Hebrews 11:1,3, 6 - Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For by it the people of old received their commendation. By faith we understand that the universe was created by the Word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible. ... And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who seek Him.
The issue of faith is something that's central to the life of a Christian. That's obvious enough. But what is it for a would-be follower of Jesus that indicates that he or she has an authentic and living faith?
Is it necessary to feel saved? The answer is no.
It is necessary, however, to "believe" the promises of God. As John 3:36 says, "Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.
As you listen, you may be saying, "I would like to believe, but I am not able. Some people may believe, but I just cannot trust God's promises."
Have you ever stopped to think that each day you place your trust in things which are must less trustworthy than God and His Word? You ride an elevator from one floor to another. You trust your car to transport you on the highway. Whenever you sit in a chair, you trust it will hold you up. With a repentant heart, ask God to give you the gift of faith. Through His Word and the power of the Holy Spirit, He will create a living faith in your heart. Trust in Him. Believe in Him and what He has done out of love for you.
Speaking of the Holy Scriptures and its witnesses to Jesus Christ, the apostle John said, "These are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in His Name" (John 20:31). Again, in 1 John 5, we read, "I write these things to you who believe in the Name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life" (1 John 5:13).
The great blessing of believing in Jesus Christ as the Son of God and our only Savior is beautifully described in Romans 10, which says, "If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved" (Romans 10:9-10).
Believe! Believe today! No matter whether or not you have had an emotional experience, believe the beautiful promise of Jesus when He says, "Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears My Word and believes Him who sent Me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life" (John 5:24).
THE PRAYER: Heavenly Father, You know our weakness and disbelief. By the power of Your Holy Spirit, convict us of our sins, bring us to repentance, and lead us into faith in Jesus. In His Name we pray. Amen.
From "Must One 'Feel' Saved to Be Saved?" a sermon excerpt from Wallace Schulz, Speaker of The Lutheran Hour
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