Sunday, September 07, 2014

Nobody's Perfect

nobodys perfect

First John 1:8-2:2
If we say that 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 that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us. 
My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world. 

Many Christians live in a state of perpetual fear of being rejected by God because of our sin. We imagine God as a stern headmaster, with a pen and paper in hand,  watching every move we make, noting our weaknesses. 

In today's text,  John is writing to Christians to correct some ugly impressions that were rearing their heads in the Churches. Peter the fisherman caught many fishes when Jesus made him the fisher of men. Paul the tent maker made these men into Churches scattered over the world. Later, the Churches started to tear apart because of ugly doctrines and because the enemy, the roaring lion, had entered their midst.  It required John, the tent mender to come and mend the Churches. He wrote exclusively to Christians hence he often used the collective pronoun “we” more often than any other writer. 

First John 1:8 says: “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us” This means that ALL Christians, including John the writer himself, sin. That is what the Bible says; otherwise we are guilty of self deception. If you deceive others, you are wise, but if you deceive yourself you have no credit. That is man’s side. The next verse gives us God’s side of the story: “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” We see that God’s own side is faithfulness; “keeping all that are His till the end,” and forgiveness. He forgives and keeps all that confess to Him their sins. So from these two verses, ours is that of sinning and confessing, God’s is that of forgiving and faithfulness. 

I want us to note particularly that these two verses are in the present continuous tense. It is not in the past tense. This means that it is a fact that is true at all times. God is ever forgiving and ever faithful, man is ever sinning and the Christian must be ever confessing.

Read More: Justification and Sanctification

But does this mean that the Christian has a license to continue to sin because God is faithful to forgive? Never! Look at First John 5:18: “We know that whoever is born of God does not sin; but he who has been born of God keeps himself, and the wicked one does not touch him.”  Confession implies conviction of a wrong, feeling of guilt for the wrong, and self defeat in saying “I am sorry” which in itself means “I shall not do it again”. If something makes you sad to the extent that you go to the other person to say “I am sorry, I should not do it again”, would you have delight in doing it? No! So then the Christian does not delight in sin; he may sometimes fail; but when he fails he becomes so uncomfortable that he runs to God and says “I am sorry” like David in Psalm 51:10-12, he, cries out: “Create in me a clean heart, O God; renew a right Spirit within me. Cast me not away from Your presence, and take not Your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of Your salvation; and uphold me with Your free Spirit.”
John therefore tells the Christian in verses 1 and 2 of the second Chapter, that we have no need to fear rejection and failure. We should not take delight in sinning but should we sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ, the Righteous. And He is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.

Jesus our High Priest sits at the right hand of God pleading for us. If we say that we are no longer capable of sinning, we are saying we no longer have any need for Jesus Christ or of the Holy Spirit. We have attained perfection just as He has. We are also saying, there is no need for Christ’s Second Coming for we are told that when He comes He shall bring everything to perfection. We are saying, we do not need the New Heaven and the New Earth, because in this present one all things are already perfect. 

Let us beware of false doctrines and guard ourselves lest we are carried off guard. We are not yet perfect, only Christ is, and we shall not be until we enter the City “where God shall wipe away all tears from our eyes; and there shall be no more death; neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pains; for the former things are passed away” Revelation 21:4.

God bless you all.

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