HOW CAN I KNOW IF I AM
SAVED? A SELF-TEST
Since the evidence of genuine salvation is the presence of the Holy Spirit within the individual, how can this be verified? How can we be reasonably certain about ourselves, as well as others, without being guilty of judging? To answer this, let's take our own case first-there are several "tests" that we can take to determine His presence within us: (all Scripture quotes from Parallel Bible, KJV/Amplified Bible Commentary).
1. Romans 8:16 tells us: "The Spirit Himself [thus] testifies together with our own spirit, [assuring us] that we are children of God." First and foremost, we have the unshakable testimony from within us! The indwelling Holy Spirit of God constantly reassures us that we belong to Jesus Christ.
2. The entire book of First John was written as a "test" for determining the reality of salvation. Verse three of Chapter one tells us: "What we have seen and [ourselves] heard we are also telling you, so that you too may realize and enjoy fellowship as partners and partakers with us. And [this] fellowship that we have (which is a distinguishing mark of Christians) is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ, the Messiah." The fellowship enjoyed by genuine Christians is proof positive of salvation. Those who claim Christ, but yet rarely attend church to worship God and associate with other believers, are possibly fooling themselves! A backslidden Christian can stay out of church and away from other believers, but I can guarantee you from first-hand experience that there will never be a time when you will be comfortable with it! On the other side of the coin, verse 8 teaches us that if we deny the existence of sin within us, the Truth is not in us. Verse 3 of Chapter two teaches us that we are genuine and "growing in grace and knowledge of Christ", if we keep His commandments. Verse 10 teaches us that we are of Christ if we love the brethren. Again, those who habitually absent themselves from God's house and do not make it clear that they love being around God's children, are very likely to be tares and not wheat. Verse 15 teaches us that if anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. "Worldly Christians" is almost a contradiction in terms and those who claim Christ, but yet cling to the value system of this world-are suspect.
3. 1 John 5:13 informs us that the entire Book of 1 John was written so that we can know that we possess eternal life in Christ. Do you know for absolute certainty that, if you were to die tonight, you would go to Heaven?
4. The Word of God teaches that the Bible is incomprehensible to the "natural man"-the unsaved individual. It is a spiritual book and the unsaved person is not only spiritually blind, but 1 Corinthians 2:14 tells us that he "is incapable" of knowing that which is spiritually discerned. Do you understand the Bible? Does it make sense to you and speak to your heart? Does it convict you of your sin and teach you the right way?
5. The Bible is very clear that an unregenerate individual will not seek God (Rom.3:11). Are you painfully aware of your sinful nature and cry out to God from your heart for forgiveness when you sin? If so, this is one of the signs of having been born again.
Is your soul, your conscience, sorely vexed when you see sin in the culture around you? When you see blatant sin in public, or on TV, or in Entertainment, or anywhere else you encounter it, do you feel a severe vexation in your spirit? The Bible says of Lot, who was foolish enough to live and do business in Sodom: "(God) delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked: (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds)" [2 Peter 2:7-8]
If your heart is "vexed" by the terrible sin in our daily culture, that is a good sign you are saved. If your spirit is not vexed by this sin, that is a good sign you are not saved.
6. The Bible says that an unregenerate individual is a slave of Satan and incapable of doing anything about it (Eph.2:2). Have you been able to turn your back upon this world and its sinful ways? Are all of your close friends Christians? If you have been born again, your unsaved friends will drop you like a bad habit! (Just as an illustration, spray a small amount of "WD-40" lubricant on a surface wet with water and watch how fast the water retreats! A genuine dose of salvation is like the WD-40 where reprobate buddies are concerned.)
7. Do you love--really love--Christians and would rather be with them than anyone else? Can you meet a total stranger, find out that they are a believer, and then have instant fellowship with them? Is there "something" in your heart that draws you to them and establishes a closeness which cannot be explained any other way? [We alluded to this feature in Paragraph 2, above]
8. Do you actually enjoy giving to the Lord's work? Do you give generously of your time, talent, and treasury?
9. Do you sin less now than you did prior to receiving Christ?
10. Have other people seen the "fruit of the Spirit" at work in your life? That is, can they see genuine love, joy, peace, long-suffering, etc., (Gal.5:22), being wrought in and through you by God's Holy Spirit? Do they sense that you are a different person from the one you used to be?
11. Have you experienced persecution because of your faith in Christ? (Former friends who back away because of your testimony for Christ, are a subtle form of persecution).
12. Are you eagerly expecting and anticipating the any-moment return of Jesus Christ for His Church?
If you can truthfully answer "yes" to these questions, you are a child of God and the Holy Spirit dwells within you! If you cannot truthfully answer "yes" to these questions, then you are probably not saved and you need to go to the bottom of this page to the Salvation message and go through the steps in honesty and sincereness of heart so you can be saved!
"You must be born again"
The Bible is very clear on the necessity of
a person being "Born Again" if they are to receive eternal life. Jesus
coined this term, in John 3:3-7, when he told Nicodemus, "You must be born
again" to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven. Since this necessity is so
critical, Satan has attacked it with all his might for two thousand years,
causing most "Christian" churches to stop teaching this doctrine, even
though no one can be saved without undergoing this wondrous spiritual
conversion. However, Satan's most effective weapon against being Born Again
has been, and still is, confusion.
Fortunately, Jesus lovingly made this
transformation process very simple, so simple that even those who are
retarded or not educated can understand. There are several steps to becoming
Born Again, listed below:
1. Understand that ALL men ever born are
sinners. Romans 3:23, says, "For all have sinned and come short of the glory
of God." This message that all men are sinners is amply repeated through
Scripture . This means you are a sinner in the eyes of an angry God, Who
must punish all sin. Do you believe you are a sinner?
2. Since man is an imperfect sinner, and
God is a perfect God, no man can save himself. Jesus made this fact very
plain in Matthew 5:48, when He said, "Be ye, therefore, perfect, even as
your Heavenly Father is perfect."!!!
You must also be very sorry for your sins, and want to have them forgiven. This is known as Repentance. The word Repent means to both be very sorry for your sins, and to want to not sin anymore. Repentance means the desire to turn your life around 180 degrees. This does not mean you will never sin again, but it does mean that sin will become the exception in your life, not the rule.
3. When the sinless Son of God, Jesus Christ, shed His precious blood on the cross at Calvary, He died for the sins of His people in their place as a sacrificial substitute. And in doing so, He suffered the wrath of God the Father upon their sin. He paid the penalty for that sin in His own body and purchased their eternal redemption. This enables Him to give as a free gift His own holiness and righteousness to those who believe in Him and trust Him for salvation. making them absolutely perfect in God. s sight! Romans 6:23 says, "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." None of us deserve to be saved; in His love and mercy God extends grace to those who will believe. Grace is defined as "undeserved favor" and perhaps this little acrostic will help you to remember its meaning: G od. s Riches At Christ. s Expense. [The true meaning of GRACE]
4. In Ephesians 2:8-9, the Apostle Paul
reiterates this teaching that eternal life with God is a free gift.
"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is
the gift of God; Not of works, lest any man should boast." No man can stand
before God in eternity, and boast that they 'earned' their way to Heaven.
All people in Heaven will be there only because of Jesus' FREE
Gift, which He obtained from God because of His substitutionary
death sacrifice on the Cross. Rather than punishing each person's individual
sins, God heaped all those sins on Jesus on the Cross Isaiah 53:2-12]
Now, you are probably thinking, 'How can I obtain this free gift of eternal life'? Again, the Bible is not silent. In Acts 16:25-33, the jailer anxiously asked Paul, "What must I do to be saved"? Paul answered "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved ..." verse 31". You must BELIEVE on Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior. To truly believe, you must place your complete faith and trust in Christ and rely upon Him as your only hope of salvation and eternal life. This is a matter of the heart and you cannot hope to deceive God by putting on an act because He knows everything about you. Many people mistakenly think that by merely believing the facts concerning Jesus Christ. s death, burial, and resurrection, they will be automatically be given the gift of eternal life. But such is not the case. Preachers call that a "head knowledge and not a heart knowledge." Salvation is freely given, but only to those who are genuine believers.
5. In John 1:1, 14, we see that Jesus
Christ is God, equal with God, present with God from before the beginning of
time, and the actual Creator of the Universe. He is 100% God and 100% human
at the same time, which is why He used both titles during His ministry, Son
of God and Son of Man. To become Born Again, you must believe this doctrine
about Jesus Christ.
Verse 14 is most important, the teaching
that Jesus God became man. This teaching becomes a point of separation
between the followers of Christ and Antichrist. In 1 John 4:1-3, we see that
anyone who denies that Jesus has come in the flesh is the spirit of
antichrist. That is just what the Gnostics of that day were saying, i.e.,
that Jesus the human was not God Messiah come in the flesh; rather, the
'Christ Consciousness' the 'Messiah' Consciousness, came on Jesus at His
baptism and left Him on the Cross; they believe Jesus was not God and Man.
The New Age Movement and Freemasonry have resurrected this blasphemy with a
6. Isaiah 53:6 foretells exactly what Jesus
Christ did for us on the Cross; "the Lord [God the Father] has laid on Him
the iniquity of us all." Praise God!! Only the Wisdom, Grace, and Power of
God Almighty could conceive of such a gracious Plan of Salvation!! God's
Nature is such that sin must be punished. Period! But, God
set up a Plan whereby an innocent substitute was to be punished
instead of the guilty person. In the Old Testament, God allowed the
lamb to be the substitute sacrifice for sin; Jesus then became the ultimate
substitute sacrifice, for all the sins of the world. His was the
Perfect sacrifice, that never needs to be repeated, and that saves all
people forever more.
You must believe in, and understand, this
principle of Substitute Punishment, before you can become Born Again. And,
you must believe that Jesus Christ became the Perfect Substitute Punishment
for YOU, before you can become Born Again.
Now that you understand these Truths, and
believe them for your life, you now need to understand how you can obtain
this FREE Gift of eternal life through Jesus Christ. After all, if I were to
attempt to give you a FREE gift, that gift would not become yours if you
were to refuse to reach out and take that gift from my hand. So it is here.
You must reach out and take this FREE Gift of Eternal Life from the hand of
Jesus Christ. How is this done?
Through Saving Faith .
Notice I said Saving Faith
. There are types of faith that will not get you saved. You may have 'head
knowledge' faith that merely intellectually assents to the facts of Jesus
Christ's person, but that is not Saving Faith. You may be in a 'church' or a
cult that teaches many truths about Jesus Christ, but who teach that you
must do many things to earn your way to Heaven. This is not Saving Faith.
Saving Faith is trusting in Jesus Christ, and Him alone, for your Salvation.
If you think you need to do anything for
Salvation except trust in Jesus work on the cross, you are guilty of
violating Ephesians 2:8-9 and Isaiah 53:6b. Most cults and false Christian
religions err at this point; they add things that are "necessary" for
Salvation, or they offer a counterfeit way to Heaven, i.e., Salvation by
Do you want this Gift of Eternal Life that
Jesus left Heaven and died on a cross to give you? If your answer is, 'Yes',
you can immediately have Eternal Life.
Let me clarify exactly what this involves. First, you are going to transfer your trust, your hope of eternal life from what you have been doing to what Jesus Christ has done for you on the cross. Jesus will take your sin and transfer TO YOU His right standing with God the Father, what we call His righteousness . This means that though we have failed repeatedly to keep God's commandments, Christ perfectly obeyed all the laws of God. He lived the perfect life, so He could be the perfect, innocent substitutionary sacrifice that God would accept for your sins, and the sin of the entire world, for all who will believe.
Are you willing to repent of your sins
right now, and become a responsible member of God's forever family,
following Him and serving Him as a member of His forever family, following
Him and serving Him as a member of His body, the Church? If your heartfelt
answer is, "Yes", then we can go to Him now in prayer, and we can tell Him
that you want to cease trusting in anything else for Eternal Salvation,
especially in what you can do for yourself. You can place your trust in Him
and Him alone for salvation. Before we pray this simple prayer, I need to
point our that the Lord Jesus Christ is looking at your heart more than His
is listening to your lips. As He promised, "Ye shall seek Me, and find Me,
when [after] ye shall search for Me with all your heart." (Jeremiah 29:13).
Jesus Christ is right with you right now.
You are not talking to anyone now, but to Him. If you really want to be Born
Again, into the Eternal Family of God through Jesus Christ, pray this
prayer, from your heart.
How can you know for sure that you have been born again? Please do not expect any "earth-shaking" experience, because in the majority of cases it comes about in a rather peaceful way, a sense of relief and a load lifted. There will be no fireworks or brass bands playing, just a wonderful calm that is deep down inside. But with the passing of time, I have found that one of the best indicators of the New Birth is a genuine understanding of the Word of God. Prior to being Born Again, the "natural man", as the Bible calls him, (a lost person), cannot understand the Bible because it is spiritually discerned (1 Corinthians 2:14). Indeed, it is foolishness to him! So when the Word begins to make sense, to speak to your heart, and convict you of sin in your life, it is a very good indicator that you have the Holy Spirit of God residing within you. You see, a Christian obtains a new spiritual nature by the New Birth, but he does not get rid of the old nature he was born with. That is why it is so vitally important that we "grow in grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ" (2 Peter 3:18). We must cooperate with the Holy Spirit as we walk through this sinful and spiritually defiling world around us. The Holy Spirit literally takes up residence within us when we are Born Again and will never leave us nor forsake us.
Another wonderful evidence of genuine salvation is found in the "fruit of the Spirit" (Galatians 5:22) that will take place in our daily lives as the Holy Spirit works within us. His presence will be manifested to the outside world by means of the love, joy, peace, longsuffering, faith, etc., they see in us! Then, the Bible tells us in Romans 8:16 that, "The Spirit itself (lit. Himself) beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God." In other words, the Holy Spirit living deep within us tells us that we belong to God.
But, He has done much more!! In Revelation
3:20, Jesus promised, "Behold, I stand at the door and knock He has been
knocking at the door of your heart, and you have just opened that door to
let Him in]; if anyone hears and listens and heeds My voice, and opens the
door I WILL come in to him and will eat with him, and he will eat with Me."
Jesus Christ has just entered INTO YOUR HEART through the work of the Holy
Spirit, to live in your heart for the rest of your life!! What great news,
for now we have the same Holy Spirit power within us that raised Jesus from
the dead [Romans 8:11]. In fact, read Romans 8 to see all the advantages we
have because the Holy Spirit indwells us daily.
Cutting edge ministry
Go to Home page (cutting edge.org)