We Should Try To Live Perfectly

In one of my phone studies recently, the student made the comment that his pastor had told him that we keep the Sabbath today by picking out a day of the week to try to sin less on that day. That bespeaks of an attitude I hear expressed a lot – that “we all sin, therefore it is okay to sin.”

It is true none of us will live without sin (I John 1:8), but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try. I John 2:1 reads “My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not.” In Exod 20:20 “Moses said unto the people, Fear not: for God is come to prove you … that ye sin not.” Psalm 4:4 says “Stand in awe, and sin not.” I Cor 15:34 instructs “Awake to righteousness, and sin not.” I Pet 2:21-22 says “For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth.” And so God commands us not to sin; God instructs us to follow the example of Christ in living above sin.

And if that is our goal, sinless perfection, then we will be disappointed whenever we do not meet our goal; we will repent. On the other hand, if our goal is to only obey 50 percent of God’s law, then we will be satisfied when we only do 50 percent, and will not repent.

Another who couldn’t dispute the fact that Matt 19:9 showed her marriage was adulterous, replied that “it serves as a reminder that if we could’ve kept the law there would’ve been no reason for Him to die.” Referring to actions like terminating such unscriptural marriages she wrote “when you do that, you’re negating Christ dying on the cross. You’re saying that I don’t need Christ, I can just go back and deal with the (God’s) law.” This is the attitude that I am talking about – that we can just continue in sin because the death of Christ will take care of it (Rom 6:1-2).

In the Old Testament, God told the Israelites in Deut 5:29 “O that there were such an heart in them, that they would fear me, and keep all my commandments always, that it might be well with them, and with their children for ever!” And in the New Testament James 2:10 says “For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.” So God expects us to obey everything in his law, all the time, until we die.

And when we fail, when we sin, I Cor 10:13 proves it is always our fault as it reads “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” We shouldn’t blame our sin on Adam or anybody else.

And if we want to be forgiven of our sin, we have to repent of it. II Pet 3:9 explains that God is “not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” So those who steal must quit stealing (Eph 4:28) to be forgiven; those who cuss must quit cussing (Eph 4:29); those who lie must quit lying (Rev 21:8); those in homosexual relationships must terminate those relationships (I Cor 6:9-10); and those in adulterous marriages must terminate those marriages (Matt 19:9). There are no ifs ands or buts about it.

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