Friday, February 25, 2011

Childhood Salvation

I participate in a Yahoo group called Above Rubies.  One of the ladies asked about children getting saved.  Below is my response.  I just thought I'd post it here in case others might have some thoughts to share.

Neither my husband nor I were raised in a Christian home. Both of us came to the saving knowledge of our salvation as teens. I just mentioned a few things we've considered and done so far concerning our 6 year old.

First, we were determined not to give false assurance of salvation. We've seen too many children "pray for salvation" as children that then get assure over and over again by their parents of their salvation vs "making sure" own salvation (2 Peter 1:10).

So, whenever we've talked about salvation, we mention our salvation, but we've used qualifiers when talking about her such as, "If you are a Christian...," "When you accept Jesus...,"

When she did ask if she was a Christian, we just turn the question around and ask her if she was. "I don't know, if you've accept Jesus as your Savior you are."

As far as communion went, we made sure she understood that it was only for believer's and therefore, she couldn't have it unless Jesus was in her heart.

It truly is amazing to see a child grow up in a Christian home. I totally know what you're talking about. The things of God are just as normal for her as breathing... praying, Bible reading and memory, singing praise, etc. Talking about Scripture and doctrine are just a normal part of conversation.

Eventually, after hearing my husband and I talk about our salvation, she became more curious about her own. One night she asked specifically, and she prayed about it. My husband and I were excited, but again, determined that if she was sincere, it would be her assurance and not ours.

She started refering to herself as being saved. Communion was our first "test". We did not mention to her about partaking when it was time, but she told us, "I'm a Christian now, so I can have communion."

So, we are fairly sure of her salvation because of her assurances not because we are telling her.

Now, I recently heard a lady at our church give her testimony, and she made an awesome point. She was saved at 8, but as she said, outwardly, you may not notice a big difference between a saved 8 year old and a unsaved 8 year old. They're only 8. Doesn't make it less real or sincere, but it's not like they're necessarily going to have a tremendous change in lifestyle.

One thing I would suggest for you and your husband, however, is to start discussing and planning on how you want to handle things or encourage things before they happened. We discussed how we wanted to handle communion, for instance, long before she was even able to eat communion! I know kids can always throw curves that we're not expecting, but discussing some of these things not only help us know how we want to handle them, but also helps us be sure of our beliefs on the subjects as well.

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