Am I Going To Heaven? Part 5: The Guarantee
Ever since I started buying comic books digitally, I’ve been going through a lot of iTunes credit. So I’m always on the lookout for discounted iTunes cards. There’s this site I check out that keeps a record of who is selling these cards at the cheapest rate. When I’m running low on credit, I pull up the site, find out who’s got the best discount, then go shopping. But even though I’ve seen the price on the website, even though I’ve checked out the stores catalogue, I’m always a bit apprehensive when I walk up to the counter. What if I got it wrong? What if they’re not really on sale? Will I look like an idiot when I ask for the discount and there isn’t one? Although I’ve been promised the discount, I’m never sure I’m going to get it until I hand over my money.
God has promised me, through his Word, that the death of Jesus has paid for my sin and that if I believe in Jesus, I’m going to heaven. But how can I be sure? How do I know that Jesus really has deal with my sin? How can I know that God actually will follow through on his promise and let me into heaven?
When Jesus was on earth, he knew he had a mission and he knew what it would take to complete it. In Mark 10:33-34, Jesus said “The Son of Man will be betrayed to the chief priest and teachers of the law. They will condemn him to death and will hand him over to the Gentiles, who will mock him and spit on him, flog him and kill him. Three days later he will rise.” If Jesus had died on the cross and stayed dead, then we would have no assurance what so ever that we would be saved. Instead, Jesus conquered death. He went to the grave and then told death who was boss. One of the reasons Jesus came back from the dead was to prove he had the power to deal with sin. If he could take on death and win, then how much more could he save us from sin?
After all, God is not in the practice of making promises that he can’t keep. Throughout the Bible, time and time again, God has proven himself. If he makes a promise, he keeps it. We see in the Bible that God promises that God’s people, that is, people who follow his son Jesus, will be saved.
“What then shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all – how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died – more than that, who was raised to life – is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written:
“For your sake we face death all day long;
we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:31-39)
If God is for us, who can be against us? If we accept the gift of salvation that Jesus offers us, who can keep us out of heaven? There is no power in this world, or any other, that can come between us and the love of Christ.
At some point, each of us is going to stand before God. And God will ask “Why should I let you into my heaven?” The good things you’ve done? They will be insufficient. Being baptised as a baby? That will be inadequate. Rocking up to church or youth group two or three times a year? That will be unsatisfactory. The only answer that will count for anything is JESUS. Lord, I believe in your son Jesus. I believe he died in my place. I believe that he has taken care of the punishment that my sin deserves. I believe that because of Jesus that you’ve already welcomed me into your family.
And God will reply with an emphatic YES. Yes, you are my child. Yes Jesus has prepared a place in my heaven. Yes you can come in, even though we both know you don’t deserve it. Welcome!
Are you going to heaven? If you are a follower of Jesus than the answer is yes. You can have confidence. You can have assurance. Because God is faithful to his promises. The gates of heaven are open wide for those who follow Jesus. Are you going to accept the invitation and walk on through?