Pure Motives?

Q. I have a question about salvation that is basically about motives and where we place God. Should a person question their salvation if they do indeed love God, but a lot of the time love other things or people above Him? And what about when people first get converted, but their joy and delight are more in the benefit of being saved, than in God’s character in saving them. Because these motives are present, should a person question their salvation?

A. In regard to sometimes loving something or someone more than God, in Romans 7:15-20 Paul said that he was unable to behave like he really wanted to because of the sin that still lived within him (that’s true of all of us).   It seemed to him like the harder he tried to do what he wanted the more often he failed.

And in Galatians 5:17 he said the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. That’s why we can only be saved by the Grace of God.

Being human beings with a sin nature we are all guilty of having our focus drawn away from God from time to time. Confession brings forgiveness, and the Holy Spirit will get us back on track.

However, if you ever start worshiping or praying to someone or something else, or crediting him/her/it for your blessings, then you’ve crossed the line and have turned this other thing into your god. That means you were never saved in the first place.

As for the joy of new converts coming more from the benefits of being saved than the character of God, I suspect that’s true in most cases. Most of us were unhappy with the way our life was going and were looking for a way to make it better when we met the Lord. We didn’t learn much about His character until well after we were saved.

By the way, I assume this is not a hypothetical case and you’re asking for yourself. I would say the fact you have questions about it is a good indication that you’re saved.

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