Sunday, April 02, 2017

You Might Be A Sinner

If you've never struggled with sin, you might have a real sin problem. I've you've ever or never confessed sin, you might be a sinner. If you've never asked or ever asked, "Who will set me free from the body of this death?" (Rom 7:24), you might be a sinner. Well, to be clear, if you've ever been born, you might be a sinner. Nay, you are.

Sin is the default position of anyone born human -- an inborn defiance of the God who made us. You don't have to teach children to be bad; you have to teach them not to. We consider it courageous to resist temptation because our natural tendency is not to. In John's first epistle, he gives us two options. We can either agree with God that we are sinners -- that we sin -- or we can not, in which case "we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us" and "we make Him a liar and His word is not in us." (1 John 1:8-10)

You see, this isn't a "you" problem. This isn't "All you rotten people out there are sinning!" This is a "we" problem. I would dispute with Paul who calls himself the foremost of sinners (1 Tim 1:15) because I fear I could be that myself.

This is why we have such delight in Paul's response to his own claim of being foremost of sinners.
It is a trustworthy statement, deserving full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, among whom I am foremost of all. (1 Tim 1:15)
This is why Paul's response to his own cry, "Who will set me free from the body of this death?", is so remarkable.
Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. (Rom 8:1-2)
"We have fixed our hope on the living God," Paul says (1 Tim 4:10). "God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." (Rom 5:8) Good news, indeed!

If you do not struggle with sin, you might have a good reason to ask if you've ever been saved. But if you, like others before you, recognize your sin and struggle with it and long for that permanent release from sin, you are likely right where you need to be, trusting solely in the God who demonstrates His love toward us, resting only in Christ Jesus who came into the world to save sinners ... sinners like me and like you. That there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus produces joy inexpressible to the ones who know the condemnation they deserve.

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