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Q&A – How Do I Know I Will Go to Heaven?

Question:

I am a struggling believer in Christ and I have an unimaginable fear of the rapture. How do I know I’m saved enough to go to heaven? What happens if I don’t?

Answer:

How can we know, for sure, that we will spend eternity with God?

It’s important that we stop thinking of salvation as something that we need enough of to get to Heaven.

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Salvation is a gift. Imagine a conversation with God that goes something like this:

God stands before us with a beautifully wrapped gift and asks, “Would you like this?”

“What is it?” we ask.

“It’s the gift of spending eternity with me,” He says.

“How much is it?” we ask.

“It costs nothing. It’s a gift,” he says.

“What’s the catch?” we ask.

“All you have to do is believe in it. Believe that I sent my son to earth as a baby. Believe that He was crucified to save you. Believe that I raised Him from the dead three days later. Believe that He is now with me in Heaven and that I love you.”

“That’s it?” we ask, “It sounds too easy.”

“It won’t be easy,” he says, “There’ll be trials. You’ll have doubts. You’ll still sin sometimes.”

“Then what? You just take it away?” we ask.

“No.” He is quiet. “I will never take this gift away from you, but I hope that once you realize how amazing it is, you will want to spend time with me. I hope that we will get to know each other better. I’d like to talk to you as often as we can. I hope that when I speak, you’ll listen and I promise that when you speak, I’ll always listen. I hope that you’ll see how much I love you.”

Salvation is our assurance that we are going to spend eternity with God in Heaven. If you believe in Jesus and pray for Him to come into your heart; to live with you and change you, then you are saved. We are human, sometimes we doubt. We might doubt that Heaven and Hell are real places. We might doubt our salvation. We doubt all kinds of things, but doubting does not mean that we have lost our salvation. Doubting is normal; the Bible calls this working out your salvation. It basically means that you are thinking about your life and making sure that you still believe in Jesus and then making sure that your life lines up with what you believe. It’s totally normal!

For more on what it means to be a Christian, head over to What is a Christian? Part One.

Romans 10:9 – If you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.

Written by Jenn Arman

Poll

Do you believe you're going to heaven?

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Image: Hemera | Thinkstock

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45 Comments

  1. princessladk

    Posted by princessladk on May 26, 2017 at 15:36

    “All you have to do is believe in it. Believe that I sent my son to earth as a baby. Believe that He was crucified to save you. Believe that I raised Him from the dead three days later. Believe that He is now with me in Heaven and that I love you.”

    Yes! Well… kinda. This is right, but I want to point out the underlying that was not stated in the article but I think may have been inferred here. You cant forget, tho, that we are all sinners deserving of death and the punishment of sin is death, eternity in hell. But Christ (who is both God and the Son of God) loved us so much that He died on the cross and suffered the punishment of sin and hell in our place and rose again on the third day conquering sin and death. All we have to do is believe He did this and confess that He is Lord and accept His free gift of FORGIVENESS, not just salvation. Salvation comes as a result of forgiveness.

    Romans 3:23
    For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,

    Romans 6:23
    For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

    Romans 5:8
    But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

    Romans 10:9
    That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.

    Romans 10:13
    For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

  2. Project Inspired

    Posted by Jeanni on June 16, 2012 at 17:05

    Praise the Lord!!! people who accepted Jesus Christ in their Hearts will ether be taken in the Rapture or when they die. Heaven is going to be SO COOL!!!! Think you Jesus for dying for me for my sins and rising again on the 3rd day by God. Jesus is Lord, King of Kings, Lord and Lords, Prince of Peace. Come Jesus, Come! Amen -Jeanni (:

  3. Project Inspired

    Posted by animalsrock on February 27, 2012 at 06:02

    you know im really afraid of death because I’m pretty sure im going to hell and it scares me really it does and i just can’t change.

    • so_shedances

      Posted by so_shedances on April 22, 2012 at 21:43

      If you believe Jesus is your Savior and He died on the cross for your sins, you are guaranteed salvation. You’re probably being too hard on yourself. I was, and still am at times, where you are now. Every time I’d make a series of mistakes, I thought God hated me and that there was no way He would accept me or forgive me. But good thing God is more loving than we are, huh? Please don’t put yourself down. You CAN change. God is patient with you. He will help you. Believe that wholeheartedly. You are a citizen of heaven, girl!

  4. Project Inspired

    Posted by Brittany on December 11, 2011 at 20:05

    I cannot express how much gratitude I have for you for writing this article. I’ve been struggling with persistent doubts over God’s existence, and I assumed that meant I was pretty much heading straight to hell. My doubts took a whole different direction and suddenly I was severely doubting whether I was saved or not. This article helped me out so much, I had tears in my eyes to be honest. I’m no longer as worried as I used to be, thank you!

    • Posted by Nicole on December 11, 2011 at 20:37

      wow thank you Brittany, I am so glad the article touched you like this! God led you to it for a reason!

  5. Posted by on November 28, 2011 at 23:07

    One of my favorite verses is Romans 10:13: All who call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.

    His salvation is ETERNAL, no matter what you do, if you take him in to your Spirit, God will remain there. Even if you stray, He will always be there, calling you back. Do not doubt, just TRUST in the Lord.

  6. Posted by on November 26, 2011 at 14:09

    I remember my sunday school teacher telling me a story about this question. The story is …. There was an elderly woman and she was on the brink of dying soon. A person she never met came in and talked to her. He asked her “Are you going to Heaven?” she said “maybe” he said ” “you are or your not, how you tell is if you believe in God and that Jesus is his son, you don’t have to go to church in order to go to heaven” the woman said “I am going to Heaven”

  7. Kchiarellaluvsgod

    Posted by Kchiarellaluvsgod on November 25, 2011 at 05:59

    I have that fear too.

  8. Project Inspired

    Posted by maryhbellamy on November 21, 2011 at 20:56

    I love this. Your answer was perfect. We cant earn salvation its a gift. its not about what we can get away with and still be a christian, this type of thinking shows that your heart is still tied to things of this world and friendship with the world is enmity with God. Give him your whole heart not bits and peaces he’s so worthy of it all not the left overs.

  9. Posted by on November 18, 2011 at 13:44

    This is a great article! Though I am a Christian, sometimes I get stuck in a Catch-22 by thinking that I am not good enough for heaven, but then I have to remember that guilt is a tool that Satan uses to drive a wedge between us and God. I also have to remember that it’s not only a question of me, it’s a question of God’s power.

  10. Posted by on November 10, 2011 at 18:23

    Thank you SO much for writing this article! I always ask myself that question, “Am I going to go to Heaven?” But I know if I just accept God, then I will live with him forever [=

  11. Project Inspired

    Posted by BeMyLoveStory on November 2, 2011 at 19:56

    Hi I have a question! If I don’t get baptized, does that mean I won’t go to heaven? Thanks 🙂 Cuz I don’t think I was baptized as a kid, but my family is Christian and I’ve been a Christian my whole life.

    • JessicaLS

      Posted by JessicaLS on November 8, 2011 at 12:53

      Yes, you are saved even if you are not baptized. When you ask Jesus into your heart, He is baptizing you with the Holy Spirit. (cleansing you and purifying you to make you like Him.) When you are baptized at a church, it is only showing a public demonstration of Faith in God and pronouncing you are going to live for Him. You don’t have to be baptized but people should know you are a Christian through your actions. :)God knows your heart. <3 Just remember, if you ask Jesus into your heart…you have been baptized already with the Holy Spirit…which is all that truly matters! <3

  12. Posted by on October 27, 2011 at 21:14

    I love this for Christians that aren’t Saved…..They will understand it better in this artical.Great Job!I love this website!:)

  13. Posted by on October 24, 2011 at 20:03

    ohhh, thank you for wrting this… i ofetn find myself doubting, espeailly when my life doesnt line up… thank you 🙂 i know that Jesus loves me, but sometimes it’ so hard for me to completely grasp…

  14. Posted by on October 24, 2011 at 11:28

    nobody can say if i am going to heaven or not cause god makes the desisions nobody else can. dont believe anybody that say you r going to heaven or not cause like i said god only knows

  15. Posted by on October 24, 2011 at 05:44

    Thanks for helping me!

  16. Posted by on October 23, 2011 at 13:57

    This article is so timely 🙂 thank ya so much. Very good analogy by the way 🙂

  17. Posted by on October 23, 2011 at 09:00

    I had the same problem.!I would always think what if there is no heaven.?What if its all lies.?
    I thought I was the only one 🙂

  18. Posted by on October 22, 2011 at 19:15

    thank you very much! i need this reminder

  19. Posted by on October 21, 2011 at 15:18

    i needed this so much you have no idea. i constantly worry that I’m not good enough for heaven. its terrible, but this brings me comfort. thank you and God Bless! <3

  20. Posted by on October 21, 2011 at 13:31

    The thing is, we won’t know for absolute certainty if we make it to heaven or not until we die, since our actions here on this earth are so important and we can’t “declare” that we’re going to heaven or not. I know this wasn’t your point, but I do think it’s important to realize that we have to ACT like we’re going to heaven and live a holy life, performing works of mercy as well as believing in Christ.

  21. Posted by on October 21, 2011 at 12:16

    Lol i cant believe i started crying when i read the conversation with God scenario you wrote because im am struggling so much right now and i have been so afraid that God will be disappointed in me and that at some point he would just turn away from me even though im trying so hard but that just filled my heart so much and i actually pictured myself saying all that to God and it was like i pictured how much love he was trying to convey to me and UHHHH!! thank you for this article. it really touched me deeply. God Bless you so much!

    • Project Inspired

      Posted by emilybrub74 on January 4, 2012 at 14:48

      I had a similar experience- i cry when I read things that touch my heart- I totally worried last year all the time AM I dissapointing God? I love God&You dialogue. I am reading this book called Jesus Calling- it feels like the words are right from God’s mouth!

  22. Posted by on October 21, 2011 at 11:59

    nobody will ever know because god makes that choice you shouldnt make a choice at all

  23. Posted by on October 21, 2011 at 07:16

    Thank you so much. 🙂 I’ve never thought I would go to heaven but this gave me hope. Now i know God will take me through all the way! 😀

  24. Posted by on October 21, 2011 at 06:10

    I love that conversation!

  25. Posted by on October 21, 2011 at 04:56

    I always knew that if I let Jesus in my heart, ask for forgiveness and believe that Jesus died on the cross for me…My friends and I just discussed it this afternoon…One of them is a hindu…so they were like “what do you think its like after death? Will we go to heaven? Jesus is coming soon rite?…” I said,”I’m actually happy Jesus is comin” and my other two friends go ” yea me too” But my non-christian friend was quite…I guess she has doubts..Thank you so much for this!!! God lead me to this article…

  26. Posted by on October 20, 2011 at 20:31

    Wow. This helped a lot. I’ve been worrying about whether or not I’d go. I understand that it is grace and not works that saves you, but still. Thanks! 😀

  27. Posted by on October 20, 2011 at 19:23

    That is an awesome article God must have been speaking through you!

  28. Posted by on October 20, 2011 at 18:41

    Thanks this really helped! 😀

  29. Posted by on October 20, 2011 at 18:21

    hey I loved the conversation between us and God 🙂

  30. Posted by on October 11, 2011 at 19:40

    Sometimes I cant even believe that God whats us to believe in Him and know Him. That that is just what he wants from us. It sounds so simple and we even refuse to do it, but it is hard sometimes.

    • Posted by on October 22, 2011 at 06:39

      I know. It feels like it’s “too good to be true” that God loves us so much sometimes. 🙂

  31. Posted by on October 11, 2011 at 18:24

    also, remember that the most important thing is to live your life to its fullest. of course, i can’t wait to see God’s face, but that’s not the most important part. the most important part is being God’s ambassador on earth.

  32. Posted by on October 11, 2011 at 18:16

    I love this article 🙂

  33. Posted by on October 11, 2011 at 17:42

    Love the answer Jen! One way to know is when you look back over your life,and you’ve lived a life that’s pleasing to God.

  34. Posted by on October 11, 2011 at 17:22

    Thanks I needed this! 😀 Everyday I ask myself- “Will I be with God forever? I mean I really didn’t do anything special and I sin against God a lot.” It’s nice to know that ‘doubting’ is just ‘working on your salvation.’ 😀 GOD BLESS!

  35. Posted by on October 11, 2011 at 17:06

    Thank you so much for this article! I constantly worry, “what if I’m not saved enough”? Or “what if I completely doubt God the last few minutes of my life, will I still go to heaven since I’ve believed in Him the other times in my life?”
    God has given me many signs and answered so many of my prayers…but I still doubt. I mark so many things off as “possibly coincidental.” I’ve noticed that when I doubt, I feel temporarily blinded from the Truth. Like, I can’t understand or I’m confused or sometimes I even seem to forget some of the things He’s done for me. Is that normal? And, also what if we doubt the last few minutes of our life, do we go to heaven still? Thank you!

    • Project Inspired

      Posted by emilybrub74 on January 4, 2012 at 14:43

      Doubt and disbelief are 2 different things.

    • Posted by on October 22, 2011 at 14:45

      just remember: everything happens for a reason-nothing is coincidental.

      • Posted by on October 22, 2011 at 14:46

        and it’s definitely normal. thats satan’s job-to make us doubt