Friday, March 10, 2006
WIN OVER SIN
The answer to the sin problem is very simple, but not easy. The primary thrust of this writing is this: to overcome sin we must become so weak, so perfectly unable to do for ourselves what only God can do that we fall before His mercy and receive his grace, at last.
Our inability to receive His grace, especially those of us who are so good at being good and have long been taught the way of striving, is our main problem.
It took me so long to learn this, and I had to un-learn so much of what I thought I'd learned.
The bible makes it clear that His strength is made manifest in our weakness, and that our righteousness is filthy rags. Unless His strength replaces our weakness, we have attainted nothing.
How does this play out?
If Christ dwells in you - you have all you need. It may be, as Jesus said in the parable, that he is in you only as a seed - a seed that has been choked and thwarted. Now what you need is to allow that seed to grow up on the inside of you. This is the fundamental key. We cannot "get the seed to grow" by striving. This is where being busy kills Christ. By listening to Him, by being still, you will hear that tiny voice, that seed in you, and you will see that small bit of power. Then, by resting in faith that seed can grow to become a louder voice, to being a greater power.
When caught in a cycle of some sin, you must rest. As you rest, even if you continue to sin, if you just keep the switch of faith on and continually claim God's forgiveness, you will be released. These are the things you "do." Communion is a big way of finding God's grace and His power to overcome. As you wait in faith for your sin to be overcome, keep applying the body and blood. It works. Don't let Satan tell you that you are unworthy now because of the fact that you are still sinning. You are made worthy through faith and the desire for righteousness. You will suddenly find that you aren't committing that sin any more!
So the first component is resting in faith.
The second is receiving grace.
The third is warfare. We are in a war. You cannot attain anything without warring against Satan. The more you want God, the more you will see the enemy of God, and it will be disguised as something else. You will think, "I'm depressed, I'm lusting, I'm hating, I'm confused," but it will be the influence of a diabolical spirit.
Remember it says "submit to God" then, "resist the devil." We submit to God by first dealing with our sin, then receiving grace, and then warring against the devil. We war with our words, speaking the Word Of God. God spoke and the world came to be. Our words are too important - as we have seen here in this blog, what it says about the tongue and how it can set things on fire. A tiny member of our bodies, like the rudder of a ship, and it steers us one way or another. Don't say, "I'll never be good enough, I'll never do anything right, I'm gonna die young." Dangerous words.
Here is a communion confession that is good:
Father in heaven, I examine myself today to see if there is any thing in me that is displeasing to You. In Jesus' name I ask you to forgive me for_________and to release me from the power of this sin. I break the hold of my judgment against anyone who has hurt me and allow him or her to go free of me. I ask forgiveness for any part I had in causing this and to cleanse me.
Take the bread and say over it: "this is the body of Jesus." Then repeat the words of Jesus....
"Take eat, this is my body," like the body of the Lamb eaten by Israel, "broken for you" to bear your sins, so you may die to sin and live to righteousness. This body heals you of the results of sin and heals the body. "Do this in remembrance of me."
Take the wine or juice and say over it: "this is the blood of Jesus" than repeat the words of Jesus:
"Drink, for this is the blood of the new Covenant," not the old covenant of the blood of animals, but the new covenant of the blood of the Eternal Lamb of God. This was shed for you to pardon sin, to release you from sin. This blood sets you free from the destruction that sin has caused, and heals the soul. "Do this in remembrance of Me."
Lord, we remember You and what You have done for us.