What is the Gospel? : Track #13

A Series of Studies on the foundational Doctrines of the Gospel

Part V You were Marked with a Seal (Ephesians 1:13)

V.1 Certain, not Doubtful: Assurance

The seal is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance; our salvation is eternally secure.

1. Explicit Scriptures

John 3:36; 5:24; 6:54; 10:28,29; Romans 11;29; Philippians 1:6; 1Peter 1:5

2. Implicit Doctrines

See how many other truths would fall apart if we cannot be sure that God will complete what he began:

a) The power of God
b) The providential care of God
c) Election
d) Adoption
e) Priestly intercession
f) Atonement

3. Unsubstantiated Objections

a) Wavering experiences

But what we can never know concerning those who seem to slip away:

  • Reality of salvation
  • Return from backsliding

b) Warning scriptures

Hebrews 6:4-6 Tasting the heavenly gift is not the same as salvation

  • 1Timothy 1:18-20 Excommunication is redemptive
  • 2Timothy 2:17-19 The falling away is only a sifting of the genuine

(i) These warnings are addressed to all men alike; some readers are genuinely saved, and others just think they are. To the latter they are a real warning.

(ii) Where they are addressed to believers, they are one of the means by which he fulfills his promise to keep us, as his warnings contain the power to restrain us.

“Once saved, always saved” is a misleading slogan, suggesting that once people make their decision for Christ, they can go off and do what they like. But this is not what the Bible teaches. Rather, the perseverance of the saints means that those who are truly saved will evidence the reality of their salvation by persevering by God’s grace in all that the Christian life entails.

Brian Watts is Pastor of The King's Community Church and lives in Langley with his wife Rosalind.
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