We’ve spent several posts studying temptation and its effects on our lives. (Introduction, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4). We’ve examined several ways to fight off temptation and keep ourselves as free from sin as possible. We’ve also discussed how putting our focus on God and his word can save us from a lot of trouble and heartache.
Today, I want to finish this series by owning up to the fact that we all sin (1 John 1:8). Sometimes, in our weakened, fleshly state, we make poor decisions, losing our focus and our faith in God and decide to allow temptation to cause us to sin (James 1:14-15). It’s that sin that is the root cause of our separation from God and the reason why Jesus sacrificed himself to afford us a second chance of eternity with God.
Now, I don’t want to teach the idea of sinning for the sake of grace. The Bible clearly admonishes us not to have such a shallow view of grace (Roman 6:1-2). We should make every attempt to extinguish sin and worldly living from our lives. If we truly love God, it would be a joy to follow his commands and abstain from the things that pull us away from Him. We are taught, “do not let sin reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions. Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness” (Romans 6:12-13).
So what are we to do when we sin? The answer is simple….repent! It’s very important that we recognize our errors, own up to them, and honestly and humbly ask God for forgiveness. Why? Because sin in our lives leads to death. Death of our relationship with God. Death to our reputation and self-esteem. Death to our marriage or death to our influence, and ultimately, spiritual death and an eternity spent apart from our Creator. “Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out, that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord” (Acts 3:19-20a).
We have much to be grateful for concerning our relationship with God and his love for his children and we can be especially appreciative of the opportunity we have to repent from our mistakes. I hope you’ll join me in seeking to serve and obey God in every avenue of your life, knowing that a great reward lies ahead for those who continue to press towards the goal (Philippians 3:13-14).