Charles Stanley (October-26-2020) Daily Devotion: How to Know You’re Saved.
The most important issue we must settle in this life is our eternal destiny. Throughout history, local churches have been composed of both believers and unbelievers, and it’s often difficult to tell the difference. That’s why John wrote his first letter. He wanted to assure the true Christians of their salvation and warn those who professed belief but lacked saving faith.
John gives a fourfold test describing the beliefs and practices of genuine believers:
- Right understanding of Christ and salvation (1 John 2:18-27 - 18 Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have appeared; from this we know that it is the last hour. 19 They went out from us, but they were not really of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but they went out, so that it would be shown that they all are not of us. 20 But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and you all know. 21 I have not written to you because you do not know the truth, but because you do know it, and because no lie is of the truth. 22 Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son. 23 Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father; the one who confesses the Son has the Father also. 24 As for you, let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, you also will abide in the Son and in the Father. 25 This is the promise which He Himself made to us: eternal life. 26 These things I have written to you concerning those who are trying to deceive you. 27 As for you, the anointing which you received from Him abides in you, and you have no need for anyone to teach you; but as His anointing teaches you about all things, and is true and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you abide in Him.). To be saved, we must have the true gospel and the only Savior, as described in God’s Word.
- Right attitude toward sin (1 John 1:5-29, 1 John 2:1-2). True believers hate their sin and are quick to confess and turn from it.
- Right practice of obedience (1 John 2:3-6 -3 By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments. 4 The one who says, I have come to know Him," and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him; 5 but whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected. By this we know that we are in Him: 6 the one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.). God’s commands are not burdensome to those who belong to Christ. Although they fail at times, the overall direction of their life is one of obedience.
- Right relationship with God’s people (1 John 2:7-11 -7 Beloved, I am not writing a new commandment to you, but an old commandment which you have had from the beginning; the old commandment is the word which you have heard. 8 On the other hand, I am writing a new commandment to you, which is true in Him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true Light is already shining. 9 The one who says he is in the Light and yet hates his brother is in the darkness until now. 10 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.). Christ produces within His true followers a love for fellow believers, demonstrated by a desire to be with them.
If you have doubts about your salvation, reading the book of 1 John will help you settle the issue.