“Are you foolish if you live as though Christ will return at any moment and live all your life with Christ not returning? What should you do today if you believe in His imminent return that you wouldn’t do if you thought His return would not happen in your life? Jesus said, ‘We must work the works of Him who sent Me, while it is day; night comes, when no one can work.’ The night of life comes all too quickly for everyone.” Walter A. Henrichsen (“Walt H”)
Thoughts from the Diary of a Desperate Man by Walter A Henrichsen (“Walt”)
“For our gospel came unto you…in much assurance.” 1 Thessalonians 1:5
You must maintain a clear distinction between the assurance and the fact of salvation. A man may be full of assurance that he knows Jesus and be lost. Jesus said, “Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name…And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”101 Conversely, a man may doubt his salvation, due to a lack of clear biblical teaching, and in fact be saved.
We call it assurance of salvation because none can know they are saved. Assurance is the product of a healthy relationship. If I tell you that I am not sure if my wife loves me, you correctly conclude that there is something terribly wrong in my marriage. But assurance is different from knowing. You cannot know because you walk by faith; faith and knowing are mutually exclusive.
You can have legitimate, biblical reason for concluding that you are saved, and thus have no doubt, but doubt is different from uncertainty. Say we are flying across the ocean and you sleep soundly, for you have no doubt that the plane will arrive safely. I am filled with anxiety, for I do doubt. My doubt and your lack of doubt have nothing to do with the safety of the plane. You can say to me that you have no doubt that we are safe, but that is different from saying you know for a certainty that the plane will land safely. Certainty is possible only after the fact.
God will not relate to a willful person. He did not die for you so that you can return to the Garden of Eden and eat of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil with impunity. If you are living in willful disobedience to God, you forfeit your right to be assured of your salvation. Your soul is in peril, and the best thing you can do is repent and seek God’s forgiveness.
101 Matthew 7:22-23
Numbers 23-25 Mark 7:14-37 (New King James Version)
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Mark 11:24 24Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in Prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.
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