How Does One Remain a Believer? ~ blog
Yesterday we looked at how our becoming saved was completely a work of God. His choice of having us become born again was by His Grace and because of His love for us. It was not based on His foreseeing that we would be good moral people. He foresaw that we would be sinners and chose to love us anyway. We are not told any other reason in the Bible.
Therefore, it is right and biblical to believe that His choice of us was unconditional and completely by Grace. Therefore, at some point in our lives the Father drew us to the Son, the Spirit convicted us of our sins and God gave us the faith and grace to believe.
We placed our faith in Christ and at that moment we, who were spiritually dead in our sins and transgressions and separated from God, became born again and were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit. See that in Ephesians 1:13-14;
“And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance…”
At that point we became a member of God’s family and a member of the body of Christ. We became a new creation in Christ and were born-again, born by the Spirit into the family of God. The Father applied to all of our sins, past, present, and future the blood of Christ and therefore our sins have been completely paid for by the finished work of Christ.
Therefore, it is not only biblical to believe that we are eternally saved from our sins and now, also, have the promise of eternal life. The Holy Spirit Himself is God’s guarantee of that and we will live forever in the unconditional love of God.
However, now, as children of God, we live every day in a permanent relationship with God, yet how we choose to live impacts us in the present.
Our Eternal Relationship is Unconditional
Our Daily Relationship is Conditional
What do I mean by that? My sins, which have been completely paid for and forgiven will still have present day consequences should I choose to walk in sin. In his letter to the Romans 6:1 Paul is answering this question;
“What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase?”
The wrong conclusion one could draw is that since all my sins are already forgiven then I can go ahead and just sin as much as I want to, and I will still be saved. It is true that our sins will not delete our permanent relationship with God … however, that is just a dumb conclusion because of what sin will do to us as children of God. At least one thing will happen to the Christian who gives themself over to sinning.
Sin will always have consequences in the here are now. Even knowing Christ as our Savior does not mean that sin cannot still be our master. And remember what sin does. It destroys. It hurts us because when we choose to sin then God, as a faithful and loving Father, will disciple us. The punishment for our sins was placed on Christ but the discipline of our Father will happen, and sin will bring with it suffering for us and our loved ones.
Those of us who live with sexual brokenness and are repeatedly giving in to the desires of the flesh are going to experience the results of those choices. We read in Galatians 5:19-20;
“The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like.”
Is that what you really want? If you are truly a believer your answer will be NO!!! The very fact that you are struggling against sexual sin, that you want to stop and want it out of your life is proof that you are a believer and have not given yourself over to sexual sin with complete abandon.
Listen, I know what it is like to be living with my sin nature actively desiring sexual sin. I remember the cravings and the feelings that I would do almost anything to get relief. I was certainly and without a doubt a believer. I was even a Senior Pastor of a fairly large church.
But sexual sin was destroying my relationship with my wife and the ministry I was doing was is the flesh and devoid of any fruit. I was absolutely miserable and fought hard to stop. However, I remained in isolation because to confess would be career suicide.
Did I lose my salvation? No, because once one is born again into the family of God, we cannot make ourselves unborn. However, God, in His incredible grace and goodness, exposed my sin so that out of the train wreck that followed He could put my life back together again and use me to help other believers.
Please my friends … do not lose hope in your battle against sexual sin. End the isolation and begin the Healing God has for all of us. Talk with me about joining one of our Online Support Teams where you can get the help you need in a safe community with no condemnation. You need to do this, and you know you need to do this.
Email me for more information about trying an OST and see how they are working for so many others. And if need be … I will start an OST with just you. I would love to have a OST just for pastors who need help and want to remain anonymous.