Some things prove a person is not saved.
Some things prove nothing.
Some things prove a person is saved.
These things are visible, objective evidence that show whether or not we are saved - or if there is simply no evidence to say either way. These things speak the truth about our spiritual condition, even if we don't. One caution, however: We need to learn how to distinguish between the genuine and the counterfeit of these characteristics; or we may end up deceiving ourselves about our (and other people's) spiritual condition.
Each of the following sections contains the main issue described by the title, and (sometimes) additional articles related to the main topic. [This series is patterned after the article, The "Fruit of Salvation."]
[A summary of characteristics that prove or don't prove one's salvation can be found: HERE. Although Part 3 of the summary ("Actions that prove we are saved") consists of just a few lines, it it the focus of nearly all of the presentations in this series!]
None of these characteristics can guarantee a person's salvation; some actually prove that a person is not saved.
Includes: 1) a short introduction to the entire series; 2) characteristics that prove a person is unsaved (based on direct statements in Scripture); and 3) a look at issues such as grace, judging, and our guilt before God.
Characateristics that prove nothing. Unfortunatley, these are the very characteristics that most people rely on for "assurance."
The following characteristics guarantee a person's salvation, because their presence is only possible when God is doing a work of salvation in the person. (Human effort can do nothing better than counterfeit these characteristics.) Furthermore, these characteristics will all be present, to one degree or another - though not to the point of "perfection." They will be "growing" in the saved person's life - though at any one moment, the growing may be faster, slower, or sometimes even regressing to a degree (though not as an ongoing way of life).
In each of the following sections, the characteristic is explained (including God's role in guaranteeing that the characteristic will be present). Also, the distinction is shown between the genuine and the counterfeit.
Topics in this section include: 1) review, 2) the role of God's sovereignty in this matter, and 3) the issue of not having "assurance."
This is the first proof of assurance. But it must be: 1) the God of the Bible who we are loving, and 2) "love" as God defines it. (The false gospel, popular in many churches, promotes a distorted "god" and a false concept of "love." It selectively promotes aspects of God that most people find "pleasing" and shoves aside anything that might offend the unsaved person.)
Most churches downlplay this concept, because they don't think it sounds "positive" enough. But all that is accomplished by ignoring this is fake "salvation."
The "faith" of the Bible is based on the factual foundation of Scripture. It is totally incompatible with the "believe-what-you-want-to-believe faith" that most people talk about.
Yes, you can know if you are humble, if it's the type of humility described in the Bible! We could almost describe it as "simply telling the truth about one's self," because none of us are as "good" or as "high and mighty" as our sinful natures want us to believe.
The world tells us to "affirm" or "promote" ourselves; Jesus tells us to "deny" ourselves. Here, we look at what it means to do so.
What do you live for?
It's not just the words and motions of prayer, which even a trained parrot can do. It's the spirit - the heart attitude that goes along with the words and motions - that matters the most.
There is a special bond within the family... but there is also a type of love for "outsiders" - those who are not part of the family (though we wish were).
God's ways and the world's ways are incompatible. This fact should influence all of life.
"Growing" is an ongoing process, not just some event in the past. This "proof" has to do with the various godly character traits that God graciously develops in the lives of his people.
In a sense, this summarizes it all. Anyone who has a life characterized by obedience will be growing in all the other characteristics that have already been described.