from genuine love and produce genuine love inside us.

Say it again!!!

Quote
They are then not done to show WE'RE holy but out of thankfulness from our hearts.


Thass right!!!!!!

Quote
Then there is no selfishness, only genuine good works.

Preach on!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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