Looking Saved
A nineteenth century German philosopher once said: "His disciples will have to look more saved if I am to believe in their Savior." That's a thought provoking statement, isn't it? The man obviously didn't believe in Jesus, and the reason he cited was his unfavorable observations of Christians. He understood that disciples of Christ believe themselves to be saved. However, he didn't see this truth manifested in their lives.

A quote like that should remind us all of the serious importance of our personal influence. That's right, we all have influence over others in our lives--perhaps more influence than we even realize. Our decisions and actions (i.e., the way we live our lives) impact others directly and indirectly. If people see me living a joy-filled, peaceful life as a Christian (even in the midst of adversity), if they see me doing good unto others (even when others aren't treating me well), if they notice that I'm living a godly, upright life (even though most people aren't), they will be influenced for good and hopefully impressed by the genuineness of my faith. If they are thereby impressed, perhaps they will choose to further investigate my faith and adopt it for themselves. When we let our lights shine with a proper spirit, God will be glorified (cf. Matt. 5:16)!

Unfortunately, sometimes Christians do not let their lights shine. Sometimes Christians fail to say and do the things that they should. Sometimes Christians are hypocritical and fail to live the sanctified lives that God calls all to live. Sometimes Christians just don't look very saved in the way they live their lives.

If you are a Christian, what about your life? What kind of influence are you exercising for the Lord and His kingdom? Do the people you associate with (at school, at work, and at play) know that you are a Christian? Do they know that you've been saved as a penitent believer who has been baptized into Christ and received the remission of your sins (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38)? Do you look saved to your peers? If not, why not? Are you ashamed of the gospel message (cf. Rom. 1:16), afraid to share it through your speech and actions? Are you embarrassed by the Lord and His word--are you scared to truly live for Him or do anything for Him outside the walls of a church building?

Friends, the bottom line is this: if a Christian hasn't adopted Paul's philosophy of life recorded in Philippians 1:21, then, in many respects, he just won't look very saved! If a Christian can't genuinely say with the apostle, "For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain", then his influence on others will certainly not be what it should be! If a self-proclaimed disciple of Jesus is living a selfish life--a life of sin--how will he look any different than the world from which he is supposed to be separate and called out (II Cor. 6:17)? How will he look saved?

A secondary point on this subject of looking saved pertains to Christians exuding confidence in their salvation. I John 5:13 reads - "These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life." Christians who are faithfully serving the Lord in accordance with His inspired word have nothing to worry about regarding the Day of Judgment. We can know that we are saved, and that confidence should be seen in the way we humbly live for God. If we doubt our own eternal home, such will negatively affect our influence.

Dear listeners, take a good look at your life. Do you know that you are saved? Do your actions and words exemplify one who looks saved?