How can a person know that he or she is a Christian? Is there any way someone can really know? These are questions that are often asked. I am happy to tell you that God doesn’t leave us standing on the quicksand of feelings and experiences. Without a doubt it’s possible for one to know whether he or she is a Christian. Here are some very plain statements from the Bible on the subject. These truths will plant our feet on a sure and solid foundation.
The Hebrew writer said, “This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil” (Hebrews 6:19). Our hope, even though we may worry about our salvation, is indeed “sure and steadfast.” John wrote, “He who says, ‘I know Him,’ and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked” (1 John 2:4-6). Finally, Paul adds, “The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God” (Romans 8:16). This last passage shows that there must be agreement in testimony of the Holy Spirit and my spirit. The Holy Spirit testifies that to be a Christian one has to submit to God’s will.
Let’s illustrate this concept. First, the Spirit testifies that one has to believe (Hebrews 11:6). My spirit testifies that I truly believe. Second, the Spirit testifies that one has to repent (Acts 3:19). My Spirit testifies that I have truly repented. Third, the Spirit testifies that one has to confess Christ (Acts 8:35-38). My Spirit testifies that I have truly confessed Christ. Fourth, the Spirit testifies that one has to be baptized for remission of sins (Acts 2:38). My spirit testifies that I have been baptized for the remission of sins and into Christ.
Please notice that Romans 8:16 doesn’t say the Holy Spirit bears witness to your spirit, but with your spirit. Is there complete agreement between what God requires and what you have done or what you are doing? If there isn’t complete agreement between the two, then you’re not saved. This means you’re not a Christian. Humble yourself and do what the Spirit teaches in the Bible.