Sometimes I wonder if I am actually saved? Is there a criteria or test to be sure?
First, the test of salvation is clear in scripture:
Rom. 10:9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;
If you have done these things, then you are saved for eternity. Following salvation, we continue to live in a sinful, fleshly body for a time, and in that state we experience disappointments that all Christians, even the Apostle Paul, share. Consider what Paul said about himself in Romans 7:
Rom. 7:14 For we know that the Law is spiritual, but I am of flesh, sold into bondage to sin.
Rom. 7:15 For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate.
Rom. 7:16 But if I do the very thing I do not want to do, I agree with the Law, confessing that the Law is good.
Rom. 7:17 So now, no longer am I the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me.
Rom. 7:18 For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh; for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not.
Rom. 7:19 For the good that I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want.
Rom. 7:20 But if I am doing the very thing I do not want, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me.
Rom. 7:21 I find then the principle that evil is present in me, the one who wants to do good.
Rom. 7:22 For I joyfully concur with the law of God in the inner man,
Rom. 7:23 but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members.
Rom. 7:24 Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death?
Rom. 7:25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind am serving the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh the law of sin.
It’s it remarkable that Paul describes himself as someone who is “practicing what I would like to do”? Clearly, if the Apostle Paul was prone to live in sin from time to time, then we can all expect to be disappointed in our behavior as well.
Believers are not perfect; we are simply forgiven of our sin. Your faith in Jesus Christ and your love for His word are proof of your salvation, and the fact that you continue to sin from time to time is merely proof that you continue to occupy a sinful, fleshly body. One day the Lord will rescue us from our this tombs of flesh, and in that day we will be like Christ.
Meanwhile, the Sprit living in us works to convict us of sin so that we will move beyond it, confirming ourselves to a life of godliness. Do not doubt your salvation simply because you feel guilt for your sin. On the contrary, your conviction is proof of the Holy Spirit working in you to sanctify you. As Paul says: