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Believer’s Basics #10 – Assurance (Part A)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston
The Truth Network Radio
November 23, 2022 6:00 am

Believer’s Basics #10 – Assurance (Part A)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston

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November 23, 2022 6:00 am

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Pastor Rick Gaston

Peter says, Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved. There is no other route but through Jesus Christ. I have to emphasize that on a subject concerning assurance because you will have no assurance if you are listening to that which is against what God has said. How can you be sure of anything if you are disagreeing with what God has clearly said?

You cannot earn your way into salvation, into heaven. This is Cross Reference Radio with our pastor and teacher Rick Gaston. Rick is the pastor of Calvary Chapel Mechanicsville. Pastor Rick is currently teaching through his series called The Believer's Basics.

Please stay with us after today's message to hear more information about Cross Reference Radio, specifically how you can get a free copy of this teaching. But for now, let's join Pastor Rick in the book of 1 John 5 as he begins a brand new study called Assurance. We are in the first letter of John chapter 5. 1 John chapter 5, we will take verses 10 through 13. He who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself.

He who does not believe God has made him a liar because he has not believed the testimony that God has given of his Son. And this is the testimony that 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. These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.

Please be seated. Well that's straight to the point. The most important thing about you and me and anybody is where you're going after you die. Because you will die or you'll be snatched away, but either way you will stand before God and will you go to heaven or will you go to hell?

You have no choice concerning your first birth. You have every choice once you hear the gospel concerning a second birth to be born again, to be on God's side, to conform to God's word, to comply to what God wants. And many Christians are just not sure about that. They profess Christ but they fret sometimes over their salvation.

And this is damaging. You cannot really serve if you're not sure about these things that God has settled them. And to sing, for instance, we were singing Holy, Holy is our God Almighty. If you don't have that assurance, that blessed assurance of salvation, then you sort of Holy, Holy is the God Almighty. But if you are sure, it takes a whole new course in your life and how you express yourself and your faith. And so this morning we are going to discuss the tenth session of the Believer's Basics, assurance. That is assurance of salvation. Our text is found in 1 John 5 verse 13. These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God. Well, before we open up our text, just to talk about this letter, this letter of 1 John, that is written to give assurance to believers. But as you read this letter, you will be destabilized a little bit.

You will be concerned about a lot of things. You will begin to examine yourself. And in this letter, he gives seven reasons why he wrote the letter to these Christians. The first is in the first chapter.

He says for their joy that it would be full. In the second chapter, that they might not sin. Again in the second chapter, that darkness will be defeated by light.

That we win in the end, in other words. And in chapter 2, he also says because your sins are forgiven. I'm writing to you because your sins are forgiven. And he wanted to make sure they understood this. And then again in chapter 2, he writes because you have known, because you have overcome, because you have known. John emphasizes knowledge in this first letter. He emphasizes love. He emphasizes the Son of God. In chapter 2, he also says he wrote to warn them against deceivers. And then here in our text in chapter 5, he says he writes to them so that they would be sure where they are going after this life. And that's what we're going to hopefully discuss.

This may be too basic for some, but I hope beneficial for all. So we look at our text again. These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God. That you may know that you have eternal life and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.

These things I have written to you. Now, when he says that here in chapter 5, he is certainly including all of what he is writing. But he's really, he has really narrowed it down to the verses in chapter 5 that we know as chapter 5 beginning at verse 1. And then, for example, verses 11 and 12, if you still have your Bibles open in 1 John chapter 5, and this is the testimony that 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 does not have life. And so he says, I'm writing this to you so that you will know.

That's really what he is talking about in our text. It's through the Son. Through Jesus Christ. He said, what about Mary? What about my good deeds?

Can I go through them? Absolutely not. Especially no. An emphatic no.

And an absolute no. Unless you want to disagree with what God has said. In the book of Acts in the fourth chapter, the apostles made it clear. Peter says, Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.

There is no other route but through Jesus Christ. I have to emphasize that on a subject concerning assurance because you will have no assurance if you are listening to that which is against what God has said. How can you be sure of anything if you are disagreeing with what God has clearly said? You cannot earn your way into salvation, into heaven.

It is something that is received. The Bible alone is our authority on spiritual matters. Scripture alone is the authority on scriptural matters, on spiritual matters. Not the church, not the pastors, not human beings, not a paganized Christianity which is everywhere and is increasing day by day and we're not supposed to be surprised at this. We have been warned in the scripture that in the end times there would be a great apostasy that would blanket the earth.

And it is happening even now. Even now there are people entering podiums in what they call churches and they've been prepared to speak to their congregation fluffy, silly, nonsensical, baloney things in God's name. Let the buyer beware. The buyer's remorse at the end of this life is not what you want.

You do not want to land in hell because you listen to people who didn't listen to God. It's not very tricky, is it? It's very simple. I'm not saying this with an attitude of anger or anything like that. I'm very firm about this, no apology for it. None of us should have an apology for what God makes very clear because of his mercy and his grace. He also makes that clear. He also says, I will take you to myself and you will be with me forever if that's what you want.

But if you don't want it, I'm not going to jam it down your throat. If you are offended by these things, then you are offended by the Bible. If you are offended by Peter's words, nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved. If that offends you, then God offends you.

And there's nothing anybody can say about that. Except you are offended by God. Truth always offends its opponents without exception. God wants us to be sure of truths concerning us, concerning me personally, you personally. God wants you to be sure of these things. Confusion does not bring strength to anyone.

When Luke was writing the Gospel according to Luke in the very opening verses, he writes to a man named Theophilus, and he says to Theophilus, I want you to understand what I'm about to say to you, Luke chapter 1 verse 4, that you may know the certainty of those things in which you were instructed. I love that. Luke is saying, I'm not playing around with you. I want you to understand this. This means everything. He doesn't have that attitude.

He's very soft when he says it. It's me that, it's not my fault I'm like this. It's the Marine Corps. They did it to me. I was a good boy before them.

Not really. Anyway, back to what we're talking about here. He says, who believe in the name of the Son of God. So this is written to those who believe, who claim to be Christians. Maybe you are a Christian. I hope you are. But you're not sure of your salvation. What is this going to be settled?

I hope it's settled this morning. If you came into these doors uncertain about where you were going, why you're going where you're going, and who is the one that is doing it, and why he is doing it, and his banner over you is love, love, love. He cares for you. In spite of the junk of this cursed life, which makes his love so superior, and there are many, many reasons to doubt, after a while they get boring. They get boring in the light of truth, and the Spirit of God lives in our hearts. And so, that we might believe in a more emphatic sense of the word. That our salvation is no longer unsure. We need to settle this now, in this life, and not wait to get to the throne of God to find out. Jesus says this, he says, Most assuredly I say to you, he who believes in me has everlasting life. Now, how many read that, or have heard that, and still go on doubting?

Why is this? What's your problem here? Lovingly, again, saying this to those, not trying to be hard on anybody, God, again, I want you to understand, these are hard-driven nails of truth. And when he says, Most assuredly I say to you, he who believes in me has everlasting life. He doesn't say, he who believes in me, or anybody else, or somebody else, or something else.

They are wrong. They speak opposite of the blessed assurance of Christ. In 17, Jesus prayed this, he said, And this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. That, of course, making Christ equal, because you couldn't say that they may believe, that they may know you, the only true God, and Rick Gaston, whom you have sent. That would be blasphemy. He doesn't put Moses' name there, or anyone else's name.

He is the center of attention. The foundation of assurance of our salvation is belief in what the Scripture says about the Son, who is Jesus Christ. And so, he says in our text, that you may know that you have eternal life. See, John knew that confusion weakens us.

If you're not saved, and you come to church, why do you come to church, why are you not saved? Well, sometimes it's a process. You need time.

It's understood. But at some point, it's got to be settled. And you're not safe if you're not saved. Because you can die at any time. You don't know when the proverbial grim reaper is going to come.

But you can be ready. And that is the role of Scripture, the Holy Spirit, the pastors, and Christians in general, is so that this confusion is taken away. Do you know liberals are made of confusion? Pontius Pilate, what is truth?

Well, you're looking at him, doofus. He's too liberal. He's too confused about life. He became a philosopher. Philosophers settle nothing. They just go on talking about everything from different angles, and they never get to something that is settled. Truth can be known. Truth about God. There are many churches, they practice confusion. You go in there, and they speak in what they claim to be tongues, and nobody knows what they're saying, and they think that somehow this is not confusing. Paul writes about that in that very section. He says, For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints. In all the churches, God is not the author of that which confuses you. The reason why a pastor has to work so hard in preparation to deliver his word, and you have to work so hard to preach the gospel, is because you have to take out the cobwebs, the things that might be confusing. Charles Spurgeon said, a great preacher from long ago, A mist in the pulpit is a fog in the pew. See, a little confusion up here leaves you really confused. Not that it doesn't ever happen, but it never happened here.

No. Not that it doesn't happen, but you must work to reduce it from happening, to keep it from not being the normal. That you may continue to believe, he says here in verse 13, in the name of the Son of God. This is a verse in the Bible that is worth memorizing at some point in your life.

So he says that you may continue to believe, which presupposes that you may not continue. And I know this causes some to go berserk. Berserk. And they don't know why they go berserk over this. But here it is in Scripture, I want you to continue.

I don't want you to stop. Apostates are lost. We are exhorted to examine and to prove ourselves that we are in the faith. 2 Corinthians, Paul says, check yourselves out, examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves that Jesus Christ is in you?

Unless indeed you are disqualified. There it is again. Maybe you're not with him because you don't want to be with him. You've stopped loving him. You don't care about him anymore. When you sing songs to the Lord, there's no love in it.

There's no passion. I'm not talking about those times in our life when we are beaten down, when we are in great grief. I'm talking about when there's really nothing unusual taking place, things are relatively routine, and you're just not moved by holy things or the Holy Spirit. You should be concerned.

Every alarm in your mind should be ringing if that is the case. You need to get with the Lord and tell him straight out that this is an issue that you will not settle for. Not to demand God to do something, but to place a demand upon yourself to get to the bottom of it before God. Because we know that he is long suffering, willing that none should perish. And aren't we glad he is long suffering?

Because if he were not, we would have been toast long time ago. And so, if I say, choose, if you choose to stop believing, you're lost. If you become a believer, then you choose to stop.

This rattles so many people. I know why some of them, because they're so locked into the doctrines of men, and others just get upset because they don't know why they're upset. They've been told this in the church. What are you saying?

What are you saying? I could lose my salvation? Jesus said it like this, if you abide with me, I'll abide with you.

I don't need any more than that. If I don't abide with him, then what happens? Don't find out, because he says in John 15 verse 5, they're cast into the fire. I believe in the eternal security of the believer. I do not believe in the eternal security of the unbeliever. What is so complicated about that, when you come across such texts that said, check yourselves out or maybe you're disqualified. Or in our very text this morning, that you may continue to believe.

And there's so many other places, it shouldn't be something that we are frazzled by. We love the Lord. Jesus said, no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. He said it through his man, the apostle Paul. No condemnation for those in Christ Jesus, and no salvation for those outside Christ Jesus.

Which is an offense to the world that wants to come to Christ on their terms as did Cain. And so assurance, what is it? It is the solid belief that you are truly saved from an eternal judgment, that you will be going to heaven. That you are a friend of God. That you walk with God. In spite of your shortcomings, in spite of your failures, in spite of your sins, he has made a way for you. God has interfered with your sin if you come to him. You don't deserve this, but you can receive it.

And if you're too proud to receive it, then you won't get it. And so we are destined to be in heaven. If we have faith in Jesus Christ, that is our destiny. That is where we're going. We are on the flight that is going to heaven.

That's what I want, and that's what I want everyone to want. Some, again, are not sure about this. It should not be. If you claim Christ as Lord, you should never doubt his work. We'll get to the sin part a little bit more as we move on. But, many just have the milk of faith. They come to the faith and they just have the milk.

They can't take solid food. God wants you to have solid food. If you live on milk, but have claimed Christ long enough, why do you keep a baby's diet?

Why do you not press on to the deeper things of the word of God, such as scripture that we have this morning before us and many of the surrounding scriptures that are being used to drive the point home, again, like well-driven nails. We are to believe and we are exhorted to eat. We are exhorted to be sheep that feed in the pastures of the Lord. The Lord is my shepherd I shall not want. John chapter 10, Jesus said, I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go out and in and find pasture. You will be saved and you will feed, not on milk, but solid food. This is what God wants.

And I believe that those Christians that are always fretting about their salvation, they never get off the baby food. And so, you can't get strong that way. There are processes at work and you have to respond to them.

And if you don't respond to them, you won't mature. You won't be what you can be. If you do not believe you can be more in Christ, then you doubt Christ's work through his Holy Spirit. True Christian assurance is not a matter of guesswork. It's not, well, I think I'm saved. Well, I hope I'm saved. Well, I might be saved. I guess I'm saved. It is I am saved. I know where I am going.

I know who I believe. I trust his promises and I'm not backing away. It's your call. It's up to you. It's up to each and every one of us. That doesn't mean Satan will not come and attack you on this matter.

He'll attack you on anything he can attack you. It's ready for him through the Word of God. How can we effectively live for Christ if we doubt his promises? How can you be used to preach Christ if you yourself don't believe it?

What benefit is there in that? God has assured those who love Jesus Christ and seek his will in all things. You catch that? It's not a scripture verse, but it's a statement built on scripture verses. God has assured those who love Jesus Christ and seek his will in all things that they will be saved. You may not get to his will because of your sinful flesh, but you still want it. You hunger and thirst to do it his way, and you don't like that you do it the carnal way. It's what Paul talks about in Romans 8, O sinful man that I am, wretched man that I am. For me, I want to do what God tells me to do, but I find this flesh, this carnal nature, this sinful nature that I am born with and I can't shake in this life with me wherever I go, disturbing everything I believe.

What is going to be done about this, and where does he leave it? In the hands of God. Only God can settle this. Understanding who this God is means everything.

Loving him for his, again, interference in my life against sin. At some point, what God promises, not what our doubts dictate, must prevail. If you're ever going to be assured of your salvation and useful because of it, then you're going to have to, at some point, lay hold of the promises. It is normal for all Christians to know that they are saved. It is normal.

That is what's expected of us. It's not something like, wow, there's a rare Christian, he's sure where he's going. I mean, there are other religions out there that tell you, there are leaders of their religions that will tell you, no man can know that he is saved until he is dead.

Well, what good is that? There's a lottery or something? I mean, God did not leave us with a roulette wheel? It's not spiritual roulette. It's a promise of God. It would not be a God of love if he said, watch this, I'm going to keep them paranoid and panic-stricken all the days of their life. You know, this is the thing, you know, I hear some people, they go to church, well, the word's not preached there, but I like the people.

Well, that's a contradiction in terms because if the Lord is your shepherd, once again, he leads you to green pastures. Thanks for joining us for today's teaching on Cross-Reference Radio, the daily radio ministry of Pastor Rick Gaston of Calvary Chapel Mechanicsville in Virginia. We hope you've been blessed by this Believer's Basics series, exploring the fundamentals of what it means to follow Christ. If you'd like to listen to more of this series or share it with someone you know, please visit crossreferenceradio.com. We encourage you to subscribe to our podcast too so you'll never miss another edition. Just visit crossreferenceradio.com and follow the links under radio. Again, that's crossreferenceradio.com. That's all for today. We hope you'll tune in next time to continue studying the word of God right here on Cross-Reference Radio.
Whisper: medium.en / 2022-11-23 06:33:45 / 2022-11-23 06:43:21 / 10

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