Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Are You Saved or Deceived?

Are you sure where you will spend eternity?  Do you think you’re a good person and because you do good things you will get to heaven?  Just because you do good things and serve in the church doesn’t give you eternal salvation.  Being part of a certain denomination, holding a church title, or having perfect attendance in church will not help you have eternal life in heaven.

There are many people who are religious and think they are Christians, but are not truly saved.  Satan deceives people into believing the lie that they are saved when they are not saved at all.  “The great dragon was hurled down – that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray.”Rev. 12:9.

People can appear to be godly and still miss heaven.  They can be active in the church choir, teach a Sunday school class, be generous in giving money to the church and charities, and may look like a good person as they may well be.  They appear to have it all together, but God know the true condition of their heart.  An example is Judas who was a disciple and accepted Jesus, but later betrayed Him.

Jesus warns us in Matt. 7:21-23 “Not everyone who says to me, Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in haven.  Many will say to me on that day, Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?  Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you.  Away from me, you evildoers!’”

You are not saved because you are a good person or have prayed the sinner’s prayer.  The Bible says you must repent and believe the gospel, stop sinning and obey God.  Then God may test your faith (Deut. 9:1, James 1:12, 1 Peter 1:7).  Remember even Jesus was tempted (Matt. 4:1-11).  If you withstand the faith you will be saved.  Jesus says, “Those who endure to the end will be saved.” Matt. 10:22.

Ways unsaved people think they are saved:
I am a good person. – I’m not a murder, thief, adulterer or as bad others.   I know God is a God of love and would never send a good person to hell.
I have said the sinner’s prayer and accepted Jesus. – That is a very good thing, but there must be true repentance and a changed life.
I feel like I’m saved. – Singing praise music and lifting hands to God is not enough.  It’s not about feelings and emotions.  That is a deception from Satan.
I do good deeds. – Helping the needy and giving to charities is good, but you can’t earn your way to heaven.
I am religious. – Going to church and doing other religious things to please yourself and others under obligation is putting your confidence in people.  Doing things for show and not for God is not pleasing the Him.
I hold a title in the church. – I am a pastor, elder, or deacon.  Putting your trust in titles in life is pride.  God hates pride (Prov. 8:13).
I hold to my church’s traditions. – I am a Baptist, Catholic, etc.   We are not put our confidence in anyone but God.  Praying to Mary or Saints is against God’s Word.  There is only one God and one Mediator (1 Tim. 2:5, Ex. 20:3-5).
I am blessed with prosperity. – God is blessing me with financial security.  This is false assurance.  You are being deceived by Satan.
I honor God and I know His laws. - They honor God with their lips, but not their hearts. – (Matt. 15:7-9, Psalm 50:16-22).

Often it’s hard to tell a true Christian from a counterfeit one.  They often don’t even know they are not saved, because they have been so deceived.  Eventually the truth will come out.  There is only one way to salvation and it’s through Jesus.  “Jesus answered, I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6.  “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast.”Eph. 2:8-9.

A true believer is:
Born again (John 3:3).
Has a new identity in Christ (Rom. 6:6-11, 2 Cor. 5:17-21).
Has a changed heart (Jer. 32:39).
Obeys God’s word (1 John 2:3-6).
Lives a Godly life (2 Peter 3:11).
Pursues holiness (Heb. 12:14).
Fears God (Luke 12:5).
Stops habitually sinning (1 John 3:6-10).
Does not compromise with the world (Rom 12:2).
Overcomes Satan’s temptations and only believes God’s Word (1 John 5:3-5).
Has a servant’s heart (Matt. 23:11).
Denies self and follows Jesus (Luke 9:23-26).
Surrenders all to Jesus (Gal. 2:20).
Ready for His return (Luke 12:35-38).
Produces good fruit (John 15:8).
Does all things for God’s glory (1 Cor. 10:31).
Doesn’t believe anything contrary to God’s Word (1 John 2:27).
Has eternal life and will not experience God’s wrath (John 3:36).

So examine and test yourself.  “Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves.  Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you – unless, of course, you fail the test?”2 Cor. 13:5.

Test yourself by asking yourself these questions.  Do I love God and seek to obey His Word?  When I sin, do I feel sorry and turn away from my sin?  Am I growing to be more like Jesus with love, joy, patience, kindness, and self-control? 

If you answered ‘yes’ to these questions, you’re showing signs that God has made you a Christian and will never let you lose your salvation.  “I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand.”John 10:28.  “I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our lord.”Rom. 8:38-39.  “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” Rom. 8:1.

If you answered ‘no’ to these questions, you can find out how to become a Christian by believing in the Lord Jesus.  Steps for doing that are found at the bottom of this page, “How to be saved”.

If you’re a true believer, you’ll keep turning from sin and trusting Jesus to help you overcome sin.  You will want to obey Him and His Word.  You will still sin, but sin no longer has to control you.

Join me next time for more studies.  Have a blessed day and thanks for visiting my site.  Hope to see you here again.  --  I encourage you to trust in Jesus.


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