Pickin’ n Grinnin’

For any fans of the Andy Griffith show, whether you watched them when they originally aired as I did or caught them on the almost daily reruns, you probably are familiar with the title of today’s essay. Or if you are a fan of bluegrass music or older country music you may also be familiar with the term. For the rest of you it refers to someone playing a stringed instrument, most likely a guitar or banjo, and smiling in the pure pleasure of making music. I have fond memories of watching Andy pick his guitar. Especially when the Darlings were in town and they would play together. So what does pickin’ n grinnin’ have to do with the usually subject of these essays, God’s Word? Some Christians are pickin’ n grinnin’ when it comes to God’s Word. What I mean by that is they pick the verses that appeal to them while ignoring ones they do not like.

I want to remind those who do this is that God’s Word is not a spiritual buffet where we pick the things we like and move on past the less palatable parts. Or we pick only verses that point in one direction and ignore the rest. One such area is free will verses divine providence or as some will be more familiar with Calvinism or Arminianism. But that is for a future post.

Another area I just found out is “do Christians still sin or not”. The reason I say I just found this out is that from my personal experience and that of Christians around me I have always believed that even though we are saved we still sin. To believe that Christians no longer sin means either I have a distorted view of what sin is, doubtful as God is very clear what sin is, or I and every Christian I know is fooling themselves and we are not saved, again doubtful as the road to salvation is also very clear. If it was just me that would be one thing, but for that many to be wrong including every pastor I have ever had and every Christian writer I have read to be wrong seems a bit farfetched.

When this happened it is usually because the person has decided to accept only one side of what God is telling us while ignoring the rest. The reason can be that it seems God is contradicting Himself so let’s pick one side and just forget about the other verses. While this may make us feel better about God and His Word it leaves us open to attack from unbelievers when they point out these so called contradictions. When confronted by a seeming contradiction I turn to sources I trust to guide me through the hard parts and in the end I always find that it is not God contradicting Himself but my lack of understanding that is the problem. That is why we need mature mentors to guide us. For as Paul writes “For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.” (1 Corinthians 13:12 ESV) When we finally stand before God in all His glory then we will be able to understand all that is now unclear and that which is clear will become clearer.

The comment about Christians and sin caused me to take a look at what God says about believers and sin. After all I know I am saved and I know that I still harbor sinful thought and do things that I wish I did not do so this is an important question that I need answered. Fortunately God as always supplies the answers. Below are the verses I found. Let’s take a brief look at each group.

If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. (1 John 1:8-10 ESV)

John is very clear in these verses from 1 John that we are not to claim that we do not sin. In fact making such a claim is tantamount to calling Jesus a liar.

Did that which is good, then, bring death to me? By no means! It was sin, producing death in me through what is good, in order that sin might be shown to be sin, and through the commandment might become sinful beyond measure. For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under sin. For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good. So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin. (Romans 7:13-25 ESV)

When I have a personal question about faith I like to read what Paul says. He brings the Christian struggle alive for me. I figure if Paul struggled with something then I am in good company when I experience the same struggles. In the above verses from Paul’s letter to the Romans we see that Paul struggled with sin in his life. He fought the urges to do wrong with his desire as a follow of Christ to live a sin free life. Paul was the greatest evangelist in the history of the church. If he struggled with sin then how are we to expect anything less in our lives.

I thank him who has given me strength, Christ Jesus our Lord, because he judged me faithful, appointing me to his service, though formerly I was a blasphemer, persecutor, and insolent opponent. But I received mercy because I had acted ignorantly in unbelief, and the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost. But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life. (1 Timothy 1:12-16 ESV)

Once again I turn to Paul and his first letter to Timothy, Paul’s disciple and someone Paul thought of as a son. Paul is telling Timothy that Jesus came into the world to save sinners of which he is the foremost. Paul uses the present tense. Paul is not telling Timothy he was a sinner but that he continues to sin. These verses coupled with the above verses from Romans tell us of the struggles Paul faced and that each Christian has and will face in their lives even though we have accepted Christ and our sins have already been paid for.

Surely there is not a righteous man on earth who does good and never sins. (Ecclesiastes 7:20 ESV)

In this verse from Ecclesiastes God tells us that there is not a righteous man, that is a man right with God or saved, who never sins. Now you may quibble that this is from the Old Testament and would not apply to Christian believers but that then means that none of the Old Testament patriarchs and prophets were saved.  But we know from Hebrews that this is not true. Abraham was declared righteous and we know that David was a man after God’s own heart. The best way I ever heard it explained is that the people before Jesus came were saved looking forward to the Messiah and we are saved looking back to Him. Clearly this verse says that the righteous do sin. The good news is that all our sins are covered. Those in the past, those in the future and those we will commit. When we claim that Christians should never sin or no longer sin we are in essence doing Satan’s work for him as we cast doubt in the minds of others.

Each of us comes to the Lord in a different state of sin but none come in a sin free state. Once we accepted Jesus’ free gift of salvation the Holy Spirit begins to work on and in us transforming us from the old self to the new self. The transformation will be a lifelong process as we are still in the old sinful body. Please do not mistake what I just wrote. We are at the time we accept Jesus transformed spiritually and we are immediately saved, a salvation that is eternal and cannot be taken away. But just as Paul wrote we still inhibit a sinful body that carries the curse of original sin. Only when we are free from that body and in our new bodies will be sin no more. One additional thought, our salvation did not take away our free will. We still can decide to sin or not sin. Unfortunately sometime we make foolish choices. What we will find is that as we overcome our sins we will come to recognize actions that one time seemed ok, now we know to be sinful and we become acutely aware of each sin.

One final warning. It is dangerous to claim special knowledge about God or special insight in the Word. God’s Word is there for all and has the same meaning for all. God and His Word are unchanging. When we claim special knowledge we commit the same heresy as did the Gnostics. God does not hide His message in secret codes or between the lines. God’s message is there for all. We always need to interpret God’s Word based on the entirety of the Word not the parts we agree with or some claim to special knowledge or inspiration. If I find myself at odds with the rest of Christianity I need to take stock and see why if I am right than everyone for almost two thousand years has been wrong. If I an honest with myself I realize that it is me that is in error rather than everyone else. Yes some things are hard to understand but that is why we call on those more mature in the faith than us and sometimes we just need to take it on faith that even though we do not fully understand now all will be made clear in the end. And of course everything we do or say needs to be in a loving manner always showing the love of Christ even when we disagree. Lastly, even though we still sin, it is not a license to sin. To willfully sin is a slap in the face of God.

Have a blessed day,

David

PS: I will take a look at the verses that seem to indicate that we no longer sin in the near future. Also, This may be my last post until next Wednesday as our internet is down and we will not get a tech out until then. Right now I am using my cell phone to get to the internet, not the most economical way.

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About dwwork

The name of this blog is taken from 1 Peter 3:13 - “always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience. This verse became special to me over ten years ago when I was asked to teach an adult Sunday school class on Christian apologetics. This interest grew over the years to the point that I took some graduate level classes in apologetics. I think the best way to be prepared to give and answer to everyone who asks is to know scripture. It is my hope that through these short devotionals the reader will become more familiar with each verse. I have tried when possible to make them personal hoping in some small way to show that God’s word written over two thousand years ago is still relevant today. In the writing of these short devotionals I have been able to better understand how God’s word impacts my life. It is my hope that you too will come closer to our Lord Jesus and develop a closer relationship with Him. Finally, if the reader finds anything in conflict with scripture please let me know. God’s word is the final authority always overrules anything I might write. David
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2 Responses to Pickin’ n Grinnin’

  1. You seem to be refuting what I share David, but without the respect of addressing me by name and also without confirming that we go do on sinning till we die but are forgiven, all the references to Scripture you shared were read out of context and also excluded those that also confirm we do not go on sinning, which you reject, I believe you accused me of doing this.

    I have shared enough Scripture that clearly confirms we do not continue to sin when we are Born again (see below) but just because you and those you know, or do you know every person in the world who shares God’s Truth, just because you claim because of your own sin and others, that we do continue to sin, you reject the Scriptures that say we don’t, without explanation or confirmation of Scripture and yet accuse me of doing this.

    You even reject the Scripture about putting our Carnal flesh to death that causes us to sin and also to aim to be perfected in Love and Love does not sin, God is Love and when we are Born again we have His seed and we walk now in this world as Jesus walked, this is confirmed by God’s inspired words in Scripture which you are rejecting.

    1John 4:16-19 And we have known and believed the Love that God hath to us. God is Love; and he that dwelleth in Love dwelleth in God, and God in him. Herein is our Love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as He is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in Love; but perfect Love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in Love. We Love Him, because He first Loved us.

    1 John 3:9 No one who is Born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in him; he cannot go on sinning, because he has been Born of God.

    1 John 5:18-20 We know that no one who is Born of God sins; but He who was Born of God keeps him, and the evil one does not touch him.

    1 John 3: 1-11 ( 6-7 ) Whosoever abideth in Him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen Him, neither known Him. Little children, let no man/woman deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as He is righteous.

    Romans 8 :12-15 Therefore, brothers, we have an obligation—but it is not to the sinful nature, to live according to it. or if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live, because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.

    The Gnostics did not have the Holy Spirit or God’s wisdom, proven by what they taught, so how could they know God’s Truth, so David are you also without the Holy Spirit as confirmed in (1Corinthians 2:9-16) is that why God’s Truth I shared more than once is foolishness to you, perhaps you only have partial understanding, it’s time you went to Jesus not man for His Truth, Wow that’s right it is not just me who can know the full plan of Salvation and we remember that Paul also claimed to speak not his own words but God’s, 1Corinthians2 or was he a Gnostic too.

    I never share anything that can’t be confirmed David as a whole Picture in Scripture but many others do, including you it seems, it’s fleshy understanding or what has been taught in error and based on fleshy experience.

    If wanted I will share all the Scriptures again that you are rejecting David, please let me know if you want more confirmation but without asking and receiving God’s wisdom and empowering (see below) you will remain in darkness, as Prophesied about the Churches in the end times.

    What I share was taught in the early Church as confirmed in Scripture, we are now under a new Covenant not the old one of the law but that does not mean we break the law that Jesus established and which we can obey because Jesus came to set us free, so we are no longer in slavery to sin.

    John 8:34-36 Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

    The Holy Spirit – Luke 11:13 how much more shall your Heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him?

    Proverbs 4:7 Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.

    God’s wisdom – James 1:5-6 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.

    Christian Love in Christ Jesus – Anne.

  2. dwwork says:

    Anne, a more complete response to your comments about Christians and if we still sin.

    You seem to be refuting what I share David, but without the respect of addressing me by name and also without confirming that we go do on sinning till we die but are forgiven, all the references to Scripture you shared were read out of context and also excluded those that also confirm we do not go on sinning, which you reject, I believe you accused me of doing this.

    Anne, I did respond to your comments directly although not in the detail of this response. I feel that it is inappropriate to single out someone when I post to my blog. If you feel disrespected I apologize as none was meant. If you have truly read what I have posted in the past then you know that rather than reject any scripture I have always said that we need to take all scripture together. I feel you are ignoring or misunderstanding the parts of scripture that does not support your understanding of scripture I would like to take your comments one by one to let you see my understanding of scripture..

    I have shared enough Scripture that clearly confirms we do not continue to sin when we are Born again (see below) but just because you and those you know, or do you know every person in the world who shares God’s Truth, just because you claim because of your own sin and others, that we do continue to sin, you reject the Scriptures that say we don’t, without explanation or confirmation of Scripture and yet accuse me of doing this.

    Yes you have shared a lot of scripture however you have ignored the scripture the does not agree with your position. I have a question for you. Since you have been saved have you never lied, gotten angry, shown jealousy or wanted something someone else has, taken anything that did not belong to you or shown a lack of love toward someone else. I know I have. We all fall short of God’s perfection and when we make these all too human mistakes we sin against God. We can sin not only by our actions but also our thoughts.

    You even reject the Scripture about putting our Carnal flesh to death that causes us to sin and also to aim to be perfected in Love and Love does not sin, God is Love and when we are Born again we have His seed and we walk now in this world as Jesus walked, this is confirmed by God’s inspired words in Scripture which you are rejecting.

    As I have stated before I do not reject any of God’s Word. Aiming to be perfect is not the same as being perfect. Only one person was perfect. To claim perfection for ourselves is to elevate us to Jesus’ level. I am sure none of us want to make that claim. We have been freed from our sin nature not from the ability to sin.

    1John 4:16-19 And we have known and believed the Love that God hath to us. God is Love; and he that dwelleth in Love dwelleth in God, and God in him. Herein is our Love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as He is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in Love; but perfect Love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in Love. We Love Him, because He first Loved us.

    I am not sure why you feel the above verses from 1 John tells you we no longer sin. John is writing about love, the love God has for us and the love we should show each other. Great verses which I totally agree with but not one mention about sin or believers no longer sinning.
    1 John 3:9 No one who is Born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in him; he cannot go on sinning, because he has been Born of God.

    1 John 3: 1-11 ( 6-7 ) Whosoever abideth in Him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen Him, neither known Him. Little children, let no man/woman deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as He is righteous.

    Anne, it seems that you use only one English translation of God’s Word. As I have written about on numerous times we need to use more than one translation because whenever one language is translated into another the translator has choices to make in trying to get God’s meaning across in the new language. Unless we can read the scriptures in the original Greek, Hebrew and Aramaic and also know the idioms of the day we can miss some subtle points. Fortunately none of the subtle points have anything to do with being saved. So let’s look at the rest of 1 John 1:11 from a different translation the English Standard Version. Still when we come to verses that are difficult to understand or reconcile often we need to turn to the original Greek word used. I have provided a link to one site that in part shows that the original Greek meaning does not come across as well into English.
    See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure. 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. (1 John 3:1-10 ESV)

    John is not telling us we no longer sin but that we no longer practice sin that is we no longer have a sin nature.. Big difference. Sin is no longer natural to us, in fact each time we do sin the Holy Spirit convicts us of what we have done wrong. We are freed, no longer slaves to our old lives even though we still are in our old sinful flesh. Rather than practice sin we practice righteousness. John tells us that “Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared” When Jesus returns to claim us then will be become what God meant for us to be from the beginning. Only then will we shed this old body to claim a new resurrected body.
    One final point, I love the King James (KJV) translation for its literary flow but unfortunately it is not the best English translation. When the KJV was made there were not as many manuscripts available for the translators use.

    1 John 5:18-20 We know that no one who is Born of God sins; but He who was Born of God keeps him, and the evil one does not touch him.

    Anne, once again you pick out a verse from a passage of scripture while ignoring the verses around it. So let’s look at 1 John 5 13:21 to see what John was writing about.
    I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life. And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him. If anyone sees his brother committing a sin not leading to death, he shall ask, and God will give him life—to those who commit sins that do not lead to death. There is sin that leads to death; I do not say that one should pray for that. All wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin that does not lead to death. We know that everyone who has been born of God does not keep on sinning, but he who was born of God protects him, and the evil one does not touch him. We know that we are from God, and the whole world lies in the power of the evil one. And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. Little children, keep yourselves from idols. (1 John 5:13-21 ESV)
    John is telling us that he wants us to believe we have eternal life in doing so he writes that “If anyone sees his brother committing a sin not leading to death, he shall ask, and God will give him life—to those who commit sins that do not lead to death.” Now if we no longer sin than how can one see a brother, fellow Christian, sin? If we no longer sin then the brother would not have sinned. The point that John makes in this letter is that we are no longer slaves to sin not that we never sin. But I think when we look at Paul we see that sin unfortunately is still a part of a believer’s life.

    Romans 8:12-15 Therefore, brothers, we have an obligation—but it is not to the sinful nature, to live according to it. or if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live, because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.

    I am not sure why you pick these verses from Paul’s writings while ignoring others that show that Paul himself still struggled with sin but even these verses do not tell us we no longer sin. Paul tells us in Romans 8:12-15 that our obligation is no longer to the old life but the new life. Let’s once again look at the entire passage to see what Paul is telling us.
    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. For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
    You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.
    So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him. (Romans 8:1-17 ESV)
    Paul is telling us that we have no condemnation because Christ has set us free from the law of sin and death. That is we are no longer under the law which was impossible for us to obey but that we are now under the “law of the Spirit of life.” Then Paul writes that “But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness.” Our bodies are dead because of sin but we are free from the wages of sin. Once again we are not told we no longer sin. Let’s look once again from my previous post what Paul said about Paul.
    Did that which is good, then, bring death to me? By no means! It was sin, producing death in me through what is good, in order that sin might be shown to be sin, and through the commandment might become sinful beyond measure. For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under sin. For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good. So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin. (Romans 7:13-25 ESV)
    I thank him who has given me strength, Christ Jesus our Lord, because he judged me faithful, appointing me to his service, though formerly I was a blasphemer, persecutor, and insolent opponent. But I received mercy because I had acted ignorantly in unbelief, and the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost. But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life. (1 Timothy 1:12-16 ESV)
    In both the passage from Romans and 1 Timothy Paul writing in the present tense tells us that even though he no longer wishes to sin he still does the things he does not want to do, that is sin. In the letter to Timothy Paul is even more direct when he writes about sinners “of whom I am the foremost.”
    Since most of your verses above come from 1 John let’s look again at the verses I shared twice in the past from 1 John.
    If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. (1 John 1:8-10 ESV)
    As I wrote in my prior post Picken’ and Grinnin’ John clearly tells us that when we say we have not sinned we make Jesus a liar and His word is not in us.

    The Gnostics did not have the Holy Spirit or God’s wisdom, proven by what they taught, so how could they know God’s Truth, so David are you also without the Holy Spirit as confirmed in (1Corinthians 2:9-16) is that why God’s Truth I shared more than once is foolishness to you, perhaps you only have partial understanding, it’s time you went to Jesus not man for His Truth, Wow that’s right it is not just me who can know the full plan of Salvation and we remember that Paul also claimed to speak not his own words but God’s, 1Corinthians2 or was he a Gnostic too.

    Anne, I am not sure why you would think I feel Paul was a Gnostic. I made a comparison to people who feel they have some special knowledge not shared by other believers to the Gnostics. God’s Word is plain and there is no need for secret knowledge or Bible codes to understand God’s message. That is the beauty of Scripture.

    I never share anything that can’t be confirmed David as a whole Picture in Scripture but many others do, including you it seems, it’s fleshy understanding or what has been taught in error and based on fleshy experience.
    If wanted I will share all the Scriptures again that you are rejecting David, please let me know if you want more confirmation but without asking and receiving God’s wisdom and empowering (see below) you will remain in darkness, as Prophesied about the Churches in the end times.
    You do share an abundance of scripture but truth is not found in how many verses we share but in the context of the verses. If we no longer were confined to the old flesh then you would be correct however that has not happened yet.
    What I share was taught in the early Church as confirmed in Scripture, we are now under a new Covenant not the old one of the law but that does not mean we break the law that Jesus established and which we can obey because Jesus came to set us free, so we are no longer in slavery to sin.

    Yes we are no longer salves to sin but that does not mean we no longer sin, see Paul’s writing above.

    John 8:34-36 Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

    Anne, once again you ignore the surrounding verses to make your point. Jesus was talking to the Jews who somehow forgot that they had indeed been slaves in Egypt and again we are told that we should no longer practice sin, not that we will no longer sin.
    So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” They answered him, “We are offspring of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone. How is it that you say, ‘You will become free’?”
    Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. I know that you are offspring of Abraham; yet you seek to kill me because my word finds no place in you. I speak of what I have seen with my Father, and you do what you have heard from your father.” (John 8:31-38 ESV)

    The Holy Spirit – Luke 11:13 how much more shall your Heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him?

    Now you are not even taking the whole verse but part of it and I am not sure why you selected this partial verse as this does not tell us if we sin or not. I have written about this verse on October 23, 2014 in my post How much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!

    Proverbs 4:7 Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.

    Could not agree more and I pray that we all would take this verse to heart.

    God’s wisdom – James 1:5-6 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.

    Once again I could not agree more with what James writes. Except to add that in gaining wisdom we need to avail ourselves of those believers who came before us and those believers who are more mature in the faith than we are. I always try to seek guidance from others to make sure I am not writing something that will lead someone astray or is in conflict with God’s Word.
    I believe you have a misunderstanding about no longer being a slave to sin and no longer sinning. If you are correct and real Christians no longer sin then Paul who more than once claims to continue to sin is not saved. I find it hard to believe that the writer of over half of the New Testament books is not saved. But if we accept that we are no longer slaves to sin and that we, on this earth, are in the process of being made into a new person with a new resurrected body to come than Paul is indeed saved.

    Taken from your previous comment: David apart from being an Anointed Evangelist under God’s Authority, I have often been told that I’m like a Berean not part of their Denomination today but like they were in Acts, this is because unless what is said by a man or a woman is confirmed in Scripture I reject it, which at this point I’m going to do with what you have shared today because it is not confirmed in Scripture, the opposite is as you can see below and there are other Scriptures that confirm that we don’t continue to sin when we are Born Again, so it would be wise if you take the time to read the Scriptures and don’t just Trust in what you or others think.

    Anne, I find this comment to be disrespectful placing yourself above other believers. But maybe I have misinterpreted your meaning. If you are claiming that I have not read the scriptures then that is insulting and shows you have either missed my posts on how important it is to read the entirety of God’s Word and not just what comforts us. I have written numerous time on the importance or reading God’s Word in its entirety. In fact I have read the entire Bible multiple times and have listened to God’s Word on my commutes to and from the office. One of the major purposes of my blog is to go through scripture in its entirety. God willing I will live long enough to write on the entire Bible. How could I write what I write without reading God’s Word?
    We should always be careful about casting aspersions on another’s faith or understanding. What I took from your comments is that if someone does not agree with your understanding of God’s Word then you are ready to cast them out into the darkness. I am not sure which church you attend but I would urge you to make sure that God’s Word is preached from the pulpit in its entirety. Also, who gave you this anointing? I feel led to write my blog which started as emails to my coworkers but I am not sure I can claim to have been anointed to do so. An anointing is a sacred ritual that God reserved for His priests and prophets. Today I see this performed when one is ordained into the ministry. I am nothing more than an unworthy servant doing what little I can to help others into the Kingdom.
    Anne, I could not end with commenting on your remark “do you know every person in the world who shares God’s Truth.” No I never claimed to know every Christian in the world. What I find interesting about your remark is it is the same one used by atheists when trying to refute the Kalam Cosmological argument for God’s existence which says in part that every finite object has a beginning. They often counter that we do not know every finite thing so maybe some finite things do not have a beginning. The answer to this objection is that all our experience shows that finite things have a beginning and we do not need to know the entire set to make a judgment about the set. This leads to the verse I shared in Ecclesiastes “Surely there is not a righteous man on earth who does good and never sins.” (Ecclesiastes 7:20 ESV) Hebrews tells us that even the patriarchs were righteous before God and God’s Word tells us even the righteous sin. So I do not need to know every Christian to say that Christians still sin. All I need to know is what Scripture says.
    You seem to want to lean on your own understanding but God tells us in Jeremiah that “And I will give you shepherds after my own heart, who will feed you with knowledge and understanding.” (Jeremiah 3:15 ESV) God has provided us with shepherds, pastors and ministers, to help us understand and put into practice God’s Word. So much of what I write about in my blog comes from great Christians who came before me. From Paul and John to Thomas Aquinas and Augustine of Hippo to C.S. Lewis and Charles Spurgeon to Norman Geisler, Ravi Zacharias and Billy Graham today I rely on these people to help me understand the parts of scripture that seem to contradict or are hard to understand. It is with their help and others that I am able to not lean on my own understanding.
    I would ask you not to claim to know what is in my heart or any other’s heart. When you do that you are passing judgment on others and that is God’s prerogative alone. I will end with a quote from Paul, “For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.” (1 Corinthians 13:12 ESV). I do not claim to know everything about God and His plan and but I do know what it takes to have a relationship with Him. And that is the beauty of Scripture that even though there are things that are hard to understand the message of Jesus His death and resurrection and the free gift of grace and eternal life are understandable no matter what language God’s Word is translate into.

    I would point you to the following web sites where Christians and sin are addressed, all back up their claims with scripture. http://www.comereason.org/do-christians-sin.asp,
    http://www.challies.com/reading-classics-together/if-we-have-died-to-sin-why-do-we-still-sin,
    http://carm.org/can-true-christian-sin, http://bible-truth.org/saintsin.htm ,
    http://www.ligonier.org/learn/conferences/tough-questions-christians-face-2010-national/why-do-christians-still-sin/?gclid=Cj0KEQiA-aujBRDqj772vpGfgooBEiQAzWAZUlRnaF7fw7MwR9P5NUdvgEd8j8zRbfEzeXwdqYERFEgaAnGp8P8HAQ,
    http://www.goodnewsarticles.com/Jun00-1.htm. On anointing: http://www.gotquestions.org/anointed.html

    Finally, something to think about. Assume for a moment that I am correct and Christians still sin. What damage can be done if we tell new believers that Christians no longer sin? I think when we tell new believers such things we undermine their faith. In fact we can make them doubt their salvation and become less effective in Kingdom work. Before we do such things we need to do as Jesus commands in Luke 6:42, “How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take out the speck that is in your eye,’ when you yourself do not see the log that is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take out the speck that is in your brother’s eye.”(ESV) We need to make sure we are correct before we proceed and then only with love do we correct our brothers and sisters. This is about the forth of fifth time I have revisited this answer. I have shared it with others to see is I have been unkind or mistaken. The last think I want to do is hurt or disrespect another believer or any person reading my blog for that matter.
    Anne, we may disagree on this issue of sin but I believe you are a sister in Christ and that one day we will know which of us is correct. But on that day it will no longer matter as we stand before the King to hear, “Well done good and faithful servant.”
    Have a blessed day,
    David

    Sorry this took so long to respond.

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