It is a part of our daily experience, because it is a part of us. We are taught in the Scriptures that we, even as Christians, have a corrupted nature—and until we enter heaven’s gate—there is something “within” us that wages war against the work of God’s Spirit. The problem is when we stop waging war with sin and our corrupted nature. The Apostle John tells us that we cannot hold on to sin and to fellowship with Christ at the same time—this is impossible, because the two are incompatible….”If we say we have fellowship with Him, and walk in the darkness, then we lie and do not practice the truth,” (I Jn. 1:6). As Christians, Christ’s death and resurrection have freed us from enslavement to our corrupted nature, and, now, the issue for God’s people, is not sins’ presence—but with our willingness to submit to it.
And this is where we make choices…choices to submit to sin—or choices to resist sin and walk in obedience through the power of the Holy Spirit. Christ, and His indwelling Spirit—have provided us with a choice! I find myself both encouraged and sobered at this truth. On the one hand–God has provided a remedy for sin and its presence in my life—praise God for His Grace that has freed us from the power of sin! On the other hand, I find that even though I have the “potential” to walk in perfect obedience to Christ—I regularly submit to (give in to) my sinful nature.
This battle is real—and our failures are sobering. And at this point– it is easy to simply “give up,” because we lack the experience of the “victorious Christian Life”. But “giving up” on the battle against sin is when Satan triumphs! We need to be reminded that this fight is a permanent part of our earthly pilgrimage—and that we can never give up! Fight the good fight—and keep on fighting! This is the only appropriate response to sin and it’s indwelling influence in our lives, because we can not have fellowship with Christ and “live with” our sin. The Apostle John tells us that these two are incompatible.
But John also tells us that when we do fail—and we will—that the grace of God has already provided the remedy: confession! “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness,” I Jn. 1:9. Our struggle with sin is real, and we will lose some of the battles. But by God’s grace, let’s not lose the war!…by His Grace and for His Glory!