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Discussion Forum : General Topics : Re: Is sin normal for the Christian?

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roadsign
Member



Joined: 2005/5/2
Posts: 3776


 Re: What is a christian?

I forgot to include one other factor:

One’s understanding of what a “Christian” is will also complicate this question: Is it normal for Christians to sin?

Jesus said that many would refer to themselves as Christians, but in fact, not be. This is an entirely different topic, but I add it in here to remind us that there are many "Christians" who are not even BORN FROM ABOVE – ie the Spirit. So they do not have Christ’s Spirit working in them to teach them God’s ways, purify them, etc etc. They may look more polished than true followers of Christ – those who are still struggling with sin but are crying out to God for his mercy and forgiveness.

The greatest sin is to deny one’s sin because that keeps one from seeing their desperate need for Christ – not only once but all the time.

Is a Christian one who seems cleaned up, or one who sees that he is NOT cleaned up and so accepts God's mercy?


_________________
Diane

 2005/10/13 9:43Profile
grod95
Member



Joined: 2005/9/1
Posts: 16


 Re:

Thanks for the feedback, Blake. I believe you and I are saying the same thing and have a similar understanding of the ramifications of sin. I just said it in a more condensed form. Sorry for taking awhile to get back to you. Had no idea someone had responded to my comment concerning this subject.

grod95 8-)

 2006/2/5 20:12Profile
BeYeDoers
Member



Joined: 2005/11/17
Posts: 370
Bloomington, IN

 Re:

Paul's thorn in the flesh had nothing to do with sin in his life. Jesus came to set us free from sin; not most sin while leaving one behind. There is no, not one, nil, zilch scripture indicating that God would leave a sin in us. When the Bible talks about victorious life, it doesn't say "except one sin, that my grace may abound in you". Paul preached against this very thing all throughout the NT.

Many believe that Paul's thorn in the flesh was a physical ailment, which was part of the reason he had Luke accompany him through much of his ministry. David Wilkerson is in this camp.

However, I believe a study on "thorn in the flesh" in scripture reveals otherwise. I think the phrase is used one or two other times in the Bible, and speaks of a spiritual battle/temptation. Paris Reidhead calls this the "first mention principle." Usually, when God uses word or phrase, you find that He defines it in the first occurence of it in scripture. I suggest doing that here.

Just 2 more cents regarding this topic of sin in the Christian life: Leonard Ravenhill believed that Paul in fact reached the state of entire sanctification here on earth (not sinless perfection, but Christian perfection, as John Wesley defined it), but was too humble to claim such a thing (which begs the question--if he claimed it, would he have really achieved it? My uncle likes to say in reference to humility: Once you think you have it, you've lost it).

Blessings


_________________
Denver McDaniel

 2006/2/5 23:26Profile
Quickend
Member



Joined: 2006/1/20
Posts: 42


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

Roadsign,
I found some of the statements in your post very troubling.

Quote:Roadsign

"God’s standards , the greatest commandment is so high that not one of us can attain it"

1 John 2:4
He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.

Quote:Roadsign

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.

1 Corinthians 15:57
But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

In my experience belivers are given victory over sin. However,as with anything that you are given, it is up to you what you do with the gift. You can neglect it, throw it away, or simply not use it. The worst thing you can do , in my opinion is deny that you ever had it.

Quote:Roadsign "I’d have to admit that my observations have led me to believe that it is very normal for Christians to sin"

1 John 5:18
We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not.

Christains are not infallible by any means, but if sinning has become the norm, we do well to question whether or not we are christiains at all.


_________________
Robert.High

 2006/2/6 4:37Profile
CJaKfOrEsT
Member



Joined: 2004/3/31
Posts: 901
Melbourne, Australia

 Re:

Quote:

Quickend wrote:
Roadsign,
I found some of the statements in your post very troubling.

Quote:Roadsign

"God’s standards , the greatest commandment is so high that not one of us can attain it"

1 John 2:4
He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.



Please Roadsign, correct me if I'm wrong, but I think I understand where you are heading with this.

Sometimes we have to accept the "dark sayings" of God, and stop trying to fill in gaps that He left empty.

Matt 19:26 - "...With men this (entering into the kingdom of heaven) is impossible; but with God, all things are possible."

You've quoted 1 John, and I believe, have taken slightly out of context. This is more of a "definition" than an "indictment". By this I mean, the way to tell if the truth is not in someone, is that they don't keep the commandments. The way to tell if you are a "liar" is that you don't keep the commandments.

Remember Paul's words, "Let God be true, and every man a liar". For me to see my failure to keep the commandments brings me face to face with the fact that I am one of the "every men", wholly dependant on God to cleans me of my unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). The only way that this is possible, is by the constant acceptance of the fact that I am totally incapable of obedience without Divine assistance, and then trusting Him to cleanse me, knowing that I will never be "clean" apart from Him.

This is the issue of the garden. Gods plan was always that we obey out of our continual relationship with Him. Satan's temptation of Eve led to the two of them seeking the ability to obey internally, thought the acquisition of Knowledge, rather that through communion with the Divinity.

Quote:

Quickend wrote:
Quote:Roadsign

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.

1 Corinthians 15:57
But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

In my experience believers are given victory over sin. However,as with anything that you are given, it is up to you what you do with the gift. You can neglect it, throw it away, or simply not use it. The worst thing you can do , in my opinion is deny that you ever had it.


The gift not and never was obedience, but is Himself. Interestingly, this is what "quickening" means. We fail to realise that being filled of the Holy Spirit is the means of producing His fruit. It's always tempting to think of the Holy Spirit as a "thing" and not the third "Person" of the Trinity. Being filled with the Spirit is have your nature infused with His nature. The thought of "filling" creates an image of Wind filling a sail, in order to propel the boat. Interestingly the words for Spirit and wind are the same in both Greek (pneuma) and Hebrew (bruach). The Holy Spirit fills our nature with His nature with the intention of manifesting His works in our works. In other words, our obedience is really His obedience, and this leaves "no room for boasting" in us.

We have to accept the fact that obedience, in action, is "abnormal" and and therefore it would be "normal" to disobey. To word it slightly differently, it is "natural" to sin, and it is "supernatural" to obey. "In [b]my[/b] experience" to ignore this fact, and assume an ability obedience without reliance on Christ, is to join the queue to join the backslider club, unless the necessary "death to self" is produced first.

Quote:

Quickend wrote:
Quote:Roadsign "I’d have to admit that my observations have led me to believe that it is very normal for Christians to sin"

1 John 5:18
We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not.

Christains are not infallible by any means, but if sinning has become the norm, we do well to question whether or not we are christiains at all.


Sorry to split hairs, but "Christian" was more of a derogatory term in NT days, a label assigned to believers by the residents of Antioch. My reason for pointing this out, is that too many people think of being a "Christian" as having entered into an "initiation" process of sorts, which was either real or false. While this is true to a way, it neglects "He who is able to complete". This really manifests itself with the term "saved" and everything that it entails. Too many Christians use the word saved to mean "someone who has (insert initiation process here)".

Really, there is no real assurance of salvation, until Judgement Day books are opened. However, we can be assured of our "sonship". Conformity is a process, and there is no excuse for falling short of the mark. However, if you can accept this fact, and "continually acknowledge this before God and man, without attempting to absolve yourself from guilt" (ie, confess your sins) then God is "faithful and just to forgive your sins and cleanse you of all unrighteousness". The moment the attitude of confession stops, we have to accept the fact that we are guilty of calling God a liar. This is antithetical to faith ("Without faith it is impossible to please God", "That which is not of faith is sin").

Faith is not natural or normal!!! This needs to get deep into our understanding, or we can never be pleasing to God. "We are saved by grace, through faith, which is {b]not of ourselves, but is a gift from God[/b]". I repeat, there is no room for boasting in this.

Our obedience in action are merely a proof of this. "Obedience" in action without this, is not obedience at all, but is "self-righteous-Pharisee-ism" (Rom 10:1-3).

In conclusion, may I quote Roadsign's post title:
Quote:

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


_________________
Aaron Ireland

 2006/2/6 5:33Profile
claydough
Member



Joined: 2006/2/4
Posts: 8


 Re: about sinning every day

about sinning every day, according to the bible sin is a choice, not something we just do. James 4:7 says he that KNOWS to do good and does not do it, to him IT (THAT) is sin. according to 1 john 3:8 sin is a wilfull transgression against the law of God. therefore we do not have to sin, but we still need Christ everyday. to say that we sin every day is not found in the scriptures. if it were true that we hasd to sin everyday then we would have to say that Adam and Eve had to eat the forbidden fruit. they did not have to eat it they chose to eat it.

 2006/2/6 14:34Profile
Quickend
Member



Joined: 2006/1/20
Posts: 42


 Re:

CJaKfOrEsT,

I would like to responed to your post by first pointing out where we agree.

In your post you stated that you were "totally incapable of obedience without Divine assistance"
Also you said "I will never be "clean" apart from Him"

To this I say amen.
I would however like to point out that we have "divine assistance" and are therefore capable of obedience.

Quote: CJaKfOrEsT

"You've quoted 1 John, and I believe, have taken slightly out of context. This is more of a "definition" than an "indictment". By this I mean, the way to tell if the truth is not in someone, is that they don't keep the commandments. The way to tell if you are a "liar" is that you don't keep the commandments"

1 John 2:4
He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.

In regards to your interpitation of this scipture. I would say that (whenever possible) I take the scripture to mean what they most clearly say, and I try not to rephrase them.

You also said in your post "The gift is not and never was obedience, but is Himself.

I belive however that scripture will support the following assertion.

The gift is Christ, but In recieving this gift(Christ)we also recive empowerment among many other benifits as a direct result of reciving Christ.

It is through him that we are able to be obedient.

Romans 6:16
Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?

There are many other things I would like to disscus with you but perhaps we will talk more in later post. May God bless you and keep you.
Quickend


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Robert.High

 2006/2/6 19:06Profile
claydough
Member



Joined: 2006/2/4
Posts: 8


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

as christians we are told that the scriptures are the final authority in all matters. that would include the idea that we do not have to sin. if we say that we must sin then we must also say that adam and eve in the garden of eden had to eat the forbidden fruit, you decide what it was, they did not have to eat it. they made a willful decision to eat the fruit, they did not make a mistake they sinned.

am i saying that we do not sin, NO! we sin but it is according to 1 john 3:8 a willful transgression. but no where in God's Holy word did he give us a command that we could not keep. if he did then he would not be God. it amazes me that people readily accept some verses but others they say well i don't that God really meant that. if he didn't then it would not be in the word.
1 john 2:1 says that what John wrote was so that we might not sin. but, and the next word is a big one, if we sin. not when. if is a conditional word and it means if. some will try to say that that is not what God means there, but i say that if God said it He means it.

 2006/2/7 3:59Profile
CJaKfOrEsT
Member



Joined: 2004/3/31
Posts: 901
Melbourne, Australia

 Re:

Quote:

Quickend wrote:
I would like to responed to your post by first pointing out where we agree.

In your post you stated that you were "totally incapable of obedience without Divine assistance"
Also you said "I will never be "clean" apart from Him"

To this I say amen.
I would however like to point out that we have "divine assistance" and are therefore capable of obedience.



Quickend,

I think you missed the heart of my post. My purpose was to reveal that what the two of you were saying was compatible, but from separate extremes. Please allow me to point out the following principle, as quoted by Ray Comfort, "Law to the proud, grace to the humble." I make a slight adaptation to this "Law to the proud, grace to the humble, 'law of grace' to the proud in Christ'".

Never forget that the cross is, and always will be an "offense to the Jew" and "foolishness to the Greek". Why? Because the "Greek" thinks it is ridiculous that someone would die for him because, in his mind, he has done nothing wrong. The "Jew" on the other hand can't bear the fact that someone else is going to take the rap for him, when he's perfectly capable of atoning for his own sin. This is the "offence of the cross". It is a shame that goes beyond all reproach, the fact that we need to accept help from another. The moment that we turn from our need of Divine assistance, the Lord lets us go our way, fully pursuaded that we're okay. Then comes into affect, "Pride cometh before the fall".

My point behind this is as follows. If we are to define sin as malevolent behaviour (ie, murder, fornication, hatred, sexual lust, etc..) if we are to keep our behaviour in check, then we would be "sinless". This of course is not true, because benevloent behaviour outside of union with God is actually the Parissaic sin of self-righteousness.

Consider this, which is worse, to be utterly moral in conduct, or to be totally dependant on God? To quote Leonard Ravenhill, "Jesus didn't come to make bad men good, but to make dead men live." The reality is, the man who is truly clinging to Christ, will be naturally moral in conduct, up until the time when he backs off, from Him. He lives "by the faith [b]of[/b] the son of God, who loved (him) and gave himself for (him)". The man who is moral, without that same level of dependance, will think that he is doing God a service.

Consider also the audience at this site. This is a place where Christians come to find reality (where they realise it when they get here or not:-)). We don't need to start with the Law here, in most cases, for I've always found that the doctrine of grace brings greater and deeper godly sorrow (and therefore repentance) in the heart of the student of revival, because the bulk of them (including myself) are trying to "make it happen" and want revival to "add something" to their spiritual experience.

Grace brings a man face to face with the drudgery of daily life, constantly ashamed of every failure, realising his own shortcomings, and yet grateful of the Lord's promise to "forgive his sin, and cleanse him of unrighteousness", conditional on his continual "confession" of unrepented sin. He knows that his every success is the direct result of Christ's intervention, and there is no room for a dutiful, "It wasn't me, it was God", because he also knows the arrogance of a statement like that, that implies that he is "so special" that God does stuff for him.

The proponent of grace teaching is constantly flanked my accusations, from those who wish to relax, of "going to far" by insisting that "perfection" is possible in a believer, and accusations of promoting "licence" by those who ascribe to the "holiness" type teaching. The greatest shame is that he is brutally honest about the fact that he is totally dependant of Christ [b]daily[/b], not just at a fixed point in life when he became a "Christian" and then "I'll take over from here".

The silly thing about all this, is that when you take a step back, and look at what Roadsign and myself are saying, you'll see that we are setting a much higher standard that that which is attainable to a mere "human", but then we are pointing to the Means of attainment, [b]who[/b] is also the End of our being. Are we coming right out and saying that? Perhaps not. However allow me to summarise what I (and I belive Roadsign also) have been saying all along.

Quote:

For a human, to be sinless is impossible. But God is calling us to be impossible.
For a human, to sin is normal, but God is calling us to be abnormal.
"Of course it's normal to sin! That's why we need Christ [b]every day[/b]!"



I understand that you feel that we are lightening the burden of a human being. But we're not. I personally don't buy into the whole "inherited (original) sin" thing. I believe the fall was the result of God given "self-interest" being wrongly expressed as "selfishness". Eating the fruit was simply the expression of the heart that needed redeeming (I know that I can get in alot of trouble saying that). Even if a bite had never been taken out of the fruit of the Tree of Knoweldge, the Cross would still be necessary. I'll leave you with that.


_________________
Aaron Ireland

 2006/2/8 10:30Profile
RandyJ
Member



Joined: 2005/10/1
Posts: 49
Peace River, AB, Canada

 Re:

Hi there claydough,
I really appreciate your post and would like to add to it. I read somewhere on this website that someone had said the scriptures say that if we say we don't sin then we are liars. I want to point out that that is both misreading the scriptures and misinterpretting the scriptures. The verse reads " If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us." 1st John 1:8 The verse reads "have no sin" not "do not sin". I am actually quite surprised how common this mistake is seeing that the apostle John in the very same book of the Bible says "These things write I unto you that ye sin not" and "He that is born of God sinneth not". To 'have sin' means that you 'have sinned' and not that you do sin. If it meant that you do sin then it would flattly contradict the entire grain of what the apostle John was saying in that epistle.
Randy


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Randy Steinke

 2006/2/8 13:25Profile





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