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  • Matthew Haan

Romans 1:8-17 - Eternal Assurance

Salvation isn't a 'maybe' or 'I hope so,' it's a certainty for those who trust Christ.

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Read Romans 1:8-17

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Heidelberg Catechism Q&A 20

Q. What is true faith?

A. True faith is not only

a knowledge and conviction

that everything God reveals

in his Word is true;

it is also a deep-rooted assurance,

created in me by the Holy Spirit

through the gospel,

that, out of sheer grace

earned for us by Christ,

not only others, but I too,

have had my sins forgiven,

have been made forever right with God,

and have been granted salvation.



In this text Paul is rejoicing over the faith given to the brothers and sisters in Christ living in Rome. These worshippers of Christ have yet to meet Paul, but already their faith is well known to him and to the seven churches of Asia Minor and those in Jerusalem. It is this faith that Paul is looking for, fortified by God’s grace. He hopes that all the assurances of the gospel would be known to them as they are to Paul.

It is the assurance of faith that we stand forgiven and accepted in the blood of Christ Jesus before the Father that makes Christianity unique in the world of religions. It is the assurance of faith that removes all shame of the gospel and brings forth a life that trusts completely in the power of the living Triune God. This assurance has been made known first to the Jew and then to Gentile so that the boundaries of hostility would be taken down, and so that sinfulness would end and that the righteousness of Christ alone would grow in you.

The end result is that you will live in righteousness; in other words, that you would live by faith, revealed from heaven to your heart so that you would be prepared for eternal days, even as you live out your days on earth.

Dig Deeper

One of the primary things that set apart the churches of the Reformation was the deep assurance that believers can know with certainty where they will spend eternity. The Roman Catholic Church had been walking away from this assurance as it made salvation increasingly dependent upon the efforts of people rather than the sovereignty of God.

But Luther, Calvin and the other Reformers stood up and said no. Much of their conviction was based on these words we read today from Romans 1. God’s Word is revealed in all of its fullness and righteousness, proclaiming that not only others but I too have had my sins forgiven. Notice the past tense declaration! It's not a maybe or possibility - it's a declaration of eternal forgiveness made possible by the sacrificial work of Christ on your behalf.

  • ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Heavenly Father we rejoice in your work and Word that is made plain to us by your Spirit.

  • ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Work in my life that I would live in assurance of your forgiveness eternally. Strengthen me to be obedient to your will for my life as I long for your kingdom to come.



Read the New Testament in a year, a chapter a day - Acts 17


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