What is that blessed assurance?
Text: 2 Timothy 1:6-12
For this reason I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day. (v.12)
One of my favorite hymns, if not my favorite hymn, is Blessed Assurance (which was also one of my dad’s favorite hymns). Have we ever really stopped to look at what we are singing about when singing that hymn? Blessed Assurance. Jesus is mine! Oh what a foretaste of glory divine. Heir of Salvation, purchase of God, born of His Spirit, washed in His blood. Blessed Assurance! We then move on to say that this is our story and our song. Our song being that Jesus is mine, and that we are the heirs of Salvation – meaning it (salvation) was left behind for us and we are entitled to inherit (gain) salvation. Oh Blessed Assurance!
When we sing that hymn we put an emphasis on assurance. We want to make it plain and clear that we are talking about assurance and not insurance because there is a great deal of difference. Insurance is the protection against that could potentially happen. We get car insurance just in case we ever wreck. We get house insurance just in case something bad happens to our home. We get health insurance just in case, and for making visits to doctors and hospitals. We get life insurance in the case of covering death. The keyword or phrase being, “just in case”.
You see, there is a major difference between insurance and assurance which is why we sing assurance. That assurance is all about certainty and fills us with full confidence. Let somebody tell you that you’re looking good today and watch how you act. When somebody assures you that you’re looking good, your strut becomes that much better. When somebody tells you that you’ve done a good job, in whatever it is you were doing, it gives you nothing but supreme confidence – you feel like you can not only do it again but do it even better. You know, when you cook something and they tell you it taste good, you just know for a fact that you can cook! You see, assurance gives you that, “I got it”, kind of attitude. We sing Blessed Assurance because we just know that we got “it”, but do we act like we actually have “it”.
Let’s take a look at this verse once again – King James Version this time.
For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.
Notice the words cause and ashamed. There is a cause that Paul tells us he has no shame in suffering or living for. I watch people and how they act towards the causes they live and fight for. There’s the animals rights fighters. There’s the gay rights fighters. There’s the civil rights fighters. The black lives matter fighters. Recently, an atheist group sent letters to colleges about college football teams having Chaplins, so they have a cause they’re fighting for. All of these cause fighters take no shame in the cause they fight and live for. Paul said he took no shame for living, fighting, and suffering for the cause of which also our cause.
Our cause is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Our cause is the will of the Father. Jesus always spoke of the doing the will of Him (the Father) that sent Him. The will of the Father is that all men be saved. We, as Christians, should be living and fighting for this cause – that all men know the Gospel and know that they can gain salvation over sin. Paul calls for Timothy to stir up the gift of God (v.6). If you are reading the New International Version of today’s text you will see that this version says to, “fan into flame the gift of God.” I love that!
God’s gift is His grace – His unmerited loved. We ought to stir up the gift of God’s grace. We ought to fan the flames of the gift of God. When you fan the flames of something you’re not trying to quench or cool off those flames – you want it to get hotter! Instead of fanning our own flames we ought to be fanning the flames of God’s grace! Even more important is that we should be fighting and living the cause of our Lord with absolutely no fear (v.7).
Do you think the KKK, no matter how crazy/insane/ignorant I feel their cause is, have any shame in their cause? People who genuinely believe in a cause, live for a cause, and fight for a cause do not care what others think of them. Yet here we are living and fighting for a righteous cause, a loving and saving grace, yet we are so conscious and fearful of what others think. Why do we care so much?! We are so fearful and so ashamed of our cause, why? Why are we so afraid and ashamed of our Savior? The Lord has not given us the Spirit of fear, but the a Spirit of power!
Look at how people who feel they have some kind of power act. Do they ever look like they fear anything? Take a look at Donald Trump – that man feels he is the most powerful man in the world. He has his businesses, his money, and just doesn’t care much for what others think about what he says. I don’t care much for a lot of the stuff that he says – he could not care less. He has no fear because he has his confidence. There are many men like him, who supposedly have power, that appear not to fear anything. The things that give these men “power” could easily be lost because those things are of this world – they are worldly. We have the Spirit of power dwelling inside of us because God dwells inside of all believers. Why are we so ashamed of this? We have true power dwelling in us – we should not be ashamed!
We are encouraged not to be ashamed of the testimony of the Lord. His testimony is of love – sending His only begotten Son. Paul tells us that he suffered for the Gospel and was not ashamed to do so. Why? Paul knew exactly what He believed in and it was that Blessed Assurance that filled him up with confidence. Do you know who you have believed in? You have believe in the Savior. You have believed in one who is not going to judge you based on your looks or the color of your skin. You have believed in a forgiver. You have believed in one who will not punish you for all the bad things you have done in your life. You have believed in one who can take away all of your worries. You have believed in one who is not going to allow this life to beat you up. You see, the one you have believed in is not a “just in case” God but a God of certainty!
You believe in a God where you should proclaim, I can do all things through Christ, and mean it! My uncle would tell you that you believe in a God that will lift your feet up out of the muck and mire clay. We have that Blessed Assurance! An assurance to know that there is nothing nobody can do down here that can defeat or crush me! I have had some hard days, some days that should have absolutely crushed me, but through my Lord I still stand here today! It is that Blessed Assurance that should make us stand and fight the good fight of faith knowing that there is nothing that can touch you!
People may look at you funny. People may think you’re nuts. You have that Blessed Assurance – confidence – to know that the day is coming and is real. Oh Blessed Assurance! Assurance to know we worship the one true God! Assurance to know that said better day is truly ahead. Assurance to know that our Savior is coming back to receive us. Assurance to know that one day we will stand before the Judgment Seat of Christ and receive our crown! Oh Blessed Assurance, Jesus is mine! Oh what a foretaste of glory divine! Heir of salvation, purchase of God, born of His Spirit, washed in His blood! This is my story and my song! I’m praising my Savior all the day long and I have no fear, no shame, and no worry in what anybody thinks!
I leave you with this
Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching. – Hebrews 10:22-25