How do you know for sure you are a true Christian?
Written by Joseph Ho, 2nd July 2014
Is it true that just because you say the sinners’ prayers and make a verbal confession to the Lord our God that you be saved and once saved always saved? I began again to look carefully at what Jesus said in the bible after reading his rejections on those who had served him. This is almost equivalent to a coach telling you that you don’t need to practice just watch the sports on video and you will be given talent to win the game. Can such doctrine be true, that we don’t need to do anything else to receive our salvation? No need to gain the Holy Spirit to overcome? As far as I know, no Holy Spirit no victory.
Matthew 7:22-24 (NIV)
22 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 in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’
I was always concern at the back of my mind that the kingdom of God is not for anyone. It is meant for the true believers, the ones who do God’s will. I supposed the above verse in Matthew is speaking about people who do things using God’s name but not his will. How can Jesus say to those who did his work to be evildoers? They were obviously church people and doing missionary works. I would also think they have said the sinners’ prayers as well, got baptised in water in order to be in church serving God, prophesying and all, doing miracles for God.
Ezekiel 3:16-20 (NIV)
16 At the end of seven days the word of the Lord came to me: 17 “Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the people of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me. 18 When I say to a wicked person, ‘You will surely die,’ and you do not warn them or speak out to dissuade them from their evil ways in order to save their life, that wicked person will die for their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. 19 But if you do warn the wicked person and they do not turn from their wickedness or from their evil ways, they will die for their sin; but you will have saved yourself.
20 “Again, when a righteous person turns from their righteousness and does evil, and I put a stumbling block before them, they will die. Since you did not warn them, they will die for their sin. The righteous things that person did will not be remembered, and I will hold you accountable for their blood.”
Those who did good and turned away will die in their sin, which says that once saved is not always saved. Jesus taught that we should bear fruit, so if the branch does not bear fruit; it will be cut down. Does this tell you something about being a Christian that you have to bear fruit?
John 15 (NIV)
The Vine and the Branches
15 “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. 3 You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 4 Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me?
5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me, you can do nothing. 6 If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. 7 If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.
If being a Christian, we do not bear fruit then Jesus said, God, will prune him to remove those branches which don’t bear fruit. We are his branches and he is the vine. So we have to bear fruit. So what are the fruits we must bear since we are on the vine? God does not want fruitless branches that connect to the Jesus the Vine.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things, there is no law.
When we achieve the fruit bearing we would not have the law against us since we will be walking in the Spirit. Only then there is no condemnation, as the law or Satan cannot accuse you anymore since Jesus is your defending attorney. When you walk in the Spirit with the fruit Satan cannot accuse you of any wrong, since you move with the Holy Spirit.
Romans 8:1-2King James Version (KJV)
8 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.
So after the sinner’s prayers, we still need to stay in the vine, become the branches of God, bear fruit and walk in the Spirit. All these will be given by God, the journey to bear fruit and the fruit of the Spirit, to walk in the Spirit. Jesus is the only one who can give you of the Holy Spirit by baptising you with the baptism of the fire through the Holy Spirit. Pastors and teachers cannot give this to you since Jesus is the only gateway to heaven. Once you have this Holy Spirit then you are awarded another promise which is the promise of salvation.
Ephesians 1:13-14 (NIV)
13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.
The seal that guarantees our salvation and inheritance is that we receive the Holy Spirit sent by Jesus to us. We need to get this from God as a promised of our redemption. Many don’t receive this Spirit as they were led the wrong way to heaven. They don’t bear fruit as they never worked on walking with God to bear fruit. Fruit bearing is not easy, it requires us to live a life according to the ways ordained by God and certainly, God will send us difficult situation to test if we will sacrifice our own egos, ideas and benefits to walk in his ways. The Holy Spirit is our Righteousness in God; it is given to those who overcome. The Holy Spirit is the White Robe same as the multi colour coat of Joseph, the rainbow that had 7 colours became as one in white when combined together; the seven spirits of God. Isaiah11:2.
1 John 2:27 NIV
As for you, the anointing you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about all things and as that anointing is real, not counterfeit—just as it has taught you, remain in him.
Philippians 2:12 NIV
12 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,
So is this why Paul tells us to work out our salvation with trembling, which means we need to do something and not just say the sinners’ prayer and let God do the rest without our participation or effort. That is why we need to overcome the world, as the worldly ways are not the ways of God. To overcome, it means there are tough decisions to make and we will lose something temporal to gain something eternal. We walk by sacrificing the immediate glory of this world. So only when we overcome the world in certain aspects do we receive a reward, finally to be a true believer, we need to overcome, like what it says in the book of Revelation.
Revelation 2:7 (NIV)
7 Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.
Revelation 3:4-6 (NIV)
4 Yet you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their clothes. They will walk with me, dressed in white, for they are worthy. 5 The one who is victorious will, like them, be dressed in white. I will never blot out the name of that person from the book of life, but will acknowledge that name before my Father and his angels. 6 Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches.
Revelation 3:11-13 (NIV)
11 I am coming soon. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take your crown. 12 The one who is victorious I will make a pillar in the temple of my God. Never again will they leave it. I will write on them the name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which is coming down out of heaven from my God; and I will also write on them my new name. 13 Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches.
Revelation 3:19-22 (NIV)
19 Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent. 20 Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.
21 To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I was victorious and sat down with my Father on his throne. 22 Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”
So I concluded that you need to be an overcomer for God to reward you with something. To be victorious, we need to overcome. To overcome, we will face a formidable resistance or trial. Then again I continue to search the bible for more clues, and this is what I found,
Revelation 7:13-14 (NIV)
13 Then one of the elders asked me, “These in white robes—who are they, and where did they come from?”
14 I answered, “Sir, you know.”
And he said, “These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.
And I found again, this crucial clue about the white robes.
Matthew 22:11-14 (NIV)
11 “But when the king came in to see the guests, he noticed a man there who was not wearing wedding clothes. 12 He asked, ‘How did you get in here without wedding clothes, friend?’ The man was speechless.
13 “Then the king told the attendants, ‘Tie him hand and foot, and throw him outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’
14 “For many are invited, but few are chosen.”
The man who was a guest was not wearing wedding clothes which is white was thrown into darkness, and these wedding clothes are for the bride since Jesus is the groom, so those who wear white possess the Holy Spirit in them. Guest usually don’t need to wear white, but in this case, he was questioned why he was not wearing wedding clothes which seem strange. Thus, I conclude that those true Christians who are baptised in the Holy Spirit and now wear the white robe, which is the robe of righteousness that these people are no longer under condemnation. These are the true sons and daughters of God who worship God in Spirit and in Truth.
John 4:23-24 (NIV)
23 Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. 24 God is a spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.”
If many are invited and few are chosen, wouldn’t that say something about the requirements of God? The kingdom of God is not for all, they are true believers in Jesus, those who walk the talk and had much to sacrifice in their lives to obey the teachings of God. They pay the price to overcome their trials and be sealed with the Holy Spirit of God. Is this not scary indeed when we need to be accepted by Jesus to receive the Holy Spirit as proof of our salvation and redemption and we need to overcome the world by walking with God through his proceeding word that comes from his mouth by actively hearing from God and obeying and doing his will on earth? Any questions kindly write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org