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Assurance of Salvation

 

Eternal Security

            It is said that D.L. Moody was once accosted on a Chicago street by a drunk who exclaimed, “Aren’t you Mr. Moody? Why, I’m one of your converts!” Said Moody in reply, “That must be true, for you surely aren’t one of the Lord’s.”

            The gospel promises not only forgiveness of sins but also new life. When a person receives this new life, his or her life should begin to show some changes.

 

Eternal Security

Those who don’t believe in eternal security say that the doctrine leads to license and sin. This is as absurd as saying that because we have Blue Cross/Blue Shield insurance, we will chew on razor blades or guzzle hydrochloric acid. ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching

 

Assurance of Salvation

Several years ago one of the astronauts who walked on the moon was interviewed and asked, “What do you think about as you stood on the moon and looked back at the earth?” The astronaut replied, “I remembered how the spacecraft was built by the lowest bidder.”

We as Christians can rejoice that the work of salvation did not go to the “lowest bidder” but was performed by an infinite God. There will never be a deficiency in his work. Our salvation is as sure as the architect of that salvation, almighty God. ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching

 

Assurance of Salvation

Picture a small lake in the north when winter has just made itself at home. A wooden dock juts out into the thin shell of ice on the pond. Over the whole scene lies a cotton cushion of snow. A young lad walks out onto the dock, long familiar to him from lazy summer days of fishing. He daydreams at the end of the dock, but suddenly his sister’s call from shore arouses him. As he turns around to see her, he loses his balance, one of his feet lands on the ice, and he crashes into the icy water.

You see, as long as both his feet were solidly planted on the wooden dock, the boy stood securely. But as soon as he shifted one foot to the ice, even though by mistake, he toppled into the water.

As long as we keep our trust totally on Christ’s finished work on the cross, we stand assured of God’s promise of eternal life. But as soon as we rest any weight on the thin ice of our own efforts, we will topple into the icy waters of insecurity. ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching

 

Assurance of Salvation

There is a commonly known story that comes from the life of Martin Luther. It is said that the devil approached Luther one day and tried to use the fact that every person is fallible. He presented the Reformer with a long list of sins of which he was guilty. When he had finished reading, Luther said to Satan, “Think a little harder; you must have forgotten some.” This the devil did and added other sins to the list. At the conclusion of this exchange, Martin Luther simply said, “That’s fine. Now write across that list in red ink, ‘The blood of Jesus Christ, His Son, cleanses us from all sin.’” There was nothing the devil could say to that. ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching

 

Assurance of Salvation

There is a story about a boy flying a kite. The kite was so high that it had disappeared into the clouds. A man came by and asked, “Why are you holding on to that string?” The boy said, “I’ve got a kite up there.” The man looked up and said, “I don’t see it.” The boy replied, “Well, I know it’s there because I can feel the tug.”

That’s like the witness of the Holy Spirit within us. We may not always see the evidence, but we feed a tug in our hearts constantly, letting us know that we are in touch with God. ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching

 

Assurance of Salvation

C.H. Spurgeon is quoted as saying that he was so sure of his salvation that he could grab on to a cornstalk and swing out over the fires of hell, look into the face of the devil, and sing, “Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine!”

When the storms of life, the winds of trouble, and the sea of discomfort and emotional agony seem to overwhelm, we have to say with the songwriter, “Our hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness… We dare not trust the sweetest frame, but wholly lean on Jesus’ name.” ── Michael P. GreenIllustrations for Biblical Preaching

 

ETERNAL SECURITY
(see also SECURITY)

Harry Ironside stated that salvation was like Noah inviting a pagan in his day to place his trust in God's Word and come in to the ark. Some view salvation like Noah offering to put a peg on the outside of the ark. "If you just hang on through the storm, you'll be saved." Salvation is not dependent on our holding on to God, but on our being securely held by and in Christ.

Source Unknown.

 

SALVATION, Assurance of

No Illustrations yet.


Commentary

'Tis not God's design that men should obtain assurance in any other way, than by mortifying corruption, and increasing in grace, and obtaining the lively exercises of it. And although self-examination be a duty of great use and importance, and by no means to be neglected; yet it is not the principal means, by which the saints do get satisfaction of their good estate. Assurance is not to be obtained so much by self-examination, as by action.

Jonathan Edwards, The Religious Affections, Yale University Press, 1959, p. 195.

 

SECURITY
(see also ETERNAL SECURITY)

A group of botanists went on an expedition into a hard-to-reach location in the Alps, searching for new varieties of flowers. One day as a scientist looked through his binoculars, he saw a beautiful, rare species growing at the bottom of a deep ravine. To reach it, someone would have to be lowered into that gorge. Noticing a local youngster standing nearby, the man asked him if he would help them get the flower. The boy was told that a rope would be tied around his waist and the men would then lower him to the floor of the canyon. Excited yet apprehensive about the adventure, the youngster peered thoughtfully into the chasm. "Wait," he said, "I'll be back," and off he dashed. When he returned, he was accompanied by an older man. Approaching the head botanist, the boy said, "I'll go over the cliff now and get the flower for you, but this man must hold onto the rope. He's my dad!"

Our Daily Bread.


Watchman Nee tells about a new convert who came in deep distress to see him. "No matter how much I pray, no matter how hard I try, I simply cannot seem to be faithful to my Lord. I think I'm losing my salvation." Nee said, "Do you see this dog here? He is my dog. He is house-trained; he never makes a mess; he is obedient; he is a pure delight to me. Out in the kitchen I have a son, a baby son. He makes a mess, he throws his food around, he fouls his clothes, he is a total mess. But who is going to inherit my kingdom? Not my dog; my son is my heir. You are Jesus Christ's heir because it is for you that He died." We are Christ's heirs, not through our perfection but by means of His grace.

Watchman Nee.


F.B. Meyer wrote about two Germans who wanted to climb the Matterhorn. They hired three guides and began their ascent at the steepest and most slippery part. The men roped themselves together in this order: guide, traveler, guide, traveler, guide. They had gone only a little way up the side when the last man lost his footing. He was held up temporarily by the other four, because each had a toehold in the niches they had cut in the ice. But then the next man slipped, and he pulled down the two above him. The only one to stand firm was the first guide, who had driven a spike deep into the ice. Because he held his ground, all the men beneath him regained their footing. F.B. Meyer concluded his story by drawing a spiritual application. He said, "I am like one of those men who slipped, but thank God, I am bound in a living partnership to Christ. And because He stands, I will never perish."

Our Daily Bread.


Morris Mandel, on security: When God made the oyster, he guaranteed his absolute economic and social security. He built the oyster a house, his shell, to shelter and protect him from his enemies. When hungry, the oyster simply opens his shell and food rushes in for him. He has freedom from want.

But when God made the eagle he declared: "The blue sky is the limit -- build your own house!" So the eagle built on the highest mountain. Storms threaten him every day. For food he flies through miles of rain and snow and wind. But think of it, the eagle, not the oyster, is the emblem of America.

The Jewish Press.


The story is told of a monastery in Portugal, perched high on a 3,000 foot cliff and accessible only by a terrifying ride in a swaying basket. The basket is pulled with a single rope by several strong men, perspiring under the strain of the fully loaded basket. One American tourist who visited the site got nervous halfway up the cliff when he noticed that the rope was old and frayed. Hoping to relive his fear he asked, "How often do you change the rope?" The monk in charge replied, "Whenever it breaks!"

Daily Walk, March 30, 1992.


During initial construction on the Golden Gate Bridge, no safety devices were used and 23 men fell to their deaths. For the final part of the project, however, a large net was used as a safety precaution. At least 10 men fell into it and were saved from certain death. Even more interesting, however, is the fact that 25% more work was accomplished after the net was installed. Why? Because the men had the assurance of their safety, and they were free to wholeheartedly serve the project.

Unknown.


The 3-year old felt secure in his father's arms as Dad stood in the middle of the pool. But Dad, for fun, began walking slowly toward the deep end, gently chanting, "Deeper and deeper and deeper," as the water rose higher and higher on the child. The lad's face registered increasing degrees of panic, as he held all the more tightly to his father, who, of course, easily touched the bottom. Had the little boy been able to analyze his situation, he'd have realized there was no reason for increased anxiety. The water's depth in ANY part of the pool was over his head. Even in the shallowest part, had he not been held up, he'd have drowned. His safety anywhere in that pool depended on Dad. At various points in our lives, all of us feel we're getting "out of our depth" -- problems abound, a job is lost, someone dies. Our temptation is to panic, for we feel we've lost control. Yet, as with the child in the pool, the truth is we've never been in control over the most valuable things of life. We've always been held up by the grace of God, our Father, and that does not change. God is never out of his depth, and therefore we're safe when we're "going deeper" than we've ever been.

Charles Ryrie, So Great Salvation, Victor Books, 1989, p. 137ff.


A manager and a sales rep stood looking at a map on which colored pins indicated the company representative in each area. "I'm not going to fire you, Wilson," the manager said, "but I'm loosening your pin a bit just to emphasize the insecurity of your situation."

Bits & Pieces, May 26, 1994.

 

SECURITY, false

A Japanese attack on Hawaii is regarded as the most unlikely thing in the world, with one chance in a million of being successful. Besides having more powerful defenses than any other post under the American Flag, it is protected by distance.

Taken from the book At Dawn We Slept by Gordon Prange. Written on Sept. 6, 1941 by journalist Clarke Beach.