In my last post we learned from the Bible that confidence is a trust, mainly it is a trust in God. Confidence is also having hope, courage, and assurance. Thus if we have confidence toward God we have hope in what He has provided for us, courage because He is with us, and an assurance that the things He has promised us He will give to us. And through it all, because we have confidence in Him, we feel secure and safe. If you think about it, for a Christian, confidence is absolutely essential. Here are five things we can have confidence in God for.
1. For our salvation. Some people don’t think it’s important to know that when they die they are going to heaven. But God does. That’s why He has given us so many promises that we can claim for our salvation. A favorite of mine is in 1 John 5:13. It says, basically, that if we have the Son living in us we have eternal life. Another good verse is 1 John 3:14. This verse tells us that if we have love toward the brethren, it is a demonstration and a proof for us that we are a Christian.
2. For answered prayer. God wants us to be confident in prayer. What does that mean? Well first, He wants us to be confident that we can approach Him for prayer. Hebrews 4:16 tells us that we can come boldly before His throne of grace. And the reason we can come boldly is because of His blood shed for us on the cross, for as our High Priest, He has prepared us, and cleansed us inside and out—He has sprinkled our hearts with his own blood from an evil conscience and has washed our bodies with pure water—that we may enter, with extreme confidence, into His presence (Heb. 10:19-22).
Secondly, since He gives us confidence to come into His presence, He also gives us confidence to obtain mercy and find grace (Heb. 4:16); that is to say, when we pray in His name we will receive whatever we ask of Him. For in John 16:24 Jesus spoke to His disciples, and He speaks to us, saying, “Until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.” Also in 1 John 5:14-15 it says, “Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we ask of Him.”
3. For victory. When you surrendered your life to God He gave you a new life in Christ, and a new home in the kingdom of God. Your old man was crucified with Christ. That means that you died to the reign and rule of sin, and you became alive to Christ who is your new Master and King. In this new kingdom with Christ, He requires you to stop yielding yourself to sin and to start living a holy life before Him—a life free from sin (Read Romans 6 and Ephesians 1:4).
And how do we do that? How can we have confidence in God for victory? The answer is that you must present yourself to God as a slave in the service of His kingdom, to obey Him in all that He asks and desires of you (Rom. 6:16). As you trust and obey Him in everything, you can take great confidence in God for victory over sin (Read 1 John 3:22). For He will then give you the promise in 1 Corinthians 10:13: “No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.”
Well, you say, this is all true, but how do we acquire the strength to trust and obey Him? Sometimes I just don’t feel like obeying God. What should I do then? Well, I believe the answer is that we must prayerfully depend on God to help us. And we must also seek the help of other believers. We can’t do it alone. I think every Christian should be in a support group where there is prayer, accountability, and encouragement. I am in a group myself and I can testify that since I got into this group—which is a wonderful accountability and support group—I have more power now to resist sin than I ever did when I was not in a group.
Therefore, we can have confidence in God for victory when we obey Him in everything. And that includes abiding in prayer and in fellowship with others.
4. For forgiveness. Just as God desires that we be confident in Him for victory, He also desires that we be confident in Him when we are defeated. For this reason, He has given us an advocate, Jesus Christ the righteous. By Him, we can, at any time of defeat, be reconciled to God (1 Jn. 2:1-2). He is the propitiation for our sins. In fact, His blood constantly and forever satisfies the wrath of God against our sins.
In Him (if you are a Christian) we are redeemed forever by His blood. This means that not even the worst sin (murder, adultery, etc.) can cause us to loose our salvation.
We do, however, because we constantly sin, need regular cleansing to stay in fellowship with Him. And so, for each and every sin we need an advocate to help us, and the power of His blood to cleanse us.
But what do we have to do to get this cleansing? The answer is found in 1 John 1:9. We must humbly confess our sins to Him. And what does that mean? It means to no longer cover up your sins, but to make them evident. It means to repent—to change your mind about your sin and to decide not to do it again. If we do these things we have the promise that He will give us mercy (Prov. 28:13) and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Therefore, let us place our full confidence in such a faithful God for regular (day by day) forgiveness.
5. For guidance. Last, God wants us to be confident in Him for guidance. And so He has given us many promises assuring us that He will go with us and guide us. A favorite passage of many believers is in Proverbs 3:5-6: “Trust in [be confident in] the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your path straight.” I like also Psalms 119:105: “Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.”
We surely can be confident in His Word to guide us. For all the words in the Bible are inspired by God. For this reason, the Holy Spirit brings the inspired Word to us every day at just the time we need it; He will speak to us in our ears saying, “This is the way, walk in it” (Isa. 30:21).
These point are also found in my book Prayer A to Z (look on the side panel).