AM I REALLY A CHRISTIAN? HOW TO KNOW WITH 100% CONFIDENCE
The Galatians Road – A Road Less Traveled. Len Baker. Growing in Grace Ministries, 2012.
2 Corinthians 13 – Examine Yourselves. David Guzik. Enduring Word.com, 2018, https://enduringword.com/bible-commentary/2-corinthians-13
Colossians 1- The Greatness of Jesus Christ. David Guzik. Enduring Word.com, 2018, https://enduringword.com/bible-commentary/colossians-1
Galatians 4 – Heirs and Slaves, Grace and Law. David Guzik. Enduring Word.com, 2018, https://enduringword.com/bible-commentary/galatians-4
What Does “Christ in You” Mean? Chizobam Idahosa. Beautiful in Jesus.com, 2022, https://beautifulinjesus.com/christ-in-you
What does it mean that Christ is in us? GotQuestions.org, 2022, https://www.gotquestions.org/Christ-in-us.html
Christ in Us: How Does He Live in You? Steve Moody. LifeHopeandTruth.com, 2022, https://lifehopeandtruth.com/change/christian-conversion/christ-in-us
What does “test yourselves” mean in 2 Corinthians 13:5? GotQuestions.org, 2022, https://www.gotquestions.org/test-yourselves.html
Why is the Holy Spirit called “the Spirit of Christ” and the “Spirit of Jesus”? Don Stewart. BlueLetterBible.org, 2022, https://www.blueletterbible.org/Comm/stewart_don/faq/the-identity-of-the-holy-spirit/16-why-is-the-holy-spirit-called-the-spirit-of-jesus.cfm
AM I REALLY A CHRISTIAN? HOW TO KNOW WITH 100% CONFIDENCE
The Apostle John said he wrote 1 John to those who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that they would know that they have eternal life. Friends, we can have confidence in our hope and assurance of our salvation.
At the same time, we recognize that Jesus said not everyone who calls him “Lord” will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Sadly, there are many who live with false hope and false assurance.
In light of this, how can we know with 100% confidence that our salvation is real?
Well, in his second letter to the church in Corinth, the Apostle Paul provides a test, a very simple examination we can use to answer the question, “Am I Really a Christian?”
Before we get to the test, today’s video is sponsored by Arizona Community Church. You can watch their encouraging and Bible-based sermons on YouTube or on their website at AZ.CHURCH.
Now let’s get back to the test… In 2 Corinthians 13:5, the Apostle Paul writes, “Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith” and then he repeats, “examine yourselves!” Notice he didn’t write, “examine each other.” First and foremost, we need to test and examine ourselves.
The test is in the very next sentence. “Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, he writes, that Jesus Christ is in you—unless indeed you fail the test?” Paul’s test is very simple and includes only one criteria: Is Jesus Christ in you?
Paul often taught about Christ taking up residence in the hearts of God’s holy people and in Colossians 1:27, he refers to this indwelling as a great mystery. He writes, “God wanted to make known to them the glorious riches of this mystery… which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”
Friends, when we place our faith in Jesus, we are united to Christ for all eternity, first in His death and then in His resurrection. His death brought us redemption. His resurrection gives us life. His death freed us from the penalty of sin. His life frees us from the power of sin, and one day, from the very presence of sin.
We, also, were brought from death to life. We were spiritually dead, but now we are born again into newness of life. We were separated from God, but now we are reconciled through Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross. Once enemies, the Bible says we are now children of God. We were slaves to sin, but not anymore. We put to death our old sinful life and independent way of doing things and the life we now live, we live with Christ in us.
Jesus died for you to give His life to you to live His life through you. That is the beauty and mystery of the Christian Life. Christ in you, the hope of glory!
You might be wondering, “How do I know if Jesus Christ lives in me?” The Apostle John says, “we know He lives in us because the Spirit He gave us lives in us.” Friends, if you have close fellowship with the Son of God deep within your spirit, you’ll know. You can also look for evidence or “fruit” that the Spirit lives in you. More and more, do you see yourself exhibiting genuine love, steadfast joy, unexplainable peace, calm patience, merciful kindness, uncompromising goodness, unwavering faithfulness, humble gentleness, and increasing self-control?
If Christ is in you, the Bible says you are a new creation. The old is gone and the new has come. Now this is both a promise and a test. Do you see evidence that your old sinful patterns are being replaced with godly priorities?
If Christ is in you, the Bible says you no longer live for yourself, but for Christ. Have you have given Jesus authority as Lord of your life and do you trust and obey Him to the best of your ability?
And finally, if Christ is in you, you will become more like Him. We know this because the Bible says God works in our lives for the very purpose of making us more like Jesus. Do you see your interests shifting from the things of this world to the things of God’s Kingdom?
If you haven’t seen these things develop in your life, is it possible that you adopted Christianity as a religion, but never entered into the type of relationship that God wants to have with you? Many people gladly accept Jesus as Savior, but never submit to Him as Lord. You might know a lot about Him, but do you love Him, treasure Him, and follow Him?
Sadly, there are many people who have prayed the prayer, done the alter call, been baptized, served in the church, or even preached the Gospel, and yet still fail the test. If this might be you, you can always decide right now if you want to receive Jesus into your heart and into your life as Lord and Savior.
Friends, this is important: when we examine ourselves, we’re not looking for sinless perfection, we’re looking for spiritual direction—evidence that Jesus Christ lives in us. His work on the cross is finished, but His work in us is not until the day of His return. So be gracious and patient with yourselves (and others) as your Lord God is gracious and patient with you.
But just remember that as Christians, the Bible says we are now dead to sin and alive to God. We don’t live to sin anymore, because that part of us died. We may fall into it, but we don’t dive in headfirst! We don’t accept it and we certainly don’t embrace it. And here is why: because we hate what it stands for and the underlying lies that oppose God’s ways. As believers, our attitude towards sin should always be repentance, which leads to grace.
This is not only the test to see if we are in the faith, Christ in you is the secret to the Christian Life. After all, Jesus says we can do nothing of any spiritual significance without Him. So rather than trying harder in our own strength to be more patient, be more loving, or have more self-control, the secret is to trust the power and presence of Christ in us to do in and through us what we could never accomplish on our own to the praise of His glory.
Jesus died for you to give His life to you to live His life through you. Together with all God’s people, may you experience the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory, and may you know with 100% confidence that you have eternal life.
I hope this video is a blessing to you. God bless you all.