How can I be sure???

.BillyGraham03_Eve2_176 by tru64dude

From-our-friend-David-at-Five-Pint-Lutheran

 

 When were you saved?

On what day and in which hour did your life change?

Well you know that if you cannot recall a day that you became a believer you cannot know that you are saved, don’t you?

These questions can plague a believer to the point of distraction and doubt about salvation. They are based upon some concern for others by those who believe he or she had some part in salvation by making a choice. Some, who will deny free will, maintain there must be a point of time to which one can point for proof of salvation.

“We are not to look back to our conversion for assurance, but we must go to the Savior again and again, every day, as though we had never been converted.”   

  Read-the-rest-of-the-post-here

 

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Can God grab a hold of someone at a Billy Graham Crusade (or any crusade)?

I say, YES!

Can that person have any assurance in that decision that they made to accept Jesus into their heart as their personal Lord and Savior?

I say, NO!     No assurance there.

 

What do you say?

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Thanks, David, at http://fivepintlutheran.blogspot.com/ !

 

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25 Responses

  1. Can God grab hold at an Arminian revival? Sure.

    But then old Jakob engages in a grappling match over the poor soul and trying to turn it back upon itself. It’s really not unlike Arminius’ OT name’s sake wrestling with God.

    Would that more Arminian personal decisions got put out joint in favor of the Gospel’s personal proclamation of forgivenes of sins in word and sacrament!

  2. YES!
    There was a moment in history, in time and space,
    when God saved the lost – the world He made and loves,

    a bleak and ugly place, filled with rage and pain,
    ripe with the reality of a world broken by divorce from the one who
    came after us as we abandoned His care…

    the void was too deep, the chasm too wide, for any fallen creature to bare, so the darkness hid and shrouded that astonishing moment when He who knew no sin…

    and then, as in that profound moment at the dawn of creation,
    He cried aloud, and heaven and earth was rent with the majesty of a bruising, a healing, that staggers all who sand before it’s foolish wisdom, that breaks the serpents head, and snaps the chains of death and hell like kindling,

    the graves no longer had sway over the dead,
    the very ‘holy of holies’ was torn open,
    for His naked, broken flesh and poured blood had
    made the whole of creation, truly His forever…

    That was the day, the hour, of our redemption!

  3. How beautifully put, Howard!

    When was I saved? Approximately 2000 years ago, when Christ suffered and died on the cross for my sins.

  4. “Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him (Rom. 5:9 NIV)!”

    “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God (1 Cor. 1:18).”

    So, when was my life changed? When was I saved? 30 years ago, and last week, and this morning, and tomorrow…

    Can I be sure? Yes, if I believe Jesus when he said, “For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day (John 6:40).”

    “Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine …”, for I not only looked to him yesterday, but also today.

    (sorry for the rambling comment, it was kind of stream-of-consciousness…)

  5. “I can be sure IF I believe…” Yes, but how do I know I REALLY believe?

    If my “blessed assurance” is based on anything inside of me, I have no hope. My only hope is what happened outside of me at the cross, delivered to me in my Baptism. Christ put His name on me and I belong to Him. His death on the cross was for the forgiveness of all my sins.

  6. God can reach through time and space at anytime, inside or outside eternity and make the save…He is after all God. Can someone be sure of their salvation? If God assures them with His Word and His Holy Spirit…Yes they can!

    I remember the day and place I married my sweet DH…If I were to have a brain injury and be unable to recall it…it would still be fact! I can’t remember the day I was born…fact none the less. Witnesses to an event may pass from existence in this world, but the Word of God will stand forever and His Holy Spirit.

    1 Peter 1:18-20 (New International Version)

    18For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, 19but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. 20He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake.

    1 John 3:23-24 (New International Version)

    23And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us. 24Those who obey his commands live in him, and he in them. And this is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us.

    Ephesians 1:13 (New International Version)

    13And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit,

    Hebrews 10:23-25 (New International Version)

    23Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 25Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

  7. God revealed Himself to me at a Graham crusade while I was there minding my own business.

    Praise God He did!

    Dawn – I’m not sure I understand what you mean by this statement: “If my “blessed assurance” is based on anything inside of me, I have no hope.”

    The Holy Spirit resides in you. He reminds me everyday whom I belong to. (1 John 3:24)

  8. Thanks, all, for your input.

    It is the external Word (that which God does for us) that brings us assurance.

    It is ‘extra nos’, outside of us.

    That which resides inside of ourselves just cannot be trusted. “The devil can come all dressed up as an angel of light”.

    So, the Word and Sacrament is all we can rely upon, absolutely. It may at times not seem like much, but it is …and it’s all we’re going to get in this life.

  9. I wouldn’t ask the question as a hypothetical. The truth is that many have been reached at Billy Graham crusades, they have also been given at those crusade the theological equivalent of a map to the back door. That theology will breed unbelief, as false doctrine, breeds false belief, breeds despair, breeds other great shame and vice. As it tells people to trust in themselves much more than it tells them about Jesus Christ his death and resurrection.

    • “That theology will breed unbelief, as false doctrine, breeds false belief, breeds despair, breeds other great shame and vice.”

      What theology is that, Bror? Because I’ve not experienced any of those things since God revealed Himself to me.

  10. Waynedawg,
    If Dawn K will let me step up in her defense…
    It is true that the Holy Spirit dwells with in us as baptized Christians who have had Him poured out upon us. However our blessed assurance is not the indwelling of the Holy Spirit but the death and resurrection of Christ as revealed to us in the word, through which the Holy Spirit came to us, and to which the Holy Spirit constantly points us. Because quite frankly as nice as it is that the Holy Spirit dwells in us, he never did die for my sins, contrary to the popular belief of evangelicals evidenced by the fact that they have no problem depicting a dove on the cross but turn in horror to see Jesus on the cross.
    So no our blessed assurance does not reside in us, is not of us, but is outside of us, external to us. Because without the death and resurrection of Christ, the Holy Spirit would have nothing with which to assure us that our sins are forgiven.
    I hope that explains things a bit.

    • Thanks Bror.

      I love this statement, “Because quite frankly as nice as it is that the Holy Spirit dwells in us, he never did die for my sins, contrary to the popular belief of evangelicals evidenced by the fact that they have no problem depicting a dove on the cross but turn in horror to see Jesus on the cross.”

      lol….I’m an evangelical, but I have never believed that
      the Holy Spirit died for me.

      You said, “Because without the death and resurrection of Christ, the Holy Spirit would have nothing with which to assure us that our sins are forgiven.”

      Amen!

      That’s exactly what I was eluding to with 1 John 3:24.

      The Holy Spirit inside me assures me that my sins are forgiven and to Whom I belong to.

    • “However our blessed assurance is not the indwelling of the Holy Spirit but the death and resurrection of Christ as revealed to us in the word, through which the Holy Spirit came to us, and to which the Holy Spirit constantly points us. Because quite frankly as nice as it is that the Holy Spirit dwells in us, he never did die for my sins, contrary to the popular belief of evangelicals evidenced by the fact that they have no problem depicting a dove on the cross but turn in horror to see Jesus on the cross.”

      You can always count on Bror to fight straw men and be intellectually dishonest in his anti-evangelical views. Seriously, dude, what you just said there doesn’t represent any Christian evangelical I know. But thanks for playing, we have a great parting gift for you. :)

  11. When did I “get saved?”

    Yes, I like to use the “2000 years ago” response. That’s a good one.

    But for real kicks, the one that really flumoxes them is “When I got sprinkled with water at the baptism font as a one-month-old baby.”

  12. St Stephen, Thank you for posting this over here to your well accessed blog. My you are brave! :P

    God’s peace. †

    • No, St. David…I’m not brave. But I do like it when someone proclaims the truth about ourselves, and about Christ, as you always do.

      Thanks for being such a bold underline of God’s Holy Word, David.

      And thanks for allowing me to share your excellent post.

  13. I like to tell people (in answer to the “when did you get saved?’ question…

    ‘At my baptism, and each and every day since then.

    ‘I walk away, but our merciful Lord leads me to repentance and carries me back home…again, and again, and again, and again.’

    What an awesome God we have!

  14. Maybe the question isn’t when did you get saved as much as when did you become cognizant of your salvation…especially when the two don’t actually coincide.

  15. Yeah but, that’s just it about faith/salvation, isn’t it? When wouldn’t they ever coincide?

    I mean, I was instilled with real, effective, saving faith when I was baptized as a one-month-old baby.

    Aren’t we always cognizant of our faith (salvation) in that sense?

    If I have to have “head knowledge” about my “faith/salvation” then it sounds like something I work up inside myself, but which can’t ever actually be sure I objectively really *have* it.

    Otherwise, why is the head knowledge about it so important, especially if the objective trust in the promise is there by effect of an objective means of grace?

    I think that’s why we are taught to remember our baptism, no? It’s trust in the objective act applied to us through water/word by Christ, rather than the subjective “head knowledge” of our faith. I don’t have to “feel saved” to be saved.

  16. But, but what if you lost ALL your family when you were quite young in an earthquake or some such tragedy and there was no one around or alive to tell you you had been baptized as an infant and all the Lutheran pastors were gone so you had to go to the (gasp!) Baptist Church…how would you know you were saved then…? *; )

  17. Well…then you’d have to rely on what the Baptists rely on…your feelings of being saved, the evidence that you are saved (your good works), or you could just get re-baptized and accept Jesus and put your trust in that. :D

  18. Or, maybe just maybe something like…Jesus loves me this I know for the BIBLE tells me so…Of course you might just have to read it to be really sure what it actually says. Stuff like how His love is shed abroad in our hearts and all…Or, moving back to the earthquake … if you are still alive…it might indicate He likes you a little…

  19. Yep, Nancy, we certainly can trust what the Bible tells us.

    But since we are tactile creatures living in the rough and tumble world, and since the flesh and devil are after us, too…He commanded that we be baptized and that we eat His body and drink His blood.

    Then our faith can actually touch down and take hold of something tangible that we can touch, taste, feel, smell.

    I think our Lord didn’t want our faith floating around in our hearts and head (you know what goes on in there!), so He decided to give us a means of accessing Himself, totally apart from anything we think, feel, say, or do.

    Not so sure about the being spared from the earthquake as proof of His love for you :D

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