Tuesday, July 4, 2023

Sin and Temptation

 Tuesday, July 4 2023 Some material taken from What Do We Do When We Mess Up? by John Strappazon

 If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us. 1 John 1:8-10

Sin and Temptation

Everybody sins. In fact, we are born with a sin nature. Sin comes natural to us. As Satan brought sin to Adam and Eve in the Garden, we inherit that desire to sin. Even when we have the best intentions, we have to fight against the desires that do not honor God. Paul understood this - Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst. 1 Timothy 1:15 

Even as Christians we still mess up at times. 1 John 1:8 says If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. What exactly is sin? 1 john 5:17 tells us that All wrongdoing is sin. 

Sin is about our relationship with God. It is doing things that go against God’s commands and His Word. Sin is about us doing what we want to do over what God says we should do. We doubt His goodness and wisdom and like to make our own decisions based on what we want instead of what His word says. Sin separates us from God. When we are separated from Him, we cease to thrive in the abundant life He gives. No sin is worth that. In Him is where we find life, abundant life. Our relationship with Him offers so much more abundance than any sin ever will, although it promises it will. This is the deception of the father of lies – Satan.  

Temptation is not sin. We are all tempted. In fact, Satan knows what tempts us and will try to trip us up. He cannot snatch us out of God’s hand, but he can try to take our focus off God. God has already conquered everything that tempts us. When we feel tempted, we have to immediately turn it over to Him. When we choose not to do that, we are choosing to sin. We are not alone in being tempted. Just as we are all sinners, we all face temptation, and what’s more, Christ has also been tempted in the same ways we are. 

No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. 1Corinthians 10:13

We know that God forgives us when we confess and repent. Does that mean we should sin because we know He will forgive us? Absolutely not. That is abuse of God’s grace. Jesus became human in order to pay the debt for our sin. He suffered and died in our place, and thereby stilled God’s wrath. Whoever believes in Jesus, is saved from the guilt and power of sin and from God’s wrath. 

Sin does have consequences. God can forgive us from sin, but we usually still have to pay some earthly consequences – fines, broken relationships, job loss, etc. Jesus took the wrath from God for our sin and in return, He offers us the gift of salvation and eternal life – a gift for all who choose to receive. It's not hopeless. We will be tempted at times and we will fail because we are human... but God. He made a way for us with His own son on a cross, who defeated sin and death for us. He paid it all and we are free in Him.

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in[b] Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23

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