“…the author and finisher of our faith.” (Hebrews 12:2)
In this day and age, it is easy to get our eyes on all of the chaos that surrounds us and lose sight of the fact that we are the children of the LIVING GOD!
Even the modern-day religious organizations (along with all of the self-proclaimed prophets and apostles) would have us get our eyes on them and become reliant upon their every word, tradition and pronouncements … bringing us into subjection.
But Jesus Christ is NOT a religion … He’s a PERSON!
And He’s ALIVE and ABIDES within us!
“…and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.” (1 John 2:27)
Though the topic of sin is not the prime objective of this article, it is an integral part in understanding the workings of the Holy Spirit in our relationship with Christ.
So, using the topic of “sin” as an example, sin has been the object of religious indoctrination which promotes the idea that Christians who “sin” somehow live outside the truth of God’s promises. No matter from what corner this is preached, the expounders of such only succeed in placing believers under the burden of guilt and condemnation for allegedly “failing” in their walk with Christ. But it certainly doesn’t bring any actual healing or victory to those who are struggling to mature in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Please consider Hebrews 8:10-11.
“For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people: And they shall not teach every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest. For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.”
Though this is technically a promise to the future house of Israel (of which we are grafted into), as Christians we have become partakers of that New Covenant right now. And, as such, we can embrace the promise that:
“As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.” (Psalms103:12)
As it is also written:
“He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all (our) sins into the depths of the sea.” (Micah 7:19)
Notice it is God who will SUBDUE our iniquities and NOT we ourselves. Many a Christian has thought that through enough motivation and determination they could “will” themselves into perfection. But they eventually fall flat on their faces in discouragement due to the nature of their flesh.
Which brings us full circle back to “looking unto Jesus”!
Every true Christian desires to have total victory over the “besetting” sin in their lives. But this is an impossible task to achieve in the flesh. There’s only ONE way to victory:
“Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.” (Galatians 5:16)
But that instantly brings to mind: “OK … great! How do we walk in the Spirit?”
As Shakespeare wrote in Hamlet Act 1, Scene 3:
“Aye! There’s the rub!”
But, actually, the answer is quite simple:
“For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous. For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.” (1John 5:3-4)
“Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?” (1John 5:5)
When you truly became born again, you received the Spirit of Christ within you. And that very same Spirit “sanctifies you wholly”, “cleanses you from all sin” [because the blood of Christ resides in the Spirit … Hebrews 9:14], “guides you into all truth”, “shows you things to come”, “teaches you all things” and quietly speaks to your new, inner man which is NOW holy and perfect before God in Christ and is INCAPABALE of sin (1 John 3:9)!
“For by one offering he hath PERFECTED for ever them that are SANCTIFIED [meaning you as a NEW CREATURE in Christ].” (Hebrews 10:24)
As we walk by faith in the promises of God that are found in the Word of God and that are inscribed by the Spirit upon our hearts, we learn to become obedient to that still, small voice within us. Thus, we automatically subdue the “works of the flesh” and “perfect holiness in the fear of God” without even realizing it!
But what of those “sins which so easily beset us”?
We are not under the Old Testament which would separate us from God every time our outward man (i.e. the old nature) causes us to falter, but under the New Covenant which completely delivers and heals us from all evil within and without.
Paul admonished the believers of his day:
“What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid. ” (Romans 6:15)
“How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?” (Romans 6:2)
Well, guess what! We won’t live any longer therein! Do you know why?
Because now we have a Father who truly loves and cares for us even as He loved His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ!
“Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared; Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him” (Hebrews 5:7-9)
How does this apply to us? Well we…
“…have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin. And (we) have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto (us) as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.” (Hebrews 12:4-6)
“If (we) endure chastening, God dealeth with (us) as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not … For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness.” (Hebrews 12:7,10)
“Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.” (1John 3:2)
For Christians, it’s no longer a question of “salvation”, but of “maturing” into the fullness of Christ through the transforming work of the Word of God and our praying in the Holy Ghost as we worship the Father in Spirit and in truth.
“But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost, Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.” (Jude 1:20-21)
God will NEVER leave us nor forsake us … no matter what our inward or outward condition might be.
If we encounter problems inwardly within our hearts and minds (i.e. the carnal man), He will but chasten us by way of instruction that we may humble ourselves to His perfect will:
“… for God resisteth the proud, (but) giveth grace to the humble.” (1Peter 5:5)
If we encounter problems outwardly according to the course and chaos of this world, then…
“…the Lord shall deliver (us) from every evil work, and will preserve (us) unto his heavenly kingdom” (2Timothy 4:18)
“…ears shall hear a word behind (us), saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when (we) turn to the right hand, and when (we) turn to the left.” (Isaiah 30:21)
So, remember, no matter what your circumstances may be (physical, mental, emotional, spiritual), Jesus Christ is not only the “author” of your faith, but more importantly, the FINISHER! And He will…
“…perfect that which concerneth (you)” (Psalms 138:8)
Since His Spirit abides within you, you can HEAR His voice and thereby be LED by the Spirit in ANY scenario or condition in which you find yourself.
“… when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers.” (John 10:4-5)
It’s important to realize that the preceding promise holds true whether it be things in the natural or spiritual … whether they be things in our minds or things in the world. God is ever present to speak to our hearts and deliver us from any and all evil! We need only to obey His voice in full assurance of faith.
That’s walking in the Spirit!
“Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.” (Jude 1:24-25)
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