Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Living Beyond Sin

I have a goal in life...live in the Spirit of Christ.

Within that goal are smaller objectives that support the goal. These include but are not limited to helping our family maintain and further develop in the love in Christ amongst us; help a family of believers in the Lord with whom my wife and I fellowship do the same; make friends and extend the deep heart of God in reconciliation with those I know but who do not know Him, and so it goes.

Examining my own life and observing the real world around me has been a continual classroom of learning. Class should teach facts, principles of the topic under study, known solutions to obstacles of those principles, analysis skills appropriate to the topic, and applications of knowledge and evaluations of outcomes which expand knowledge and establish confidence within the topic and beyond.

I've learned there is an obstacle to achieving the stated goal above, which must constantly be navigated.

The sinful nature of humans. Were it not for this obstacle, it would be a perfect world.

In wrestling with my sin nature over the years, I have pondered the questions of the last post often. I think all the answers are described in our Scriptures--Thank You, God!--we must simply apply faith to walk in the Truth of those answers. postmodern redneck responded to the last post with a clear summation of the work of "grace" in "sanctification" or for the uninitiated in theological terms: God's grace is His being willing to approach our sinful souls which are so alien to His perfection and move to help us, which leads us in the decision to separate and walk away from our natural inclination to live the habits and practices of the fallen world around us. This becomes a continuing process into ever-increasing levels of holiness.

Hmmm..."Holiness" there's a theological term that has ripped up more than one group of Christians. Some groups even take on this term exactly as part of a name. I won't even start on the lack of faith inherent in the naming of groups!

Back to sin or the opposite state of holiness.

Perhaps our greatest real problem is that we deal with sin in a sinful manner. Jesus said, "It is finished," on the cross. He meant His work on earth, and that means He had defeated God's enemy, Satan, who would no longer be able to enslave with sin humans who receive that completed work of grace.

Did you hear any fatalism in the account of the last post in which a pastor says to his flock, we only have a choice of what sin will be ours?

Monday, June 28, 2010

Never Specifically Answered the Questions

I proposed the following questions back in February
as I contemplated writing on sin generally and
homosexuality specifically:

If all our sins are so completely covered that we do
not fear any judgment from God, what should we feel
and do about our failures of sin?

Are there degrees of response to sin such that
some sins are never overcome, and therefore,
we must live with them believing that God ultimately forgives all?

Do Christians live in sin before God and simply
apply the truth of the grace of God, trusting in His forgiveness,
as if He winks at our state?

What is the dividing line between sinning to
the point of being reprobate and struggling
with sin as evidenced by falling into it...even falling often...
yet being forgiven?

How does the struggle against sin figure
into our corporate commitment to piety or holiness?

What is sanctification?

I know of a pastor speaking from the pulpit recently
who told his listeners that the only choice we had as
believers was which sin. He was speaking in context on
the futility of the human paradigm and the predisposition
of the fall of man into sin precipitated
byAdam and Eve which mars us.

In this context, the death and resurrection of Jesus
is simply the payment and proof of the value of the legal tender
of His life which covers our sin.
Therefore, we can know we are forgiven.


What of the deliverance from evil for which

Thursday, June 24, 2010

I've not posted in a while. I've not given up on the blog. Several events in life have kept me wandering down a quiet path here in the Wild Wood.