19th March 01:54
DN Conquering Doubt 9/21/2006 (wise faith able grace heaven)
"Take the helmet of salvation" (Eph. 6:17).
The key to conquering doubt is to focus on the preserving power of
Doubt comes to Christians in many ways. After you've sinned, your
conscience might hiss at you, saying, "Surely you're not a Christian.
Why would God save you anyway? You don't deserve His mercy. You're
not good enough. How presumptuous to think God could ever use you!"
Such doubts are common among Christians who focus on their
performance rather than God's power.
All too often we're quick to acknowledge God's power to save us but
slow to understand His power to keep us. To complicate matters, many
Christians believe they can lose their salvation, so they live in
constant fear of falling away from the faith. Still others have never
learned what Scripture teaches about their security in Christ.
They're so intent on pleasing God through their own efforts that they
lose sight of grace and drift into a subtle works-righteousness
Your performance doesn't determine your standing in Christ; your
standing in Christ determines your performance. Good works are the
necessary result of salvation (Eph. 2:10) but they don't save you or
keep you saved. That's God's work.
Jude said, "Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to
make you stand in the presence of His glory blameless with great joy"
(v. 24). "Able" in that verse translates a Greek word that speaks of
power. "Keep" literally means "to secure in the midst of an attack."
"Stumbling" refers to falling into sin. Together they say that God is
powerful enough to prevent you from stumbling into sin and falling
away from Him--no matter how intense Satan's attacks might be. He
will continue to protect and cleanse you until the day you enter His
glorious heaven perfected.
Sin is a serious issue and you should never take it lightly. But when
you do sin, remember that as a believer you're immediately cleansed
by the blood of Jesus Christ (1 John 1:7). So always confess your
sins and turn from them, but never doubt God's power or willingness
to keep you saved. Trust in His grace, not in your ability to
Suggestions for Prayer:
Praise the Lord for continually cleansing your sin.
For Further Study:
Memorize Jude 24-25 and recite it often as a reminder of God's power
Drawing Near, Copyright 1993 John F. MacArthur, Jr.
All rights reserved. Used by permission.
8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of
yourselves; it is the gift of God,
9 not of works, lest anyone should boast.
10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good
works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.
1 John 1:7
7 But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have
fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son
cleanses us from all sin.
24 Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, And to present
you faultless Before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy,
25 To God our Savior, Who alone is wise, Be glory and majesty,
Dominion and power, Both now and forever. Amen.
These devotions are posted with permission from John MacArthur's
first (1993) devotional work, _Drawing Near_, and they are also sent
out daily for free to several folks via e-mail.
In addition, John's second (1997) devotional, _Strength for Today_,
is also available free via e-mail only. _Strength for Today_ follows
the same format as what you have seen here from _Drawing Near_, but
with different monthly themes.
If you would like to receive daily devotions via e-mail from either
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Peter G. Chase :: Columbus, Ohio, USA
STOP! Who do you think Jesus is?
To f****ve is to set a prisoner free, and to discover that the prisoner was you. -Alistair Begg