I is always at the center of sin!
(Definition of sin = whatever you do without conviction that you have God’s approval to do it is sin)
Génesis 4:7 If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.
I have written about sin more than once. Although some pastors don’t like to preach about sin it is a huge deal for followers of Jesus. Sin separates us from God by destroying our power to pray, testify, witness, fellowship and read His Word. A pastor that watches out for the flock needs to talk about sin, especially in one on one counseling sessions. Sin is the act of doing anything that displeases God. The thing about sin is it doesn’t have various degrees. In the Old Testament the punishment for sin was death. Irregardless of whether you were picking up sticks on the sabbath, being a rebellious teenager or blaspheming God, it was worthy of capital punishment. Displeasing God resulted in separation and death.
In Spanish the word ‘sin’ means without. I want to avoid sin at all costs, and advise everyone else to do the same. I just want to please Jesus and know Him better. A slave fears the master’s lashes (hell, sickness, poverty) but the son fears his father’s displeasure.
Sin is rebellion, acting out, being bad or naughty. One of our little kids that we help said, ‘but I like to be bad every now and then.’ It was funny coming out of a four year old’s mouth, but it’s true for all of us. Every day we are tempted to say or do something a little bad or naughty. We must ask ourselves if we are displeasing God with our actions or glorifying Him. We must listen to God’s voice and His leading. He will never lead you to do something that is contrary to the His Word. If we do all things in a way to glorify God, we will live a sinless life. There is no grey area. If you are not doing what pleases God (disobedience to God in any form is sinning) you are causing others to stumble. Even what we call ‘grey areas’ like smoking where it doesn’t specifically say ‘thou shalt not smoke’ in the Bible, we need to beware. God said that our bodies are a temple. Plus, who can smoke and glorify God at the same time without causing others to stumble? We all sin. No one is perfect. Our goal every day should be to not to sin. If we do all for God’s glory it’s easier to avoid falling.
1 Cor 10:31 Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.
Things to consider in resisting sin;
Grace of God – understanding the Grace if God is critical. There is nothing you can do to make God love you more more less. God´s grace is a free gift. Love God for His goodness. Loving God and His presence will make it easier to not sin.
Truth – Truth is critical. The more truthful you are with others and yourself, the harder it would be so sin. Truth is what makes you free – all sins are shrouded by lies which blind us. Be a truth lover. Be truthful with yourself and others.
Inner Strength – Build up your inner-man to be stronger. Be more in control of your flesh and your thought life. You build up your inner-man by Bible study, prayer, fellowship (acccountability) and worship.
Vision – Vision yourself to be sin free and more self disciplined. See the result and that will increase your desire.
Will – What do you want? To be sin free and closer to God, or not? Like I said, none of us are there yet, but we are to strive for it.
Submit – The more your are submitted to God, and the authorities He has placed over you (everyone from police to pastors), your life will be less and less encumberred by sin.
My retired missionary friend pointed out today that the the middle word in sIn is ‘I’. When we sIn, it is to please ‘I’. ‘I’ rules the life of a sinner. Every mistake I made as a businessman, soldier, pastor, father, husband, son, sibling, friend and missionary has been because ‘I’ was in the middle of that sin.
The good thing is that we don’t have to sin. James 4:7 says Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. or flee yourself. We have a choice. We can develop our inner-man’s strength and in the process our self-control by practice and hard work. Sin is laying in await to ambush you the moment you let your guard down. The exercise drill used to build up your self discipline is just saying another word, ‘no’. An undisciplined Christian is what we call a carnal Christian. A little weak baby in other words. It’s understandable if they are new believers, to be weak. But Christians need to develop with time.
If we sin, Jesus paid for it and we’re forgiven. That doesn’t change the fact that it’s wrong. It is a bad testimony and our lives won’t be as victorious as they could be. We could make someone permanently reject Jesus because of our lack of self control.
1 John 2:1 My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:”
It’s not easy but there is no sin that is impossible to resist. You just have to have a strong enough ‘why?’ and a strong inner-man that you can continue to develop. Learn to say no. Force yourself to say ‘no’. Practice and hard work are required to abstain but it is far better than sinning. At the end of the day, sinning is a choice. Remember you aren’t in the battle alone. God is with you.
1 Cor 10:13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.
Sin destroys you yourself, your soul, families, ministries, marriages, churches, businesses, careers and testimonies. Sin generally speaking does not send people to hell. Rejecting Jesus does. That is the only sin that will send you to hell. Sin always displeases God, and it separates you from Him. A white lie, an affair or a murder spree is the same thing in the eyes of a Holy God. No truly born again Christian wants to sin. A person that keeps on sinning without repentance is a person who probably has not accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour and are not saved. Or they could live a seemingly perfect life, go to church having great morals and still end up in hell if they didn’t accept Jesus. With Jesus in your heart, you have are sealed by the Holy Spirit and will go to heaven. Without Jesus, you don´t, and will go to hell.
Romans 8:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;”
Because of their rejection of Christ all the way up until their death, many seemingly good people will sadly spend their eternity in hell. If someone accepts Jesus, and doesn’t even have strong will power, or enough faith, they will probably sin. But they will go to heaven. There is only one sin that will keep you out of heaven, and that is rejecting Jesus.
Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
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