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The Marks of a Christian
This article, an abridged sermon, originally appeared in the October 14, 1957 issue of Christianity Today.
In the First Epistle of John, fifth chapter, thirteenth verse, we read: "These things have I written to you that believe on the name of the Son of God, that ye may know that ye have eternal life and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God." That is the reason this epistle is written to the people. "These things I write unto you," said John, "that ye may know that ye have eternal life."
Now I ask you, do you know whether you have eternal life? What do I mean by eternal life? I mean life, here and now, a full-orbed life, life's complete fulfillment, as well as heaven to come when you die. Do you know that you have that? The Bible says you can know it. You can be sure of it. John says, "These things I write unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God, that ye may know that ye have eternal life." A Christian who has received Christ can say with assurance, "I know that I have eternal life. I'm sure. I have received Christ. There are certain evidences in my life that indicate that I've passed from death unto life. Whether I was conscious of the moment or unconscious of it, I've passed from death unto life and I know that I'm ready to meet God. I know in whom I have believed."
All through the epistles, the apostles say, "I know." You can know, you can be sure. Paul said, "I am persuaded … I know these things." How can you know, how can you be sure?
Well, I want to give you an examination. I want to ask you some very pointed questions about your own life. The Bible says that God's law is a mirror. And when I look into the Law, the Ten Commandments or the Sermon on the Mount, the Bible ...1