Tuesday, March 25, 2008

How do you know if someone is really saved?

 "I have read the Bible. I go to church....

I know morally what I am doing is right. If a woman doesn't want to be a mother, she shouldn't have to be."

 "I have no shame in what I do. I enjoy what I do. I'm happy with what I do

and I'm going to do it until somebody makes me stop."

~ James Scott Pendergraft, abortionist and clinic owner


Nearly every hour that we witness at Pendergraft's late-term abortion clinic, Orlando Women's Center, we meet professing Christians who are killing babies. Bridget & Lorinda are clinic workers. They attend local churches and say that they are Christians. These women play worship music on their way in to murder the little ones who are made in the image of God. At least two of the abortionists say they believe in God and go to church. "Scotty" Pendergraft said the quote above. One of his hired abortionists, Randy Whitney (who has been killing babies since before abortion was legal), assured me that he was a Christian, explaining; "Patte, the only difference between me and you is that you are a pre-modern Christian and I am a post-modern Christian." We just met a 28 year old 'Christian' mother named Marian who aborted for the eighth time on Valentine's Day. Javier is a well-respected member of a local Pentecostal church raped his 17 year old step-daughter Judith on the living room floor. He was very unhappy when he discovered that his step-daughter had become pregnant from the rape. Javier certainly didn't want his wife to find out so he put a wad of money in young Judith's hands and drove her to the clinic to have a labor-and-delivery abortion at six months. Javier sported a Z88 (Christian radio station) bumper sticker on the tailgate of his truck. 'Leeanne' is another professing Christian. She told me a chilling story of how her pastor provided her with a seaside memorial service after she murdered her baby by abortion. Leeanne described how 'beautiful' the ceremony was. The next time Leeanne became pregnant, with the guidance and support of her pastor and a 'Christian' counselor, she killed that baby by abortion too. A few weeks ago we met a woman named 'Whitney' at the abortion clinic. She lavished praise on her pastor and her church. Whitney had come to kill her baby at 4 months of pregnancy by labor-and-delivery. When three women from her church came to take her away from the killing place, Whitney stubbornly refused to speak with them. She wanted her baby dead. Yesterday I met Theresa. She had come to kill her late-term baby. Theresa explained: "I am a Christian. I know that it is murder. I know that it is wrong. I know that I should not do it". I offered Theresa my personal help in choosing a loving adoptive home for her son or daughter. Theresa said: "I would never give my baby away." Yet, Theresa was willing to give her her poor little infant into the toilet of the clinic ... and she did.

Bridget, Lorinda, Scotty, Randy, Marian, Marian, Javier, Leeanne, Whitney, Theresa. I could go on and on ... but I am certain that you don't have the stomach for it any more than I do.

How can you tell if a person is a true Christian?
Who are His disciples indeed?
Is the regenerate person the one who calls Jesus 'Lord, Lord'
"Not everyone who comes to Me saying; 'Lord, Lord!'will enter the kingdom of heaven, ... & I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!" (Matthew 7:21-23)  see also Matthew 25:41 Luke 13:27  Psalm 6:8
Is it the one who believes in God always truly saved?
'You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.' James 2:19

One remarkable way that Jesus answered the question of who is a true follower is through the challenge of whether or not their faith endures.
"You will be hated by all because of My name, but it is the one who has endured to the end who will be saved."
Matthew 10:22
"But the one who endures to the end, he will be saved."
Matthew 24:13     
Jesus contrasts those who are true converts with those who DO NOT endure:
" ... and they have no root in themselves, and so endure only for a time. Afterward, when tribulation or persecution arises for the word's sake, immediately they stumble." Mark 4:17
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers;
II Tim 4:3
Only the people who follow  and obey the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ actually abide in Him and endure to the end. They are His disciples indeed.   
Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, "If you abide in My Word, you are My disciples indeed."
John 8:31  
For this reason I endure all things 
II Tim 2:10  
Matthew Henry:

2:8-13 Let suffering saints remember, and look to Jesus, the Author and Finisher of their faith, who for the joy that was set before him, endured the cross, despised the shame, and is now set down at the right hand of the throne of God. We must not think it strange if the best men meet with the worst treatment; but this is cheering, that the word of God is not bound. Here we see the real and true cause of the apostle's suffering trouble in, or for, the sake of the gospel. If we are dead to this world, its pleasures, profits, and honours, we shall be for ever with Christ in a better world. He is faithful to his threatenings, and faithful to his promises. This truth makes sure the unbeliever's condemnation, and the believer's salvation.

But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.

II Tim 4:5

If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten?

Heb 12:7

Indeed we count them blessed who endure.

James 5:11

And we labor, working with our own hands. Being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we endure

I Corinthians 4:12

but endure all things lest we hinder the gospel of Christ.
I Corinthians 9:12
for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that you endure,
II Thess 1:4
You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ ... If we endure, We shall also reign with [Him]. If we deny [Him], He also will deny us.
II Tim 2:3, 12
His seed also I will make to endure forever, And His throne as the days of heaven ... His seed shall endure forever, And His throne as the sun before Me;
Ps 89:29;36         
They will perish, but You will endure;
Ps 102:26

Endurance is a gift of God's grace!

... They whom God hath accepted in his Beloved, effectually called and sanctified by his Spirit, can neither totally nor finally fall away from the state of grace; but shall certainly persevere therein to the end, and be eternally saved.

... This perseverance of the saints depends, not upon their own free-will, but upon the immutability of the decree of election, flowing from the free and unchangeable love of God the Father; upon the efficacy of the merit and intercession of Jesus Christ; the abiding of the Spirit and of the seed of God within them; and the nature of the covenant of grace; from all which ariseth also the certainty and infallibility thereof.

~ excerpt from Westminster Confession, CHAPTER XVII Of The Perseverance of the Saints

Other scriptural signs to compare & contrast true & false converts
According to the Bible, who else reveals by their life actions that they are NOT genuine Christians?
Those who commit sin, practice sin, live lawlessly, are evil-doers, those who work inquity will be cast into a devil's hell.

"And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.'

Matthew 7:23

People's New Testament

7:23 I never knew you. I never knew you must be accepted in its deeper signification of recognizing the disciples. Augustine says that for Christ to say, I never knew you, is only another way of saying, You never knew me.

Depart from me, ye that work iniquity. In spite of all their professions they had been evil doers. Their religion expended itself in professions and prayers. Hence, in that day they are commanded to depart. What it is to so depart we may learn from Mt 25:41. It is evident from this passage that many are self-deceived.

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

7:21-29 Christ here shows that it will not be enough to own him for our Master, only in word and tongue. It is necessary to our happiness that we believe in Christ, that we repent of sin, that we live a holy life, that we love one another. This is his will, even our sanctification. Let us take heed of resting in outward privileges and doings, lest we deceive ourselves, and perish eternally, as multitudes do, with a lie in our right hand. Let every one that names the name of Christ, depart from all sin. There are others, whose religion rests in bare hearing, and it goes no further; their heads are filled with empty notions. These two sorts of hearers are represented as two builders. This parable teaches us to hear and do the sayings of the Lord Jesus: some may seem hard to flesh and blood, but they must be done. Christ is laid for a foundation, and every thing besides Christ is sand. Some build their hopes upon worldly prosperity; others upon an outward profession of religion. Upon these they venture; but they are all sand, too weak to bear such a fabric as our hopes of heaven. There is a storm coming that will try every man's work. When God takes away the soul, where is the hope of the hypocrite? The house fell in the storm, when the builder had most need of it, and expected it would be a shelter to him. It fell when it was too late to build another. May the Lord make us wise builders for eternity. Then nothing shall separate us from the love of Christ Jesus. The multitudes were astonished at the wisdom and power of Christ's doctrine. And this sermon, ever so often read over, is always new. Every word proves its Author to be Divine. Let us be more and more decided and earnest, making some one or other of these blessednesses and Christian graces the main subject of our thoughts, even for weeks together. Let us not rest in general and confused desires after them, whereby we grasp at all, but catch nothing.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

23. And then will I profess unto them-or, openly proclaim-tearing off the mask.

I never knew you-What they claimed-intimacy with Christ-is just what He repudiates, and with a certain scornful dignity. "Our acquaintance was not broken off-there never was any."

depart from me-(Compare Mt 25:41). The connection here gives these words an awful significance. They claimed intimacy with Christ, and in the corresponding passage, Lu 13:26, are represented as having gone out and in with Him on familiar terms. "So much the worse for you," He replies: "I bore with that long enough; but now-begone!"

ye that work iniquity-not "that wrought iniquity"; for they are represented as fresh from the scenes and acts of it as they stand before the Judge. (See on the almost identical, but even more vivid and awful, description of the scene in Lu 13:24-27). That the apostle alludes to these very words in 2Ti 2:19 there can hardly be any doubt-"Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are His. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity."


God is not impressed with an outward show of religion without a genuine holy life of faith. Ceremony can be form without substance. Clouds without water. Formalism does not please God.

Against formalism:
Bring no more futile sacrifices; Incense is an abomination to Me. The New Moons, the Sabbaths, and the calling of assemblies-- I cannot endureiniquity and the sacred meeting.
Is 1:13



Those who truly love & follow Jesus Christ can and will and do have assurance of their salvation.


Of the Assurance of Grace and Salvation.

I. Although hypocrites, and other unregenerate men, may vainly deceive themselves with false hopes and carnal presumptions: of being in the favor of God and estate of salvation; which hope of theirs shall perish: yet such as truly believe in the Lord Jesus, and love him in sincerity, endeavoring to walk in all good conscience before him, may in this life be certainly assured that they are in a state of grace, and may rejoice in the hope of the glory of God: which hope shall never make them ashamed.

II. This certainty is not a bare conjectural and probably persuasion, grounded upon a fallible hope; but an infallible assurance of faith, founded upon the divine truth of the promises of salvation, the inward evidence of those graces unto which these promises are made, the testimony of the Spirit of adoption witnessing with our spirits that we are the children of God; which Spirit is the earnest of our inheritance, whereby we are sealed to the day of redemption.

What will happen to those who refuse and resist the call to repentance from sin & faith toward Jesus Christ?
See what comes of refusing the gospel.
Those who will not hear the messengers of peace, shall be made to hear the messengers of war...
When we look forward to the eternity of misery that is before the obstinate refusers of Christ and his gospel, we may truly say,
The greatest earthly judgments are but the beginning of sorrows.
~ Matthew Henry
Patte Smith
Sanctuary Ministries
Remember Baby Rowan

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