Faith Baptist Church
4258 Botetourt Road
Fincastle, Virginia 24090
One of the major obstacles to reaching spiritual maturity, and living a successful Christian life is overcoming the influence of sin in our lives.
I. The Existence of Sin.
Sin ruins fellowship, joy, and production in phase II of the C.W.L
1. Present - I Jn.1:10
2. Persistent - I Jn.1:9 confess is in the present tense in the Greek denoting constant awareness of the possibility for needing confession.
3. Pretender - I Jn.1:8 we deceive ourselves in saying we do not sin, we pretend our sin is not a sin. A callous slowly desensitizes the conscience and what was once wrong is somehow right. Know your trends toward sinning, and stay vigilant.
4. Painful - Prov.13:15 “Good understanding giveth favor, but the way of the transgressor is hard.”
Sin never deposits goodness and joy in our lives; it simply takes withdrawals out of the bank of our souls and leaves us empty.
5. Preventive - Ps.119:11 Never underestimate the influence of God’s Word on your conscience. God’s righteousness stands at the door of your heart, and with you having on the whole armor of God you can defeat the enemy at the gate of your soul.
II. Putting Your Sin to Rest .
1. Phil.3:13 Assign your confessed sins to oblivion. God has forgiven you via I Jn.1:9.
Part of grace orientation is realizing and accepting the fact that you depend on God to forgive you, and cleanse you. Do not dig up old sins.
The fact that you are still here on the earth, after you as a believer have sinned, is testimony enough of the faithfulness of God.
God knows even the bravest of saints, ex. Simon Peter, Moses, Abraham, Elijah, King David, John the Baptist, Mary, and so many more all failed because we are all of the earth, and we are all crippled by the influence of sin.
Yet God does not throw in the towel and pull us out of the race just because we fail Him. He restores us and puts us back out to run the race set before us.
His plans for his children factor in our failures, even though as King David, the sorrow never left his household due to his sins, II Sam.12-22.
Moses did not enter into the promised land, Num.20:7-12, because he disobeyed God before the people in striking the rock twice instead of speaking to it as God ordered.
God knows our faith has to grow, and in times of testing and trials sometimes we cave in to our old sin nature. We become fainthearted and at times as did Moses, we complained to the Lord in our frustration.
He disciplines us as he sees fit and only if we persist in disobedience does he turn up the heat with intense discipline, I Cor.11:27-32.
So, if you find yourself giving up because you think you have failed God on too may occasions, think again.
You are still alive, and you still have positive volition at your immediate beckoning.
When God gives up on you as his child, then he will take you home. So this is a lesson we can all learn today.
How earnestly do you want to do the right thing for the Lord, whatever it is, i.e. commit yourself to more Bible study, and get control over a bad habit or victory over a nagging sin?
The answer lies in your own determination and free will, a free will to yield to the leading of the Holy Spirit, Gal.5:16 “This I say then, walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.” The flesh refers to the old sin nature.
My message to you today is to gorge yourself on Bible Doctrine so much so that daily, not once a week, but daily taking in the Word of God you are more influenced and encouraged to stay the course when so many are giving up or simply playing Christianity without ever knowing the joy of the Lord.
To defeat the old sin nature we need to develop effective strategies. We must be changed in order to gain ground on our sinful trends.
1. Soak up B.D on a daily basis, Ps.119:11. If we intend to win the battle between the flesh and the Spirit we need God’s ammunition. We cannot will ourselves into God’s good pleasure. It takes Divine intervention to overcome an earthly trend.
Ps.119:11 Thy Word have I hidden in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.”
Rom.7:24-25 “Oh wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death? I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord, So then, with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh, the law of sin.”
2. Be controlled with the Holy Spirit, Eph.5:18.
Confession of known sin keeps the believer in fellowship with God, I Jn.1:9, “If we confess [ name or cite] our sins he [ God] is faithful and just [ because of the cross] to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Keep your sin accounts short. When you realize you have sinned, confess it immediately. When sin goes unchecked it calls on other sins to join in on the invasion of your soul. Sin is the enemy at the gate of your temple, the place reserved for the Savior. Protect your spiritual house.
3. Keep away from the things which make you vulnerable to your trend. I Thess.5:22 “Abstain from all appearance of evil.”
This is a [ Present, Middle, Imperative ], verb in the Greek which is translated to say it is up to the believer to continuously participate in the command to keep away from all forms of wickedness.
James says..Jm.4:7-8 “Submit yourselves, therefore unto God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near unto God, and he will draw near to you.”
4. Be tough on yourself when tempted. I Cor.9:27 Paul saw his nature to sin as an enemy which uses the body to render him unapproved in God’s service. He said I will buffet my body and as a victor who has conquered the enemy I will bring it under submission to my Lord.
5. Believe you can resist temptation and glorify God in doing so.
I Cor.10:13 ; Ps.18:2; Prov.1:33 compare. Resident Bible doctrine; truth in the soul, becomes your fortress wherein you abide in the dark hour of temptation. Go to the Rock of your salvation. Ps.62:1 “From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed; lead me to the Rock that is higher than I.”
6. Believe in the prize awaiting you at the Judgment Seat of Christ.
James 1:12 “ Blessed is the man that endureth temptation; for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.”
What a wonderful day that will be when we receive this crown. This crown will represent untold blessings for you, the believer in heaven, because of your submission to God in time.