“Who can tell if God will turn and relent, and turn away from His fierce anger, so that we may not perish?”
God has chosen to reveal the plan of salvation through the foolishness of preaching. Nowhere, is that better illustrated than in the story of Jonah. This reluctant preacher delivered a message that turned a nation toward the Lord. As the king heard this message, his heart was stirred to turn from his wicked ways and begin to follow Jehovah. In his desperation, he asked a deeply profound question. Is it possible to know for sure that our sins have been forgiven and we have been set free from the judgment of God?
Years ago, I was at a home fellowship where we were enjoying a time of worship. As it came to an end, the leader instructed us to take a few minutes to pray for one another. When I, and another young man, began to pray, I sensed the need to pray that he would know for sure he had been forgiven of his sin and, in fact, belonged to God. As we finished praying and I looked up, I could see he was overcome with emotion. He began to explain that he had been struggling with the idea of being truly forgiven. He kept reminding himself of all the ways he had failed, and questioned whether he was really a believer. Like the king of Assyria, he was hoping to be set free from judgment, but was not certain he had met the requirements.
The message of Scripture says we can indeed be forgiven of sin and we have an assurance of our salvation. Both Scripture and experience testify to the heart of the child of God, that we belong to God. Jesus declared from the cross, the work of salvation is finished. All that is required for us to be forgiven and set free from divine judgment, is to simply accept the gift. When we choose to believe upon Christ, our sins are removed and we become a child of God. To affirm the reality of this, God begins to change our life, replacing old desires and behaviors with new ones that testify to our hearts, we belong to Him.
If you want to be forgiven of sin, just ask; salvation is free to all who choose to receive the gift.