WIN AGAINST SIN
How long have you been living with the notion that you, Christ-follower, can’t win against sin? Can your sins be conquered? John makes it clear that Christ-followers do not have to sin. “I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin.” (1 John 2:1)
Here’s the secret to having victory over your sin—“walk in the light” (1 John 1:7). To be open, honest, and sincere is what it means to walk in the light. It was Paul who prayed in Philippians 1:10 that his friends might “be sincere and without offense.” The word sincere is from two Latin words, sine and cera, which mean “without wax.” In the days of the Roman sculptors they would cover up their mistakes by filling in the defects of their marble statues with wax, which was unnoticeable until the statue had been exposed to the hot sun for a while. It was the more reputable sculptors who made sure that during the sale their customers knew that their statues were sine ceru —without wax.
Churches and Bible study classes are filled with insincere folks whose lives cannot stand to be tested by God’s light. “God is light,” and when you walk in the light, there is nothing you can hide. To walk in the light means to be sincere with God, with yourself and with others. Stop the masquerade! When the light reveals your sin immediately confess it to God and claim His forgiveness. And if your sin brings harm to another, ask for their forgiveness too.
There is something else— walking in light also means obeying God’s Word. In 1 John 2:3-4 it says, “By this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. Whoever says "I know him" but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him.” To walk in the light of God means to spend time daily in God’s Word. It is here where you discover His will and then obey what He tells you. “Your word is a lamp to my feel and a light to my path.” (Psalm 119:105)
Being obedient to God’s Word is proof of your love for Him. There are three motives for obedience. You can obey because you have to, you can obey because you need to, or you can obey because you want to. As children we obeyed our parents because we had to. If we didn’t obey, we were spanked! (May not be a politically correct thing to say, but it’s biblical). As we grew up we discovered that obedience meant enjoyment and reward so we started obeying because it met certain needs in our lives. And it was a sign of real growth and maturity when we started obeying because of love.
Baby Christ-followers must constantly be warned or rewarded for obedience to take root. Mature Christ-followers obey God’s Word simply because they love Him. Where are you on the growth chart? (Continued Next Week)