Jan. 1, 2020

What It Means...

... To Be A Christian In Christ

Understanding the Root of Sin, and How to Overcome it...

The Hebrew and Greek translation for sin is offense. In the garden of Eden Adam and Eve committed sin: offended God by not keeping His commandment not to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. In the context of the Bible, sin separates a person from God. God gave the ten commandments to Moses to protect His people from sin. The problem was that God’s people, on their own could not keep the commandments of God. Therefore God sent his only begotten Son to earth as a man; yet at the same time God also in order that they may be able to keep God‘s Commandments through Christ the God-man living in them as taught in the gospel of Christ. Spiritually understanding the gospel is of primary importance. We will look at three elements to this understanding that many times are overlooked or not perceived by the carnal mind.

Overcoming Sin (separation from God) By:

1. Spiritual Hearing, Seeing and Doing

Adam and Eve took of the tree of sin because it was appealing to their eyes (carnal senses) (Gn 3:6). We learn through Paul that the carnal mind is the enemy of God (Rm 8:7-9) and cannot possess spiritual hearing, seeing, and doing apart from being BORN AGAIN FROM ABOVE by the Spirit of God (Jn 3:3-6). Jesus also taught if we presume to have spiritual site, yet do not, we remain in our sin (Jn 9:39-41). Jesus also taught that his true sheep are able to hear his voice, which means understand his teaching (Jn 10). Jesus would say: “He who has ears to hear let him hear” (Mt 11:15). Jesus speaking through John says: “He who has an ear let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches“ (Rev 2:29). In Proverbs we read: “Without a vision (Revelation knowledge of God) my people perish, for words alone will not correct them“ (Prov 29:18-19). Paul underscored this in his letter to the Ephesians (Eph 1:16-23) This demonstrates that the believer must become awakened to the Holy Spirit and live in the light of God as Paul taught in (Eph 5:8-21). Paul also in this regard stressed the need for Christ to be formed in us (Ga 4:19). Jesus taught that we must continually ask, seek, and knock for the Holy Spirit (Lk 11:9-13).

2. Walking in the Light / Spirit

“If we walk in the light as God is in the light we will not fulfill the lust of the flesh” (1 Jn 1:7-9). This means that after we have been reborn by God’s Spirit we have the power of God to live through Him and not of ourselves according to the gospel (Rm 1:16-17, 6:1-11, 1 Co 15). This is a journey: an ongoing process, asPaul said: “I press towards the mark of the high calling in Christ Jesus (Phil 3:14). We will have the ability to overcome our fleshly nature because through the gospel we become a new creation in God (2 Co 5:8, 17), Christ in us is our hope of glory (Col 1:27). Paul taught that if we walk in the S pirit, we will not fulfill the lust of the flesh (Ga 5:16-26). “He that overcomes shall inherit all things; and I will be his God (Rev 21:7-9). The problem is that most people love the darkness more than the light (Jn 3:19). This is why we must seek the narrow way which leads to life, but few find.

3. Walking The  Narrow Way

The easy gospel that so many modern preachers preach today is far removed from the gospel of Christ. Many today say: “Just believe by inviting Jesus into your heart and you will be saved.” That would be nice if it were true but the problem is that this broad way that many follow today, according to Jesus is the broad way that leads to spiritual destruction and death. Jesus taught that the way into the kingdom of heaven is through persevering prayer and entering through the narrow gate which leads to life, and there are a few find it. (Mt 7:7-14). Jesus told his followers to beware of false prophets. You will know them by their fruits, which means that they demonstrate the life of Christ and the cross of the gospel, and that they preach this gospel to the church.He said that not everyone who says to Him “Lord Lord“, shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of God in heaven. The Lord taught us to pray that his will would be done on earth as it is in heaven (Mt 6:10).  He will tell those who do not do His will to depart from Him (Mt 7:15-23).

The only way that our faith can be on a firm foundation is to hear and do Jesus’ teachings (Mt 7:24-29). Many Christians say that this is impossible to do, but Jesus told His followers that we are to be perfect even as our heavenly Father is perfect (Mt 5:48). It is true of that with man alone, by his own abilities, this is impossible, but Jesus assures us that with God all things are possible (Mt 19:26). In Jesus’ high priestly prayer we learn that eternal life is only gained by knowing God in the sense of being one with Him (Jn 17).

© George Blasy. Used by permission.