Doubts can shut down progress! A christian needs a firm and sure foundation to go forward in following Christ. When a person is unsure of the character of the person they are trying to follow; they are unsure of their standing and acceptance by that person. When the person is the Creator God of the Universe, the importance escalates.
Where does our confidence come from? How much faith does it take to save? What act or person do we put our trust in?
There are not many guarantees in life and worldly guarantees run out; but there is one eternal guarantee! Anyone who who trust in Jesus Christ will never be disappointed in their choice. When a person calls out to Jesus, that call has weight and merit. People call out to him as they are; they do not have to try to improve themselves to be heard. No matter what the question is concerning eternity, Jesus Christ is the answer! God the Father honors those who believe and trust in his Son!
2 Corinthians 1: 20 For no matter how many promises God has made, they are "Yes" in Christ. And so through him the "Amen" is spoken by us to the glory of God.
21 Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us,
22 set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.
Again let us go back to our foundation, back to bedrock. If a person does not know what the foundation is made out of and just how strong it is, nothing much will follow.
However if we know what it is made of; just how strong it is, then we can go forward to build with confidence.
Think of your own foundation. What choices do you make and what do you carry out to move forward on those decisions?
Confidence for the Christian always begins at the beginning. We must go back to the start of our relationship with our Creator.
The Holy Spirit gives to us the assurance that we are Gods children.
Ephesians 1: 13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit,
14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God's possession--to the praise of his glory.
When we first believed and trusted in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ to redeem us; in came the Holy Spirit - putting his stamp of mercy, acceptance, love, and forgiveness on us.
Romans 8: 14 because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.
15 For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, "Abba, Father."
16 The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children.
17 Now if we are children, then we are heirs--heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.
God's Holy Spirit bears witness with our spirit that we are his; we belong to him. The verse goes on that we are in a close relationship with him. We can call him Daddy or Poppa. He is that intimate. Can you grasp the magnitude and acceptance of that concept?
How much faith does it take to be saved. John Chapter 3 is a wonderful chapter that Jesus tells of our need to be born again, to be born from above. This Chapter also includes verse 16
John 3: 14 Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so the Son of Man must be lifted up,
15 that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.
16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son.
19 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil.
Remember Faith is believing to the point where action follows. Jesus makes an interesting statement here. He mentions the snake on a pole lifted up by Moses. Lets go back to the story in the Old Testament.
Numbers 21: 4 They traveled from Mount Hor along the route to the Red Sea, to go around Edom. But the people grew impatient on the way;
5 they spoke against God and against Moses, and said, "Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the desert? There is no bread! There is no water! And we detest this miserable food!"
6 Then the LORD sent venomous snakes among them; they bit the people and many Israelites died.
7 The people came to Moses and said, "We sinned when we spoke against the LORD and against you. Pray that the LORD will take the snakes away from us." So Moses prayed for the people.
8 The LORD said to Moses, "Make a snake and put it up on a pole; anyone who is bitten can look at it and live."
9 So Moses made a bronze snake and put it up on a pole. Then when anyone was bitten by a snake and looked at the bronze snake, he lived.
All it takes is enough faith to look toward Jesus suffering on the cross to pay for the penalty of our sins. Trust what he did for us, not in what we can do for ourselves. Because of pride we think sometimes that we must do part of the saving ourselves. God does not accept our good works or sacrifices for redemption. We cannot add anything to what Christ did for us but faith in his performance. Jesus paid it all.
Then in Colossians 1: 22 But now he has reconciled you by Christ's physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation--
23 if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.
Finally think about the stages that God takes us through as he gradually conforms us into the image of Christ. Think about a baby being born. First a newborn does not know what happened at birth. As they grow they begin to crawl. Next they are toddlers, up and down trying to learn to walk. Then comes walking and finally running. Each of us are different, God makes the determination on when we will mature in Christ and how.
Proverbs 16: 9 The mind of man plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps.
Philippians 1: 6 being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
We can be confident that through Christ that we are loved, accepted, forgiven, and given the strength and power to go forward accomplishing the purposes of God. We show up and step through the doors that he opens. As we go - we take time to fellowship with him in prayer, read his word so that we will be assured of walking though the right doors.
Our confidence is based on our relationship with God, our faith in Christ, and the Holy Spirits presence in our life.
When Christ comes in he brings love and acceptance, we are never alone again.
Isaiah 40: 8 The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God stands forever."