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grod95
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Joined: 2005/9/1
Posts: 16


 Re: Is sin normal for the Christian?

I don't think it is in the eternal purpose of God for sin to be the norm in the Christian life.
Sin by nature is abnormal. It is the antithesis to all that is righteous, holy and good. God has decreed that sin shall not have dominion over the life of the sincere believer. Because of the fall, we are beset by the power of sin. There is this constant antagonism between the flesh and the Spirit within our inner man. As Christians we struggle with sin. However, there should not be a deliberate turning of the life to sin. We must also be aware of the fallacy of sinless perfection. We are warned from the scriptures if any man deny that he sins he is a liar and the truth has no place in his life. We ought to stick with Christ and allow him to cultivate his life within us on a daily basis. He is our ultimate victory over sin.

 2005/10/8 22:02Profile









 Whosoever abideth in Him sinneth not

1 John 2:3-4;"And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.

I John 3:4-10;"Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law. And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin. Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him. Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous. He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother."

1 John 5:1-4; "Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous. For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith."

 2005/10/9 6:13
paula4jc
Member



Joined: 2005/1/8
Posts: 132


 Re: Whosoever abideth in Him sinneth not

How I resist the devil and over come sin as I run the race for Christ?


I thank Jesus for pulling me out of the pit of hell! When I was a new born again I was passionate and zealous for Jesus, my soul thirst for his words; I read the bible, each day, for 2 solid years, (Psalm 119:103. How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth! ).
I taught myself to pray by reading the prayers in the bible. I was in church 7 days a week. When my church didn’t have any program I find one that does, (Psalm 122:1 I rejoiced with those who said to me, "Let us go to the house of the LORD.").
Gradually I lost “All” interest for the sinful things I once adore, (2 Cor. 5:17. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!).
Those first two committed years the Holy Spirit build a rock solid foundation upon which I stand today and I continue to build on it, (Matt. 7:25. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock).
Since the Holy Spirit lives in me and I depend on Him daily to live a peaceful and Christ like life, I strongly resist the temptation to directly or indirectly participate in any thing that would grieve the Spirit or dishonor Christ, (James 4:7. Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you).
In the natural if I fall in filt, do I lay in it? No! I feel yucky, so I clean up and move on. Like wise when I sin I don’t go on living in my sin. As a child of God who has the Holy Spirit in me I feel guilty, restless and burdensome. I don’t have Christ peace or any peace when my heart is unrepented, therefore I kneel and beg for repentance, (Psalm 51:12. Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me).
I don’t struggle with reoccurring sins, but as I grow to be more like Christ I seem to encounter more distractions, trials and temptations. As always the Lord who is gracious and faithfully always strengths and delivers me in my weakness, (1 Cor. 10:13. No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.
2 Cor. 12:9. But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”)
I usually do more fasting, praying, bible reading, listen to spiritual songs and hymns in those time.



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Paula

 2005/10/9 16:54Profile
LetUsPray
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Joined: 2004/10/12
Posts: 173


 Re: Is sin normal for the Christian?

Freecd

I love your dedication to truth, therefore I ask you to prayerfully consider this post. Personally I still sin and so does every Christian I have met on this side of heaven. What makes me uncomfortable is the lack of grace that I receive from your quotes. I use them all the time when I counsel people to turn back from sin and backsliding, but ALSO the grace from our Savior. On the other hand the almost callousness when it comes to talk about our God disturbs me too. Our God is holy and we SHOULD KNOW HOW TO WORSHIP HIM. Without knowing Him everything becomes meaningless and we may end up being deceived.

Matthew 6
9 After this manner therefore pray [verb mood is imperative, i.e. it is a command] ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.

In this Scripture it is quite evident that Jesus commanded us to pray to the Father which art in HEAVEN.

Quote:
I am not going to argue about whether you pray to Him or not. I talk to Him but I think He is a spirit of Jesus. I think He is a dear person of the trinity. I don't exalt the Holy Spirit. He always glorifies Jesus. That is what Jesus said, "The Holy Spirit will not bear witness to Himself, and He will always bear witness to me." So you are safe in the hands of the Holy Spirit. So the first thing is believe that the Holy Spirit is a person in your life and ask Him, "Holy Spirit, will you begin to counsel me about this and will You begin to take me down to the depths of my inner self so that I, at last know myself." (Ernest O’Neill).


1 John 2:3-4;"And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.

God bless you freecd.


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Hans Prang

 2005/10/11 7:53Profile
beenblake
Member



Joined: 2005/7/26
Posts: 524
Tennessee, USA

 Re:

Dear grod95,

I wrote this for another post, but I think it is just as pertinent to what you have written. I think this may help you understand a bit more about sin after salvation. I fear at times our greatest pitfall as Christians is that we become so absorbed with righteousness that we often fall away from Christ by becoming judgmental of other Christians and ourselves. I am not saying that you are judgmental or such, but I just would like to encourage you to beware of this pitfall.

So what about sin after salvation?

The apostle Paul had a thorn in his side. The Lord's response to this thorn was, "My grace is sufficient." Why did the Lord not deliver Paul from this thorn in his side? Was it because it was impossible for God? ??Quite the contrary. The Lord left the thorn in Paul's side to remind Paul of His grace. ??If Paul had overcome all of his sins, if Paul had walked with no visible sin, then Paul could have quickly become self-righteous. However, in order that Paul would be continually be humbled, the Lord left this little reminder. ??There is a great misunderstanding of sin that many people don't realize. ??At one point, a man called Jesus a "good" teacher. How did Jesus reply? Mark 10:18 "Jesus replied. 'Only God is good.'"??Why would Jesus say this? Why did Jesus not come out and admit He was good? ??He did this because we are to follow Jesus and mimic Christ. And this statement is highly important: Only God is good. ??When we say this statement, we are not giving a characteristic of God. Many people think we are trying give God a trait by saying He is good. This is wrong. By this statement, we are not giving definition to God, but rather, giving definition to "good". If we were to measure goodness, what standard would we use? We would use God. We would say, "how do you measure in comparison to God?" This is how good you are.??We don't say, "By what standard do we measure God?" For we know that God is core, the root, the heart of all things. We know God is at the top and everything else is below. Therefore, when we say "God is good", we are really saying, "To be good is to be God." ??This is important. For whenever we saying something is good, we are saying, "This is God." Only God is good. ONLY God is good. And so, anything that is good, is God. ??Now, when we call human beings good, we are using it to define them. We are using it as a trait. People judge by what they can see, outward appearance. So, usually, when we say someone is good, it is because of the good things they do. (Because of the Godly things they do.) We say, "Martin is a good person because he gives money to the poor." However, as we know, God judges by the heart. (1 Samuel 16:7) This statement is also important, although I will explain later.??When God created humans, He meant for them to be good. Which means, He created us to be like Him. However, only God is good. And so, all was well and fine as long as we did not defy good (defy God). ??When God looked at His creation (the heavens and the earth) in Genesis, multiple times He called it good. Why? Because His creation did not defy Him. It was in accord with His will. It existed in the presence of God. ??However, the minute we sinned, this all changed. We defied God. We defied His goodness. We went against His will.??At this point, it is important to note that we were not born of God. We were part of creation. As a part of creation, as long as we followed God's will, we were good. We were in one accord with God. ??However, we were given free will. When we exercised our freedom and sinned, everything fell apart. For the first time in all of creation, a creature apart from God had defied His goodness, His supremacy, His Holiness. ??Sin is the defiance of God's will. Sin is evil because it goes against God who is good. ??Thus, the minute the first sin was committed, evil was born. And from that point forward, all men were evil because they were no longer in accord with God's will. ??God is at the top. He is supreme. In order for God to be supreme, He cannot let anything exist that threatens His supremacy. If He did, He would no longer be good which means He would no longer be God. (Which we know it is impossible for God to not be God.) ??It is impossible for God to let anything be in His presense that challenges His authority. Our sin was to defy God. This meant we defied His authority. And so God had one of two choices. He could extinguish us right then and there, or He could rebuke us. When Adam and Eve sinned, God chose to draw His spirit from us causing us to die. ??God cannot be near sin. However, only God is good. This means that anything apart from God that is not in accord to His will, is evil. Thus, all of humanity is evil. (Romans 3:10) ??The story continues. God gave us the law. He gave us the law to show how sinful we are. (Romans 5:20) Only God who is good can live up to the law. He gave us the law to show us that we are evil. ??We know what happened. The law showed that we are sinful. We cannot be good. ??And so, God then sent His son to save us. How? Jesus, who is God, came to earth and lived up to the law. He then took all sin and died with it. The law did not die, rather, Jesus died to the law, and we died with Him. (Romans 7:4)??Then He said, "Whoever believes in my son, shall be saved." ??What happens is important. In order to be saved, we must accept Jesus as our Lord. (Romans 10:9) This means that we submit unto the authority of Jesus Christ. ??The first part is important. We submit unto the authority of Christ. Do you remember the problem we had above? Sin was the defiance to God's will. Sin challenged God's authority. If we submit ourselves unto Jesus and make Him our Lord, then we are submitting unto the authority of God. This solves half the problem of sin. If we submit unto God's authority, then He does not have to extinguish us or rebuke us. We can be forgiven for our defiance. We are no longer challenging God's supremacy for we have submitted unto it. We have made Him our King and God by a committed choice.??The second half of the problem of sin is to not do it. Only God is good. Only God could possibly be good. So, if we are to be made good, we must become a part of God. This means we must be born again. We must be born again as a part of God bearing His Spirit. However, to be born again, we must first die.??When we are saved, Christ then helps us overcome sin. How? Well, He redeems us. We die on the cross to the law, and are born again as a part of God.??There are two parts to our death. We have a spirit and a body. The spirit and body come together to form us. When we are saved, our spirit that lives in what we call the heart dies. We are then born again in the Spirit. We are given a new heart. (Ezekiel 36:36) However, the transformation is still not complete. We still have this body to tackle with. Our earthly body must die and we must be given a new heavenly body to be fully transformed to the image of Christ. We must be resurrected. (Paul speaks about the importance of the resurrection in 1 Corinthians 15.)??However, as far as sin goes, we have been delivered. Christ has delivered us from all sin in two ways. 1) He has become our Lord. 2) He has made us new. ??This means, as a Christian, it is impossible for us to sin. It is impossible for us to defy God's will. Why? Because we are a part of God. We have been born again as a part of God. If you remember, God is good. God cannot sin. Therefore, if we are truly born again as a part of God, we also cannot sin. ??1 John 3:9 - (NLT)?"Those who have been born into God's family do not sin, because God's life is in them. So they can't keep on sinning, because they have been born of God."??When we are born again, we become a part of God. We are good. Our heart is good. However, our body is still bad. Because our bodies are still bad, people who are saved still do bad things. It is not because they are bad, it is because thier flesh is bad. ??It is impossible for us to sin after we are saved because we are a part of God. Our will has been transformed into God's will. ??Now, what does this mean for Christian's who sin? If they are a part of God, doesn't that means God sins? What about that? ??You must understand that our heart has been transformed but our body has not been. When we sin, we do not mean to sin. It is not intention. It cannot be. Why? For Jesus Christ lives in our heart. If our heart is bad, then we are saying that Jesus is bad. We know Jesus is good. The heart of a true born again Christian is never bad. It is always good and always wishes to do good things. It bears Christ and has the nature of Christ. Our heart is of God, but our body is not. Rather, our flesh fights against us.??We all know by experience that we must be reminded to follow our heart, to follow the Holy Spirit inside of us, to follow Jesus. ??Inside every Christian, a great war rages between the body(flesh) and the heart(spirit). The heart is good and wants to do good. However, the body is still evil. It craves bad things. And so, we live admist this constant conflict. ??Many Christians sway easily to the desires of thier flesh because they ignore the joys of thier spirit. They are decieved and tricked. They always mean good things, and always mean to do good things because thier heart is good, but for some reason, they end up doing bad things and sin. Sometimes, they even given in to the flesh and become a slave to sin. (They don't want to, but thier flesh is weak.)??Matthew 26:41 - (NLT)?"Keep alert and pray. Otherwise temptation will overpower you. For though the spirit is willing enough, the body is weak!" ??We need not worry about our salvation, though, for we are judged by our heart as established above. Jesus lives in our heart, and so, we cannot fail. (Unless we ask Jesus to leave our heart, but that's a whole different issue.) This means that if we have been born again, we can do anything, and we will still goto Heaven. (Please do not pull this as a quote without reading further.)??However, as Paul so established in the bible, not everything is beneficial. Not to mention, if we truly love God, we will want to please Him. We will want to do good. ??Since we have been transformed, our inward nature has been transformed. If we give into the desires of the flesh, we will quickly discover a disgust, sadness, and other such evils inside of us. We will be prone to all the desires of the flesh. ??However, if we give into our true nature, the nature of God, it will produce all sorts of good things in us. We will also be joyful and at peace. ??You don't really have to force this on any Christian. I have noticed that people who are filled with the Spirit learn this lesson quickly through experience. They may go into sin for a time, even a long time in human terms. When they do, it takes a toll on them. Sooner or later, they become so disgusted with themselves that they come running to repentance, and some friend gets a call at 3am with the person saying, "Please help me get right with God." Or in another scenario, God will discipline them. This causes them to come running too. ??It takes time. We must be patient with those that stumble and faulter. We must be careful not to stumble with them, but we must not judge them either. Rather, we should always reflect Christ who loved his disciples and helped encourage them. Even though Christ knew Peter would deny Him three times that very night, Christ still called Peter the rock upon which He would build His church. ??Now, going back to the above. It is true that we battle against the flesh and fight against it. ??For many of us, we love God with all our heart, and we want to be sin free. Not because we have anything to prove, but just because we love God. There are many devout Christians who strive to be thier best in order to show the Lord gratitude for all He has done. ??There are also many Christians who encourage and push other Christians to be sin free, not because they are worried this person is going to Hell, but because they love that person. They love them so much, they want to see them at thier best. ??Love motivates us to be sin free.

The closer we draw to Christ, the more disgusted we become with sin, and the more transformed to His likeness we become. ??However, there is a small problem. Many people think that since they have been saved that they should have complete victory over thier flesh. This will never happen. It is impossible for you to have complete victory over your flesh. Your flesh has yet to be transformed. It is not a part of God. Your flesh is no good. ??If you were to become sin free in your flesh, then you would do what Jesus did. By this, you wouldn't need Him. As we know, that's no good. If you were to gain complete victory over sin in your flesh, then you would not be at war. You would not have a flesh to battle against. If you walked without sin, then you would not die in the flesh. You would be perfect and live forever. ??That is why God did not give Paul victory over His thorn. We all have thorns. There is a sin or sin(s) that haunt every Christian. Some try to hide it. Some are completely ignorant of it. Some fall away from God because they don't get victory. ??The Devil uses our thorn to hurt us. We think, "I have victory in Christ." And then we sin in the flesh. This breaks us down. It opens us up to attack. "Why did I sin? Why did not Jesus help me?" We then start think, "Where was Jesus when I needed Him?" This opens us to more attacks and more attacks until finally we start to question our salvation. We become guilt stricken and defeated.??WE ARE AT WAR!!!!! We battle against the dark forces of the world who have power over us because of our fleshly bodies. ??We do not yet have victory. If we had victory, then there would be no war. Victors don't fight, they rejoice. We know that we have victory in Jesus. We have the hope of victory. We have HOPE!!! Because we have Jesus, we can say the war has already been won. The war has been won, but the war is not over. We still have to press on to the end. We still have to persevere.

Everyday, we must die to our flesh. Everyday, we should fall on our knees and ask Christ to give us strength. Everyday, we must realize that we are weak and that we need Jesus.

The Lord said unto Paul, "My grace is sufficient." This means that the blood of Christ is sufficient to cover all our sin. All we need is Jesus.

We should be careful not to fall into the snares of the Devil whose primary goal is to destroy our relationship with God. He will use whatever means necessary to do so. All the Devil has to do is get us to focus on something other than Jesus. For Christians, the easiest way to do this is to focus them on sin. He will get them so wrapped up in trying to become sinless, that they lose sight of Christ. By this, instead of having a deep intimate relationship with Christ, the person becomes wrapped up in sin management. Is that a healthy relationship? ??We need to keep our focus on our King, on the hope of the victory. We need to walk in faith. By this, we keep our focus on Jesus. ??If we do, we will not let sin have power over us. And I don't mean we will not fall into sin. This is not right. The body is weak. We will fall into sin. If we never did, then we wouldn't need grace. We need grace. The above statment means we will not let sin have power over us. It will not bind us. It will not lead us into guilt. It will not bring us into addiction. It will not control us. It will not haunt us.??When our focus is on Christ, we will be aware of His presence in our lives 24/7. We will live in fear of the Lord. We will not be drawn to the world, but rather be filled with love. ??Amen.??I hope this better explains some things.
?May God bless you my brother with deep understanding.??Blake


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Blake Kidney

 2005/10/11 9:05Profile
LetUsPray
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Joined: 2004/10/12
Posts: 173


 Re: Re: Is sin normal for the Christian?

Dear Beenblake,

I post this just to make sure that I understand you correctly. When you say:

Quote:
The apostle Paul had a thorn in his side. The Lord's response to this thorn was, "My grace is sufficient." Why did the Lord not deliver Paul from this thorn in his side? Was it because it was impossible for God? ??Quite the contrary. The Lord left the thorn in Paul's side to remind Paul of His grace. ??If Paul had overcome all of his sins, if Paul had walked with no visible sin, then Paul could have quickly become self-righteous. However, in order that Paul would be continually be humbled, the Lord left this little reminder. ??


are you saying that the thorn was a measure of sin? The Bible doesn’t specify what the thorn in Paul’s flesh is, but I am totally convicted of the fact that since there is no sin in God, He would not give us a measure of sin. We have enough trouble crucifying the flesh without our Lord to give us some more. Many scholars have said that it was a physical ailment. Isn’t it more likely that it was a physical ailment, which is sometimes also attributed to Satan?

Luke 13:11 And there was a woman who for eighteen years had had a sickness caused by a spirit; and she was bent double, and could not straighten up at all. 16 "And this woman, a daughter of Abraham as she is, whom Satan has bound for eighteen long years, should she not have been released from this bond on the Sabbath day?"
Quote:
The closer we draw to Christ, the more disgusted we become with sin, and the more transformed to His likeness we become. ??However, there is a small problem. Many people think that since they have been saved that they should have complete victory over thier flesh. This will never happen.


I agree with your comment. We are crucified with Christ and the power on Satan over our lives is broken, but unfortunately we still sin. But, I agree with others, we – with the grace of God – should as Paula4JC writes depend on the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit:
Quote:
Since the Holy Spirit lives in me and I depend on Him daily to live a peaceful and Christ like life, I strongly resist the temptation to directly or indirectly participate in any thing that would grieve the Spirit or dishonor Christ, (James 4:7. Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you).


God bless you Beenblake,


_________________
Hans Prang

 2005/10/11 11:31Profile
InTheLight
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Joined: 2003/7/31
Posts: 2749
Phoenix, Arizona USA

 Re:

Quote:
are you saying that the thorn was a measure of sin? The Bible doesn’t specify what the thorn in Paul’s flesh is, but I am totally convicted of the fact that since there is no sin in God, He would not give us a measure of sin. We have enough trouble crucifying the flesh without our Lord to give us some more. Many scholars have said that it was a physical ailment. Isn’t it more likely that it was a physical ailment, which is sometimes also attributed to Satan?



I agree with Hans here and would add this; the Bible tells us that the thorn in the flesh was given to keep Paul from being exalted, from spiritual pride, as a result of the many visions and revelations he had. If the "thorn" was some type of sin then that would mean God sent one sin into his life to keep him from another sin? To my knowledge sin never has this effect. Seems much more likely it was some physical ailment as Hans said.

In Christ,

Ron


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Ron Halverson

 2005/10/11 12:42Profile
beenblake
Member



Joined: 2005/7/26
Posts: 524
Tennessee, USA

 Re:

Dear LetUsPray,

Your correct, the bible does not give clear indication whether Paul's thorn was a sin or not. However, the Lord's response to Paul in regards to his thorn was, "My grace is sufficient." Why would Paul need grace, if his thorn was not sin?

It would not make sense if it were a physical ailment. Firstly, God would have said, "My strength is sufficient" as a physical ailment hinders the body and not the Spirit. Secondly, Paul knew that his body/flesh was incomplete. By this, Paul would not have pleaded to be healed knowing his body was not of God. Thirdly, Paul would have been thankful for an ailment such as Jacob had for God would have been all the more glorified through it. Lastly, the Lord left this thorn in Him to keep him from Spiritual pride as it indicates in 2 Corinthians 12:7. A physical ailment is not something that would keep Paul from Spiritual pride, for a physical ailment is not spiritual. Spiritual pride occurs when we think we are greater than God, or as Holy as God. The only thing that would have kept Paul from this is a sin. By this, Paul would have been reminded daily that He was less than Christ.

Christ did not give Paul his thorn. Paul said he pleaded for the Lord to take it away, but He did not. Rather, the Lord left this thorn in Paul. He did not take it away.

Quote:
Since the Holy Spirit lives in me and I depend on Him daily to live a peaceful and Christ like life, I strongly resist the temptation to directly or indirectly participate in any thing that would grieve the Spirit or dishonor Christ, (James 4:7. Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you).



I agree whole heartedly with this quote and don't think it conflicts with anything I have said. Although the Devil will flee from us for a time, He always comes back.

We should strive to be Holy for God. However, this desire to be Holy should not be for the sake of righteousness, rather it should be for love.

Let me explain. When we love a person, we do things for that person without expecting anything in return. When we strive to be Holy for God in love, we do so without expecting anything in return. We do it to show gratitude for what God has done for us. When we try to be good or Holy out of love, if we should faulter and fail, it doesn't cause us to waver in faith. Why? We didn't do it to earn anything, we did it just to give our love to God. And so, since we didn't have any expectations, our sin doesn't cause us to stumble. Rather, we reside in God's grace and keep trying.

When we strive to be Holy for the sake of righteousness, we are actually being selfish. We are trying to do good things for the sake of our own righteousness. We are trying to do good things for God with the expectation that He will give us something in return. We are trying to earn God's love so to speak. In this scenario, when we stumble and sin, we then fall apart. We feel ashamed and guilt stricken.

My point is this, "Only God is good." We should not attempt to be God, we should attempt to be like Christ. While Christ was perfect, He never once claimed to be God. He never once claimed that He was good. Rather, He always did the will of the Father. And Christ always gave credit to God for all His good deeds. Christ was never self-righteous. He never once said, "Look at how good I am and the good things I do." Christ was completely dependent on the Father.

This all leads to the same core statement: we should follow Christ.

Thank you my friend highlighting that.

I hope this helps,

Blake





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Blake Kidney

 2005/10/13 9:09Profile
roadsign
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Joined: 2005/5/2
Posts: 3776


 Of course it's normal to sin! That's why we need Christ every day!

Normal: it means the norm. I’d have to admit that my observations have led me to believe that it is very normal for Christians to sin. In fact sin seems to be the norm. That is why we need revival.

So perhaps we should reword our question: “Is it ideal that Christians sin?” The answer is “No”. But that is not reality. But even if we say, “No it is not expected that we sin” then we set ourselves such a high ideal, that we either have to deny our sin, or we will feel terribly defeated. (we may kick ourselves a lot)

The above question is also complicated by our faulty understandings of sin. Usually we refer to sin as certain outward acts (depending on our background), but rarely do we think of faulty thinking, faulty trusts, hidden idols in our hearts, bitter roots, buried anger, unbelief (manifested by worry, controlling behaviors, etc etc.) - all those things that don’t FEEL wrong. Any of these sins can be masked by a fine looking outer life. And so hypocrisy sets in. And soon we say, “I thank God that I’m not a sinner like he is.” Isn’t that the plague of our churches?

Sadly, I have seen all too often where someone “asks Jesus in their hearts” and then they are told that they have victory from sin. It is ideal, but not reality. They still cling to many sins (not on purpose, of course) They simply receive a massive inoculation and from admitting it. They no longer see their need to face the various sin loads in their heart. After all, the sin is supposed to be gone! They remain in bondage, and don’t know why. It can’t be sin, surely! And so they go looking elsewhere for solutions.

I think that our inadequate definition of sin keeps us from the full benefit of God’s forgiveness. We first have to recognize our sin (from God’s point of view), and admit it (confession) before we can appeal to God for his mercy.

God’s standards , the greatest commandment is so high that not one of us can attain it. Who of us can love God with ALL our hearts, ALL our minds, and ALL our souls – even for one minute? We may think we do, but God has a way of showing us that we don’t. Who of us always loves our neighbor as we should? We have no idea how many times we “pass by on the other side”. We have no idea how many times a needy person crosses our path, and we pass them by with a polite “Hi, How are you?” with no real interest in knowing what’s going on with them. We have no idea how much our affluent western life style is robbing the poor people of the world.

In Hebrews it says; “In your struggle against sin you have not resisted to the point of shedding your blood.” Heb. 12:4. I wonder how many of us have died to self so much that we would be willing to surrender our very lives rather than compromise our loyalty to God. And so, the Lord disciplines us through hardships. Hardships help us learn about ourselves. They strip away our self-illusions, and cause us to cry out to God for mercy. The recognition of our sinfulness helps us rely on God, and not on ourselves, or our past “salvation” experience.

Here is an anonymous poem that helps us understand our sinful nature.

Much of our spiritual life
has a great deal of leaven
of self-advantage and self-glory
only on a higher level,
and of a more refined sort.
Nothing is so hard to kill as pride and selfishness.
Man is like an onion - layer after layer,
and each layer of self in some form.

Strip off self-righteousness,
and you will come to self-trust;
get beneath this
and you will meet self-seeking,
and self-pleasing;
and even when you think these are abandoned,
self will betrays its presence.

If this seems stripped off,
you find self-defense,
and last of all,
self-glory.

And when even this seems abandoned,
the heart of the human 'onion'-
most offensive of all-
is the selfish PRIDE
that boasts at last of being truly humble.


_________________
Diane

 2005/10/13 9:14Profile
LetUsPray
Member



Joined: 2004/10/12
Posts: 173


 Re: Of course it's normal to sin! That's why we need Christ every day!


Bless you Roadsign, for that "reality" check.


_________________
Hans Prang

 2005/10/13 9:18Profile





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