At least three times in the last month I have been told by different people they were afraid that they were no longer saved. They didn’t know if they believed anymore.
When I get this many comments on a single topic it makes me realize there are many more people with this same concern. So, let me briefly address this concern. However, there are two key passages you need to keep in mind as we walk through this devotional, together.
(1) Ephesians 2:8-9 (NIV) “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.“
(2) James 2:18 (NIV) “But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.” Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds.“
These two verses do not contradict each other but complement. What would you do to check to see if a person is alive? You’d check for a pulse; is the breath of life still there? We are saved through God’s grace. Our faith is made alive by God. Breath is active, breath is life. Faith is active, it produces, it works; the evidence of a healthy life in Jesus is an active faith. Now, it is possible that a person is in such bad shape that their breath is undetectable. People that fear they are no longer saved are nearly always in this condition.
The life of Christ is in the apparently dead person but life is there within them and renewal is available for the asking. Is repentance needed? No doubt. Is restitution needed? Probably. Is rededication to the will of God needed? Absolutely. But all are freely available by the power of the Word of God within that person.
Within our relationship with Jesus we are reminded by Paul in Philippians 2:12-13 (NIV, “Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.”
The “working out” is a very personal thing, as you would expect between a parent and a child. Even more importantly, this “working out” has nothing to do with losing your salvation. This is about becoming the person God knows you can be.