Written by A. W. Pink
[It has been said by the wise that “Context is everything.” And while that bit of sagacity is certainly true in the study of the Scriptures, it is equally true in the giving and receiving of Christian Commentary. And, it is also true of the following message by A. W. Pink.
If I may be so bold, let me reassure those seeking, anxious Christians. You, who are tempest tossed with sin, who struggle keenly with your Adamic nature, who cling to the cross and bitterly lament even the whiff of temptation, or the tiniest thought of sin that dares to cross the threshold of your mind… As I said, let me reassure you, that Pink is not addressing you with this message, at least not directly.
Rather, Pink here is addressing that large class of Christians who, by virtue of their church, heritage, position, social standing, etc., believe that they have a “lock” on heaven. After all, they were baptized as children, they had recited the ritual formula for salvation, but their shallow profession of Christianity has never translated over to a “sanctified life.”
In the highly stratified society of England where Pink lived, I am sure that the “Church” was as highly infested with those people as the church is today. And it was, and is, to those highly self-satisfied, self-righteous, holier-than-thou, I can do anything I want, shallow Christians that Pink is here reaching out to… by the neck, almost.
Oh, by the way, if you have not examined yourself in Christ recently, perhaps because you are feeling pretty self-assured, well this message is most definitely meant for you. –MWP]
God Himself has supplied us with tests…
…and we are mad if we do not avail ourselves of them, and honestly measure ourselves by them. “These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God, that ye may know that ye have eternal life.” (1 John 5:13). The Holy Spirit Himself moved one of His servants to write a whole Epistle to instruct as how we might know whether or not we have eternal life…..Let the really concerned soul read slowly and thoughtfully through this first Epistle of John…. the very first passage which contains the familiar “we know” is quite the reverse of what is now being so widely advocated as the ground of Christian assurance. “And hereby we do know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments” (1 John 2:3).
Is not that plain enough?
A godly life is the first proof that I am a child of God….But let us observe the solemn declaration that immediately follows. “He that saith, I know Him, and keepeth not His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him” (1 John 2:4).
Do these words anger you?
We trust not: they are God’s, not ours. Do you refuse to read any more of this article? That would be a bad sign—an honest heart does not fear the light. A sincere soul is willing to be searched by the Truth. If you are unable to endure now the feeble probing of one of His servants, how will it fare in a soon-coming day when the Lord Himself shall search you through and through?
O dear friend, give your poor soul a fair chance…
…be willing to ascertain whether your faith is real wheat, or only chaff. If it proves to be the latter, there is still time for you to humble yourself before God and cry unto Him to give you saving faith. But in that Day it will be too late!”
Taken from, ”Assurance”
Meet the Author and part of your Christian heritage: Arthur Walkington Pink (1 April 1886 – 15 July 1952) was an English Christian evangelist and biblical scholar who was known for his staunchly Calvinist and Puritan-like teachings in an era dominated by opposing theological traditions. For example, he called Dispensationalism a “modern and pernicious error”. Subscribers of his monthly magazine Studies in the Scriptures included Martyn Lloyd-Jones and Dr. Douglas Johnson, first general secretary of Inter-Varsity.After Pink’s death, his works were republished by a number of publishing houses, among them, Banner of Truth Trust, Baker Book House, Christian Focus Publications, Moody Press, Truth for Today, and reached a much wider audience as a result. Biographer Iain Murray observes of Pink, “the widespread circulation of his writings after his death made him one of the most influential evangelical authors in the second half of the twentieth century.” His writing sparked a revival of expository preaching and focused readers’ hearts on biblical living. Pink is left out of many biographical dictionaries and overlooked in many religious histories.