This question is a main one I have seen since my rebirth. How do you know you are saved? How do you know you are God’s child? This passage for me more than any other sums up the answer.
Ephesians 1:11 In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will, 12 that we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory.
13 In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, 14 who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory.
If salvation has come to you, it is an unmistakable event. It is not a temporary feeling, but a deep eternal realization of who you are, and what God has done via the work of Jesus Christ. He left His throne to become man, born of a virgin, lived a life of perfection, marched to His crucifiction on the Cross for the redemption and propitiation of sin, and proved He was this Messiah by His rising again. Ask yourself what does this mean to you? Do you believe Jesus paid your sin debt? That He took your place and satisfied God’s demand for justice on your sin?
Back to the question on knowing if you are saved. There is one way to know for sure and I will use an analogy. When I was training my hunting dog as a puppy for his first hunt, I tried to get him prepared for everything. The one unknown I had is if this dog would bolt and run off on me as soon as I let him off the leash. His natural instinct would have told him to do so. So in the back of my mind, I hoped he wouldn’t. Honestly looking back on our first hunt and walking out the blind, this is all I worried about. He didn’t bolt, he didn’t run off.
Now let’s look at God and an actual saved sinner. Every world religion will teach a relationship with God from a human standpoint. “Will they run off because they can”. But this not in the least how that relationship is! You see God is all-knowing, omniscient. When He makes a promise, He keeps it. Despite your human tendency to think otherwise, He KNOWS you will never run from Him. Why? Because as V11-14 explain above, it is God’s will that you are saved, who seals you with the indwelling Holy Spirit, barring any inclination that you will ever leave Him. And why would you want to if you have seen the Kingdom of God? That desire to rebel against God and His Kingdom is gone forever, this is HOW you know you have been saved!
False humanistic religions such as Roman Catholicism sets the human empowered OVER God’s will. It teaches that although God would save one, your stronger free-will could empower your leaving of Him at any moment you desire. The relationship is a cooperation. God must stand down and allow you this, or in this unsaved mindset He would be forcing salvation on you. Which I always have found ODD. “Forcing salvation on you”.
If God did not intervene, if He as my example with my dog above allowed you to do as you wished? You in a natural fallen state WOULD ALWAYS run off, you’d choose to disobey Him. God would be reduced to a human owner, where we just hope and pray those we love don’t run off from us. And in this Jesus would have died as some giant cosmic gamble! God would have rolled the dice with His Son, hoping that just one could believe in this redemption without His intervention knowing FULL WELL, man in their fallen state cannot.
How do you know you are saved? When the tests of life come your way, you have NO desire to leave God, rather you run to Him. Through thick and thin, God is your center of your life, He is not a bystander following you on Facebook, but your actual Father who you cling to for your every need. You STOP desiring the things of this world, and rather desire only the things of Heaven, your heavenly Kingdom is your desire. The word of Jesus Christ is your food and drink, He is your all in all! You love God, and you hate the things He hates. You love your neighbor as yourself, and desire them only to see the Kingdom as you have. And by the way, “tough love” is STILL love, so you are bold in sharing the Gospel.
If you are still contemplating if you are saved, there is a great possibility you have NOT been saved. When salvation enters your life, there is no doubt. You naturally start doing things you did not do before such as repenting of sin, and you have NO desire to continue on with your former decrepit rotten sinful life. If you carry the name of the King Jesus Christ, you realize fully whom you are representing of which there is no other who can compare!