The certainty of our salvation is wrapped up in our daily walk with Jesus. Want to know you’re saved? Walk with Jesus.
17 Whoever heeds discipline [stays close to the Master] shows the way to life [to others], but whoever ignores correction leads others astray.
Pierre Teilhard de Chardin once said, “Joy is the infallible sign of the presence of God.” The apostle Peter said it like this,
Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, 9 for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls. 1 Peter 1:8
Joy is one of the three fruits that is bestowed upon us by the presence of Jesus in our lives. The other two are love and peace. When we acknowledge Him as being in our lives and in control of our lives, His love, JOY and peace flow from Him to and through us. How do we acknowledge the Lord?
- Believing- the entrusting of our lives to Him; the only way to foster such belief and trust is to know Him. How do we know God? By reading the letter He sent us: The Bible! For the younger generation, consider it a long text message. The point is that He thought enough of us to write down everything (at least, some of everything) so that we wouldn’t have to guess or take another person’s word for what He said. The only Person we trust is Jesus because Jesus’ words were/are founded in the Scriptures (Old Testament). The first Covenant corroborates Jesus’ claim as the Son of God, the Messiah.
- Experiencing- when we are saved, we entrust our lives to Him; by doing so, we experience Him that first time as we feel His love, JOY, and peace flowing from Him to and through us. It’s amazing! It truly is inexpressible and glorious. What often happens is that a new Christian does not sustain His relationship with Christ through Scripture reading, prayer, and Christian fellowship, and loses the feeling. Then, in a moment of conviction, turns around and faces Christ again, and, entrusting his life once again to Christ, feels that he has been born again because it feels like that first time–sometimes even stronger. Only the person knows for sure if it was a true salvation experience or simply a returning to our first love (see Revelation 2:4-5). Sometimes, Christ calls us to a higher, closer walk with Him. That, too, can be mistaken as a salvation experience. How can we tell the difference? The presence of the Holy Spirit and a changed life. Again, only the person can answer that question.
- The end result- This salvation is the ongoing presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives. He is the Spirit of Jesus Christ! Being with Him is being in heaven; the difference in how we perceive Him is the container in which we live. Now, we live in perishable, natural and weak bodies (1 Corinthians 15:42-44), and we see only a reflection (dimly) as in a mirror (1 Corinthians 13:12a) and only in part. Upon death, we will put on the imperishable and the immortal (1 Corinthians 15:53-54), and we will see Him face to face. We will know Him fully, even as we are fully known by Him (1 Corinthians 13:12b).
How do we know that we are receiving the salvation of our souls? We feel His presence as love, JOY and peace that pervades our souls! And how do we make that happen?
By trusting Jesus and reading the Bible.
Bigger than our schedules, higher than our life goals, greater than our own plans, He is our One Desire. King David said,
One thing I ask from the Lord,
this only do I seek:
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
all the days of my life,
to gaze on the beauty of the Lord
and to seek him in his temple.
Since we are His temple, all we have to do is access Him by turning around mentally and “facing” Him in our minds, by talking to Him and listening for His still, small voice, and by reading His Word and recognizing the impressions and urgings of the Holy Spirit as He helps us think like Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16). If we take our Christianity and our decision to follow Christ seriously, we will follow this procedure every day until the day we die.
Abba, I reconfirm my commitment to follow You. Every morning, I trade my will for Your will, my thoughts for Your thoughts (as I read Your Word), my desires for Your desires, and my life for Your life. Use me as You see fit; I am hooked on Your JOY, Lord! Fill me up so that I overflow to others!!! Amen.