THE TWENTY-THIRD DAY OF AUGUST IN THE YEAR OF GRACE TWO THOUSAND AND FIFTEEN.
A gracEmail subscriber writes that he often feels insecure regarding his standing with God. Does that mean he is lost?
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Not at all. There is an important distinction to be made in this matter, and that is the difference between security and assurance. Security involves our actual objective condition. Assurance reflects our subjective perception of it. Someone has noted that God told Noah to waterproof the Ark with “pitch” (bitumen) both inside and outside–outside for his security and inside for his assurance.
Imagine a bridge across a river. It is very old and its appearance does not inspire confidence. Unknown to us, however, the bridge was recently reinforced out of our sight with steel beams. Security is real, although assurance may be lacking. Or consider the opposite. A new bridge appears very safe but defective construction out of sight makes it very unsafe. In that case, assurance is faulty because the bridge is not really secure.
The Chinese evangelist Watchman Nee put it like this. Fact, Faith and Feeling were walking on the top of a wall. When Faith followed Fact, all was well and Feeling followed Faith. But when Faith followed Feeling they both fell off the wall. The fact is that Christ’s atonement is sufficient and God is well-pleased. That is true, regardless of our subjective feelings about it. When we focus on the facts about Jesus (and I speak of spiritual realities in particular), our feelings will align with the facts as we trust in Jesus.