Sunday, January 25, 2009

Victory Over Sin

Lie: I Cannot Walk In Consistent Victory Over Sin

More than half of the women we surveyed acknowledged that they had bought into the lie that they could not live in consistent victory over sin. It is easy to see how Satan uses this lie to place believers in bondage.
Romans 7:21-24 [says] any person who is a true child of God has been given a new nature – a nature that desires to obey God. Deep down, every true believer wants to live a life that is pleasing to God.
However, according to the Scripture, even after we are born again, our “flesh” (our natural inclinations) continues to wage war against the Spirit of God living within us.

The Spirit says: Forgive.
The flesh says: Hold a grudge.

The Spirit says: Be temperate.
The flesh says: Eat whatever you want, whenever you feel like it.

The Spirit says: Give that money to someone in need.
The flesh says: Spend that money on yourself.

The Spirit says: Spend some time in the Word and prayer.
The flesh says: You’ve had a long day; chill out in front of the TV for the evening.

The Spirit says: Hold your tongue. What you are about to say is not kind or necessary.
The flesh says: Tell it like it is!

Every time we choose to give in to the flesh, rather than yielding to the Spirit of God, we allow sin to gain mastery over us. On the other hand, every time we say yes to the Spirit, we give Him greater control of our lives.
When we make repeated choices to obey sin rather than God, we establish habit patterns that are extremely difficult to break – we choose to live as sin’s slaves. For a while, we may find ourselves trying to do right, then failing, trying and failing, trying and failing. That is when the devil begins to convince us that it can never be any different, that we will always be enslaved to that sinful habit. We think, What’s the use? I’m just going to blow it again! I’m going to be defeated by this for the rest of my life. So we give up. What has happened? Satan has succeeded in making us believe we cannot walk in consistent victory over temptation and sin.

Remember that what we believe determines the way we live. If we believe we are going to sin, then we will. If we believe we have to live in bondage, then we will. If we believe that we can’t live victorious lives, we won’t.
The Truth is, you and I are powerless to change ourselves, for “Apart from me,” Jesus said, “you can do nothing” (John 15:5).
So what are we to do? How can we be set free from habitual sin? It is the Truth that sets us free.
The Truth is, through Christ’s finished work on the cross, we can live in victory over sin; Satan is no longer our master, and we no longer have to live as slaves to sin. If you are in Christ, the Truth is:
You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness… Through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.
– Romans 6:18; 8:2

The Truth is we are not slaves to sin. Through Christ we have been set free from sin.

John 8:31-32: To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, "If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."

Romans 6:6-7: For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin— because anyone who has died has been freed from sin.

Galatians 5:1: It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.

Hebrews 10:10: And by that will, we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.

The Truth is that by God’s grace and through the finished work of Christ on the cross, I can experience victory over sin.

John 15:5: I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.

1 Corinthians 6:9-11: Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

Galatians 2:20: I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

Galatians 5:22-25: But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.

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