Assurance – being 100% confident that you are saved – is based squarely on your understanding of justification by grace through faith. The single greatest reason I am spending time going through the Book of Romans is to help you have just such an assurance.
Romans 5:1 begins with these words: Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. This is the essence of assurance of our salvation. We are no longer an enemy of God. There is no longer any hostility or enmity between us and God. Not because of anything we have done. But because God took the initiative.
This assurance – confidence that we will go to heaven – is sorely lacking for far too many Christians. But Paul is telling us, “therefore” – by way of the arguments I have already made – you can be fully confident of your salvation. If this is the case, then why do so many have doubts? Mainly because they do not understand the basis for this assurance.
Justification By Faith…Again…Still
What is the proper basis for having such assurance? Nothing less than the knowledge that we are justified by our faith in the atoning blood of Jesus. Paul begins this chapter by reminding us of all that he has taught and presented in the previous four chapters. “Therefore” is there for us to recall and remind ourselves of what he has been teaching.
Justification – forgiveness of our sins – is not possible by law keeping. It is only possible by grace and is received by faith. We cannot allow ourselves to forget the comparison that Paul has been making from the beginning of this letter. If we do, we run the risk of misinterpreting and then misapplying his teaching. The result of which is either a false sense of security or a continued state of uncertainty.