Feeling has never saved a single soul
Published 8:11 am Wednesday, February 23, 2022
From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham
Dear Rev. Graham: When I was first saved I really felt a difference, but now a few years later I don’t feel the same confidence in my decision. Is this normal? — F.F.
Dear F.F.: Believing is an experience as real as any experience, yet multitudes are looking for something more — some electric sensation that will bring a thrill to their physical bodies, or some other spectacular manifestation. But the Bible says that a person is justified by faith and not by a feeling (Romans 3:28). A person is saved by trusting in the finished work of Christ on the cross and not by bodily sensations or religious ecstasy.
There certainly is room for feeling in saving faith, but we are not saved by it. Feeling has never saved a single soul. But when we understand something of Christ’s love for us as sinners, and respond with a love for Christ, love can, and often does, manifest itself through feelings.
But love for Christ is far greater than human love. It is a love that is free from all self. The Bible tells us that perfect love casts out fear (1 John 4:18). Those who love Christ have a confidence in Him that raises them above doubts. Our culture puts feelings first, but true love is not based on feelings.
Often when we feel distant from God it is because we are, and it should be a reminder that we have not given Him His rightful place in our lives. The Bible teaches that faith is the only approach that we have to God. No one has sins forgiven, no one goes to Heaven, no one has assurance of peace until he or she has faith in Jesus Christ. And God commands those who follow Him to be nourished by His Word, to serve Him, and to be a witness to others of what He has done for us.
(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)