In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth, and God saw that the world he had made was good and perfect (Genesis 1:31). Because of free will man was able to choose between obedience to God or to disobey God, Sin then came into the world as a result of disobedience to God. In this sin filled world how then can we overcome sin and stay on the path that God wants us to be on? How can we practically choose Gods way in the 21st century?
Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace. What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? Certainly not! Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness? Romans 6:12-16. (New King James Version)
If you didn’t understand what this passage from Romans 6 meant then lets read it in a different and a more modern english version of the bible:
But don’t let sin control your life here on earth. You must not be ruled by the things your sinful self makes you want to do. Don’t offer the parts of your body to serve sin. Don’t use your bodies to do evil, but offer yourselves to God, as people who have died and now live. Offer the parts of your body to God to be used for doing good. Sin will not be your master, because you are not under law. You now live under God’s grace. So what should we do? Should we sin because we are under grace and not under law? Certainly not! Surely you know that you become the slaves of whatever you give yourselves to. Anything or anyone you follow will be your master. You can follow sin, or you can obey God. Following sin brings spiritual death, but obeying God makes you right with him. Romans 6:12-16. (ERV Version)
This passage is very clear in demonstrating that sin can actually take control of someones life by becoming their master. This means that when we are indulging in sin we are actually slaves or servants to that master, (that master is sin). So we see here that in this process of overcoming sin there is a choice to be made, you can either follow sin or you can obey God.
I speak in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves of uncleanness, and of lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness. Romans 6:19, KJV.
Paul here is saying that the way to overcome sin is to do the same thing that you did to fall into sin. Let me repeat that again: The way in which we overcome sin is to use the same method we used in order to get addicted to sin. As Paul said in the verse above, rather than giving yourself away to sin “so now present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness”.
This is telling us to give ourselves over to be used by God, to seek first the kingdom of God, to spend time dwelling in the word of God so that we may know what God wants us to do.
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. Romans 12:1 (KJV)
Choosing Gods Way
The problem with many of us is that we want to be christians but then we still want to hold on to our own ideas. We want to follow God but we don’t want Gods guidance in every aspect of life. We are ‘pick and choose’ christians. We pick and choose the parts that we like the most and ignore the parts of the bible that might conflict with our own ideas.
Let’s consider the verse below:
And in that day seven women shall take hold of one man, saying, We will eat our own bread, and wear our own apparel: only let us be called by thy name, to take away our reproach. Isaiah 4:1
Don’t miss the point in that verse. I simply wanted to show the principle of what it sounds like when we say we want to follow God but then we choose to hold onto our own way of living. This kind of Christianity is dangerous as it shows that we haven’t fully surrendered all to God.
Seek the Lord while He may be found, Call upon Him while He is near.Let the wicked forsake his way, And the unrighteous man his thoughts; Let him return to the Lord, And He will have mercy on him; And to our God, For He will abundantly pardon. “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:6-9
Gods way of life is better than our way of life. The example of a relationship between a very young child and a parent is the best example to demonstrate this. The parent usually knows what is best for their child and the parent gives the child some guidance of how to live because the parent is more wise than the child. This doesn’t mean that the parent does not want the child to have a good life it just means the parent knows what is best for that child. In this same way, God knows what is best for us so we should seek him while he may be found, and we should seek for his thoughts, and his guidance. The bible provides us with guidelines and principles which are ‘the thoughts/mind of God’.
Man’s idea vs God’s idea examples
1. The example of clothing
Remember the story of Adam and Eve? When they had sinned they saw that they were naked so they tried to cover themselves up. And how did they cover themselves? They made Aprons for themselves. From what we have learnt Gods way is better than mans way. So what was Gods idea of covering their nakedness? He made them Coats of skin, this was the proper covering that God had in mind.
Genesis 3:7 – mans idea of clothing – not fully covered
Genesis 3:21 – Gods idea of clothing – A Coat
In the spiritual sense mans idea of clothing represented salvation by works, and Gods covering represented Christs righteousness which covers us. Choosing God’s way is best.
2. Dating Principles
Gods way – Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart. 2 Timothy 2:22
3. When going through a hard time.
Gods way – My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. James 1:2- 3
When it comes to anything we do ,God’s idea is always better, whether it’s in eating, amusements, music, decision making, courtship or anything else, how to live, Gods way is best, see Isaiah 55:9-12. It is indeed better to Choose Gods way. Take time to pray and to have personal study of the scripture, believe the word of God by faith.
A Change of perspective
The book of Psalms 119contains a summary of the things that we have come across in this blog post. Let’s consider the passage below. Lets remember that the main topic is about overcoming sin and choosing God’s way..
How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your word. With my whole heart I have sought You; Oh, let me not wander from Your commandments! Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You. Blessed are You, O Lord! Teach me Your statutes. With my lips I have declared All the judgments of Your mouth. I have rejoiced in the way of Your testimonies, As much as in all riches. I will meditate on Your precepts, And contemplate Your ways. I will delight myself in Your statutes; I will not forget Your word. Deal bountifully with Your servant. That I may live and keep Your word. Open my eyes, that I may see Wondrous things from Your law. Psalms 119:9-18
Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever. 1 John 2:16
Jesus is in the Most Holy place of the heavenly Sanctuary and his work as our high priest is nearing its completion. This is the time for true repentance and for us to examine our lives to prove that we’re living according to Gods word. This is the time to make sure that sin is not our master but rather let’s be servants of God.
Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
Hebrews 4:14-16, 2 Corinthians 13:5, Romans 6:16,19