SALVATION – SIGNS OF LIFE
By Rev. Dr. Jerry Schmoyer email@example.com
When a baby is born, how can you tell if it is alive or dead?
What are some of the signs that show physical life?
When a person is born again, how can you tell?
What are some of the signs that show spiritual life?
REVIEW Explain plan of salvation
When ‘born again’ some similarities between physical baby and spiritual baby:
I. VITAL SIGNS OF NEW LIFE (I JOHN)
When a baby is born everyone checks immediately to make sure it is alive and healthy
Certain ‘signs’ to show this has happened physically
Same is true spiritually
1. BELIEF IN JESUS AS SAVIOR AND LORD
1 John 5:1 Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves the father loves his child as well.
SIGN: know in heart that Jesus is God who came to earth to pay sins
2. STRONG DESIRE TO OVERCOME SIN IN LIFE
1 John 5:18 We know that anyone born of God does not continue to sin; the one who was born of God keeps him safe, and the evil one cannot harm him.
SIGN: entirely different view to ‘sin’ – can ‘enjoy’ it as before
Not always able to overcome all sin (lifelong process)
Progressively have victory over areas of sin in life as grow spiritually
3. DOING WHAT GOD CONSIDERS RIGHT
1 John 2:29 If you know that he is righteous, you know that everyone who does what is right has been born of him.
SIGN: ‘Righteous’ – living holy life, ‘right’ in God’s life
Newfound desire to live holy life, pleasing to God
#2 what NOT do – sin
#3 what DO do – holy life
SPIRITUAL GROWTH: GREEN
BABY GROWS PHYSICALLY
New bel must grow spiritually, too
AS CHRISTIANS WE ARE COMMANDED TO GROW SP.
GROW in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. II Peter 3:18
Grow in: 1. GRACE – Christian daily experience (Outer growth)
2. KNOWLEDGE – Learning God’s Word (Inner growth)
GROWTH IS NECESSARY
Alarmed if our infant shows no signs of growth
3,5,11 yrs old and still in diapers with bottle
Parent seek out specialist, do whatever he says
In church tolerate lack of growth spiritually
Born again 3,5,11 yrs ago but sp baby
Immature actions so common we don’t notice
PAUL upset about that among Corinthians
Brothers, I could not address you as spiritual but as worldly — mere infants in Christ. I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready for it. Indeed, you are still not ready. You are still worldly. For since there is jealousy and quarreling among you, are you not worldly? Are you not acting like mere men? I Corinthians 3:1-3
Grow by FAITH
Paul expected Cor bel to grow spiritually
Disappointed they didn’t
Not natural, right for them to not grow!
Born again, but lived like unbel (no grow
Something wrong if we don’t grow spiritually
NOT how God wants it to be!
When I was like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. I Cor 13:11
4. LOVE FOR OTHER BELIEVERS
1 John 3:14 We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers. Anyone who does not love remains in death.
SIGN: feel automatically ‘connected’ to other believers because have Jesus in common
Care about them, want to help them, be with them
5. VICTORY OVER WORLDLY WAYS
1 John 5:4 for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.
SIGN: instead of living for the world and looking for needs met there, Jesus meets them
New, different world view (Biblical instead of worldly)
Victory comes by God’s power, not our own?
When baby born look for signs of life to make sure alive and healthy
Then take measures to protect baby from disease for very vulnerable when first born
New believers vulnerable to disease of doubt
II. PROTECTION FROM DISEASE OF DOUBT
1. DISEASE OF DOUBT
Doubt salvation: didn’t ‘do it’ right, not really saved
Promise: IF you believe you DO HAVE eternal life
Satan puts doubt in mind
Write down date (or even today’s date if don’t know date) so can look back to it
Rom 3:28 For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from observing the law.
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
After hearing the gospel explained, people often say, “You mean there’s nothing I can do to deserve it? That’s too easy.” It seems natural for people to object to the idea that God’s unmerited favor can be given so freely to unworthy sinners. Many find it difficult to trust a God who offers salvation as a free gift.
Bible teacher G. Campbell Morgan told of a coal miner who came to him and said, “I would give anything to believe that God would forgive my sins, but I cannot believe that He will forgive them if I just ask Him. It is too cheap.” Morgan said, “My dear friend, have you been working today?” “Yes, I was down in the mine.” “How did you get out of the pit? Did you pay?” “Of course not. I just got into to cage and was pulled to the top.” “Were you not afraid to entrust yourself to that cage? Was it not too cheap?” Morgan asked. “Oh no,” said the miner, “it was cheap for me, but it cost the company a lot of money to sink the shaft.” Suddenly the truth struck him. What had not cost him anything — salvation — had not come cheap to God. This miner had never thought of the great price God paid to send His Son so He could rescue fallen humanity. Now he realized that all anyone had to do was to “get into the cage” by faith.
John Newton, author of “Amazing Grace,” example of salvation by grace
SALVATION ALL BY GOD Eph 2:8-9
Eph 2:8-9 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith– and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God– not by works, so that no one can boast.
A young fellow came forward in a Gospel meeting, earnestly asking, “What can I do to be saved?” Knowing the man thought he had to accomplish something by his own efforts to gain redemption, the Christian worker responded to the anxious inquirer, “You’re too late!” “Oh, don’t say that,” exclaimed the distressed seeker, “I really want salvation; I’d do anything or go anywhere to obtain it.” “I’m sorry,” replied the other, “you’re too late for that. Your salvation was completed many hundreds of years ago at Calvary. It’s finished work! All you have to do is simply receive Christ. Then the blessed gift He offers will become yours through His merits. Realizing his great debt was paid, the young man found peace by looking to the Savior and resting his all upon the grace of God.”
Dr. Jacob Chamberlain, an early missionary to India, recalls that while preaching to a group who had come to bathe in the “sacred stream” of the Ganges, a man joined them who had crawled many agonizing miles on his knees and elbows to reach that spot. The poor exhausted soul made his prayer to Gunga, and then slipped into the water but emerged with the same conviction of sin as before. The fear of death still tugged at his heart. Then he heard Chamberlain tell the wonderful story of grace and how Christ died on the cross to rescue needy sinners. With new hope the man staggered to his feet, clasped his hands together, and cried, “Oh, that’s what I need! Forgiveness and peace!” The missionary soon led him to Jesus.
A beggar stopped a lawyer on the street in a large southern city and asked him for a quarter. Taking a long, hard look into the man’s unshaven face, the attorney asked, “Don’t I know you from somewhere?” “You should,” came the reply. “I’m your former classmate. Remember, second floor, old Main Hall?” “Why Sam, of course I know you!” Without further question the lawyer wrote a check for $100. “Here, take this and get a new start. I don’t care what’s happened in the past, it’s the future that counts.” And with that he hurried on.
Tears welled up in the man’s eyes as he walked to a bank nearby. Stopping at the door, he saw through the glass well-dressed tellers and the spotlessly clean interior. Then he looked at his filthy rags. “They won’t take this from me. They’ll swear that I forged it,” he muttered as he turned away.
The next day the two men met again. “Why Sam, what did you do with my check? Gamble it away? Drink it up?” “No,” said the beggar as he pulled it out of his dirty shirt pocket and told why he hadn’t cashed it. “Listen, friend,” said the lawyer. “What makes that check good is not your clothes or appearance, but my signature. Go on, cash it!”
The Bible says, “Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” That promise is a “negotiable note” of infinite value. And as sinners, all we need to do is “exchange” it by faith for eternal life. Don’t let the “tattered clothes” of your past keep you from cashing God’s “check” of salvation.
2. DISEASE OF FEAR
Fear of losing salvation, not good enough, commit sin and therefore lose salvatiion
WE ARE UNDER GRACE, NOT LAW
Rom 6:14 For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace.
God’s faithfulness II Tim 2:11-13
2 Timothy 2:11-13 Here is a trustworthy saying: If we died with him, we will also live with him; if we endure, we will also reign with him. If we disown him, he will also disown us; if we are faithless, he will remain faithful, for he cannot disown himself.
God’s protection Mt 12:20; Ps 37:24
Matthew 12:20 A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out, till he leads justice to victory.
Psalms 37:24 though he stumble, he will not fall, for the LORD upholds him with his hand.
God’s forgiveness Rom 4:6-8
Romans 4:6-8 David says the same thing when he speaks of the blessedness of the man to whom God credits righteousness apart from works:
“Blessed are they whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will never count against him.”
God’s steadfastness Jn 10:28-29; Rom 8:37-39
John 10:28-29 I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand.
Romans 8:37-39 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future,
nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Gal 5:4 You who are trying to be justified by law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace.
Story about woman who worked for man doing housework, etc, from list he gave her. At the end of the week she got paid. After awhile they fell in love and got married. After the honeymoon they came home and he went to work. She did the same work as had been paid for but no list and no pay. Why? Done out of love — motive changed!