Sunday, May 04, 2008

Satan In America

How does Satan operate? His goal is to prevent as many people as possible from joining Jesus Chris in heaven. What techniques does he use? A book called "10 Things Satan Doesn't Want You To Know" as a good description:

"He [Satan] is a master counterfeiter, and he is trying to promote something that is similar, not dissimilar, to the plan and will of God. Satan, with all of his intelligence and long experience, knows that if he puts something which is clearly evil in the path of a Christian, he is apt to be alert to the fact that this comes from Satan and as a consequence be on guard against it. But if Satan can offer something which though good in itself is not the best, he will be more likely to gain the victory over the believer."

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Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Do Christians Sin?

Do Christians sin? Yes. Christians are like everyone else. Christians disobey God. Christians do things that are wrong. The difference is in the response to sin. The story in the Bible about Simon the Samaritan shows this. Simon was a Samaritan sorcerer who was very influential because of the magic he performed. Then he heard Philip preach and he became a Christian. But as happens with many Christians his old desires stayed with him. Here is his story from Acts 8:13-24 (NLT)

"Then Simon himself believed and was baptized. He began following Philip wherever he went, and he was amazed by the great miracles and signs Philip performed."

"When the apostles back in Jerusalem heard that the people of Samaria had accepted God's message, they sent Peter and John there. As soon as they arrived, they prayed for these new Christians to receive the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit had not yet come upon any of them, for they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. The Peter and John laid their hands upon these believers and they received the Holy Spirit."

"When Simon saw that the Holy Spirit was given when the apostles placed their hands upon people's heads, he offered money to buy this power. 'Let me have this power, too,' he exclaimed, 'so that when I lay my hands on people, they will receive the Holy Spirit!'"

"But Peter replied, 'May your money perish with you for thinking God's gift can be bought! You can have no part in this, for your heart is not right before God. Turn from your wickedness and pray to the Lord. Perhaps he will forgive your evil thoughts, for I can see that you are full of bitterness and held captive by sin.'"

"'Pray to the Lord for me,' Simon exclaimed, 'that these terrible things won't happen to me!'"

What was Simon's response to learning he was sinning? He recognized his sin, turned away from his sin, and sought God's forgiveness. He was so overwhelmed by recognizing he was sinning that he felt the great separation from God that sin brings, and did not feel worthy to pray himself.

This is the difference between a Christian and non-Christian. The Christian recognizes their sin, recognizes their responsibility for their sin, and recognizes the evil of their sin. They desire to stop sinning. They seek forgiveness from God for the sin.

The non-Christian embraces their sin. The non-Christian finds excuses for their sin.

Both Christians and non-Christians sin (disobey God). The difference is that Christians fall into sin and non-Christians dive into sin.

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