Perhaps you yourself doubt, groaning, “Do I really belong to God’s family?”
I do not believe there exists any significant difference between being saved and staying saved. Salvation is always by Jesus Christ. That truth remains unchanged regardless which side of the cross we live on. Only faith in Jesus will save us; only faith in Jesus will keep us. None of my works brought me into salvation, and none of my works will keep me in salvation. Christ, and Christ alone, is all I need.
Does that mean faith is the sum total of salvation and of being sure I’m saved? No! If faith alone will open Heaven to us, the object of our faith would be immaterial. We could hold the Islamic faith or adhere to Judaism or revere our great-grandmother’s slipper or belong to a conservative Mennonite church…and boldly gain access to the heavenly kingdom. But it isn’t that way!
Faith in Christ is the essence and fulness of our redemption and of our certainty of being saved. Continue reading
“In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began” (Titus 1:2).
When I came to that verse as I worked on a new Grade 8 Bible course, I had two questions come to my mind:
- How long has God had His salvation plan?
- To whom did He make the above promise
Since God is eternal, all His plans are likewise eternal. Inhabiting the eternal present, God knew man would need redemption and had a plan to offer us that. This truly is mind bending and logic defying for mortals such as we.
How can such a thing be?! I don’t know. But I accept it by faith. The Bible tells me so.
Now notice an additional awesome truth nestled in that verse:
God made a promise “before the world began!”
To whom could He have made that promise?
Since only He is eternal, who else?
I get this picture of the triune Godhead covenanting with Himself (or would you say Themselves?!) to offer salvation to me and you and billions of other humans-not-yet-living. So I borrow from these two verses:
“And God said, Let us make man in our image…”
“He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved…” (Mark 16:16).
And I imagine this happening sometime before Genesis:
And God said,
“Let us give eternal life
to those who
believe and are baptized.”