Return to God's Love for Us
Photo used under Creative Commons from pixydust8605
My sister asked me this question the other day and at first I didn't know what to say. So I put aside her email with plans of addressing it later and
asked our Heavenly Father what was the best answer to it.
It wasn't more than 5 minutes later while researching another subject I came across this verse:
Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He that says, I know Him, and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. 1 John 2: 3, 4.
Suddenly I knew the answer to the above question. If our lives show that we have changed and following our
Saviour than we know we know Him. A converted person will show their conversion with a total life change. Now they keep God's commands and do what He wants. They let Him rule over their lives. This is how you know you have a true conversion experience.
We naturally show our faith by our works because faith without works is dead. James 2:14-20. When a person is truly converted their life will show it. Of course there is room for growth and mistakes. A person who says they follow Jesus but their life is the same as it was before conversion shows that they do not and are deceiving themselves and others.
However we must be careful to remember that this change in our lives is fruit and never depend on our own good works for salvation. This includes devotions, doing Bible studies or any good thing we might do.
For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them. NASB Ephesians 2:8-10
So if there is a whisper in your mind saying that you are not good enough to be saved you can agree and say,
"In my hand no price I bring;
Simply to Thy cross I cling."
(From the book, The Desire of Ages)
This quote really helps explain faith and works in our lives:
"Some who come to God by repentance and confession, and even believe that their sins are forgiven, still fail of claiming, as they should, the promises of God. They do not see that Jesus is an ever-present Saviour; and they are not ready to commit the keeping of their souls to him, relying upon him to perfect the work of grace begun in their hearts. While they think they are committing themselves to God, there is a great deal of self-dependence. There are conscientious souls that trust partly to God, and partly to themselves. They do not look to God, to be kept by his power, but depend upon watchfulness against temptation, and the performance of certain duties for acceptance with him. There are no victories in this kind of faith. Such persons toil to no purpose; their souls are in continual bondage, and they find no rest until their burdens are laid at the feet of Jesus.
There is need of constant watchfulness, and of earnest, loving devotion; but these will come naturally when the soul is kept by the power of God through faith. We can do nothing, absolutely nothing, to commend ourselves to divine favor. We must not trust at all to ourselves nor to our good works; but when as erring, sinful beings we come to Christ, we may find rest in his love. God will accept every one that comes to him trusting wholly in the merits of a crucified Saviour. Love springs up in the heart. There may be no ecstasy of feeling, but there is an abiding, peaceful trust. Every burden is light; for the yoke which Christ imposes is easy. Duty becomes a delight, and sacrifice a pleasure. The path that before seemed shrouded in darkness becomes bright with beams from the Sun of Righteousness. This is walking in the light as Christ is in the light."
So what about the sins and imperfection we still see in our lives?
"There are those who have known the pardoning love of Christ and who really desire to be children of God, yet they realize that their character is imperfect, their life faulty, and they are ready to doubt whether their hearts have been renewed by the Holy Spirit. To such I would say, Do not draw back in despair. We shall often have to bow down and weep at the feet of Jesus because of our shortcomings and mistakes, but we are not to be discouraged. Even if we are overcome by the enemy, we are not cast off, not forsaken and rejected of God. No; Christ is at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Said the beloved John, "These things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous." 1 John 2:1. And do not forget the words of Christ, "The Father Himself loveth you." John 16:27. He desires to restore you to Himself, to see His own purity and holiness reflected in you. And if you will but yield yourself to Him, He that hath begun a good work in you will carry it forward to the day of Jesus Christ. Pray more fervently; believe more fully. As we come to distrust our own power, let us trust the power of our Redeemer, and we shall praise Him who is the health of our countenance.
The closer you come to Jesus, the more faulty you will appear in your own eyes; for your vision will be clearer, and your imperfections will be seen in broad and distinct contrast to His perfect nature. This is evidence that Satan's delusions have lost their
power; that the vivifying influence of the Spirit of God is arousing you.
No deep-seated love for Jesus can dwell in the heart that does not realize its own sinfulness. The soul that is transformed by the grace of Christ will admire His divine character; but if we do not see our own moral deformity, it is unmistakable evidence that we have not had a view of the beauty and excellence of Christ.
The less we see to esteem in ourselves, the more we shall see to esteem in the infinite purity and loveliness of our Saviour. A view of our sinfulness drives us to Him who can pardon; and when the soul, realizing its helplessness, reaches out after Christ, He will reveal Himself in power. The more our sense of need drives us to Him and to the word of God, the more exalted views we shall have of His character, and the more fully we shall reflect His image."
So we don't need to be discouraged. We don't lose our salvation ever time we sin but we come to Jesus in repentance. The only way we can be lost is if we persistently reject Him and go back to the world.
It is hard to be lost when we know how good the Good News is!
For more information and help read these articles on this page: God's Love for Us
How do we grow in Jesus?
"By Beholding You Become Changed." This means that what you take into your mind will change you. What you see and hear (beholding) will mode and shape you.
When we behold Christ by prayer, meditation on Him, reading the Bible and other inspired books we take Him in and grow.
Why should we NOT make promises to God?
What is the difference between the power of choice (or the will) and making a promise? A promise is depending on your own self and strength to fulfill it. While choosing to serve God is depending on Him to do it in you.
So instead of promising God you will do something, choose to do it and (ask) depend on God to do it in you.
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