Desert Hills Bible Church | Kept By Jesus Christ

Kept By Jesus Christ

One of the blessings of being a believer in Jesus Christ is having a certain knowledge of our salvation and eternal destiny. This knowledge, however, must produce certain convictions throughout our Christian life.

We live in a time where people are often weak, wishy-washy, devoid of real convictions, and content to just go with the flow and swim wherever the tide of the world take them. The apostle John rejects all of that in the life of a believer, asserting that if we have eternal life, then we should be strong; we should have convictions; and we should have certainty as a defining mark of our spiritual lives. In 1 John 5, John gives us five convictions that we should manifest as Christians who know that we have eternal life.

The first conviction we should have as believers is that we are heard by God.

Our confidence about our salvation should lead to confidence in our prayers. When we come into the presence of God in prayer – to make requests, to cast our burdens upon Him, to seek His grace and His help in a time of need – we should come with confidence and boldness. This attitude in prayer should be expansive; John tells us we can ask for anything according to God’s will. We have a certain knowledge God hears us because we know that we belong to Him and that He will give us whatever we ask of Him that is according to His will.

The one qualifier is we must ask according to His will, referring to anything revealed in Scripture. If we go through the New Testament, we see hundreds of promises and commands from God we are called to believe and obey – and we should pray that God would strengthen us to believe and obey His Word. The amazing thing is that we can pray all of these things with confidence, knowing God will perform His work in us to answer our prayers.

The second conviction we have as a result of our certainty of salvation is that we are liberated from sin.

If we want to be strong and stand firm in the evil day, then we must be convinced that not only are we saved and have eternal life, but we must also have been liberated from sin. We cannot be the kind of people who, when confronted with sin in their lives, respond, “I can’t help it!” We can help it because we have been born of God. We know we can battle against sin and win because of what God has done for us in Christ.

Believers realize that we have been liberated from sin’s penalty and power in our lives. Although Christians do sin, no one who is born of God is characterized by sin. When believers sin, we have Jesus Christ the Righteous One as our Advocate with the Father. Sin is not our lifestyle; sin is not our pursuit; sin is not what defines us; and sin is not what we practice – all because we have been liberated from the power of sin.

The third conviction is that we know we are protected from Satan.

This conviction should be in the running for the most comforting and encouraging in the entire Bible. John promises those who have been born of God that God guards, protects, keeps, and encircles us like a shield and a mighty fortress.  The Lord Jesus is the one who is watching and guarding our soul every moment of our lives, which is an amazing image to have in our minds all throughout the day.

With Christ protecting us, the evil one cannot touch us. Satan has no power over the Christian because the believer is kept by Christ. The evil one can send his minions to tempt, to distract, to discourage, to try all kinds of tricks to deceive us – but ultimately, he is powerless because Christ is guarding our soul.

At our church, we sing a song called, “Christ Will Hold.” In that song, we sing these lines, “In my own humanity, I’m no match for the enemy; he will sift me like wheat.” We know how true these words are in our lives. Left to our own strength and devices, Satan would devour and destroy us; he would sift us like wheat.

What resolves that tension is the truth that we sing next in that song – “Christ will hold!” He will protect and guard us. And, as we sing in that song, our God is undefeated. Jesus has never lost one soul He set out to save, and He never will. If we are born of God, Jesus keeps us and protects us from the evil one.

The fourth conviction is that we are distinct from the world.

Christians must be convinced of this reality: we are not allied with the world, but we are distinct from the world – and the world is hostile to us because it is under the devil’s power. The whole world lies under the power of the evil one, and he has blinded the eyes of those in the world so that they cannot see the glory of God in the face of Christ. Unbelievers, wherever they are and however much they might seem to have in common with morality and decency, are under the devil’s lies. We must constantly remind ourselves, which gets easier by the day, that this world is not our home, that we are strangers and exiles here, and that we are pilgrims just passing through.

Finally, the last conviction we have knowing we have eternal life is that we are united to Christ.

How do we survive in a sinful world under the power of the devil when we have been set free from sin and are so distinct from the world? We overwhelmingly conquer because we are united to Christ. We know that the Son of God has come and given us understanding to know Him, our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Father, the true God – and eternal life. We are united to Christ, one with Christ, in Christ; and our lives are now defined by, protected by, and governed by Christ.

This conviction is the climax of John’s letter, where he has spent so much time telling his readers about who Christ is as the Son, the Word of Life, the Messiah, the Son of God come in the flesh. Now he ends by telling us that Christ is the true God, and there is none other. If we have the Son, we have the true God – and that means we have the life, eternal life.

As Christians who have assurance of eternal life, we must be people of strong and biblical convictions. We must know that we are heard by God, liberated from sin, protected from Satan, distinct from the world, and united to Christ. It is my prayer for our churches that, in an unstable world built on shifting sand, we would be people who embrace these immovable convictions built on the rock, the true God, our Lord Jesus Christ.

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