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“Is it normal to doubt one’s salvation.”

“Is it normal to doubt one’s salvation.”

JANUARY 14, 2022

/ Programs / Key Life / “Is it normal to doubt one’s salvation.”

Steve Brown:
Is it normal to doubt one’s salvation? The answer to that and other questions on Key Life.

Matthew Porter:
Welcome to Key Life. Our host and teacher is Steve Brown. He’s no guru, but he does have honest answers to honest questions about the Bible. God’s grace changes everything, how we love, work, live, lead, marry, parent, evangelize, purchase and worship. So, here’s Steve and Pete Alwinson from ForgeBibleStudy.com with street-smart Bible teaching for real life.

Steve Brown:
Hi Pete.

Pete Alwinson:
Hey man, how you doing?

Steve Brown:
I’m doing really good,

Pete Alwinson:
Alright

Steve Brown:
as a matter of fact.

Pete Alwinson:
You look like you are.

Steve Brown:
A lot better, now that you’re here.

Pete Alwinson:
Share the blame, right? There you go.

Steve Brown:
No, it’s not just that. It’s just having you around, is kind of a nice thing. Always has been how many years? Like 800.

Pete Alwinson:
Yeah, probably.

Steve Brown:
I had hair when we started and yours was all black or brown.

Pete Alwinson:
I know. So, I mean, so this is what you did to me.

Steve Brown:
What you did to me.

Pete Alwinson:
Oh. Ok.

Steve Brown:
Let’s try to keep that straight. That’s Pete Alwinson, for 25 years, we’ve been sitting in this studio, answering questions, speaking from Sinai, giving accurate and reliable Biblical information and teaching those who are without answers to their questions. And if you believe any of that, you’ll believe anything, but we have been honest and we’ve been wrong some, and we’ve been right at least 51% of the time. We just don’t know which 51%. That’s Pete Alwinson, by the way. And if you haven’t checked out ForgeTruth.com, you ought to check it out. And if you’re in the central Florida area, you might be blessed to be a part of Forge. That is an absolutely fabulous ministry. And, there are three different meetings of Forge. And you can pick one of those three. And if you go to ForgeTruth.com and you live in the central Florida, you can check on one of those and you will be glad I told you about. Pete comes in and we answer questions, as I said, and we love to get your questions. You can ask a question anytime you want by dialing 1-800-KEY-LIFE and recording your question. And sometimes we put your voice on the air. Or you can send your question to

Key Life Network
P.O. Box 5000
Maitland, Florida 32794

If you live in Canada

Key Life Canada
P.O. Box 28060
Waterloo, Ontario N2L 6J8

Or you can e-mail your question to Steve@keylife.org. And as I said, we take your questions seriously. And if you can help us financially, please do. We’re member of ECFA in the States and CCCC in Canada. Both of those organizations check to make sure that we are ethical in our financial policies and we are, and we squeeze every dime you send for the glory of God. So, if you can help us, if you can’t, we understand that, not everybody is, but when you help us, you help a whole bunch of other people. So, thank you ahead of time, if you can. Pete, why don’t you lead us in prayer. And we will turn to some of these questions.

Pete Alwinson:
Alright. Let’s pray. Father, thank you so much. We come into your presence today at the end of this week, and we gratefully praise you, for who you are and all that you have done for us. We, honor you Father for your self revelation in Scripture, but also in the world around us. And we see that you are a God who is almighty and yet all loving. You provide for us, you created us, you redeem us, you protect us, you bring your Holy Spirit into our lives and you brought us through your power to faith through Christ. So, we give you honor and praise today and we ask that Lord, you’d continue the great work that you started in us. We pray that even this week-end, as we go to church, your grace would seek down to deeper levels and new levels in our life that we would be set free to honor, praise you and to enjoy life as you intended us to live it. And so, we give you praise, be with our pastors, teachers, priests, worship directors, all those who are preparing even now to bring us into your presence. Honor yourself through them. And we commit them and this time of Q&A to you now. In Jesus name. Amen.

Steve Brown:
Amen. Pete, this first question is an e-mail. Is it normal to doubt one’s salvation?

Pete Alwinson:
Yeah, I think it is. I think it is

Steve Brown:
I do too.

Pete Alwinson:
from time to time. Yeah. Why do you think we do?

Steve Brown:
It’s cause it’s so counter intuitive, you know, first because we’re sinners and we don’t after we become Christians, stop sinning. And I think Satan loves to say, if you were really a Christian, you wouldn’t think that, you wouldn’t do that, you wouldn’t be that way after all the Jesus has done for you. And because he’s the father of lies and we’re vulnerable, that kind of stuff plays off of us. I find though, and you can tell me whether you find that’s true, as you walk with Christ longer and longer, that becomes less of an issue.

Pete Alwinson:
Yeah, I agree with you a hundred percent and I think that, so hang in there. Just keep, keep, keep living in the truth, reading the truth, the Scriptures, listening to the Holy Spirit and yeah, get answers to the questions that come up. But, I do believe that down the road, you know, it does, your faith grows. It gets stronger.

Steve Brown:
It really does. And you can’t imagine life without him. It’s so part of who you are that you just, let’s talk a little bit about assurance. You know, there are a number of ways that people have historically and Biblically, have talked about assurance and one is, in reformed circles and perseverance, it’s not just eternal security. It is the perseverance that you have in your life. And when you see it, you know that can’t be you. And so, by persevering, assurance grows and grows and there’s some truth to that.

Pete Alwinson:
Absolutely. Absolutely. I think assurance grows as we really do gain victory over certain sins that beset us that were so strong in our lives. And as we gain victory, by God’s grace and through failure and repentance, you know, all the means of grace. Yeah. You do gain a greater sense that God been at work in your life.

Steve Brown:
And then there are others, and this was, Bill Bright used to say this a lot. You ought to hammer, you know, when you’re sinning and you know, you are, and you shouldn’t be, especially after being a Christian. It’s hard to rely on perseverance because at least at that moment, you’re not persevering very well. And so, he said it was very important. There was something to this too, if you lack assurance, then do the process and put a date on it, say on such and such a date, I gave as much of me as I knew of me to as much of Jesus as I knew of him and I became his, unless he lied. And if he lied, I’ve got a bigger problem than my assurance. And that’s cool. You know, there are people that can say on June the third, 1984, I gave my life to Christ and anybody that tells me different is calling Jesus a liar, that helps sometimes.

Pete Alwinson:
It does help, you drew a line in the sand. And it was there. I think, there’s some times, when we’re new in Christ, he shows up in powerful, supernatural ways, when it’s new. And as we walk with him, as he develops our faith, it almost seems as though he pulls back a little bit, of the glitz of the frosting kind of activities. And he develops us deeper and that’s part of the process.

Steve Brown:
It really is. And doubt is a part of that, but you’re so right. You know, new Christians, let me tell you, if you have no other reason for evangelism leading your friends to Christ, asking them to pray for you and for particulars, right after they become a Christian is a good policy, man. I mean, lead somebody to Christ and ask them to pray that you win the lottery.

Pete Alwinson:
That’s right. There you go. Because God will probably say yes, just to build their faith.

Steve Brown:
There you go. Not the lottery, that’s something for nothing, but he might, you never know.

Pete Alwinson:
But the reality is there. And the vibrancy of new faith, he rewards. He loves faith. He loves to reward our faith.

Steve Brown:
And he hammers it in, in the beginning, he really does. He just says, I just want you to know before we get down and dirty, I want you to know that your mine and that will never change. One other thing, and it’s kinda mine, but I’m sure I got it from somebody else. There is a sense in which knowing, I never met a real Christian who didn’t want to be better, genuinely want to be better than they are, I’ve never met one. You know, you hear people talking about, you know, you teach grace, you’re encouraging sin, but in fact, that has never been my experience with other Christians. Christians, trying not to do what God wants. They want to do it. They just don’t know how. And that very reality is a basis of assurance. Where did that come from? That came from the Holy Spirit, came from the reality and you, and you wouldn’t even think that, if you weren’t a Christian.

Pete Alwinson:
So, even when we fail, even when we sin, we want to do better. And the reason we want to do better is because of the work of the Spirit of God in us.

Steve Brown:
Yeah, that’s true. I mean, this is a pretty complicated question and maybe we’ll address it another time, but what happens to babies who die before becoming Christians?

Pete Alwinson:
Well, that is a very intense deal, but we know that God is gracious and merciful and that he protects

Steve Brown:
He really does.

Pete Alwinson:
the young life.

Steve Brown:
You know, you have to trust in the person of God, of Jesus as revealed in how he loved children. You know, none of those children that he picked up and let the little children come unto me, none of them could articulate a plan of salvation and yet he hugged them and he still does that, I believe.

Pete Alwinson:
Yeah. Yeah. And, and when a friend of ours, loses a child, this is the time to move in and hug them, love them. And just say, I don’t have any answers. This is so painful, but I love you. And, I’m with you. I’ve got your back. I’m here.

Steve Brown:
And God loves you even more than I do, but boy, it’s hard, isn’t it?

Pete Alwinson:
It’s very hard. And it’s time where we, like Job’s forlorn comforters, we sometimes give cliches that hurt more than help. So, we need to be careful not to do that, but to be there to love them.

Steve Brown:
Is that one of the reasons you’re glad you’re no longer a pastor. Oh man, we both buried a lot of babies.

Pete Alwinson:
It’s one of the hardest times.

Steve Brown:
I just hate it. I hate it. And, at those times I’ve leaned on Jesus, who said, let the little children come unto me. And I think we can all do that.

Pete Alwinson:
Absolutely. And on the grace of God, toward us.

Steve Brown:
We’ve got to go. I just looked at the clock.

Pete Alwinson:
I know, it’s right upon us, but there it is. See you next week.

Steve Brown:
One other thing, Key Life is a listener supported production of Key Life Network.

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