The following is from the Pee Dee Baptist Association. Featured this month is Dr. Dick Alderman of Little Rock Baptist Church.
“How to Know You Are Really Saved”
A person walks the aisle at the end of a service, prays a prayer, and is told by a preacher that he is now saved, but is he? Not necessarily; and in today’s casual approach to salvation, probably not. How can we be certain we are saved?
It begins with the door to salvation. Jesus said, “Strive to enter in at the narrow gate; for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able.” I thought salvation was easy. Well, it is, and is isn’t. It is in the sense that Jesus did all the work on the Cross of paying for your sins and making the way for you to be saved. But it isn’t easy because you will fight the biggest battle of your life in order to enter that door.
Singing, pleading with people, appealing to their emotions, making it so easy to do will often encourage people to walk the aisle without any real conviction that they are sinners and without understanding what they are doing What are we being saved from disillusionment, disappointment, dissatisfaction, despair, low self-esteem and the like. But this is wrong: we are being saved from God… BY God. Saved from His wrath and God Who is our Judge. Saved unto His grace and mercy and forgiveness.
The word “strive” is the word “agony” indicating a hard effort and real battle to get into the door of salvation. It is the term for athletic struggle, fighting an opponent, waging a military battle. It is not a matter of your works or how good you are and can become. God calls all these “filthy rags.” Your good works will send you to Hell if you trust them tog et you to Heaven. No, the toughest battle you will ever fight is with the person you see in the mirror everyday. Jesus had consistently taught that we must “deny ourselves, crucify ourselves, say no to ourselves” in order to be saved. This is the very opposite that the world believes today. The culture we live in, the friends we have, the purpose of life today is to please yourself and make yourself happy. Jesus taught the opposite: say no to yourself and nail your life on a cross. When you approach God to be saved, no one else on earth matters. I tis just you and Him. And if you do not come on His terms, He does not receive you.
The battle is between you and the Holy Spirit for your life, for control of who you are and what you will do and how you will live. If you win, you lose; but if you lose, you win. While it is easy to trust Christ to save you, it nonetheless requires the death of your self and the old life to reach that door. To many today Jesus is nothing more than a rubber stamp to approve and help their own ambitions, desires, and plans. He will make you happy, they say. But, no, He will make you HOLY, and therein is real happiness. To be right with God brings peace and spiritual health, salvation. So, you must hate your sin, deny yourself, turn from your sin, then receive Christ into your heart as Savior. Or else you remain lost forever no matter what else you do.
If you are not sure about being saved, get desperate to knock on the door, deal with your sin and rebellion against God, beg for His mercy and trust Jesus to let you in. He will. He said, “I am the door; by Me if any person comes in, he shall be saved.” Everything else is a fake; nothing works but Jesus, and on HIS terms, not yours.