Have you ever spent hours staring at your ceiling fan trying to fall asleep – wondering whether you’ll make it into Heaven one day? I used to all the time.
And, some days, a well-meaning Christian would ask a bunch of us, “Do you know that you’re saved?”
“You bet!” I’d think…right before their follow up question.
“Are you suuuure?”
“I…I’m pretty sure. I think. Maybe. But you don’t seem convinced. So, maybe not?”
That’s when my fan-watching game would be at its strongest. It was almost like the rotating blades were slowly repeating, “are you suuuure?”
So, let’s settle the question.
1 Thessalonians 1:4-5
For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not only in word, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction. You know what kind of men we proved to be among you for your sake.
Paul knew the Thessalonians’ saving faith was sincere because…
They had heard the Gospel.
“For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you.” He said elsewhere, “How will anybody believe what they have not heard?” (Romans 10:14). Saving faith starts with hearing the Good News.
They were transformed by the power of God.
“…our gospel came to you not only in word, but also in power…” Their lives looked different because of the saving work of Christ.
The Holy Spirit was evident in their lives.
“…but also in power and in the Holy Spirit…” When we believe the Gospel, the Spirit of God makes His home in us and our lives show evidence of it (Galatians 3:2, John 14:23, Galatians 5:16-26). The Spirit also confirms with our spirit that we are children of God (Romans 8:16). It’s safe to assume Paul meant all of this here as well.
They were convinced that it was true.
“…in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction…”
The question you should be asking, then, is not, “Am I saved?” But “Do I believe in my heart and confess with my mouth that Jesus is Lord?” (see Romans 10:9)
If your words and actions answer, “YES!” then stop fretting over that ceiling fan. In the words of the great hymn, rest knowing “Twas grace that brought me safe thus far and grace will lead me home.”