The thing that saddens a Christian's life most is sin; which is the very work of the devil. But we have the promise from Jesus Himself, that He came to destroy the works of the devil. The best definition in the New Testament for sin is: The willful transgression of the known law of God. Those intentional sins, the deliberate sins, those premeditated sins, those known sins committed on purpose, He came to destroy. This is what truly turns the saddened life into a life filled with joy and peace; the fulfillment of the Christmas story.
Grace and faith are the characteristic features of the present dispensation. Not only is salvation now declared to be by grace, through faith, but the Spirit also operates in the believer by grace, through faith, to cleanse and keep the believer clean. He does not take possession of us and cause us to do what is right, but fills each surrendered believer's heart so, to provide needed guidance and the strength to withstand temptation, and we may avail ourselves of this provision by faith. Faith is trusting in His word.
The Spirit, Who first imparted life to us will also impart strength to withstand temptation and overcome sin. In our inability to even pray as we ought, "the Spirit... helpeth our infirmities" and "maketh intercession for us" (Rom. 8:26). In our weakness we are "strengthened with might by His Spirit in the inner man" (Eph. 3:16) and God even stoops to "quicken [our] mortal bodies by His Spirit that dwelleth in us" (Rom. 8:11). "Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh" (Ver. 12).
The implication from the above passage is that though sorely tempted we are debtors to the Spirit who dwells within and provides overcoming power.
The question, in times of temptation, is generally whether we truly desire to overcome, for we may overcome in any given case by grace, through faith. In the present dispensation it is not true that it is not possible for the believer to sin, but it is blessedly true that in any situation it is possible for him not to sin, for the Spirit is always there to help.
Do not live below what has been provided for you at a great cost. But may you embrace this Christmas gift from the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit today, and never forget that you are loved!!!
Henry D. is from Southern Indiana and writes these wonderful daily devotionals to encourage those at the Dogwood Community Church located in Paoli, Indiana. Henry has graciously agreed to share these wonderful devotionals here at Without Excuse Ministries to encourage you our valued guest!