Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Are You Really a Christian?

I guess the biggest ploy the devil uses against people is to question whether they are really believers in Christ. To get them to question whether or not they are saved. Think about how great that ploy would work?

In most cases when a new believer gives their heart to Jesus, they don't feel anything. Sometimes they do, but in most cases nothing. They might have shed some tears when their recited the sinner's prayer and really meant in their heart but other than that really nothing has changed.

I guess they are looking for some notable change on the outside, but it's on the inside where the change has actually occurred. If Satan can keep them guessing, just like when he enticed Eve to eat of the fruit in Eden, he responded with," Did God really say you shouldn't eat of the fruit?" he makes us second guess ourselves and our faith in God.

Then we often times keep giving our lives to God each time an altar call is given, because we want to make certain, we really gave our lives to God. Don't want to die and realize, "Nope, your not saved, but you almost made it."

God's not like that. My youngest daughter asks me that question all the time, and my best answer for her, is "Do you feel convicted when you did something you know you're not supposed to?" She'll usually respond, "Yes." That is the Holy Spirit dwelling within you, helping you to know sin from what isn't sin. If you're convicted in a big way, guilt is just riding you til you can't deal with things anymore, and you've given your life to God, THAT is the proof you're looking for!

Now keep in mind, you don't want to quench the Holy Spirit either. Wait what? What is that? It means to keep on sinning, knowing your sinning and you basically tell him, thanks but no thanks to the feeling of repentance or turning away from your sin and confessing it to God.

So what? What does it matter? Well it does. The Holy Spirit is something Jesus sent to be with us as a helper to get through life when He left to go to Heaven to prepare it for us.

"When the Counselor (Helper) comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of through who goes out from the Father, he will testify about me." ~John 15:26

It is here to keep us on track. But we can grieve it so much it becomes hard to hear the truth any more. This is the path of the prodigal child, you wander away from God, by your own choosing, He doesn't leave you. He stays with you despite all the things you choose to do. Constantly trying to tell you what you're doing is wrong.

"And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption." ~ Ephesians 4:30. 

This is where you find power in the Holy Spirit, He comes to you in songs that stay in your head from church, often hearing them when you wake in the middle of the night, or that message at church that you feel is meant just for you, you're so blown away that it feels like you've been discovered; that what you are going through right at that moment is exactly what your pastor is speaking on. Isn't He truly wonderful?

Here are 5 great ways to confirm that what you believe makes you a true believer in Jesus.

1. You believe in the deity of Jesus Christ. 

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God." ~ John 1:1 (NIV).

"Thomas said to him, 'My Lord and my God." ~ John 20:28 (NIV).

"But about the Son he says 'Your throne, O God, will last forever and ever, and righteousness will be the scepter of  your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you about your companions by anointing you will the oil of joy." ~ Hebrews 1: 8-9 (NIV).

2. You believe in the virgin birth. 

"Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel." ~ Isaiah 7:14 (NIV).

"The virgin will be with child and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel - which means, "God with us." ~ Matthew 1:23 (NIV).

"to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin's name was Mary." Luke 1:27 (NIV).

3. You believe in the blood atonement of Jesus Christ for our sins.

"God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in his blood. He did this to demonstrate his justice, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished - " ~ Romans 3:25 (NIV).

"In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's grace." ~ Ephesians 1:7 (NIV).

"He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, having obtained eternal redemption. The blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkled on those who are ceremonially unclean sanctify them so that they are outwardly clean. How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God." ~ Hebrews 9:12-14 (NIV).

4. You believe in the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ, that He rose from the dead.

" Now as they said these things, Jesus Himself stood in the midst of them, and said to them, “Peace to you.”But they were terrified and frightened, and supposed they had seen a spirit.And He said to them, “Why are you troubled? And why do doubts arise in your hearts?Behold My hands and My feet, that it is I Myself. Handle Me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see I have.”When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His feet.But while they still did not believe for joy, and marveled, He said to them, “Have you any food here?”So they gave Him a piece of a broiled fish and some honeycomb.And He took it and ate in their presence.Then He said to them, “These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me.”And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures.Then He said to them, “Thus it is written, and thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day, " ~ Luke 24: 36-46 (NKJV)

"Now, brothers, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain. For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures," ~ 1 Corinthians 1-4 (NIV)

"And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised." ~ 1 Corinthians 15:14-15 (NIV).

5. You believe in the Inerrancy of the Scriptures; God's Word is True. 

" And the words of the Lord are flawless, like silver refined in a furnace of clay, purified seven times. " Psalm 12:6 (NIV)

"For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope." ~ Romans 15:4 (NIV).

""All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for the teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work." 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NIV).

"Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophets own interpretation." ~ 2 Peter 1:20 (NIV).

 If you can answer yes, to all of those statements, than stand true in the Word of God that you are saved through your belief that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, that he became flesh through the birth of the virgin Mary to dwell among us, and that only through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ's death on the cross as the perfect atonement for our sins, and that He rose as promised on the third day and now lives in heaven, leaving behind the perfect Word of God as a map for our lives, that we will not perish but have everlasting life.

That is 100% absolute truth that you can rest in the peace that when this life ends, your last breath here, that you will go immediately into the presence of Jesus and take your first breath there and will never have to face death again. For a believer is born twice and dies once, while an unbeliever is born once, but dies twice. 

If you wonder what its like to be a child of God and rest in the peace that when this physical life ends, that you will have an eternal home with Jesus, then pray this prayer with your heart. 

Father, I come to You, confessing my sin and asking for Your forgiveness. I thank you, Lord, for You have promised that if I will confess my sins, You will be faithful to forgive me and cleanse me from all unrighteousness. I want to turn from my sins and live in Your will. I ask that You give me the power through Your Holy Spirit to live the right way.

I thank You that Jesus Christ died on the cross, paying the price for my sins, and then rose from the dead. I accept Him now as my Savior, my Lord, and my Friend. Thank You for giving me new life in Christ. I surrender myself to You; make me what You want me to be. In Jesus' name. Amen!

If you have prayed that prayer from the bottom of your heart, then friend, I'd love to welcome you to the family of believers in Jesus Christ! Now it's time to get busy and get plugged into a church, pick up the Bible and begin reading it, and see how wonderful the changes are going to be in your life as a Christian!

Remember just because you go to church doesn't make you a Christian, anymore than sitting in a garage doesn't make you a car! It has to be your choice, God won't force His way in, He's waiting for an invitation from you, one He can't wait to accept as long as it comes from you!


Mari said...

What a great post! When I was a child, I always worried about this and I remember talking to my mom about it several times. I see this sometimes in my elderly residents. They know death is near and they start second guessing their salvation. I ask them some of the same things you mentioned here. The devil loves to make people wonder.

Katie Nguyen said...

I am so glad this post was blessed and that you took the time to write it. I manage a page called Sacred scripture on Facebook and I shared it there and it has created a wonderful dialog. Please stop by to check it out. 68 people have shared your post.


You are a wonderful writer. Keep up the good work and feel free to come post on the Sacred Scripture page anytime.

Cheesemakin' Mamma said...

Amen! I love that you stuck to the basics in this post. Salvation in Christ really is that easy, that is the beauty of it :) Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a comment so I could visit yours. Sorry it took so long to get her to visit, though ;) Have a blessed day!