I have this great daily devotional called Walking with God Day by Day by Martyn Lloyd-Jones. The devotion for each day is excerpted from one of his many books. I’ve never been very good at reading it every day, but whenever I do pick it up God never fails to reveal to me something of His great love and mercy.
I tend to read several devotions in a row right before bed. On one such occasion several weeks ago I read three devotions that covered what Lloyd-Jones called ”ten tests that you can apply to yourself to know for certain that you know the love of God to you.” Walking with God, Nov. 28.
I found great comfort in these ten tests, though even before I read them I knew that God loves me, just as He loves you and all mankind. I decided I wanted to share these ten tests, but with the added thought that even if you find you do not “pass” one or more of the tests, you can still rest assured that God loves you. I believe that coming to the point of being able to pass each of these tests is a process every believer must go through. It is by the sanctification of the indwelling Holy Spirit that we learn what we must to reach the goal of full assurance of God’s love.
The moment we believe in the Lord Jesus as our Savior, we are saved. But God loved us even before that; even before the foundation of the world He loved us. His love never changes; it is only our recognition and understanding of that love that changes over time as He draws us closer to Him.
So here are the ten tests (all from Walking with God, Nov. 28, 29, & 30):
- “a loss and absence of the sense that God is against us.”
- “a loss of the fear of God, while a sense of awe remains.”
- “a feeling and a sense that God is for us and that God loves us.”
- “a sense of sins forgiven.”
- “a sense of gratitude and thanksgiving to God.”
- “an increasing hatred of sin.”
- “a desire to please God and to live a good life because of what He has done for us.”
- “a desire to know Him better and to draw closer to Him.”
- “a conscious regret that our love to Him is so poor, along with a desire to love Him more.”
- “a delight in hearing these things and in hearing about Him.”
Remember, do not despair if you feel you can’t pass them all today. “[H]e who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:6 (NIV).