Because We Love Him, We Obey Him

1 John 3:4-10 ESV

“Everyone who makes a practice of sinning also practices lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. You know that he appeared in order to take away sins, and in him there is no sin. No one who abides in him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen him or known him. Little children, let no one deceive you. Whoever practices righteousness is righteous, as he is righteous. Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil. No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s seed abides in him; and he cannot keep on sinning, because he has been born of God. By this it is evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is the one who does not love his brother.”

In America Today

In America today, so much of what is called “church” is not the church, but they are businesses of human origin which are being marketed to the world just like any other product and business. Now there are genuine believers in Christ who gather together in these businesses called “church,” but some or many of them are living in spiritual adultery against the Lord. And there are many false professers of faith in Jesus among them, too, as well as they have people who gather with them who do not profess faith in Jesus Christ.

Since they are trying to market “the church” to the world, and to human flesh, they have partnered with the world in order to attract the world to their gatherings. And so they have also compromised with the world in order to win the world to their “churches.” So, they have altered the whole meaning of “church” in order to draw in large crowds of people from the world, and so they have also altered and adulterated the gospel message to make it more acceptable and palatable to human flesh.

Now these market-driven and flesh-driven “churches,” which are not of God but of man, are following the marketing schemes, tricks, and ploys of the flesh of humans over and above or in place of God and his word. You can hear it in the things which they say, and you can see it in the things that they practice, and you can read it on their websites that they are indeed compromising with the flesh of man in order to attract the flesh of man to their gatherings, even if their statements of faith may sound biblical.

Now, in order to attract the people of the world and human flesh to their gatherings, they have also altered the gospel of Jesus. And many or most of them have removed from the gospel of Christ God’s requirements for repentance (not just once, but daily dying to sin and to self), and for obedience to his commands (New Covenant). They are not teaching the forsaking of sinful practices, and submission to Christ as Lord, and obedience to his commands as necessary components of believing faith in Jesus Christ.

So, they have partnered with sensuality in order to draw in large crowds of people from the world and to keep them coming back for more of the same. So many of their gatherings are absolutely flesh-driven and not Spirit-driven at all. For they are trying to appeal to the flesh nature. And so they also make room for people who profess faith in Jesus to continue in deliberate and habitual sin – in sexual immorality, lying, cheating, and adultery.. And rather than encourage them to forsake sins, they coddle them in their sins.

So, they have a whole doctrine they are pushing which is not the doctrine of the Scriptures. It tells people that all that is required of them is that they “believe” in Jesus Christ, but that “belief” is rarely ever defined biblically. And then they promise them that all their sins are forgiven (past, present, and future) and that God can’t even see when they sin anymore, and that all he sees when he looks at them is Jesus. And now heaven is guaranteed them when they die, regardless of how they live their lives on the earth.

And then to make their case all the more convincing, they teach Scriptures out of context and they twist them to say what they do not say, and then they teach against the truth of the gospel. But they try to make it sound biblical, as though what they are teaching is a good thing. For example, they teach that no works are involved in our salvation at all. While it is true that we are not saved by our own fleshly works that we do in the flesh to try to be pleasing to God, it is not true that works are not required of us. They are:

[Eph 2:8-10; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Co 15:58; 2 Co 9:8; Gal 5:6; Php 2:12-13; Col 1:9-14; 2 Thess 1:11-12; 2 Tim. 2:21; Jn 15:1-11; Tit 3:8; Jas 2:17; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:19-20; 2 Co 5:15; Lu 9:23-26; Matt 7:21-23; Gal 5:16-21, etc.]

And we will all be judged by our works:

[Lu 9:23-26; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; 1 Co 6:9-10; 2 Co 5:10; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 10:26-31; 1 Pet 1:17-21; Jn 15:1-11; Matt 7:21-23; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15, etc.]

And so those who are still in slavery (addiction) to sin, who are the self-indulgent, who are intoxicated to sin, especially sexual sin, feel that they can “believe” in Jesus and have heaven secured for them but that they do not have to forsake their sinful practices. They feel at liberty to keep on in deliberate and habitual sin against God and against their fellow humans, without conscience, and without compassion towards those they are hurting. Many of them deliberately hurt other people in order to gratify their sinful cravings, including they deliberately hurt their spouses and children.

But what does this passage of Scripture teach us? It teaches us that if sin is what we practice, and if we deliberately and habitually sin against God, that we do not know God. We are not born of God. But we are of the devil. For no one who abides (continues, remains) in Christ makes a habit of sinning against God. Now this is not saying we will never sin (1 John 2:1-2), but that we should not make sin our practice. Sin should no longer have mastery over our lives if we are truly in Christ by God-given faith in Christ.

For it is not those who merely make a profession of faith in Christ who are righteous in the sight of God, but they are those who make the righteousness of God their practice, their habit, their lifestyle. They live and walk in righteousness in the power of God and they daily (regularly, consistently) are denying self and dying to sin, by the Spirit. And they are walking in obedience to the Lord, in his power and strength and wisdom. They are not perfect people, but they are not living in sin, but in righteousness and in obedience to the Lord.

[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:19-20; 2 Co 5:15,21; Tit 2:11-14; Jas 1:22-25; 1 Jn 1:5-9; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10; Heb 12:1-2; Jn 6:44; 2 Pet 1:1; 1 Co 15:58; Php 2:12-13; Col 1:21-23; 1 Co 10:1-22; Heb 3:1-19; Heb 4:1-13]

I Will Serve Thee

By Lynda Randle

I will serve Thee because I love Thee
You have given life to me.
I was nothing before You found me,
You have given life to me.

Heartaches, broken pieces,
Ruined lives are why You died on Calvary.
Your touch was what I longed for,
You have given life to me.

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