Ephesians 5:5

Sunday, 10 June 2018

-The titled of today’s teaching is “Doubting One’s Salvation.” -In the text that’s before us today, we have a very important truth and it’s one for which there has been great misunderstanding. -This because it deals with that of being deceived concerning the most important decision one will ever make for their salvation.

-If you were to ask me what I thought was one of the most important concerns for a Christian, this would be at the top of the list. -Namely, doubting and questioning their salvation or perhaps as concerning doubting and questioning someone else’s salvation. -Thankfully, the Apostle Paul by the Holy Spirit is going to provide us with the way that we can know whether or not one’s saved.

-You will forgive the childlike simplicity with which I say this, but if you’re saved and you know it then your life will surely show it. -Actually, this is, in effect, what Paul is saying in verses five through seven such that, if you’re not saved, you’re will also show it. -In other words, the lifestyle someone practices will determine whether or not an individual has experienced a true conversion.

-Notice in verse 5 where Paul says we can be sure of this, no fornicator, impure, greedy idolater will enter the kingdom of God. -In verse 6 he says don’t let anyone deceive you with empty words because God’s wrath is on those who practice disobedience. -Then, in verse 7 he says that we are not, therefore, to be partners, or partakers, in practicing a lifestyle of willful disobedience.

Galatians 5:19–21 -19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21 envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

1 John 3:7–10 -7 Little children, let no one deceive you. He who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous. 8 He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil. 9 Whoever has been born of God does not sin, for His seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he has been born of God. 10 In this the children of God and the children of the devil are manifest: Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is he who does not love his brother.

Matthew 7:15–23 -15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? 17 Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Therefore by their fruits you will know them. 21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’

-It’s with the understanding of these passages that I think we’re now ready to take and tackle the question that’s before us today. -Specifically, how is it that one can be sure of their own salvation, and as well, the salvation of someone they really care about. -What follows, though certainly not exhaustive, are three ways that we can know without a doubt that we or someone is saved.

1. I will have experienced a new birth -In the aforementioned passage in Matthew the word, “knew” in the original language of the Greek New Testament is Ginosko. -Ginosko, or know is the same word that Mary used when the angel Gabriel told her she would conceive a son though a virgin. -In Luke 1:34 Mary asks the Gabriel, “How can this be, since I do not know a man.”  It’s a Hebrew idiom for sexual intercourse.

John 3:3 -Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.”

2. I will sin less though not sinless -This is where the word “practice” comes into play, in the sense that I will no longer practice habitual and willful disobedience. -In other words, when I’m born again there’s spiritual regeneration, such that I cannot rest in the habitual practice of such things. -Conversely those who aren’t saved but think they are will practice such sin with no hesitation conviction remorse or repentance.

1 John 1:8–10 -8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.

3. I will bear good fruit in my life -I would suggest that this is the litmus test, as it were, when it comes to knowing whether or not someone is truly saved or not. -It’s for this reason that Jesus used the analogy in Matthew 7 about a good tree bearing good fruit and bad tree bearing bad fruit. -Here’s the bottom line, if I’m truly saved, there will be the fruit of the Holy Spirit that is evident on the tree of my Christian life.

Galatians 5:22–24 -22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.