THE ESSENCE OF SIN
Wednesday, October 25, 2017
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“Are you so foolish? After beginning by means of the Spirit, are you now trying to finish by means of the flesh?” Galatians 3:3

One of the most important things to discover about the Christian life, and what the devil seeks to undermine more than anything else is the indispensability of Jesus Christ. If the Christian life was nothing more than something we lived for God, it would be reduced to the ranks of just another religion and would be dull and legalistic. The Christian life is not something we live for God, but something God lives in us. From start to finish, it is a life of faith in God’s ability to work in our lives.

The error the church in Galatia made in believing they received the Spirit of God by works rather than by faith was so serious that Paul describes them as having been “bewitched”. He scolds and admonishes them. “You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified. I would like to learn just one thing from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by believing what you heard?” (Galatians 3:1-2) Every Christian is called to live by faith, which has nothing to do with good deeds, good works, or our giving, but everything to do with our attitude toward God. This is so vital that the alternative to living by faith is living in sin.

Biblically speaking, when something is described as being a “faith work”, it is simply being stated that it is not a “sin work”. When people profess they are “living by faith,” they are saying they are not “living in sin.” The Christian life is living in dependence on God, and the only other alternative is to live in independence of God. It is this attitude of being in independence of God that is the essence of sin.

Speaking of the work of the Holy Spirit, Jesus told His disciples, “When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgement: in regard to sin, because people do not believe in me…” (John 16:8-9). Sin is all that does not derive from belief in Jesus Christ. This is not an intellectual, pragmatic belief in merely the existence of Christ, but experiential as we come to know Christ better and allow Him to work in our lives.

What pleases God is acknowledging our sin, repenting of it and allowing Him to be God in our lives. It is living by faith, holding a disposition toward Jesus Christ that recognizes His authority as Lord over us, and His empowering as our life. Anything other than that is the essence of sin.

PRAYER: Dear Lord, I ask that You live Your life in me and through me to the full, and help me to be wholly dependent on You in every aspect of my life. Thank You, Lord.


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