ESV - 16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
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I think that the Bible makes clear that God did not intend assurance of salvation for the Christian to be a matter of uncertainty or "feeling". There are multiple verses (such as John 3:16; John 5:24; John 6:47; Acts 16:30-31; Romans 8:1; Romans 8:38-39; Romans 10:9; Ephesians 2:8-9; and 1 John 5:10-12) that directly address the subject of how Christians can know that they are saved. Speaking for myself, if someone were to question my salvation; or ask me how I know that I am saved; or imply that I needed to do something that I have not yet done in order to be saved, I would not respond by pointing to anything that I have said, done, or accomplished (or still needed to say, do, or accomplish), but I would say that I know that I am saved because I am depending totally and completely by faith in the redemption and eternal life that Jesus lived, died, and rose again to make possible for me, and that God (through the Bible) assures me that such faith saves me, as shown by the verses that I cited above.
A few premises: A) only God knows a person's heart, (and therefore their salvation--or not as it were) B) God's grace saves us, through our faith (Ephesians 2:8-9); C) the content of the heart should spill out into one's speech, actions, thoughts (Matthew 12:35). D) The Holy Spirit is sent by God upon our salvation and is our seal and guarantee until judgement (Acts 15:8, Romans 8:5, 2 Corinthians 1:22, 2 Corinthians 6:6, Ephesians 4:30) E) even demons believe in God and shudder (James 2:19) Yet, demons are eternally damned because they disobey and don't submit humbly to God's authority through Christ over their existence. Judas was in Christ's inner circle yet betrayed his Savior; the falsely righteous were not in right relationship with God and therefore would not see the kingdom of heaven (see Pharisees and Saducees and Matthew 7:17-23). This disobedience is an out-flowing of their selfish and sinful nature, a nature we also have, and is not in keeping with a baptism by the Holy Spirit. Galatians 5:16 admonishes us to allow the Holy Spirit to rule our lives, then we won't do what our sinful nature desires and later in the chapter tells us those things that are not in keeping with The Spirit's nature, and also what fruit we will bear if he (Holy Spirit) indwells; and we are reminded that God has called us to live holy lives and if we choose otherwise, we reject God and His Holy Spirit (1 Thessalonians 4:7-8). We are then directly warned that rejection of the Spirit is the only unforgivable sin Matthew 12:31. Our friends do not know our hearts; salvation is not a feeling, we are going to sin as we are not perfect, and certainly I am not saying our actions dictate our salvation. I am saying that just as sin is a symptom of death and the grave, obedience, righteousness and holy living are signs of a changed and saved heart; not a cause of salvation, but the effect of salvation. So I have to ask you to be thoughtful and self-searching when I ask this-- is there some temptation your friend knows you act incorrectly upon? Is there unrepentant and constant sin that he or she sees you involved in? It's a question we all have to ask ourselves. David gave us a great example in Psalms: "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts" (139:23). As I said we all sin, but grace does not abound so that we can keep sinning but instead since we have died to sin, we cannot continue to live in it (Romans 6:1-4). Is there a symptom of this that your friend sees that you have been blind to? If however your friend states that salvation is by a dogmatic practice of saying certain words, that is not in keeping with Scripture (though prayer is a huge part of a relationship with God and both spoken confession of your faith- Romans 10:9- and repentance--2 Corinthians 7:10--are instructed in the new Testament) I would point him/her to Matthew 15:8 and 6:5-7.
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