We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love each other. Anyone who does not love remains in death. Anyone who hates a brother or sister is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life residing in him.
-1 John 3:14-15
If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you forever. This is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, because he abides with you, and he will be in you.
“I will not leave you orphaned; I am coming to you. In a little while the world will no longer see me, but you will see me; because I live, you also live. On that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you. They who have my commandments and keep them are those who love me; and those who love me will be loved by my Father, and I will love them and reveal myself to them.”
Jesus taught for many days within three years. In the end, no one did anything He said. It says that they didn’t believe in Him even after the many miracles He performed, in John 12. He still gave Himself for them, because mercy triumphs over judgment. Where sin abounded, grace abounded much more, and ultimately grace wasn’t about the world looking to Jesus in the flesh because of His miracles or His teachings. It’s was about them knowing that they’re not Fatherless. What really drew men to Christ is seeing the Father in the Son.
“If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him.” Philip said to Him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works. Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me, or else believe Me for the sake of the works themselves.” — John 14
Seven Indicators of True Salvation If you were put on trial for being a Christian, would the evidence of your life be overwhelmingly clear that you know Christ and that He knows you? Genuine salvation is a life-changing experience. “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come”(2 Cor. 5: 17). Good works do not remove sins, nor can they save anyone. But after a person is genuinely saved and is truly transformed by Christ, specific good works will start showing up as evidence or proof of their salvation. These seven things are not the cause or roots of salvation, but they are the fruits of true salvation. The book of 1 John gives us seven key indicators of genuine salvation revealing that someone is truly saved and knows God.
A lifestyle of obedience to God. Though Christians stumble and make mistakes, the big picture direction and habit of a true believer becomes one of submission and obedience to Christ. They will want to read and follow God’s Word. The Holy Spirit in their lives bends them toward greater and greater obedience. What about you? Have you been living a lifestyle of obedience toward God? “By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments. The one who says, ‘I have come to know Him,’and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him; but whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected. By this we know that we are in Him: the one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked”(1 John 2:3–6).
A confession of Jesus as the Christ, God’s Son. First John 2:22–23 says, “Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son. Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father; the one who confesses the Son has the Father also.” While cults communicate that Jesus was merely a good teacher or prophet, God’s Word says He is the Christ, the sinless Son of God, and the Lord of all. Do you openly confess that Jesus Christ is God’s Son, or do you believe Him to be merely a good teacher or prophet?
A lifestyle of repentance of sin. Jesus said, “Unless you repent, you will all likewise perish”(Luke 13:3). Though we all stumble in many ways (James 3:2), true believers will be confessing and turning away from sin, while false believers will not. First John 3:9–10 says, “No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in him; he cannot go on sinning, because he has been born of God. This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not a child of God; nor is anyone who does not love his brother.”
Genuine love for other believers. “We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death. Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer; and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him”(1 John 3:14–15). God’s Spirit pours out God’s love into the hearts of God’s children (Rom. 5: 5; Gal. 5: 22). Do you have a genuine love for other believers?
The discipline of God your Father. “See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God; and such we are”(1 John 3:1). Even as a loving earthly father disciplines his children, God promises to discipline His children when they get out of line. He says this is one of the evidences of true salvation. “God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons… All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness”(Heb.12:7–8, 11). Have you experienced the clear discipline of your heavenly Father in your life?
The presence of God’s Holy Spirit. “This is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us”(1 John 3:24). If you are a true believer, then God’s Spirit is in you and will testify with your spirit that you are a child of God (Rom. 8:16). He will also convict you when you sin (John 16:8), reveal what God’s Word says when you read it (John 14:26), and pour genuine love, joy, and peace in and through you toward others (Gal. 5:22). Have you been experiencing these evidences of the Holy Spirit in your life?
Faith in Jesus alone for salvation (and not yourself). “He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life”(1 John 5:12–13). Or as Paul said in Philippians 3:9, “Not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith.” Have you been trusting in Jesus alone for your salvation, or trusting yourself or your church?
These seven things are signs of a changed life—litmus tests revealing whether God has really made you a new creation or not. They don’t come naturally and are impossible to fake long-term. The world, the flesh, and the devil are all against you doing these things and will push you in the opposite direction from them. But if you look at your life over the past few months from a fifty-thousand-foot view, do you see these things? Do you see a genuine love for other believers? Or not? Repentance of sin? Or not? Obedience to God? Or not? The discipline of your Father? Or not? The evidence of God’s Spirit? Or not? A confession of Jesus as God’s Son? Or not? A genuine faith in Jesus alone for salvation? Or not? If these indicators reveal a true relationship with Christ, then rejoice and rest in it. If they do not, then don’t put off the command of Scripture to repent and believe in Jesus Christ, placing your faith in Him alone for genuine salvation.
God is not eternal and has not always been God - The Bible says, in Psalm 90:2, “Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever You had formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God.“ and then James 1:17, “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” From these verses we see that God has always been, and has never changed, nor will He. Whereas the Mormon teachings state that God was once like us, God is clear that He is not. There was never a day where God was not God, He did not start out as a mortal man. Numbers 23:19, “
God is not a man, that He should lie, nor a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good?”
The trinity is three separate gods (polytheistic) -
Isaiah 46:9; “Remember the former things of old, for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like Me.” From this verse we read that there is only one God. The Bible is abounding in scriptural declarations that God is one. Verses that support the trinity are John 10:30, “I and the Father are one.” John 1:1-3, John 14:9-11, Philippians 2:5-8, Colossians 1:5-7, Mark 28:19, and in John 8:58 Jesus says, “Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM.” The Jews sought to stone Jesus on the basis of blaspheme because He plainly and directly claimed to be God.
Jesus was physically conceived by Mary and God the Father - Luke 1:34 says, “Then Mary said to the angel, ‘How can this be, since I do not know a man?’“ Mary is taken aback at the news that the angel, Gabriel, delivers, for she is a virgin. There is nothing to indicate that there was a physical relationship between Mary and God. Quite the opposite, actually, because John says in verse 18, “No one has seen God [the Father] at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him.“ Jesus was born of a virgin, His conception a supernatural phenomenon that emphasizes His divine nature.
Jesus is the brother of Satan - John 3:16, “For
God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever
believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” No where does the Bible tell us that Satan was the brother of Jesus. The Bible says that Jesus is the one and only Son of God. Ezekiel 28:15 tells us that, unlike Jesus who is eternal and has always been, Satan was created, “You were perfect in your ways from the day you were created, till iniquity was found in you.” And who was Satan created by? John 1:1-3 says, “In the beginning was the Word [Jesus], and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made.” Satan is not the brother of Jesus, Satan was created BY Jesus.
Salvation is through works and meeting all the requirements - Ephesians 2:8-9
“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.” The Bible is adamant that there is absolutely nothing we can do that amounts to anything in regard to salvation. It is entirely by God through Christ that we are saved, and the good works we do are ones that God specially and personally prepared for us. Verse 10, “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” We are good because God restores us, apart from Him we can do no good. Good works are the fruit, the product of salvation, not the payment. Jesus paid it all. Galatians 3:3 says, “Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh?” There were Jews in Bible times preaching this exact same false doctrine of works plus faith salvation. They are severely reprimanded in this verse as being fools, because to preach that works save us is to revile the sacrifice of Jesus’ death on the cross. He is all we need, God’s grace is enough.
Are Mormons Christians? While they label themselves as such, the foundational principles are ones that drastically deviate from the truth of the Bible. They are not Christians. They have made a god (or, multiple gods, as it be) of their own choosing, and added their own distortion. A god created by man cannot save humanity, and therefore the eternal salvation of Mormons rests in peril. If we reject who God is and the free gift of salvation He offers, we damn ourselves to hell, and that is where the Mormon doctrine leads.
But I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep, lest you sorrow as others who have no hope. 1 Thessalonians 4:13
Christians do not grieve as the world grieves. The world experiences sorrow without hope. The Christian also has sorrow, but the Christian’s sorrow is accompanied by hope.
In Jesus’ day, a funeral was a time for an impassioned demonstration of grief. It was a sign of respect for the deceased to wail loudly at a funeral. A person grieving the loss of a loved one had no power to change what had happened. There was probably no time in human experience where people felt more helpless or vulnerable than at a funeral.
Jesus, too, wept at the funeral of a close friend, but His sorrow did not come from a lack of hope (John 11:35). Jesus knew that soon Lazarus would be alive again. He also knew that at His second coming, Lazarus and all of Jesus’ followers would be resurrected from death to spend eternity with Him in heaven. Jesus wept because He saw the hopelessness felt by the people He loved. His friends had the Resurrection and the Life right in their midst, yet they were grieving! (John 11:25). When Jesus conquered death, He forever changed the way Christians view death. Christians still experience the sorrow of losing someone we love, but we have hope because we know that God can bring good out of any situation (Rom. 8:28). We have hope in the knowledge that nothing, not even death, can separate us from God’s love (Rom. 8:38-39). We have hope because Jesus will bring us to join Him in heaven so that we might enjoy eternity in unhindered fellowship with Him (John 14:3).
Even though you are a Christian, you cannot escape life’s sorrows. But you can temper your grief with the hope that Christ is risen, for He is your hope and your comfort.
I'm a Christian and queer and have been for awhile and I'm do scared of the "end times" revolution when Christ will be returning and I hate it because I feel like it's something I should look forward too but I'm so scared that I'm not good enough that me and my friends and family will all get cast into hell and all the scary stuff the book of Revelation talks about especially since a lot of people at my church have been saying it's coming sorry soon with all the natural disasters and scary stuff
Hey friend! I went through a really similar period in my faith when I was younger and it’s really scary. Let me try to clear some things up.
First of all, God loves you and he’s not going to hurt you. You are “good” enough.
Romans 10:9 “because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”
John 1:12 “But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,”
And of course I’m sure you know
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”
Secondly, you don’t have to be afraid of the return of Christ. I understand why you’re scared, sometimes I am too. Scripture tends to paint it this huge panic of destruction and death.
Remember how all the Israelites had prophecies about Jesus coming the first time and they thought he was gonna be some great warrior king to free them from Roman occupancy? And then they got a baby in a manger who did so much more? Taking all these scriptures literally and fearfully doesn’t make a lot of sense in context. God is powerful and righteous, but in the end his priority is to be with us. He’s going to protect you, you don’t need to be afraid. Here are just a few of the (shorter) scriptures I could find about how good it’s going to be.
Revelation 21:4 ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
2 Peter 3:13 “But according to his promise we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells”
John 14:1-3 “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.”
Finally, nobody knows when this is happening.
Mark 13:32 “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.”
Some of the stuff happening recently definitely resembles scripture, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s happening right this instant. Remember, Jesus said to he’d return before the original apostles died (Matthew 16:27) so there’s lots of confusion and unanswered questions about this topic. We simply can’t know.
I hope this was helpful, the best advice I can give you is to pray about this. Pray that God would help take away the fear surrounding this subject. Pray for his guidance so you can be his hands and feet until the day does come.
God loves you so much and so do I, you can always talk to me if you have more questions or just wanna talk. I’ll be praying for you, have a great day!
I'm afraid of being a fake Christian, to the point that I become depressed and can't focus on anything for long.
Many believers doubt their salvation because they don’t see signs of genuine faith in their lives. There are those who say we should never doubt our decision to follow Christ, but that’s not right the Bible encourages us to examine ourselves to see if we are truly “in the faith” (2 Corinthians 13:5) 1 John was written so that we could know that we have eternal life. 1 John 5:13, “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.” So here is a tests in 1 John that we can use to examine ourselves and our faith.
Do you enjoy having fellowship with Christ and His redeemed people? (1 John 1:3)
Would people say you walk in the light, or walk in the darkness? (1 John 1:6-7)
Do you admit and confess your sin? (1 John 1:8)
Are you obedient to God’s Word? (1 John 2:3-5)
Does your life indicate you love God rather than the world? (1 John 2:15)
Is your life characterized by “doing what is right”? (1 John 2:29)
Do you seek to maintain a pure life? (1 John 3:3)
Do you see a decreasing pattern of sin in your life? (1 John 3:5-6) [This refers to not continuing in sin as a way of life, not a total absence of sin.]
Do you demonstrate love for other Christians? (1 John 3:14)
Do you “walk the walk,” versus just “talking the talk”? (1 John 3:18-19)
Do you maintain a clear conscience? (1 John 3:21)
Do you experience victory in your Christian walk? (1 John 5:4)
If you have failed this test then I pray that you repent of your sins and run after God. If you have passed this test then you need to truly believe in promises God has made to you. You are not a fake christian. In John 10:27-29, Jesus said, “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand.” If you hear and obey the voice of Jesus, then you are one of His sheep, and He will never let you go.
Hold on to that promise.
re: the post about religions leading to heaven: Jehovah's Witnesses believe in salvation through Jesus Christ. They are baptized in his name.
The problem with Jehovah‘s Witness is that they do not worship the God of the Bible, they have made a god of their own choosing. They have rejected parts of who God is, and it is rejection of God that leads to Hell. John 12:48, “He
who rejects Me, and does not receive My words, has that which judges
him—the word that I have spoken will judge him in the last day.“ Here are some basic doctrinal teachings of the Jehovah’s Witness that deviate from the truth of the Bible…
Only certain people within their organization can understand the Bible, not individuals - The Bible leaves no doubt that God gives everyone the necessary capacity to understand what the Bible says as they seek after Him. God wants us to draw near to Him, to be in relationship with Him, and therefore He reveals Himself to us through the Bible.
Jehovah’s Witness does not believe in the Trinity - This is a massively grave point. If we deny the trinity, the entirety of the gospel is dismantled. Rejecting the Trinity either means that you are either polytheistic (you believe that the Father, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are all separate Gods), or you believe that two persons of the trinity are not God. Both these options are in direct opposition to the Bible. Isaiah 46:9 reminds us that there is only one God, “Remember the former things of old, For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like Me.” The concept of the Trinity is solidified in verses such as John 1:1-3, 14; Isaiah 9:6; John 10:30; Colossians 1:15; John 14:9-11; Philippians 2:5-8; Genesis 1:26
Jesus is not equal with God - Philipians 2:5-6 says, “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God.“ Jesus often talks about submitting to the Father’s will, but this does not mean they are unequal.
Salvation comes through works - Ephesians 2:8-9 says, “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.“ We cannot earn our salvation, not through works, not through baptism. The Bible consistently teaches that salvation comes only through faith. One of the primary indicators of a false religion is works-based salvation. The Bible teaches that we need Jesus because we cannot save ourselves, and that apart from God, nothing we do is good. (Romans 3:10-12)
We will be gods when we get to heaven - Again, the Bible repeatedly declares that God is the one and only God, now and forever. Isaiah 44:6, “Thus says the Lord, the King of Israel, And his Redeemer, the Lord of hosts: ‘I am the First and I am the Last; Besides Me there is no God.“
There is no hell, unbelievers merely cease to exist - were the entire book of Revelation not proof enough, throughout, Matthew 13:41-42 paints a dire picture. “The
Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His
kingdom all things that offend, and those who practice lawlessness, and will cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth.“ Mark 9:43 tells us that this punishment is eternal and unceasing. “If
your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter
into life maimed, rather than having two hands, to go to hell, into the
fire that shall never be quenched“
Those are just a few of the fallacies taught by the Jehovah’s Witness. By rejecting the character of God, they condemn themselves to hell. Anyone can say they believe in God, but if it is not the God of the Bible that they are putting their trust in, their faith is worthless.
The Israselites at one point put their trust in a golden calf and called it God, but that wasn’t God. What they chose to believe God was couldn’t save them because it wasn’t true. They made a god of their own choosing. We MUST put our trust in who God says He is, not our idea of Him, nor anyone else’s. God is everything that the Bible says He is, and only who the Bible says He is.