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I would have been very blessed to have these brothers on this forum to go to at a time in my life when I had more defeats than victories, and at times I felt quite hopeless that I would ever get back up. What prolonged the struggle for me was that I was heavily in to positive confession, so as quick and I would fall, I would get up and confess the promises of God. There is nothing wrong with doing this, and it is faith in the promises of God that make us partakers of the divine nature. The problem was that I thought I was the one that had to be strong, when I was so weak. I thought that by doing a lot of religious things that I would overcome. Deliverance came when I came to the point that I realized that I was helpless to do anything to deliver myself, and I threw myself on the mercy and grace of God, and in my weakness, His strength and deliverance were manifested.
When we see that He is the One that keeps us, and His grace His sufficient for us then we will live a life of victory, knowing that without Him we can do nothing, but through Him we can do all things.
| 2009/1/28 14:46||Profile|
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Christians are in dire need of instruction and teaching during times of failure. All we ever hear, it seems, are exhortations on how not to fail...or how to keep from failing. But what do we do when our purported victories and triumphs suddenly begin shattering all around us like glass houses? Where are the messages that are bathed in grace and wisdom? Where are the preachers who are able to minister with a fresh breath of God from their own grevious losses and defeats?
The truth is that most people are afraid to speak in a positive way about failure, because of the risk of being misconstrued as someone who "excuses" sin. But those who have been through the fire of defeat know better. The purpose of failure in the school of God is to wean a believer off relying on his/her flesh. This is God's way, and it is how He teaches grace. The Lord is not the author of sin, nor is it His will that we sin, but we serve a God who is infinitely resourceful...and one who turns around what the devil designed for devastation for our benefit and growth. We still feel the rod of our Father's chastisement, but with the healing of the stripes we find ourselves stronger in the knowledge of grace. It is also through the fires of failure where the Lord teaches His sons and daughters the resotrative power of the blood of Christ.
With God, the most painful lessons prove to be the most precious. You cannot learn these things through books and sermons; you must actually enter the furnace yourself. The greatest lesson I've learned in the school of God is that my Father is inconceivably gracious and loving - and that I am detestable and full of sin. It was the repeated acts of grace and kindness of God that finally pulverized my unruly heart to lay down and submit and cease all efforts to preserve victory. O brethren, how can we refuse such love and mercy?
It should make us never, ever want to sin...not because of [i]us[/i], but because of [i]Him[/i]. It is God's way, and it is wonderful.
Paul Frederick West
| 2009/1/28 16:07||Profile|
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Amen brother paul!! that is so true and refreshing to hear.
| 2009/1/28 16:30||Profile|
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The truth is that most people are afraid to speak in a positive way about failure, because of the risk of being misconstrued as someone who "excuses" sin.
One of the things I try to consistently do (I speak as a fool) is to lead the way in coming forward for confession and repentance no matter who or how many is watching. I have to respond to God no matter how bad I look or whether it is misunderstood. Who cares what people think?
Admission and seeking prayer, etc. comes at great risk no matter what the struggle is. Many believers are discouraged and need a message of hope, but like the blind pharisee they would give the serpent of judgment for the fish of grace or the stone of condemnation for the bread of restoration. Why is there this tendency to want to smack somebody seeking help? That's why so many lurk hopeless in the shadows.
I'm crazy enough to say that if God would flash our sins on a screen before the world we would all be embarrassed. Galatians 6 tells us that the 'spiritual folk' are the ones that consider themselves and restore those overtaken in a fault. Sooner or later we will all need a hand to lift us up. I say we start tossing life preservers instead of the anchor and so fulfill the law of Christ.
Robert Wurtz II
| 2009/1/28 17:04||Profile|
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The purpose of failure in the school of God...
In fact, in the school of God, you must fail in order to pass.
Paul "failed" in Romans Seven before he "passed" into Romans Eight.
I sometimes think of good book titles (which is as far as I get in writing one). One I think of is Great Failures of the Bible.
And there have been some great ones. Moses. David. Peter. Paul...
But through their failure, He who had called them showed Himself faithful, and brought forth vessels of mercy. Character. Grace. A priestly heart.
I have been thinking about "the word of His grace." In a message I listened to, Ron Bailey shared that grace is more than just unmerited favour. It is also divine enabling, an impartation of enabling power.
And so, thinking upon that line the other day, this verse came to mind. "Where sin abounded, grace did much more abound..." (Rom. 5.20). Grace. Not just His unmerited favour, and forgiveness abounding, which is certainly true, but His enabling power. Abounding.
Till, as the verse goes on, grace REIGNS in our lives where once sin reigned. And you have just as much a problem breaking that fetter, as once you did sin's chain.
"...That like as sin hath reigned unto death even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord."
...Be encouraged, brother. Continue to sow these words of grace others have written into your heart. "In due season we shall reap, if we faint not." And the Lord through the brothers is sending help your way for this very purpose: that you "faint not" (that you don't give up).
| 2009/1/28 17:41||Profile|
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After I posted my previous post, I found this song in my heart, and I wondered if perhaps I was to send it to you.
[url=http://www.hymntime.com/tch/htm/s/e/searchme.htm]It is here.[/url]
A beautiful hymn of grace, and it has these lines in it:
"Fill me with fire where once I burned with shame;
Grant my desire to magnify Thy Name."
| 2009/1/28 18:13||Profile|
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All you guys are great !!! And I like that hymn that was sent to me thank you. From what I understand is that God has to change my heart and grant me the ability. And so I will pray for that from now on.. Lord lead me not into temptation but deliver me from evil right ???
| 2009/1/28 22:35||Profile|
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Brother Paul, you speak with great wisdom and what you have written has been an experience with me as well. Your posts are worth keeping and referencing for many of us on this issue.
One thing that I have learned in all my oath's and failures is that righteousness is wrapped up in relationship. Christ died in order to remove the stain of the sin that hindered relationship with our Creator. This doesn't mean that we don't obey, but obedience is a process of relationship, not self willed determination that 'proves' something to Christ. When I see great men of God in the Bible I see men who struggled with sin but were restored because their hearts continued hot after God. Their righteousness was wrapped up in relationship, not legalism. Agian, this doesn't slight obedience in any way, for I believe men like David and Peter wanted desperately to obey rather than disobey, and eventually, through their failures, they found that their humble yeilding of themselves was more necessary than determination. I read a great article on this by Chip Brogden called "Victory is a Man", it is well worth the read.
| 2009/1/29 7:52|
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Paul Washer is excellent in explaining 1 John and what "walking in the faith" means. We all are going to struggle, and sometimes give in to sin. The difference between a true believer and a false believer is the true believer may give into sin now and then (I know I do!), but the false believer lives a lifestyle of sin.
Just the fact that you're here crying over your sin shows me that Christ is at work in you! Rejoice, repent... and move on with Christ.
| 2009/1/29 8:06|
| Re: Sexual Purity - I hate my flesh|
I have done good for sooo long
This is why you failed!!
You were thinking that your "goodness" depended on you doing and not doing certain things.
please read -
You May Not Have Sinned Enough Yet! http://victoryoversin.com/sinenough.htm
As for me I have never been good for a second and do not ever expext to be good.
| 2009/1/29 14:37|