1 John 5:13 (NKJV) These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.
“I’m not sure…” That is a very common answer from Christians when asked if they REALLY KNOW without any doubt they are going to spend eternity in Heaven.
Some don’t know for sure because their life is anything but Christ-like and, rightly so, they have no real relationship with Jesus which is the first ingredient in being confident about eternity. Or maybe they have withheld some part of their life from God where they refuse to obey God.
Some don’t know because they’ve grown up with the idea that losing your salvation is as easy as forgetting to ask forgiveness for a sin you committed. Now, whether or not you believe someone can renounce their faith in Christ, or forfeit salvation by living in continuous, unrepented sin (that’s a whole other doctrinal question), this is different than believing every sin you commit is the potential loss of eternal life until you “get all ‘fessed up”. That’s just unbiblical bondage. Saved, unsaved, saved, unsaved… of course you can’t “know you have eternal life” if you think like that.
The fact is, God says specifically and plainly “that you may know you have eternal life”. So either God was lying or exaggerating OR that’s what He meant. What separates Biblical Christianity from all other religions is the fact that YOU CAN KNOW you are going to Heaven.
What keeps us from “knowing” is sin and disobedience which erodes our confidence in Christ. What allows us to know is “believing in the name of the Son of God” which is authenticated by our hatred of sin and our obedience to Christ.
Think It Over: If you are a Christian and you don’t know for a fact you are saved and going to Heaven, the first place to look is always the same for everyone: sin that you are ignoring in your life. What part of your life, works, morality or obedience are you withholding from Christ? There’s your answer.