Assurance

As I mentioned, reading the Bible from Genesis to Revelation is an awe inspiring endeavor. It puts into perspective just how immense and gracious God is to His creation. The sad reality of mankind’s separation from fellowship with Him in the Garden and God’s attending them as a shepherd his flock of sheep, makes you awestruck at just how loving a God He is. And by reading from cover to cover you come to know Him as fully as He can be known here on Earth.

The book of Genesis depicts the Creation and the waywardness of man, how God calls them back to fellowship. There is Noah, survivor of the flood with his family, the new beginning of humanity, who receives the promise of God. He is followed by Abraham, who is given a more specific promise. To Abraham, God has made a singular selection, through whose family God will be glorified on Earth. I try to imagine what it must have been like to hear His voice, to converse with God, to hear how he was chosen to carry God’s blessing to all generations. Even when requested to offer up his own son as a As I mentioned, reading the Bible from Genesis to Revelation is an awe inspiring endeavor. It put into perspective just how immense and gracious God is to His creation. The sad reality of mankind’s separation from fellowship with Him in the Garden and God’s attending them as a shepherd his flock of sheep, makes one awestruck at just how loving a God He is. And by reading from cover to cover you come to know Him as fully as He can be known.

The book of Genesis depicts the Creation and the waywardness of man, how God calls them back to fellowship. There is Noah, survivor of the flood with his family, the new beginning of humanity, who received the promise of God. He is followed by Abraham, who is given a more specific promise. To Abraham, God had made a singular selection, through whose family God would be glorified on Earth. I try to imagine what it must have been like to hear His voice, to converse with God, to hear how he was chosen to carry God’s blessing to all generations. Even when requested to offer up his son Isaac as a sacrifice, knowing that the promise was made through him, Abraham trusted God enough to carry out His request in spite of being unaware how the conflict would be resolved. Prophetically Abraham told Isaac when asked where was the lamb for the offering, that God would Himself provide the sacrifice. Now that is trust! Having no idea if he would have to go through with it, he was prepared to obey completely. The only thing he had was an assurance in his heart that God could do anything that needed to be done to fulfill His promises, even if that meant raising his son from the dead. That is a powerful assurance.

And in that word, assurance, we have the only definition of the concept of Faith. The Bible says that without faith it is impossible to please God, and that we are saved by Faith. But in only one verse of the Scriptures is Faith actually defined, in Hebrews 11:1. It isn’t just a belief, as in all of the world’s religions. It isn’t a guessing or hoping that what you believe might be true. But “faith is the assurance.” Assurance is being certain, not guessing or supposing, or hoping it might be so. We are not thinking, “I hope I’m going to heaven.” Or “I hope I’m saved.” We are sure, we know. It is this assurance that gives us this life in which we live, His life. We have assurance because He has opened our hearts to knowing with certainty that the things He says are true. Jesus told Nicodemus that this was being Born Again. When this assurance is implanted in your heart you are at once born a new creation. Born into life, passing out of death. Entering into direct fellowship with God through the indwelling of His Holy Spirit. We know this because He has given us this assurance. This is His gift to us.

Finally, the chasm that was created in Adam’s sin is bridged by faith in the blood of the Lamb, just as Abraham suggested to Isaac. God did provide His own sacrifice, in His son Jesus Christ. That is what is such Good News. What we couldn’t do, bridge the chasm, restore our fellowship with our Creator, God Himself did, in a selfless act of death followed by the promised Resurrection. To those that realize this assurance, the effect is very powerful. No more wondering what is out there, or who is out there, or why we are here. We come to know the One who is there and who is not silent, and has never been silent. His Word reaches to the ends of the universe. To His glory!

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