Ever noticed how much of the spiritual life boils down to the tension between yes or no?
There are two ways to walk through any moment in life: down the path -- up the same, faithful -- not, smile -- frown, anxious -- calm, loving or not, and so it goes. Kind of like the binary language of a computer, I guess. Which way will the neuron be flipped when we make a decision that produces a course of action?
Easily, Christians reading this will jump to the high mark, of Jesus or of the world? True enough, but how many have determined that strict legalism is the way of Jesus and not the way of the world?
John warns us in 1 John 1: 1-5
This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. (Light or dark?) If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us.
This part of John's first letter moves forward until in chapter 3:6 we read,
No one who abides in Him sins; no one who sins has seen Him or knows Him. Practically and spiritually the only question for living a faithful life becomes, "Am I abiding in the Spirit of Christ ... yes or no?".