One of the great promises of God is that we can know for certain we’re saved. If you are saved, you ought to know it. If not, you need to be saved so you can know it. The truth is, you can know beyond any doubt that you’re saved.
First John 5:5 says:
Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?
John’s Gospel told us how to be saved; his first letter to believers tells us how to know we’re saved.
First John uses the word “know,” over forty times. Ours is not a hope-so but a know-so salvation, so you can say, “No matter what happens, I know I’m Heaven-born.” The Holy Spirit inspired John to give us a record—so we can know.
The Bible says “A three-fold cord is not easily broken” (Ecclesiastes 4:12), and the source of our certainty is a cord of three strands:
—the atoning work of the blood of Christ
—the abiding witness of the Spirit
—the affirming Word of the Father.
The Atoning Work of the Savior
When Jesus died for us on the cross, the sins of the world were distilled upon him. When his side was pierced, blood and water poured out (John 19:33-34).
His Blood Cleanses from Sin
Blood removes the penalty of sin (Hebrews 9:22). Jesus paid for my sin and yours.
Water continues to cleanse
Water cleanses from the pollution of sin. We have no hope of Heaven apart from the water and the blood of Jesus Christ.
The Abiding Witness of the Spirit
The Holy Spirit witnesses to you
Before we’re even saved, the Holy Spirit is telling us about Jesus (1 John 5:6b, 9).
Jesus said the ministry of the Holy Spirit would be to “take the things of Mine and He will show them to you” (John 16:15). When someone says, “I can’t believe,” God says they’re lying (1 John 5:10b)
Jesus never said, “You cannot come to Me.” Instead He said, “You will not come to Me.”
The Holy Spirit then witnesses in you.
When you receive Christ, the Holy Spirit takes up residence within you. You have the witness within (1 John 5:10a).
God’s Spirit speaks to your spirit that you belong to Him. It’s not an emotional feeling; it’s a certainty. He says, “You are Mine.”
The Affirming Word of the Father
God gave you a record, His written Word, the Bible. We learn about atoning death of Jesus and the witness of the Spirit from the Word of God.
It’s so important that you believe His written Word, because from Genesis to Revelation it has one central message in two words, Jesus saves. The divine, inspired Word of God is settled in Heaven (Psalm 119:89). God gave us His Word so we might have absolute assurance.
The work of Christ, the witness of the Spirit, the affirming Word of God—these three enable you to say, “I know I have eternal life.”
Jesus is the source of eternal life (1 John 5:11)
Apart from Jesus, there is no eternal life.
Jesus is the substance of eternal life (1 John 5:12)
Jesus says, “I am the life.” It is “Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27).
Jesus is the surety of your life (1 John 5:13)
The written record in God’s Word gives us assurance.
When Satan tries to make you doubt, don’t argue with him. He’s not worth it. Point him to the Word of God and step out of the argument. Let him argue with God Himself, who said, “He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.”
Do you have Him? The Holy Spirit witnesses to you that Jesus died for you. You can receive the witness of God. “If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater.” It’s greater than what I’m telling you; it’s what God is telling you.
Do you want to be saved? Then pray this prayer:
“Dear God, I know You love me, and I know You want to save me. Jesus, thank You for paying for my sin with Your blood on the cross.
I believe You’re the Son of God. I believe God raised You from the dead, and I now receive You as my Lord and Savior and Master forever.
Save me, Lord Jesus, and help me never to be ashamed of You. Save me by Your grace and keep me for Your glory.
And, Lord Jesus, I thank You for doing it. I will make it public. I will not be ashamed of You. And I will live for You the rest of my life as You give me strength.”