LifeLink Devotions (Click here for podcast)

Thursday, March 10, 2022

How bad is it? People jump at the chance to answer that question. It seems that everyone has an opinion on how bad things are compared to what they used to be. But a quick look at history reveals that sin has always abounded in humanity and its effects have always ravaged society. Sure, things are bad right now, but are they really any worse than they were in the days of Noah when God destroyed the whole population of the world because of their sin except for eight faithful people? Are things really worse now than they were for Sodom and Gomorrah when homosexuality was so rampant that the men of the city wanted to have sex with God’s angels? Are things really any more corrupt now than they were in the days of the Persian Empire when anyone who defied the King was run through with a pole from their bottom through their head and put on display in the city streets? Are Christians in parts of the world any less safe than they were in the days of the Roman Empire?

The followers of Jesus Christ have succumbed to the false notion that somehow things are so bad that there’s nothing we can do. We are convinced that we are powerless to affect change. We seem to almost gloat in the false reality that we are living in the worst of times. The effect of such thinking is to empower evil and minimize the power of God. Such thinking has become so prevalent that the church of Jesus Christ has allowed the infiltration of evil into its doors, and the followers of Jesus are unconcerned about the presence of sin in their lives. We have convinced ourselves that it’s just the reality of the times in which we live. Sin abounds around us, so it’s not that a big deal if it abounds in us.

But since Adam sin has always abounded, yet that is never a justification for its presence in the life of a Christian. There is a new life born in us that rejects the presence of sin and evil – the life of the sinless Jesus Christ. In Him we are a new creation. All the old has passed away and all things are made new. His life will change our thinking about sin, giving us a totally new attitude. His life will lead us to true righteousness and holiness. His life will not tolerate shared space with sin.

Ephesians 4:22-24  “You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

Our complacency to sin is a sad commentary on the compromised condition of our conscience. Our compliance with sin is completely contrary to Christ’s life in us. Our lifestyle identification with the world reveals the true love of our hearts. Love for self has overwhelmed love for Christ. Choices are motivated by personal fulfillment. The old self still sits securely on the throne of our lives. But the Bible tells us that it doesn’t have to. It is there by our choice. There is an alternative. We can choose to put it off and put on its place the new life of Christ. In fact, for all those who truly love Jesus, this will be the reality. Maybe you were never taught that. I’m sorry for the misinformation you were given about what salvation is. When Jesus saves you from your sin, He saves you from your sin. It is not salvation if there is not deliverance. You have been delivered from your sin by the power of the resurrected Christ, who conquered all sin and its consequence of death. It is false thinking to believe that we can have the life of Christ and continue to live a life of sin. Those who are in Christ have crucified the old self, and daily put to death all of its desires so that their lives reflect the true love of their hearts, which is their Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. (Please read Romans chapter 6)

So how bad is it? It’s bad. Always has been. Always will be. But what makes it worse is that those who know Jesus are living as slaves of sin. Instead, we should live as Paul says in Romans 6:17-18. “But thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin, you wholeheartedly obeyed the form of teaching to which you were entrusted. You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness.” It’s time to start living our faith!

Pastor John

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