It’s one thing to believe in Christ for the forgiveness of sins, it’s another to believe in Him to be freed from it.
You might have clicked on this post in hopes of reading practical, hands-on strategies one can use to overcome sin in their Christian walk.
Now I can give you a nitty gritty step by step “how to get out of sin guide” but I assure you it would fail harder than the Golden State Warriors’ loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 7 of the NBA Finals
.There is really only one promise I can guarantee you concerning victory over sin.
Genuine Faith in the Gospel
Consider the following passages:
“For if we have been united with him in a death like this, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his… .For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God. So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus”
Romans 6:5; 10-11 ESV
There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death
Romans 8:1-2 ESV
Therefore, dear brothers and sisters, you have no obligation to do what your sinful nature urges you to do. 13 For if you live by its dictates, you will die. But if through the power of the Spirit you put to death the deeds of your sinful nature, you will live.
Romans 8:12-13 NLT
His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence
2 Peter 1:3 ESV
The problem we often have as Christians is that we believe we are fighting these sins on our own strength when in reality God’s grace (through Christ) has given us the power to overcome them.
Without having faith in God’s empowerment as Christians, our efforts to overcome sin will always be in vain.
Its almost like attempting to physical push a car out of your own strength when in reality you can insert the key into the ignition and hit the gas pedal to drive the vehicle.
His grace goes beyond forgiving of us of our sins, but it also empowers us to overcome them (2 Corinthians 12:9)
But do we believe in these promises of God enough to make this a reality?
Do we sincerely believe that we have been freed from the power of sin?
In times of temptations, we must remind ourselves of such promises in the same way we remind ourselves of God’s mercy and forgiveness every time we fall into sin.
Carrying the Cross of Temptation
Now, the Bible makes known in Matthew 16:24 that we must take up our cross and follow Christ at the expense becoming His disciples. In other words, we must be be willing to endure the sufferings of our faith for the sake of Christ.
With that been said,
There are going to betimes when you have to make great sacrifices (carrying your cross) whiles overcoming sin for the sake of holiness.
If going out for dinner with your friends is going to tempt you to get drunk..
Does that mean going out for dinner is sinful?
Absolutely not. You just have to bare that cross so you can avoid drinking (Matthew 5:29).
Don’t overestimate your growth and place yourself in a situation where you know you’ll be tempted. Remember that Christ himself suffered in temptation (Hebrews 2:18)
However don’t use this as an excuse to justify a sinful lifestyle when He has clearly provided us the grace to overcome (Romans 6:1-4).
In reality, we probably already know the practical things we individually have to do in order to overcome our respective sins when facing temptations.
But what’s our motive?
Why does God want us to be free from Sin Anyways?
Now for the most part, the sins we commit or struggle with are things we desire to do (James 1:13-15).
Think about it
Whether it be pride, sexual immorality, drunkenness, greed, etc, we tend to be enjoying ourselves in the midst of sinning.
So beyond the fact that God expects holiness from us (1 Peter 1:16), what is so desirable about being free from sin?
But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life. For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord
In other words, God has graciously giving us the ability to live righteously , which leads to holiness so that we may know Him more! (our ultimate reward and motivation)
Then you might ask, what is so valuable about knowing God?
To reflect on this question consider this response from Moses when God told him to enter the Promise Land without His presence:
If your presence will not go with me, do not bring us up from here
The promise God made with Moses concerning the Israelites in the burning bush was finally about to fulfilled (Exodus 3:17)!
The only catch was this.
God himself was not going to be with them (Exodus 33:3).
In other words, He would give them the promise land without His presence.
But Moses chose God over His promise because he literally valued Him more. Moses knew God personally and wanted to continue knowing Him (Exodus 33:13-16).
He did not simply do this out of respect, but Moses genuinely wanted God more than anything else, because he knew God was greater than anything the world can offer.
The end goal is to know God and His presence, not perishable blessings.
There is a profound joy in getting to know God and the scriptures confirm that there is nothing good outside of Him (James 1:17).
He knows that our personal relationship and knowledge of Him is much more valuable than anything else in life, and through the power of Christ we have been given the ability to pursue this gift.
For this reason, we must believe God to be greater than our sins, knowing that through Him we are full of life and peace (Romans 8:5-6).
So finally when dealing with sin remember this,
- Our strength? Grace of God through faith in Christ (2 Peter 1:3-4)
- Our suffering? Bearing the cross of temptation (Hebrews 2:18; Matthew 16:24)
- Our motivation? Getting to Know God (John 3:16; John 17:3)
Soli Deo Gloria