If we are truly in Christ, if we have repented (turned away from our sins) and put our trust in Jesus Christ’s sacrifice for our sins, and His resurrection from the grave to deliver us from the power of sin and death, and simply obey His teachings, we should not be struggling with sin.
I make this bold proclamation on the basis of many scriptures, and I am firmly convinced that when we struggle with lust, or envy, or selfishness, it is because we are literally believing lies Satan has/is whispering in our minds.
Quick reminders from Jesus before I go deep with you:
And he said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you. Nevertheless, do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.” (Luke 10:18-20)
“You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies (John 8:44)
When we sin as born-again disciples of Jesus Christ, it is only for one reason: we have walked away from the Truth.
So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” (John 8:31, 32, 34-36)
Many of us professing Christians in America are believing false gospels. They’re quite subtle, they sound close to the truth, but they are not the truth. If Jesus just said those who sin are slaves and won’t “stay in the house forever” that is, go to heaven, but only the sons will—those who are “free indeed” from the power of sin—then we really need to contemplate what gospel we have believed. I guarantee you, the majority believe this gospel:
“We are all sinners. Christ came and died for sinners. If we confess and say a prayer, we will be “saved” from hell and get to go to heaven. However, we will still struggle and sin, but God will always forgive us no matter what.”
This is false doctrine. Jesus Himself just said everyone who commits sin is a slave of sin, and that sinners will not live with Him forever. He also said that His true disciples remain in His Word, and that the Truth of His Word sets them free. 1 John 3:8 says Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil, that is, Jesus came to destroy sin. He didn’t die, resurrect, and then give us His Holy Spirit just so we can keep struggling with sin! That’s nonsense! It doesn’t even make sense! If that were the case, all of these verses will be contradictory lies:
“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13)
“For this purpose also I labor, striving according to His power, which mightily works within me.”-Colossians 1:29
“For who has understood the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ. (1 Corinthians 2:16)
If being born-again in Christ and being filled with His Spirit meant we would still struggle with sin, then the verses should read: “I can do almost all things through Christ who gives me strength,” or “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength—except stop sinning completely.” Or “I labor with Christ’s strength that is not all-powerful and so it only works sorta powerfully within me.”
And if we have the mind of Christ, does Christ lust after women or men? Does he desire to watch porn, or lie, or cheat, or cuss? If we have His mind, will we think perverted thoughts? Of course we wouldn’t! Christ is perfectly pure and holy, completely sinless. This is why the Bible says we are blameless in Christ. If someone sins, are they without blame? That’s contradictory, is it not?
You might say, “But Natasha, what about these pastors and great men and women of God who end up sinning and fall away from the faith. Were they never saved?”
To that I reply, we can, at any moment, choose to walk away from Christ. When we become disciples of Jesus, that doesn’t mean we turn into robots without free-will. That is why the bible warns many times for Christians to “endure to the end,” to “stand firm” to “persevere” to “resist Satan.” God wants devoted followers, not short-lived ones; how will they be able to remain faithful for all eternity if they can’t for their short stay on earth? Hence, this rebuke and exhortation from Jesus:
“And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write, ‘These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God: “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth. Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’—and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked— I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.” (Revelation 3:14-21)
“Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.” (Matthew 7:13, 14)
Like I said previously, many Americans believe the false gospel that we are still going to sin after Christ has cleansed us and given us a new heart and mind, and His very own Holy Spirit. Why do you think mega churches are so mega? They’re buildings with lots of sinners who “have a form of godliness but deny its power.” (2 Timothy 3:5)
Actually, many mega churches sound a lot like this:
“For of this sort are those who creep into households and make captives of gullible women loaded down with sins, led away by various lusts, always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now as Jannes and Jambres resisted Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, disapproved concerning the faith; but they will progress no further, for their folly will be manifest to all, as theirs also was.” (2 Timothy 3:6-9)
And then Paul says immediately following:
“But you have carefully followed my doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, longsuffering, love, perseverance, persecutions, afflictions, which happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystra—what persecutions I endured. And out of them all the Lord delivered me. Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution. But evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived. But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them, and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. (II Timothy 3:6-15)
How many mega church pastors get persecuted for living a godly life? Instead, everyone loves them and they have lots of fans and followers, only to later get caught committing adultery or being greedy for money.
Paul is telling us what Jesus already has: the Scriptures are sufficient! They set us free from the lies of man, and the lies of satan, so that we may be “wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.”
Listen to the Truth:
“Once you were alienated and hostile in your minds because of your evil actions. But now He has reconciled you by His physical body through His death, to present you holy, faultless, and blameless before Him — if indeed you remain grounded and steadfast in the faith and are not shifted away from the hope of the gospel that you heard. This gospel has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and I, Paul, have become a servant of it.” (Colossians 1:21-23)
Beloved by God, I want you to notice five words in the above passage: “once you were” and “but now.”
You see saints, at one point—in the past—before you trusted in Christ as Lord and Savior, your minds were hostile, but now Christ has reconciled you. You are a NEW person in Christ, meaning you have a NEW mind and a NEW heart. The old has passed away!
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” (2 Corinthians 5:17)
“And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules.” (Ezekiel 36:26, 27)
So tear down the lies you have believed in!
“For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:3-5)
“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” (Romans 12:2)
“If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. On account of these the wrath of God is coming. In these you too once walked, when you were living in them. But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator. Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all. Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.” (Colossians 3:1-16)
And this is what I pray for all of you:
“And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, that you may approve the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ, being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.” (Philippians 1:9-11)
“For this reason also, since the day we heard this, we haven’t stopped praying for you. We are asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding, so that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to Him, bearing fruit in every good work and growing in the knowledge of God. May you be strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for all endurance and patience, with joy giving thanks to the Father, who has enabled you to share in the saints’ inheritance in the light. He has rescued us from the domain of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of the Son He loves.” (Colossians 1:9-13)
If you need to repent and want some prayer support and encouragement, please feel free to email me at betterthanedward(at)live.com
I love you and I’m praying for you,