Monday, September 30, 2013

Reason Not To Sin - "I'm saved"

I was out of town for the weekend so haven't gotten a new post together. In the meantime, here's a quick thought on the current topic.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Reason Not To Sin - 1 Peter 1:18-19 - Redeemed!

knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.

1 Peter 1:18-19, NASB

Why not sin?
(1) Because you have been redeemed. Bought back out of slavery to sin. The price paid wasn't ten bucks. it was the highest price: Jesus Christ, Son of God! Can you imagine how filthy the world must look to God? Picture the earth, shrouded in darkness of sin, hanging in the darkness of space, with but one pinprick of light on the surface. That would be Jesus. He perfectly did what is right and good. How precious He must have been to the Father! Such a precious lamb, He poured out his life on the cross.

(2) That way of life is futile. 1 Peter 4:3 says that within our lifetime we have already experienced enough of the desires of "the gentiles," in lusts and everything else. Was it fully satisfying? No, it was the same thing over and over. We may have hoped for a different, better result each time, but instead it just trapped us further in sin. No one has ever found satisfaction in sin throughout all history. It's empty and like trying to grasp the wind. Only God is the source of unending pleasure! See Psalm 16:11!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Reason Not To Sin - 1 Peter 1:16-17 - Like the Father, Strangers in the World

Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy. And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man's work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear:1Pet 1:16-17, KJV

Why not sin?

(1) To be like our Father. Verse 17 is almost saying, "Well, you're the one who calls God Father. Act like it, then." You claim Him as your Father, who begot you anew. Just as a child exhibits characteristics both inherited and learned from his parents, we too have, from our Father, an ability to do what's right, but we also must learn to do what's right. Since our Father is holy, it's fitting that we should also be holy: apart from sin like Jesus was.

In contrast to the Holy Father, God, we have our surroundings: the world. The more we grow to be like God, the more out of place we will feel in this world. Which brings us to the next point.

(2) You don't belong here. We are called exiles or sojourners (ESV, KJV). "This world is not my home, I'm just a-passing through." That song is right! The saying, "When in Rome, do as the Romans" does not apply to us! Though we are in the world, we must not act like the world because it is corrupted and fit only for burning (1 John 2:17, 2 Peter 3:10). Let us not act like those who are headed for that condemnation since we have been saved from that doom!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Reason Not To Sin - 1 Peter 1:15 - Called by God

but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct
1 Peter 1:15, ESV

Why not sin?

We were called by God. He has a purpose for us, not to subject us to slavery and things we don't want to do (Rom 8:15). Rather, He has a purpose that makes us free and joyful. When sin entered the world, man and nature were subjected to vanity (Rom 8:20), but God's goal for you now is not vanity but fulness in Christ (Col 2:10). "He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it." (1 Thess 5:23-24, Phil 1:6).

What a hope we have! What grace to be brought to us at the revelation of Jesus Christ (1 Pet 1:13)!

God will surely do this independent of you, but you won't find joy in God's commands of holiness unless you consider Him faithful who promised, as Sarah did (Heb 11:11)—you won't find power to sanctify yourself or stay away from sin unless you trust in God's power and purpose of holiness during each temptation.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Reason Not To Sin - 1 Peter 1:14

As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:
1 Peter 1:14, KJV

Why not sin?

First, let me ask: do you or don't you want to be obedient? You may go through a time when you know what is right but aren't ready to do it. But if you do have a desire somewhere inside you to eventually submit and obey God, consider this: the lusts in which you may indulge—however heinous or not—are things associated with ignorance. Ignorance of God and ignorance of the soul-damaging characteristic of sin. But you are not now ignorant

Or do you not know the love of God that sought you out long before you were born, that died on the cross for the sins which you may even now entertain? All your sins were still in the future when Jesus gave up His life for you. You are now fully accepted. You are brand new, created according to new things! So don't fashion yourself according to old lusts!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Reason Not To Sin - 1 Peter 1:13

Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
1 Peter 1:13, KJV

Why not sin?

There is a grace to be brought to us at the revelation of Jesus Christ. When Christ appears, we shall be like him, 1 John 3:2 says. That's quite a grace! Right now we have tendencies to sin. On that day, however—no longer! So we are told to "perfectly hope" upon that grace. Think of what you will be! And it is God's love and grace that will bring that to pass without fail. 1 John 3:3 says that those who thus hope purify themselves. You can't think of sinning if you are in love with the God who will transform you into the likeness of Christ when he is revealed.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Reason Not To Sin - 1 Peter 1:3

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead...
1 Peter 1:3, NASB

Why not sin?
(1) God exercised great mercy towards us! Our sins incurred a debt and didn't we come to God for mercy? All of God's wrath was upon us, who were sons of disobedience and not of sons God. But, "God, be merciful to me, a sinner," we cried like the tax collector in Luke 18:13, and God forgave all our sins. How can we sin with God's great, unconditional love on our side? (See Romans 8:31-39)

(2) We are born again, no longer defined by our Adamic birth and corrupted flesh. This is confirmed for us eternally because Jesus still is risen from the dead. Romans 6 explains we were crucified with Christ—dying to the corrupt rule of sin—and we were raised with Him to walk in new life. 1 Peter 1:3 indicates Jesus’ resurrection also was the moment of a new birth for us, where we come into God’s world as His children, according to His nature instead of that of Adam. Psalm 2:7 was quoted in Acts 13:33, clearly meaning that when God the Father said to the Son, “This day have I begotten thee,” it referred to the resurrection from the dead. So it makes sense that, if Jesus was birthed from the tomb, going from death to life, thereby being proclaimed to be the Son of God and proving to be of a divine birth; so we too have gone from death to life with Christ. Thus we are children of God. As children, we have His likeness indelibly within us; yet we must grow into that likeness as a child, who, though he looks like his parents and has their genetic makeup, must be trained and raised to be conformed to their will through obedience.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

More Than One Resurrection Going On Here!

Resurrection of Behavior

The verse in the header of this blog (Romans 8:10-11) has been a favorite of mine since I "discovered" it five years ago. It's a promise from God that, though our bodies still have a principle of sin in them, we, having been made alive to God, now have power at our disposal to choose not to sin and instead do right. What kind of power is that? Check it out in Ephesians 1:19-20. The power is the same that raised Christ from the dead! Wow! What power is greater than that?

Does sin have greater power than that? No. Nothing does. That's what I find encouraging. If we have a very small desire to rise above sin in our lives, all of God's power is available for us, and it is HE who wields it to a practical, day-to-day "resurrection" from sinful habits!

Resurrection of Blog

The other resurrection going on here is that of this blog, which I haven't used in about five years. As the Lord allows, I plan to post frequent, brief devotionals on Bible verses, applying truths of God's love to our day-to-day "striving against sin" (Heb. 12:4). This series will be called "Reasons Not to Sin."

I welcome your comments on the posts. Let us "exhort one another daily, while it is called "today," lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin." (Heb. 3:13)

If we set our minds on God's love for us in Christ, sin will lose it's appeal. I pray that the God will graciously  use the upcoming posts for your encouragement and growth. 

Now to Him who is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, [what kind of power? RESURRECTION power] to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen. (Ephesians 3:20-21)