More from Youth Prays, God Answers by Glenn Coon.
“Are you saved?”
That very morning I had been reading my Bible and had gone over some texts that gave me an unquestioned reassurance of the Father’s will for me with regard to this very question. Now all I had to do was to share the experience of the morning. With a face that was radiant, I replied with a resounding, “Yes, sir.” The look on his face indicated that I had not given the answer he had expected. Undoubtedly he had expected me to beat around the bush and try to qualify an answer.
Now I felt impressed by the Holy Spirit to further develop my affirmative answer, “I would like to explain why I can say ‘I am saved’. This morning when I awakened, I turned to a promise of the Bible which says, ‘If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.’ 1 John 1:9. I asked God to forgive my sins this morning. I then believed He had forgiven me just as He promised. Then I returned thanks that He had forgiven me. Then I took the promise just across the page, recorded in 1 John 2:25 which reads like this: ‘And this is the promise that He hath promised us, even eternal life.’ I asked God this very morning to give me eternal life, just as He here promises, I told Him I believed He was giving eternal life to me; and then I claimed eternal life by returning thanks that I had received eternal life, just as He promised.
“This morning I also claimed the Bible promise of John 1:12 which says: ‘But as many as received him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name,’ I asked God to make me His son again for today. I believed He was doing it. I claimed it and returned thanks that I had received continued son-ship. Then I took another promise, this very morning. It was the promise of John 3:16 which promises everlasting life. Again I asked, believed and claimed and returned thanks that I had received everlasting life. This is why I can answer without any doubt that I am saved — right nowl”
He did not say a word. He just sat there as I continued. “Now we Seventh-day Adventist’s do not go around bragging, ‘I am saved’. But we do like to declare the fact that ‘Christ is my Saviour!’ You see, the first expression puts self in the centre. The latter points to our Lord, and makes Him the centre.”
I developed the thought a little more fully, all the while rejoicing that ‘There is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved’ (Acts 4 : 12). I was also conscious of the text that says, “Let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall” (I Corinthians 10:12). Perhaps fifteen minutes passed before he ventured another question. This time he spoke more kindly. He asked, “As you sit here in this home tonight, and think of a period of time, let’s say ten years from now, can you, tonight as you sit here, tell me that ten years from now you will be saved?”
“No, of course not,” I replied, but I can say this: If ten years from now I claim the same promises of my Lord which I claimed this morning, then I can have the same assurance ten years from now that I have today. “You see,” I continued, “our Lord does not compel the sinner to become a saint; neither does He compel a saint to remain a saint. But if the saint chooses to remain a saint and claims the promises of our Lord, he can have the same assurance of salvation every day of his life.”
Later that evening I pondered our visit. Too often, when some one is asked if he is saved, he will answer with a shrug of the shoulder and an obvious lack of conviction, “I hope so.” That answer really gives me concern. In fact, it makes me shudder. Let me explain. Let us suppose my son, Glenn Coon, Jr., is introduced to a stranger one day. Upon learning that his name is Glenn Coon, the man’ s eyes brighten as he asks, “Say I heard an Elder Glenn Coon preach at the camp-meeting. Would he be your father by any chance?” Then my son gets a rather sheepish look on his face, shrugs his shoulders in disbelief, and says, “I hope so.” You know, my friend, if word of an incident like that would ever reach us, both his mother and I would be embarrassed and ashamed of our son. It would hurt us, and I think you can understand why.
Now, don’t you think our heavenly Father feels a sense of hurt when we find ourselves unable to speak with any measure of conviction with regard to our relationship with Him”? There are those who think it a mark of humility to be in doubt as to their state of salvation. I submit to you that doubt with regard to salvation has nothing to do with humility. It is my opinion that those who wander around in the maze of doubt and question with regard to this important question have allowed Satan to steal something vital from them. I base my statement on the following quotation: “Satan is ready to steal away the blessed assurances of God,” “It is the privilege of all who comply with the conditions to know for themselves that pardon is freely extended for every sin. Put away the suspicion that God’s promises are not meant for you. They are for every repentant transgressor.” — Steps to Christ , pp. 53,52,53.
The prayer of reception teaches us that we have a right, through Christ, to receive forgiveness, cleansing, assurance, and fellowship. We are given this assurance by the pen of inspiration. Notice these words; “Every promise in the Word of God furnishes us with subject-matter for prayer, presenting the pledged word of Jehovah as our assurance. Whatever spiritual blessing we need, it is our privilege to claim through Jesus.”— Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing p76.
I believe, beyond any question, that God wants us to be able to declare ‘I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I have committed unto Him against that day.’ 2 Timothy 1:12.
God does not want us to merely hope so”. He wants us to ‘know so.’