(This article was written by Sue Ann Loyola for the May 2014 newsletter. Reprinted by permission.)
I don’t know how many tracts (those little leaflets that explain the gospel) that I have signed in my life or how many times I have asked Jesus to be my Savior. When I was in college I remember reading a booklet about repentance and how important it is to salvation and went around for days trying to “really” repent. I remember trying to feel sorry for my sins but always wondering if I was really sorry; and how sorry do you have to be? What is the perfect amount of sorrow that really means you have repented?
Are you like me? Have you ever wondered if you “did it right?” I mean, if you really trusted Jesus as your Savior, and how you know for sure? Was my prayer correct? Did I really trust Jesus or was I just saying words?
When I was a young person I heard sermons over and over where the pastor said “be sure that you’re sure that you’re sure that you are saved.” I would try to look inside for some kind of assurance but I was never quite sure how you were supposed to be “sure that you’re sure.”
I do recall the joy I felt as a child when I trusted in Jesus. I knew that I was bound for heaven and that absolutely nothing would separate me from God. I remember feeling like anything could happen to me and it would be okay because I belonged to the Lord. But much of that became muddled through the years with questions, doubts and fears.
Then I realized, with the Lord’s help, that I am not trusting in an idea, my ability to “get it right,” or some feelings that I should have. When you trust in Jesus Christ for your salvation, you are trusting in a Person—Jesus Christ, God’s own beloved Son. You are laying aside anything and everything that you can do or be in your own strength to be right with God and trusting in Jesus Christ alone. You don’t have to worry that you did everything right—you trust in Someone: the sinless, perfect Son of God who did get everything right, to be right for you (in your place). When you trust Him, you are repenting (turning from) your sin and any hope of reaching God on your own and trusting Jesus only.
I encourage you today to think about who you are trusting for your eternity with God. Even if you prayed a prayer at some time in your life—it is not a prayer that saves you, it is Jesus. Look to Jesus alone, my dear friend. He is sufficient—more than sufficient—He is the only way to the Father. No one and nothing else can intercede for you. It is a decision you make—not just to assent that there is a God, but to trust in Him (Jesus), and Him alone to cleanse you from your sin.
I discovered there is a way to be sure that you’re sure that you’re sure you are saved: go to God’s Word and trust what He has said: “And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.” This is the only thing you need to be sure of: that you are trusting in Jesus Christ and Him alone for your salvation. 1 Corinthians 15: 3-4 says: “For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that He was buried, that He was raised on the third day according to the scriptures…”
Jesus is the object of our faith. Keep Him the focal point and you don’t need to doubt or wonder any more if you are saved from your sin. Know, that if He is the One you are trusting, that it is enough. He has already done everything you need to be saved—there is nothing you can add.
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him. Whoever believes in Him is not condemned…” (John 3:16-18a)
I want to encourage you to say it out loud. “Jesus, you are the Savior, you are my Savior. I am trusting you alone to save me from my sin and make me right with the Father.” Say it over and over, say it every time you are wondering if you are saved. He is the Savior—your Savior and you are waging war for your peace and assurance. Be assured that He is the only way to the Father and by telling Him so, you are trusting in Him and fixing your mind on what is true. Don’t worry about feelings—just keep speaking the truth. Really, I think this is all we can do. We cannot look within for peace. We know we have no hope apart from Jesus. So, express your faith out loud. “I have no Savior apart from you Jesus. I am trusting you alone for my salvation.”
Keep your eyes off yourself and the temptation to question but rather, look to Jesus and tell Him you are trusting Him. Tell Him and tell Him and tell Him—don’t worry about your feelings, other people’s experiences, or anything else—He is the Savior! He is YOUR Savior! Trust Him by telling Him!
Hebrews 7:25 “Therefore He is able to save completely those who come to God through Him, because He always lives to intercede for them.”