Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘sin’

Is it our job as Christians to convert the unsaved?

Are we to force our views and beliefs on others so that they might come to God?

My answer would be no. It is our job to follow Christ and love others, and the Holy Spirit’s job to convict and lead people to the Father.

We cannot convert others; we cannot make them come to Christ by forcing our views and beliefs on them. Only the Holy Spirit can convict the world of sin and lead them to repentance.

Jesus said in 1 John 3:23 that we are to accept Him and love others. Apart from that, we have nothing more to do than to be available to Him and allow the Spirit to work and love through us.

LoveGodandothers

We are called to make disciples, but disciples would be those who already have a relationship with Christ. The dictionary describes a disciple as ‘a professed follower of Christ’. We are to be there to encourage and help one another into maturity in our fellowship with Him.

We are also told to go into all the world and preach the gospel. The gospel being the good news that God loves us, He has provided freedom from our sinful nature and has restored fellowship with us. Again, this is done by loving God and loving others not by being judgmental, pointing fingers, threatening and other means we sometimes use to force others to accept Christ.

When we show the love of God to others and accept them as they are people will be be drawn to Christ easier than through condemning and threatening ways. This does not mean we have to agree with everyone or say you can live anyway you want with no consequences, but we can show the love of Christ to non-believers and accept them without expecting them to change and start acting like we think they should. God accepted us as we were before we came to Him we should do the same.

In love, tell the good news to those you meet that God loves them, encourage and make disciples out of those who know Christ and stop trying to force salvation on non-believers through ‘holier than thou’ attitudes, guilt and condemnation. Love is the answer. God is love.

Read Full Post »

This is a familiar line from a popular movie several years back. I think we can relate this to our walk with God.

According to the true love story, the love God has for mankind, this phrase would go more like, love means never having to repent again.

In today’s world, we seem to be more sin conscious than grace conscious. Most of us are running around wondering how we can overcome sin and live a life that is pleasing to God. Of course the trouble with this way of living is that we can’t do it. The main reason is because God has already taken care of the sin problem through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. The only way we can live a life pleasing to God is by relying on the strength of the Spirit within us, living by the power of Jesus. He is the vine, we are the branches. We can do these things only by His strength.

Jesus came into our world, born under the law, and lived a perfect life. This made Him acceptable as a perfect lamb, without spot or blemish, to be sacrificed once and for all, for the sin nature of mankind.

Our sin nature was crucified with Christ, and when we look to Him as our sacrifice, we are raised up as new creatures in Him. Obviously, we can’t do any of this on our own. We can’t pay for it or earn it or pay God back for what He has done. It’s a gift.

Now that the sin nature is gone, are we going to live perfect lives? Unfortunately no. The sin nature is gone, but we still have a natural mind and body. We still live in a fallen world and are continually influenced by worldly ways.

The problem is we sometimes focus more on sin and the way we used to be, that we forget who we now are in Christ. We go around saying we are just a sinner saved by grace. That was true, but now we are kings and priests, we are holy and righteous in God’s sight, all because of Christ.

It’s time we stop thinking so low of ourselves and start realizing that in Christ, we are holy and righteous. Certainly not in our own strength, or by anything we have done, but through the cross of Christ.

We no longer have to repent, since our sin nature and our past, present and future sins were taken care of at the cross.

The big difference here is the meaning of repent. The true meaning of repent is to change our mind or way of thinking. I think this is something we do all the time. As God reveals more truth to us, we repent, or change our way of thinking and become more in tune with His ways.

The traditional church’s idea of repent usually means come to the altar, confess your sins and get right with God. I don’t think we have to do this type of repenting but one time. Once we come to God through Christ, repent of our sinful nature and ask Him to forgive us, we no longer need to come to Him and repent over and over. Christ died once for the sins of the world, and that covered the sin nature for all time. We don’t have to keep coming back to God, repenting of our sinful nature.

When we do sin, we can change our mind as to how we want to live and be more God-like. All we need to do is say to God, I’m sorry for messing up, thank you for grace that has taken care of this and thank you that I am holy and righteous in your sight because of Christ.

Read Full Post »

Jesus was tempted just like each one of us. The only difference is He did not give in to the temptation.

We tend to think about Jesus being above humanity while He lived on earth. He lived a perfect life while here, but we usually say He did this because He was God and above being tempted.

We are told in the Bible that Jesus was actually tempted in ALL things just as we are today. He was completely human and was tempted just like us. This goes to show that temptation is not a sin, but we sin when we give in to the temptation.

Jesus had such a close and intimate fellowship with His Father, that he was able to overcome all temptation and live a perfect life. Because He did this, it made Him worthy to be the perfect sacrifice for us.

Because we lost the relationship and intimate fellowship with God through the fall of Adam, we were unable to live up to the Law of the Old Testament.

Jesus fulfilled the Law. He died to take away our sins and destroy the Old Covenant. He then rose from the dead and thereby began the New Covenant of living by grace.

All of us who accept His sacrifice are now living in grace, God’s perfect gift of salvation, and we are seen as perfect and righteous in His sight because of that gift.

Our old sin nature is dead and buried, and we have been raised up as new creatures in Christ. We now have the power to overcome those temptations when they come, and to live a life pleasing to God. None of this was accomplished by our own strength or works. It is the gift of God through Christ.

Read Full Post »

Hell fire and brimstone, eternal damnation…..which sin is going to cause this for you? None of them! There is not one sin that will send you to hell. We have all sinned and we have all fallen short of the glory of God. But God made a way for the sinful nature to be destroyed. God made a way we could be forgiven. No, it isn’t the 10 Commandments. It isn’t in doing at all. The only thing that will cause an eternal separation from God is rejecting Jesus and the sacrifice He made by dying for us and our sinful nature.

So, does God love the one going to hell just as much as the one going to heaven? Absolutely yes. God is love and He loves each and every one of us. He sent His Son to die for all of us because we are all sinners. He provided the way for our salvation because He loves us and we were completely unable to provide salvation for ourselves. Obviously not everyone is going to heaven just because God loves them. It is our choice now to accept that gift or not. Unfortunately many people do not accept it, but God still loves them all the way to hell.

In regard to being perfect and righteous in God’s sight, this is the basic theme of the New Covenant (Colossians 1:22 NASB). When Jesus lived on this earth, He lived under the Old Covenant and He became the only person who lived under the law and lived a totally perfect life. Because of this, He became the perfect sacrifice that was required to fulfill the law and take our sins to the cross. When Jesus said ‘it is finished’, He was saying the old covenant was fulfilled and our sin problem can be taken care of.

When we accept, believe and confess Him as Savior, our old sinful nature is crucified and buried and we are then raised up as new creatures in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). Obviously that doesn’t mean we are perfect and righteous on our own. We still have a mind that needs to be renewed daily, and we have a body that is made from the earth, but our inner spirit man is now a new creation and no longer has the sinful nature.

Spiritually speaking, when God looks at us He sees Christ’s blood covering and cleansing us of all sins. Romans 6:5-7 says ‘For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; for he who has died is freed from sin’.

Galatians 3:27 states ‘For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ’, and I Corinthians 3:16 tells us ‘Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you’? The Spirit of God isn’t going to dwell in unrighteousness. God no longer lives in a building like in the Old Testament, but now lives in us, His Church.

In Colossians 3:3 we are told ‘For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God’. Spiritually speaking, our inner spirit has been made perfect, not by our works, not by obeying the 10 commandments, not by following the Law, but by Christ taking our sin nature to the cross. It is by Him giving us the gift of a new nature and putting His righteousness in us. Ephesians 2:6 says ‘and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus’. Spiritually speaking, we are seated at the right hand of the Father. Ephesians 1:20 ‘which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places’.

‘He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him’ 2 Corinthians 5:21. Obviously all this is spiritually speaking. While we are here on earth in our natural bodies, we still deal with temptation and sin because of our minds and our natural bodies. The good thing is our spirit within, spiritually speaking, has been renewed and we now have become righteous and holy in God’s sight because of Jesus (Hebrews 10:14). What a fantastic gift of grace that Jesus has provided for us. Our part is to accept this great gift and take up our cross and daily follow Him.

We all know the physically, we live in this word in physical bodies and with minds that need to be renewed. But spiritually, our inner man was made new when we accepted Christ’s gift of grace through the cross. Our sinful nature, our sins past, present and future, were crucified with Christ and buried with Him. When He rose from the grave, it symbolizes us rising from a sinful nature to a new creature in Christ, holy and acceptable because of His grace (Ephesians 1:4).

We need to focus our thinking on this spiritual fact that we are now holy and righteous in God’s sight, we are seated with Christ in heaven at the right hand of the Father. We should fix our minds on things above and put our trust and hope in Christ who has purchased our salvation and given us the gift of grace.

Read Full Post »

I am becoming increasingly aware of the fact that I don’t want to be someone who is always against something.

Whatever that may be, against this sin or that sin, against particular lifestyles, against a particular denomination or Bible version, all the different ideas and subjects we Christians can get into that end up taking away our main focus….Christ.

Jesus told us in the New Covenant that His commands were to love God and love others.

We don’t have to agree with everyone to love them, we obviously all have our convictions of right and wrong and we aren’t expected to change or give them up. We don’t have to focus on those convictions or try to prove our reasoning to others. We are told to love others no matter what. We are not responsible for converting people, that is God’s job. We are told to love them.

When Jesus walked the earth, He didn’t spend a lot of time with the religious people. He was out with the sick, despised, neglected, and sinners of the day.

I know I did it for a long time, thought I was better than others because I went to church, felt I had to stay away from those who didn’t believe because their sins would rub off on me. I would always hang out with my church friends and stay away from the worldly people.

I would spend more time trying to prove my points and my beliefs, telling people what was wrong and what to stay away from, than the time I spent talking with God or reading His words.

Obviously God calls us to follow Him and that is going to be in different ways for each of us. But to spend more time arguing, condemning, trying to prove what we feel the Bible states, pointing out people’s mistakes and shortcomings, doesn’t really help.

When we begin to understand the freedom we have in Christ, and start living through grace that Christ provided, we can be free to love and accept all those we come in contact with each day. We can show them the love of Christ by allowing the Spirit to live through us.

Don’t worry so much about who is right and who is wrong. Don’t always be against something. Be for Jesus. Be for love. Take up your cross daily and follow Jesus. Let Him be the central focus of your life and allow His love to flow out of you and touch those around you.

Read Full Post »

2 Peter 2:9 – then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from temptation…

We all are bothered by temptation every day of our lives. No matter if we have been saved for years, or have just come to know God, temptation is always knocking at our door.

When we were saved by grace, our spirit was made new. Our spirit is now holy, righteous and perfect in God’s sight. Our body and mind are in a continual process of regeneration and sanctification. As we grow in Christ, read His words and allow the spirit to transform us, we grow and become more like Christ and more like our new spirit.

Remember, temptation is not a sin. God has given us the power to overcome the temptation and He always provides a way of escape.

When Jesus lived on earth, He also was tempted. Because of this, He knows how we feel. He knows the pressures we deal with and He knows how to help us through those temptations. He knows how to rescue us.

When temptation hits us, rather than trying to overcome it in our own way, we need to focus on Christ and depend on Him to provide us the strength to overcome. Only by grace and the strength we get from Christ can we overcome and live a life of victory.

Read Full Post »

Have you ever felt guilty because you didn’t say something to someone about Christ? Do you feel obligated to speak your mind about a particular sin? Do you feel it’s your duty as a Christian to force every opportunity into a chance to tell someone about salvation?

Quite frankly, I disagree with all of the above. I agree that some people have the gift of evangelism and should be using that gift to the fullest. I also feel that not all of us need to be forcing the issue with those we come in contact each day.

As Christians, we are told to love God with all our heart, soul, strength and mind, and love others as ourselves. When we live our lives each day under the guidance of the Holy Spirit and the love of God, the way we act will be a witness to God’s love.

Anyone can speak words…words of condemnation, words of how we should live for God, words against particular sins, but words themselves have no strength. It is the daily life we live allowing the love of God to show through that makes a difference. When we consistently live what we believe and say, it has more impact than thousands of words.

We need to remember that it’s the Holy Spirit that convicts and draws people to the Father. It is not our job to be condemning people and trying to prove to them that they are sinning against God.

God’s word says that we should live a quiet life, working with our hands and be ready to give an account of the hope that is within us.

1 Thessalonians 4:11, 12 – Do all you can to live a peaceful life. Take care of your own business, and do your own work as we have already told you. If you do, then people who are not believers will respect you, and you will not have to depend on others for what you need. (New Century Version).

1 Peter 3:15 – Through thick and thin, keep your hearts at attention, in adoration before Christ, your Master. Be ready to speak up and tell anyone who asks why you’re living the way you are, and always with the utmost courtesy (The Message).

Notice we are told to be ready to speak up when asked. Go about your daily routine, minding your business, living a peaceful life, but be ready at all times to give an answer about salvation and God’s love when someone asks. Only when the Holy Spirit is leading the opportunity and the words, will it make an impact on the person anyway.

By living this lifestyle, and not forcing our views on others, the words we say will have more meaning to those who are wondering what the hope is that we have within us.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

The Hippy Chic

Highlighting the meanderings and musings of my life in recovery

Life of a Prodigal

Searching for Truth outside the church walls

Salt, Light, Wash Feet Ministry

Loving our neighbors, forgiving our enemies, washing the feet of our brothers and sisters. We are self supported ministry devoted to being followers of Jesus Christ.

Welcome To The Party

All are invited

True Life Christianity

Offering Hope, Encouragement & Inspiration Through Jesus Christ (1 Peter 2:21)

Serendipitydodah

A place of unexpected discoveries and fortuitous happenstance

Standing on the Side of Love

A fine WordPress.com site

synchroblog

Diverse voices writing monthly articles about theological and spiritual topics.

LifeWalk

______________________ LIFE, FAITH, ETCETERA

tiahisaword.wordpress.com/

The Issue at Hand is a word, and that word is "gospel."

Light-bites For Your Heart

Seeing God's wisdom shine through every circumstance

The Sons are Free

Matthew 17:26

Love Fueled Church

Moved by Love to Serve the Body of Christ

Grain of Wheat

Jesus said, "Unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies it produces much grain."

Matthew Winters (Honest Thoughts from a Pastor)

The life, ministry, & thoughts of a Christ-follower, husband, dad, & minister

Red Letter Publications

Trade in your religion, for a relationship.

What God May Really Be Like - Misbeliefs About God

To non-religious spiritual pursuers and my kids (Click FOLLOW for future Posts; See ABOUT/USING THIS SITE tab to navigate Site)

%d bloggers like this: