MEMORY VERSE: All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. Isaiah 53:6
BIBLE IN ONE YEAR: Job 29-30
What individuals experience after giving their lives to Christ or after rededicating their lives to Christ vary greatly. Pastor Willie Mullan in his book ‘Tramp after God’ said he felt a tremendous urge to tell someone what had just happened to him – how the Lord had just saved a tramp like him. He was very excited and could not keep still. Another fellow said he was so full of love that he felt like hugging everyone. I remember when I gave my life to Christ, all I felt like doing was praying. The urge to pray was so great. Some immediately know a difference in their life. For others it is more gradual. I want you to know that what matters is not so much the initial experience but the start of a new relationship with God. The fact that you didn't feel anything, probably a tingling sensation in your tummy after saying the sinner’s prayers or after confessing your sins and asking the Lord to come into your life, does not mean you are not saved. No! If we were to rely on our feelings we could never be sure about anything. Our feelings go up and down depending on all sorts of factors, such as the weather or what we have had for breakfast. They are changeable and deceptive. 2 Corinthians 5:7 says, “For we walk by faith, not by sight.”
The assurance of our relationship stands on these three things: the word of God, the work of Jesus and the witness of the Holy Spirit. Firstly, the word of God. The promises in the Bible, which is the word of God, do not change and are totally reliable unlike our feelings. There are many great promises in the bible that assures us that once we open the door of our hearts to Jesus, He will come in and dine with us (Revelation 3:20). In addition, He has promised to be with us until the end of the world (Matthew 28:20). He went on further to promise us eternal life (John 10:28), which is a quality of life that comes from living in a relationship with God through Jesus Christ (John 17:3). Secondly, the work of Jesus. What Jesus did on the cross enables Him to give us eternal life as a gift (John 10:28). We do not earn a gift. We accept it with gratitude. On the cross, He took all our wrong-doings upon Himself. This had been clearly prophesied in the Old Testament in the Book of Isaiah. Isaiah 53:6 says, “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.” What the prophet was saying is that we have all done something wrong and those wrong-doings have caused a separation between us and God (Isaiah 59:1-2). This is why at times God can seem remote. On the other hand, Jesus never did anything wrong. There was no barrier between Him and His Father. On the cross, God transferred our wrong-doings onto Jesus. That is why He cried out on the cross, ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?' ( Mark 15:34). At that moment He was cut off from God – not because of His own wrong-doings but because of ours. This made it possible for the barrier between us and God to be removed. Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1). Lastly, the witness of the Spirit. When someone becomes a Christian, the Holy Spirit comes to live within them. When the Holy Spirit comes in, He transforms from within. He produces the character of Jesus in our lives which are also known as the fruit of the spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). We become more loving, more joyful, more peaceful, etc. Also there will be changes in our relationships- both with God and with other people.Asides these changes which can be noticed in our lives, the Holy Spirit also brings an inner experience of God. He creates a deep, personal conviction that we are children of God. ( Romans 8:15-16). This is the third way in which we are assured of our relationship with God, and that we are forgiven and have eternal life.
NOTE: It is one of the privileges of being a child of God: to be able to be absolutely confident about our relationship with our Father, to be sure of the fact that we are forgiven; to be sure that we are Christians , and to know we have eternal life.
Bro Samuel | Reaching the world for Jesus.