First things first, we want to assure you that if you have at one time accepted the gift of salvation through Jesus Christ, then YES, you are saved (Romans 5:9; 1 Thessalonians 5:9). John 3:16 says, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life." If you have believed, you are saved. Period. Even if you later experience doubt, that still won't take away your salvation (Romans 8:38-39). In John 10:28, Jesus talks about how those who follow Him are given eternal life and that "they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of [His] hand." It is Jesus' painful crucifixion on the cross, death, and resurrection that has saved you (Romans 5:10; Ephesians 1:7)—not any magical words, good deeds, or feelings.
Okay, so maybe you know all that in your head, but your heart just isn't feeling it anymore. Or maybe that euphoric feeling you got after accepting Christ at youth group has faded over the years. Maybe you accepted Christ so long ago that you aren't sure if you were ever really saved in the first place.
Don't worry. You aren't the only one who has ever felt this way. We live in a world that puts a lot of value in feelings. We make decisions based on gut reactions and go where our hearts lead us.
Sometimes that's totally fine, but other times, it can get us into trouble. Emotions are always changing and rarely trustworthy. If we let our feelings guide us, we'll find it difficult to be sure of anything. We'll constantly analyze our erratic emotions. A Christian might ask, "Do I really love God?" or "Does He really love me?" or "Am I good enough?" and totally forget that there is a real Truth right in front of him in God's Word. But so often, we want to choose that veil of perceptions and vague feelings.
We like to think that our emotions equal absolute truth—that if we feel something, then it must be true. But placing trust in our emotions is a rollercoaster that often leads to dark tunnels of doubt, discouragement, and disappointment.
Thankfully, God is unchanging (Numbers 23:19). Hebrews 13:8 says that "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever." God is also absolutely trustworthy in every promise He has given us (Titus 1:2). And He has promised that once we believe, our salvation is secure and certain (Ephesians 1:13). Our faith in this Truth assures us of our salvation.
Remember that feelings are unreliable. But God's Word holds real Truth—the Truth of the Father's sovereignty, the Truth of Jesus being on our side, the Truth of the Holy Spirit living inside us. All of these things give us hope of eternal glory. Focusing on and understanding these Truths can help us find meaning in life and strengthen our faith in God. Focusing on Him takes the focus off ourselves and our doubts and onto better things.
When you make the decision to accept and follow Christ, you become a beautiful new creature (2 Corinthians 5:17)—even if you don't feel it. The Christian life is all about dying to the selfish self we had before and being spiritually reborn to "walk in the newness of life" (Romans 6:4). Our thoughts should now focus on serving the One who saved us, not on the dead and rotting self that we have left behind. Our skin may feel the same, but the inside has been shined up with God's light. The old self is lifeless; the new self is alive.
Take a look at THIS ARTICLE or THIS ONE to get a little more clarification. But really, all you must do is believe that Jesus died to pay the ransom for your sinful soul. Have you done that? Yes? AWESOME. You're good to go! No? Then READ THIS for the 411 on salvation.
If you have at one time accepted the gift of salvation through Jesus Christ, then YES, you are saved (Romans 5:9; 1 Thessalonians 5:9; John 3:16). Period. Even if you later experience doubt, that still won't take away your salvation (Romans 8:38-39). We live in a world that puts a lot of value in feelings. We make decisions based on gut reactions and go where our hearts lead us. But salvation is not a feeling, it's a FACT. God's Word holds real Truth—the Truth of the Father's sovereignty, the Truth of Jesus being on our side, the Truth of the Holy Spirit living inside us. All of these things give us hope of eternal glory as new creatures (2 Corinthians 5:17)—even if we don't feel it.
Cat is the webmaster and editor of 412teens.org and regularly teaches local young writers at her workshops. She also contributes at GotQuestions.org, Blogos.org, and GQkidz.org. When Catiana is not writing or hanging out with teens, she loves spending time with her two kids, four socially awkward cats, and one curly-tailed dog.