Heaven on Earth

November 30, 2008

This afternoon, as I watch the snow coming down in sheets this beatiful Sabbath day, I am reading a wonderful book by Thomas Brooks called Heaven on Earth. This book’s primary thesis is the expound upon the Christian doctrine of assurance. Am I really saved? How do I know that I am in Christ? I just started this book, so I do not intend to write much about it just now, but I do wish to impart to you what I have been reading thus far.

Already, Mr. Brooks has set forth several basic reasons for assurance:

  1. Believers may in this life attain unto a well-grounded assurance of their everlasting happiness and blessedness.
  2. It is the very scope and end of the Scripture to help believers to a well-grounded assurance of their everlasting happiness and blessedness.
  3. Other believers have in an ordinary way attained to a very sweet assurance of their everlasting happiness and blessedness.
  4. God hath by promise engaged Himself to assure his people of their happiness and blessedness.
  5. There is in all saints the spring of assurance, and therefore they may attain to assurance.
  6. The Holy Spirit exhorts us “to give all diligence to make our calling and election sure” (I Peter 1:10) and presses us to look to the obtaining of full assurance.
  7. The Lord hath, in much mercy and love, propounded in His Word the ways and means whereby believers may obtain a well-grounded assurance of their everlasting happiness and blessedness; and therefore it may be obtained.
  8. It was the principal end of Christ’s institution of the sacrament of the supper that he might assure them of His love, and that he might seal up to them the forgiveness of their sins, the acceptation of their persons, and the salvation of their souls.
  9. Those scriptures that do expressly require saints to be abundant and constant in rejoicing and in praising of God, to have always harps in their hands and hallelujahs in their mouths, do clearly evidence that believers may attain to a well-grounded assurance in this life.
  10. God would never have made such a broad difference in the Scripture between the seed of the woman and the seed of the serpent, between the righteous and the wicked, between saints and sinners, between sons and slaves, sheep and goats, between lions and lambs, between wheat and chaff, light and darkness, etc.

Simply stated, there is no logical reason for any Christian to claim that there is no possibility to attian assurance in Christ. The Scriptures clearly teach that assurance is an inherent part of true Christianity. Unfortunately, many take this too far by saying Once saved, always saved. This may be true, but the problem is that those who use this phrase far too often overlook why we are always saved once we have been saved. We are always saved because God has promised this too us in His Word. (A better way of saying this would be If saved, always saved.)

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