Saturday, September 18, 2010

Claiming Christ’s Power Over Past Sins

What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase?  By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?  -Romans 6:1, 2 

I heard a story many years ago about a man who lived a sinful life.  Every so often he would come to church, fall upon his knees and cry, “Fill me Lord, fill me!”  After this, however, he would soon return to his sinful ways.  This pattern continued for some time until one Sunday when the man came forward crying, “Fill me Lord, fill me!” the pastor said, “Don’t do it Lord; he leaks!”  

The Word of God poses a stirring question regarding how we conduct ourselves after we have come to faith in Jesus Christ.  Shall we keep in sinning?  The answer is clear: “God forbid!” (KJV).  Having come to faith in Christ we are called to leave behind that sinful lifestyle we once practiced.  Imagine going out to your garbage can on a hot July day and sorting through the trash you had thrown out the week before.  What are the odds of finding anything in there you might want to bring back into the house?  Not too good!  You got rid of it because it is garbage.  It now smells, is nasty, is full of germs and filth, and picking it up and bringing it back into the house would be unthinkable.
For the follower of Christ, this should be our attitude regarding any ungodly practices we engaged in before coming to faith in Him.  Whatever goes against God’s Word, compromises our faith, does damage to our witness, or harms us or others, we are to toss it aside and not pick it up again.  Many people wonder if they can accomplish such a task.  The drug addict, the alcoholic, the one given to violence and profanity, or the person who has committed a host of crimes, might believe that salvation and deliverance from those behaviors is impossible.  Listen carefully: With God all things are possible (Matthew 19:26).  Nothing is too hard for God, and Jesus Christ has the power to break the chains of whatever destructive behaviors are holding us back.

Do not allow the past to take power over you today.  Whatever has happened in the past, whatever it may be, can be overcome by the power of Christ.  Jesus’  shed blood upon the cross can wash away the vilest sins or the most painful memories.  In Jesus there is deliverance, salvation, and hope. 
Look to Jesus and claim the victory.  He will fill us with His Spirit – and we will not leak.   

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