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Sin That Destroys Us All

In: Religion Topics

Submitted By KyleJ
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Kyle Jordan Estanislao TREDTWO C37 2/17/2015
The Clutches of Sin
Sin as we all know is formally defined as the infraction against the word of God. With every sinful act we commit, it is like we are distancing ourselves from God. Despite this, it seems that nobody could still stay away from the clutches of sin. Nobody is perfect. We live in an imperfect world filled with temptations and bad influences. Unfortunately no matter how hard we try to stay away and fight off these negative inducements, eventually we would succumb to the pull of sin. As my father always quotes from the bible “The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak. Due to this, people have this common notion in mind that if everybody eventually turns out to be a sinner, then why bother trying so hard not to be one. These people would then rationalize that it is ok to sin because God is super forgiving and that by confessing our sins, everything would be ok. It is as if by simply telling someone of one’s bad deeds, it would magically erase all the damages done because of one’s sinful acts. What they don’t realize is that as described in the lecture, sin is a spiral that enslaves us, making us addicted to it. Every time we commit a sin, it opens us to a possibility that we would keep repeating them until it now harms our major social and personal relations. Sin doesn’t just affect oneself, it also affects the people around us. Every time we commit a sin, more likely than not, someone would be negatively affected. Furthermore, it isn’t enough just to admit that one has indeed committed a wrong. True repentance would demand that people should take responsibility for their actions and should do whatever it takes to correct their mistakes and minimize the hurt that has caused to people and to God. In this way, not only does it help us cleanse our souls, it also gives us a way to be closer to God. Furthermore, we should also know that the compassion given to us by God has a limit, if we end up committing a mortal sin which is to openly disregard or reject God, we would no longer be forgiven. It is not because God couldn’t forgive you is that we ourselves would not open our hearts to receive forgiveness from God. One of the other concerns that sceptics also always points out is that if sin is really such a bad thing then why didn’t God just force us to not sin. What these sceptics fail to realize that without our free will or our freedom to choose what we do with our lives, life is meaningless. It would mean that we would be just like robots that are programmed to do a particular thing. Imagine how sad it feels if someone tells us that he is actually helping you because he has no other choice but to do so. This is primarily one of the reasons why God chose us to have the free will because not only does he believe that we could resist the beckoning of the devil to make us sin but also he wants to make us feel the joy of having someone do a rightful thing because he/she loves you. Even though I was raised with Christian and moral values and I knew all these things, I couldn’t just resist the pleasures of sin. There was even a point wherein I was so used to sin that I no longer feel guilty when committing them. It is just so hard in trying to be good. I guess one of the primary reasons why we sin is that we think sin is the easiest way to get away or solve a situation. I remember during grade school, I fail to study a test because I spent the whole day playing with my friends, so I ended up knowing nothing of the questions asked in the exam. Due to the fact that I was so afraid that I would be reprimanded by my parents and the fact that I may no longer be an honor student, I decided to cheat. For a while, I thought and keep convincing myself that I did nothing wrong and that everyone is doing the same thing as I did. I keep deceiving myself that what I did is justified since nobody was really hurt in the process. Luckily, I was very attached to God, I know that by doing this, it would hurt my relationship with Him so I ended up telling my parents and teachers about it. Although I was given a 0 in the exam and was severely lectured by my parents, but at least I could proudly say that my relationship with God is not broken and that my good grades were gotten through hard work and not cheating. Sadly, this was not the last time I sinned, I remember before I was very greedy. I had so much unused toys like action figures and tops but I refuse to give them away. Not only this, I used to also charge people every time they ask me for something such as pad papers. The bottomline is, I never do anything for free unless there is something in it for me. Until the moment arrived when people start criticizing me for being so greedy that I began to reflect on my actions. Slowly, I began to think that maybe I should try to help people just for the sake of helping them and building companionship. The moment came when one of my poorer classmates in highschool did not bring the frog’s liver for an experiment in biology because his family at that time was having a financial crisis. At that time, I brought 2 frog’s liver with me because I was making sure that if ever I made a mistake in the experiment, I could also redo it. Since I want to try sharing for once, I ended up giving my spare frog’s liver to him. When he knew that I decided to give it to him for free, he was so happy and that happiness was transferred to me. I never felt such a light and gleeful feeling before. Ever since that day, I decided to give more rather than to receive and so far I have become a happier and a better man. To avoid from further sinning, I decided to read articles and I came up with good advices from them. First is to recognize one’s tendency to sin. The very first step to avoid temptations is to recognize our tendency to be attracted to our worldly and fleshy desire. We should remember that temptations are everywhere and we should not be surprised by them. Rather, we should expect them to tempt us and we should prepare for it. Second, we should resist with the word of truth, By reading the Bible and learning all its teachings regularly, we would eventually have so much of it inside that when temptation comes we have the full counsel of God at our disposal. Third, every time we make moral decision we should put our focus off ourselves and focus on God. We should constantly ask ourselves if God were in my place right now what would He do. Lastly if ever we lose our battles against sin, we should repent quickly and not deny it for it is dangerous to persist in our sins. We should all remember that God would not give us temptation that we cannot handle, we just need to dig deep enough into our souls to reach out and have the strength to the right thing. We should also remember that whether it is by circumstance or that we justify our actions by saying that the end justifies the means or maybe it could object oriented, at the end of the day a sin is still a sin. By remember and practicing all of these, when the time comes when sin strikes again, more likely than not we would be ready and strong enough to do the right thing.

Having a more realistic view—knowing that at times you will fail—should help you to repent quickly when you do. It is not the end of the world when you fail, but it is very dangerous to persist in your sin.

Hindi mahuhuli

Hindi nahuhuli
We should also remember that deceive As long as humans exist, we will never be able to retire theconcept of sin because it definitely exists! None of us are perfect; we all sin on occasion. And certainly, sin affects all of us, both when we sin and when others sin. “”, this is usually what come to my mind when I hear the word sin. Sin is formally define as
5 Steps to Avoid Temptation
Recognize your tendency toward sin.
James 1:14 explains that we are tempted when we become enticed by our own natural desires. The first step toward avoiding temptation, is recognizing our human tendency to be tempted by our own fleshly desires. Temptation is a given, so don't be surprised by it. Rather, expect to be tempted. Be prepared for it.
Run away from the temptation.
I love the New Living Translation of 1 Corinthians 10:13. It says, "But remember that the temptations that come into your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will keep the temptation from becoming so strong that you can't stand up against it. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you will not give in to it."
When you are face to face with temptation, look for the way out that God has promised and then run as fast as you can.
Resist with the Word of truth.
Hebrews 4:12 says God's Word is living and active. Did you know you can carry a weapon that will make your thoughts obey Jesus Christ? If you don't believe me, read 2 Corinthians 10:4-5 One of these weapons is the Word of God.
Though it can be helpful to read God's Word when you're being tempted, sometimes that's not practical. Even better is to practice reading the Word daily, so that eventually you have so much of it inside, you are ready whenever temptation comes. If you are reading through the Bible regularly, you will have the full counsel of God at your disposal.
Refocus with praise.
How often have you been tempted to sin when your heart and mind were fully concentrated on worship to the Lord? Praising God takes your focus off of yourself and puts it on God. You may not be strong enough to resist temptation on your own, but as you focus on God, he will inhabit your praise. He will give you the strength to resist and walk away from the temptation. May I suggest Psalm 147as a good place to start.
Repent quickly when you fail.
In several places the Bible tells us the best way to resist temptation is to flee from it (1 Corinthians 6:18; 1 Corinthians 10:14; 1 Timothy 6:11; 2 Timothy 2:22). Yet still we all fail from time to time. We fail to flee. Notice I didn't say, repent quickly if you fail. Having a more realistic view—knowing that at times you will fail—should help you to repent quickly when you do. It is not the end of the world when you fail, but it is very dangerous to persist in your sin. Going back to James 1, verse 15 explains that sin "when it is full-grown, gives birth to death."
If you're struggling with temptation, take encouragement from this Bible verse and pray the prayer below, asking the Lord to help you deal with the struggle you face each day.
"No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it."
1 Corinthians 10:13 (NIV)
“But remember that the temptations that come into your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will keep the temptation from becoming so strong that you can't stand up against it. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you will not give in to it.”1 Corinthians 10:13 (NLT)
Dear Lord,
You know the temptations that I am facing today. Your Word promises that I will not be tempted beyond what I can bear. I ask for your strength to stand up under the temptation whenever I encounter it. Your Word also tells me you will provide a way out of the temptation. Please, Lord, give me the wisdom to walk away when I am tempted, and the clarity to see the way out that you will provide. Thank you, God, that you are afaithful deliverer and that I can count on your help in my time of need.

Why Do People Sin?By Ron Boatwright We are free moral agents. God could have made us as robots, but He didn’t. We have a choice in the matter. "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23). There are several reasons why people sin. People sin because, "There is no fear of God before their eyes" (Romans 3:18). They have no respect for God, our Creator. But the "whole duty of man" is to "fear God and keep His commandments" (Ecclesiastes 12:13). Before we can keep God’s commandments we must know what they are. But God says, "My people are destroyed for a lack of knowledge" (Hosea 4:6). We must study God’s word because, "Your word, I have hidden in my heart that I might not sin against You" (Psalms 119:11). We must develop an awesome respect for God and His word so we will not sin against Him. People sin because we are deceived by sin. We are to, "Exhort one another daily, while it is called today, lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin" (Hebrews 3:13). We can even deceive ourselves by denying we have sinned. "If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us" (1 John 1:8). Because of the deceitfulness of sin, we are to, "Beware lest you also fall from your own steadfastness, being led away with the error of the wicked" (2 Peter 3:17). We are warned, "Let no man deceive you with vain words" (Ephesians 5:6). Yes, sin is deceiving. People sin because there is temporary pleasure in sin. Moses chose "rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season" (Hebrews 11:25). Because of the pleasures of sin, we are tempted and enticed. "But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust has conceived, it brings forth sin, and sin when it is finished, brings forth death" (James 1:14-15). People sin because, "The soul of the wicked desires evil" (Proverbs 21:10). Jesus asks, "Why do you think evil in your hearts?" (Matthew 9:4). People sin because they "love evil more than good, lying rather than speaking righteousness" (Psalms 52:3). And because of this they "call evil good and good evil" (Isaiah 5:20). People sin because they are deceived by false doctrine. "If anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let hem be accursed" (Galatians 1:9). If one wanders away into the sin of denominationalism, he will be lost. "Whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God" (1 John 9). We must be faithful to God and His word. People sin because of the influence of the people with whom they associate. "Do not be deceived: evil company corrupts good habits" (1 Corinthians 15:33). We must carefully choose our associates. To protect ourselves from sin we must, "Abstain from all appearance of evil" (1 Thessalonians 5:22). We also sin when we don’t do what we should do. "Therefore, to him that knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin" (James 4:17). One of the things some people fail to do is they fail to assemble for worship. But we are not to "forsake the assembling of ourselves together as is the manner of some…for if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sin" (Hebrews 10:25-26). If we continue willfully in our sin and don’t repent, we will die in our sins and be lost (John 8:24). Let us not be deceived by sin, because the wages of sin is spiritual death in Hell forever (Romans 6:23). Question: "Do we sin daily? Is it possible to go an entire day without sinning?"Answer:While there is not a Bible verse that specifically states we commit a sinful act each day, we do have verses that remind us that we have inherited the capacity to sin at any moment. "Sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned" (Romans 5:12). "Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me" (Psalm 51:5). In addition, we have commands that we know we never keep, much less on a daily basis. For instance, who can claim to love God with all his heart, mind and soul every moment of every day? No one. Yet, that is the greatest commandment (Matthew 22:36-38). Failing to love God completely at all times is a daily sin for all Christians.We also have a verse that warns us of the deceitfulness of our old sinful nature, which in a sense is warning us of the potential, if not the likelihood, of daily sin. "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?" (Jeremiah 17:9). Even the apostle Paul was frustrated with his own battle against indwelling sin. "For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members" (Romans 7:22-23). This capacity to sin led him to cry in desperation, “What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death?” (Romans 7:24).Solomon knew full well that he and all men not only have the potential for sin, but that we all exercise that capacity routinely. As he stated in his prayer at the dedication of the temple, "If they sin against thee, (for there is no man that sinneth not)" (1 Kings 8:46). And Solomon spoke of it again in the book of Ecclesiastes: "For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not" (Ecclesiastes 7:20). Again, while these verses do not unequivocally indicate daily sin, they certainly warn us against the pride of saying at any moment that we have no sin.The good news is that we will not have to strive forever against daily sin. One day we will be in heaven with our Savior and will be freed from the presence and power of sin, just as we have already been freed from its penalty.Read more:
Question: "Why did Jesus tell people to ‘go and sin no more’ if sinlessness is impossible?"Answer:There are two instances in the New Testament when Jesus told someone to “sin no more,” and they were each under very different circumstances. The first is when Jesus healed an invalid by the Pool of Bethesda (John 5:1–15). Afterward, Jesus found the man and told him, “See, you are well again. Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you” (verse 14). It is clear that Jesus knew what had caused the man’s condition. We are not told the specifics of the man’s physical impairment, but the context implies that it was caused by sinful choices. Jesus warned the man that he had been given a second chance and that he should make better choices. If the man returned to his sinful behavior, he would have wasted the opportunity Jesus gave him to live whole and forgiven.The second instance is in the account of the woman taken in the act of adultery (John 8:3–11). When the woman’s accusers brought her before Jesus, expecting Him to pronounce judgment, He told them that the one who was without sin should throw the first stone. One by one, the condemning crowd left. Then Jesus told the woman, “Neither do I condemn you. Go and sin no more” (verse 11). She had been caught. She was guilty. She did deserve stoning according to the Law of Moses (Leviticus 20:10;Deuteronomy 22:22). But the religious leaders who had dragged her there had no concern for holiness. They were trying to trap Jesus into saying that the Law did not matter (verse 6).Jesus often reminded those religious leaders that He had not come to abolish the Law but to fulfill it (Matthew 5:17). He, as God, was the Author of the Law (2 Timothy 3:16). The Pharisees focused on the letter of the Law but missed the true spirit of it, which is given inGalatians 5:14: “The whole law can be summed up in this one command: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” When Jesus refused to condemn the woman, He was not minimizing the importance of holiness. He was offering her the same kind of forgiveness He offers every one of us (Acts 3:19).In saying, “Go and sin no more,” Jesus was not speaking of sinless perfection. He was warning against a return to sinful lifestyle choices. His words both extended mercy and demanded holiness. Jesus was always the perfect balance of “grace and truth” (John 1:14). With forgiveness comes the expectation that we will not continue in the same path of rebelliousness. Those who know God’s love will naturally want to obey Him (John 14:15).When we turn to Christ and receive His forgiveness, we experience a heart change (Luke 9:23;Acts 1:8). Forgiveness is not cheap, and it does not excuse the sin that separated us from God. It cost God everything to offer us the cleansing that pronounces us righteous before Him (John 3:16;15:13). Rather than continue in the self-centered path that led us astray from Him to begin with, the forgiven can walk in God’s path (Luke 14:27). A move toward God is a move toward righteousness, purity, and holy living (1 Peter 1:16;Romans 8:29). We cannot experience the transforming power of forgiveness without being forever changed.It goes without saying that the woman caught in adultery did not return to her infidelity. She had met Jesus. She would not be perfect. No one is. But she was forever changed. Her eyes had been opened to the depravity of what she was doing. Sin no longer held the appeal it once did. When we meet Jesus, sin no longer holds its fatal attraction. Grace changes things. “Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?” (Romans 6:1–2).When we are born again (John 3:3), the power of the Holy Spirit breaks the power that sin once had over us (Romans 6:6). Once we lived only to please ourselves, but when we have been forgiven, our motivation changes. We now live to please God (Galatians 2:20).It should be the goal of every Christian to “sin no more,” although we recognize that, while we are in the flesh, we will still stumble (1 John 1:8). God’s desire for each of us is to be holy as He is holy (1 Peter 1:16). We still sin, but sin is no longer a lifestyle choice (1 John 3:9–10). When we fail, we can come to God and ask forgiveness (1 John 1:9;1 Peter 4:1–2). And if we are truly God’s children, He will correct us, disciplining us when we need it (Hebrews 12:6–11). His work is to conform us to the image of His Son (Romans 8:29).Read more:
Question: "Will God continue to forgive you if you commit the same sin over and over again?"Answer:To best answer this question, we’re going to look at two powerful passages of Scripture. The first is found in the book of Psalms: “As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us” (Psalm 103:12). One of the most effective tricks Satan plays on Christians is to convince us that our sins aren't really forgiven, despite the promise of God's Word. If we've truly received Jesus as Savior by faith, and still have that uneasy feeling wondering whether or not there is true forgiveness, that may be coming from demonic influences. Demons hate it when people are delivered from their grasp, and they try to plant seeds of doubt in our minds about the reality of our salvation. In his vast arsenal of tricks, one of Satan’s biggest tools is to constantly remind us of our past transgressions, and he uses those to prove that God couldn't possibly forgive or restore us. The devil's attacks make it a real challenge for us to simply rest in the promises of God and trust His love.But this psalm also tells us that God not only forgives our sins, but removes them completely from His presence. This is a profound thing! Without question, this is a difficult concept for humans to grasp, which is why it's so easy for us to worry and wonder about forgiveness instead of just accepting it. The key lies in simply giving up our doubts and our feelings of guilt and resting in His promises of forgiveness.Another passage is1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” What an incredible promise! God forgives His children when they sin if only they come to Him and in an attitude of repentance and ask to be forgiven. God’s grace is so great that it can cleanse the sinner from his sin so that he becomes a child of God. Even when we stumble, we can be forgiven still.InMatthew 18:21-22, we read, "Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, ‘Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times?’ Jesus answered, ‘I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.’” Peter was probably thinking that he was being generous. Rather than repay a person who had committed a sin against him with equal retribution, Peter suggested giving the brother some leeway, say, up to seven times. But the eighth time, forgiveness and grace would run out. But Christ challenged the rules of Peter’s suggested economy of grace by saying that forgiveness is infinite for those who are truly seeking it. This is only possible because of the infinite grace of God which is made possible through the shed blood of Christ on the cross. Because of Christ’s forgiving power, we can always be made clean after we sin if we humbly seek it.At the same time, it must be noted that it is not biblical for a person to sin habitually and continually as a lifestyle and still be a believer (1 John 3:8-9). This is why Paul admonishes us to “examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you—unless, of course, you fail the test?” (2 Corinthians 13:5). As Christians, we do stumble, but we do not live a lifestyle of continual, unrepentant sin. All of us have weaknesses and can fall into sin, even if we don’t want to. Even the apostle Paul did what he didn’t want to do because of the sin at work in his body (Romans 7:15). Like Paul, the response of the believer is to hate the sin, repent of it and ask for divine grace to overcome it (Romans 7:24-25). Although we need not fall because of God’s sufficient grace, sometimes we do because we rely upon our insufficient strength. When our faith grows weak and, like Peter, we deny our Lord in word or in life, even then there is still a chance to repent and be forgiven of our sin.Another one of Satan’s tricks is to get us to think that there is no hope, that there is no possibility that we can be forgiven, healed, and restored. He will try to get us to feel consumed and trapped by guilt so that we do not feel worthy of God’s forgiveness any longer. But since when were we ever worthy of God’s grace? God loved us, forgave us and chose us to be in Christ before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4-6), not because of anything we did, but “in order that we, who were the first to hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory” (Ephesians 1:12). We must always keep in mind that there is no place we can go that God’s grace cannot reach, and there is no depth to which we can sink that God is no longer able to pull us out. His grace is greater than all of our sin. Whether we are just starting to wander off course or we are already sinking and drowning in our sin, grace can be received.Grace is a gift from God (Ephesians 2:8). When we sin, the Spirit will convict us of sin such that a godly sorrow will result (2 Corinthians 7:10-11). He will not condemn our souls as if there is no hope, for there is no longer any condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1). The Spirit’s conviction within us is a movement of love and grace. Grace is not an excuse to sin (Romans 6:1-2), and it dare not be abused, meaning that sin must be called “sin,” and it cannot be treated as if it is harmless or inoffensive. Unrepentant believers need to be lovingly confronted and guided to freedom, and unbelievers need to be told that they need to repent. Yet let us also emphasize the remedy, for we have been given grace upon grace (John 1:16). Grace is how we live, how we are saved, how we are sanctified, and how we will be kept and glorified. Let us receive grace when we sin by repenting and confessing our sin to God. Why live a sinful life when Christ offers to make us whole and right in the eyes of God?Read more: Why do we sin today?
The greatest creature God ever made, Day Star (nicknamed Lucifer) fell in heaven and took 1/3 of all the angels in his rebellion against God. He then waited for the right time and showed up one day in the garden to deceive Eve, Adam participated in the same sin willingly. It is Adam that is primarily blamed because he was nearby when this took place and did nothing to stop it. God warned Adam about eating from the one tree that was off limits, He told Adam that he would die in the day that he disobeyed. So he did not go into this act blindly. Paul writes that
“the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness”(2 Cor. 11:3), “Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression.’(1 Tim. 2:14)
The Bible explains that we no need to be deceived to sin because we have inherited the fallen nature of Adam. Why is it of Adam? Only Adam became a sinner by sinning. We are all born with a built-in death warrant, which is our sin nature, inheriting this sin nature, which brings illness, it brings flaws. We inherit our physical features and even hereditary defects from our line, why is it so difficult to believe that our sinful nature could be passed on as well? Scripture states “The wages of sin is death.” This explains why a child can die even when they are innocent of doing anything intentionally wrong, or consciously sin? They die before they have had a chance to willfully disobey because death is the consequence of sin. Sin is in humanity before we formulize what is right and right.
Romans 5:12 “Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned” The result came from the sin of Adam. Humanity was infected and it produced death and made everyone sin.
Jesus himself explains that with the sin comes the sentence of condemnation, "He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” (Jn. 3:18)
Jesus gives us all the way out, “For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh” (Rom. 8:3)
A.T. Robertson explains “For that all sinned ef' (NT:1884) hoo (NT:3691) pantes (NT:3909) heemarton (NT:261). Constative (summary) aorist active indicative of hamartanoo (NT:261), gathering up in this one tense the history of the race (committed sin). The transmission from Adam became facts of experience. In the old Greek ef' (NT:1884) hoo (NT:3691) usually meant "on condition that," but "because" in the New Testament (Robertson, Grammar, p. 963) (from Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament).
Romans 5:12 Passed upon dieelthen (NT:1317) ef' (NT:1884). Literally, "came throughout upon." The preposition dia (NT:1211) denotes "spreading, propagation," as eis (NT:1500) "into" denoted "entrance."
(from Vincent's Word Studies of the New Testament).
Romans 5:18 - 19 says, “through one man’s trespass, judgment came to all men, for by one man’s disobedience all were made sinners.” This Scripture clearly shows sin is inherited through Adam’s disobedience, not ours. According to Rom.5 If one man (Adam) made us all sinners, it is also by one man (Jesus Christ) that can make us all righteous (those who believe). While we did not have a choice with sin -- we do have a choice to be in right standing with God through the righteousness of Christ and have the power to restrain from sin.
If one takes the position that we are not born sinners but only sin takes place by a choice then it means that everyone is born innocent (perfect), just like Jesus, without ever having a virgin birth. Paul writes that Sin entered the world through one man (Rom. 5:12-21), Adam. The term Original sin means Adam losing his original righteousness he was made with and passing it on to his offspring.
Paul’s point is that Adam’s sin was a single representative act for all his posterity, which is now reckoned to their account having sinned in him. Adam, as the first man was the natural headship of the human race. From him flows man’s fallen nature, passed on through reproduction. The sin nature affects the immaterial part of man, which is expressed by our outward actions. We sin because we have the nature of sin in us.
It is not just our physical actions that make us a sinner, but our mind is affected also. Sin shows its outworkings through our actions (Ps. 58; Job 15:14, 25:4; Eph. 2:3; Rom. 5:12-19), though we cannot see sin express itself all the time, it is still there waiting to be alive. Like a piece of firewood ready to be kindled by a small flame.
James explains how sin is birthed. Jm.1:14-15 “but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.” The source of sin doesn’t come from the outside but from within, it is the temptation to sin that comes from outside and brings life to what is already there. We are drawn away from our own desires (the Greek means to be lured into a trap). It is not a single act, but a process that begins in our heart.
This sin nature is the basis for all sinful acts and habits, everything we do wrong. Many times we treat the symptoms but not the cause. King David claimed he was conceived in iniquity (Ps. 51:5). Meaning even he was not exempt from the inheritance of sin, it was there from the beginning of his life in the womb.
Religion with its rules and regulations try to control our fallen nature by conforming the outer man to do what is right. These same religions have us believe that we can then depend on our own works to merit right standing before God.
The Bible says, “The heart is deceitfully wicked out of which flow all kinds of evils.” Jesus said a similar thing to thoise who meticulously cleaned the outside
"But those things which proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and they defile a man. "For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies. "These are the things which defile a man, but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile a man." (Matt 15:18-20)
Jesus points to the innermost being of man- his spirit. The only solution for cleansing is God’s solution - change the heart. How? By the new birth which takes place on the inside of man. Our dead spirit needs to be regenerated (Rom. 8:1; Gal. 5:24) by the Spirit of God. Once we are made alive, spiritually, we are able to have a vital relationship to God through Jesus Christ. God’s answer is a new nature, what Adam lost, we are given even more.
Those who believe on his sacrifice have his righteousness imputed to us and are continually changed by the sanctification process, by the Holy Spirit to counter the effects of sin.
The Bible tells us that it is important to guard our minds from sinful thoughts. From wrong thinking comes wrong actions. Proverbs 4:23 says, “Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.” This verse says that to guard your heart it will take diligence. That means it is something that doesn’t happen without effort. 2 Corinthians 10:5 says that we need to bring wrong thoughts into captivity. We must control our mind so that we can obey Christ. “Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;”
So how are you to fill your mind with the right thoughts? How can you fight this war against wicked thinking. Here are five ways to help you avoid sinful thoughts which become wrong habits.
Fill Your Mind With God’s Word
Philippians 4:8 “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”
The Bible fits the description of all these things that Paul writes about in Philippians. When you pack your mind with songs full of ungodly lyrics you can’t expect to have pure thoughts. You need to focus on the true, honest and pure teaching of the Bible.
Memorizing Bible verses and passages is a great way to fill your mind with God’s Word. Look at some of the many verse lists we have here at What Christians Want to Know: Bible Verses by Topic and start memorizing God’s Word. If you are memorizing and meditating on the Bible then it will begin to push out the ungodly thoughts from the world and your past.
Keep Your Mind Clean
Psalm 101:3 “I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me.”
Job 31:1 “I made a covenant with mine eyes; why then should I think upon a maid?”
As the verse in 2 Corinthians reminds us, the battle for your mind is an active one. It is not something that you can passively win. You must work to keep your mind pure. The psalmist says that he would set no wicked thing before his eyes. Job covenanted with himself to keep his eyes pure because he knew that men are attracted by what they see. These two verses say that if we can keep our eyes from seeing things that are wicked then the likelihood of keeping a pure mind is greater.
Yet, there is a daily battle for your eyes. Driving down the road introduces you to billboards that promote nudity, sex and sin larger than life. You must guard your eyes. You may think, “Well, I can’t control that. I have to drive that way to work.” That may be true, but let me ask you about the things you can control. What are you watching on TV? What about the movies you watch or the books and magazines you read? I am not just talking about the obviously wicked items. You need to guard your eyes from many things on prime-time television. A casual glance through health magazines at the doctor’s office can bombard your eyes and mind with ungodly images that stir up evil thoughts.
Yes, it is a battle, but it is a battle that we have been given the tools with which to fight.
Establish Accountability with Someone
Hebrews 10:24, 25 “And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.”
Find a friend who can hold you accountable. Meet with them regularly either in person, over the phone or through the Internet. I have an accountability partner that I regularly email to let him know what is going on in my life. He knows that when I don’t write him on a regular basis it is because there is something I am not wanting to share about what is going on in life. Knowing that he expects me to report to him helps keep me accountable.
Proverbs 11:14 and 15:22 say that we should surround ourselves with counselors. These are church friends and other mature Christians who can help with accountability. Being around other people who want you to do right will give you good examples for how to live.
View Others with Godly Eyes

I will set no wicked thing before my eyes
1 Timothy 5:1, 2 “Rebuke not an elder, but intreat him as a father; and the younger men as brethren; The elder women as mothers; the younger as sisters, with all purity.”
Think of other people as your brothers and sisters. Even if the person is an unbeliever, you should still love them like a sister. There are many stories in the Bible where Jesus interacted with women. Sometimes they were vulnerable emotionally or physically. However, you never see Jesus acting inappropriately toward them. He always treated them in a godly and wholesome way. He treated them like they were part of His family.
When you view other people as objects to be desired then it is hard to have godly thoughts toward them. Remember that even those who improperly display their bodies is someone’s daughter, mother, brother or son. They may not be doing right, but that does not give you a license to take advantage of them or to allow your mind to continue towards unholy thoughts and actions.
Avoid Temptation
Romans 13:14 “But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.”
This verse has been the most helpful verse to me in overcoming wrong thoughts which lead to wrong actions in my life. Paul says that we should not make an easy way for the flesh to win. Have you noticed a pattern in the temptation in your life? Do you typically fall into sin at the same places or with the same people? I noticed that in my life that was true. I learned that I could choose to stay out of those places or stay away from those people and activities that would cause me to sin.
Often we make temptation easy for ourselves. We don’t try to avoid it. We want to play as close to it as we can but then get upset when we fall into the sin. If you want to avoid the sin, then avoid the situations that give you an opportunity to sin. Don’t play with temptation and then claim that the devil made you do it. That is a lie that you may be telling yourself, but you know it is not true. We often bring the temptation and sin upon ourselves. Claim the power of Romans 13:14 and have confidence that the God who wrote this in His Word has the power to help you apply it in your life.
Avoiding sinful thoughts is not impossible; remember these things:
Be careful to fill your mind with God’s Word
Keep your mind clean (avoid the things that pollute your mind)
Establish accountability with a fellow believer and keep in touch
View others with godly eyes (even when they do not dress or act godly)
Avoid temptation – listen when the Holy Spirit prompts you to stay away
Read more:
What Is Sin - The Big QuestionWe live in a culture where the concept of sin has become entangled in legalistic arguments over right and wrong. When many of us consider "What is sin?" we think of violations of the Ten Commandments. Even then, we tend to think of murder and adultery as "major" sins compared with lying, cursing, or idolatry. The truth is that sin, as defined in the original translations of the Bible, means "to miss the mark." The mark, in this case, is the standard of perfection established by God and evidenced by Jesus. Viewed in that light, it is clear that we are all sinners. The Apostle Paul says in Romans 3:23: "All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." In light of this, it does no good to compare ourselves to others. We cannot escape our failure to be righteous in our own strength. This is by God's design, because only when we understand our weakness will we consider relying on the atoning sacrifice of Jesus.
What Is Sin - A Biblical PerspectiveSin is mentioned hundreds of times in the Bible, starting with the "original" sin when Adam and Eve ate of the tree of knowledge. Often it seems as if sin is simply the violation of any of God's laws, including the Ten Commandments. Paul, however, puts this in perspective in Romans 3:20, when he says, "Therefore no one will be declared righteous in His sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin." God wanted us to recognize our sins. Even those who have not murdered or committed adultery will find themselves convicted of lying, or of worshipping false idols like wealth or power ahead of God. Tragically, sin in any amount will distance us from God. "Surely the arm of the LORD is not too short to save, nor His ear too dull to hear," says Isaiah 59:1-2. "But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear." We must resist the temptation to act as if we are righteous, especially by leaning on our good works. "If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives" (1 John 1:8-10).
What Is Sin - A Call to RepentanceThe good news in all of this is that, once we recognize ourselves as sinners, we need only to repent and embrace Jesus to be forgiven. Jesus can forgive us because he died and rose again three days later in victory over sin and death. The Apostle Paul refers to this process of recognizing sin and being responsible for it as "godly sorrow." "Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death," Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 7:10-11. "See what this godly sorrow has produced in you: what earnestness, what eagerness to clear yourselves, what indignation, what alarm, what longing, what concern, what readiness to see justice done. At every point you have proved yourselves to be innocent in this matter."
- See more at:
How to Prevent Sinby Herbert W. Armstrong (1892-1986)1968Related What Sin Is & What Sin Does Are Some Sins Worse Than Others? Sin, Christians, and the Fear of God The Ten Commandments The Elements of Motivation (Part Seven): Fear of Judgment How Did They Overcome? (Part One) Sin Is Spiritual! More...
Do YOU realize that if it is wrong to DO a certain thing, it is wrong to harbor THOUGHTS of that thing in your mind?
"ALL have sinned," says the Scripture.
What IS sin, anyway?
Satan ought to know — and he is the invisible influence who sways the course of this world. Hollywood is considered by many as the world's mecca of sin. On the newsstands in Hollywood may be found a very worldly booklet, written in a very light, "breezy," and satirical vein, titled "How to Sin in Hollywood." It gives a very worldly definition of sin — perhaps the definition of the very Devil who devotes his time to enticing people into it. The definition is expressive, and not far from the truth. Here it is: "Sin is THINKING THOUGHTS you ought not to be thinking about things you ought not to be DOING while you are THINKING that kind of THOUGHTS."
God's definition is: "Sin is the transgression of the law" (I John 3:4). The law of "LOVE," as defined by the Ten Commandments. Jesus said: "That which cometh out of the man, that defileth the man. For from within, OUT of the heart of men, proceed EVIL THOUGHTS adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness [violations of the law — the Ten Commandments] ..." (Mark 7:20-22).
"ALL have sinned," says the Scripture. And what man — especially what Christian, is there who has not time and again experienced the struggle against sin described by the Apostle Paul? "What I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that I do would not, that I do." Who is there who has not LOST that struggle, perhaps many times?
Of course no man, of himself, can live above sin. "With men it IS impossible," said Jesus, "but with God all things are possible." And Paul continues (Romans 8) to show that the only DELIVERANCE from this body of death is through Jesus Christ, and the indwelling power of God's Holy Spirit — "that the RIGHTEOUSNESS of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God."
Yes, but we have OUR part in it, too. And it all centers in the MIND.
REPENTANCE of sin means, literally, to CHANGE one's MIND in respect to sin. If we repent, and accept Jesus Christ as Saviour, the promise is we SHALL receive the gift of the Holy Spirit ... "and be renewed in the Spirit of YOUR MIND" (Ephesians 4:23) — the presence of the Holy Spirit is the RENEWING of THE MIND.
How does sin actually happen? "... every man is TEMPTED when he is drawn away of his own lust [desire], and enticed. Then when lust [the desire IN THE MIND] hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death" (James 1:14-15).
The TEMPTATION is in the MIND. When you THINK about the thing that tempts you — let your mind dwell on it — turn it over in your mind — whether it be a desire to GO some place, to DO something, or to HAVE something you know is wrong — that THINKING ABOUT IT finally conceives — leads to ACTION — and breeds SIN. You finally DO the thing you kept thinking about, wanting to do. If you keep thinking about it, after a while you'll be UNABLE to resist it. That's why you've lost so many of these struggles against sin — you kept THINKING about it, desiring it, wanting it.
The way to prevent sin is to let God's Spirit fill the mind. "Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth" (Colossians 3:2).
The way to put a thing OUT of the mind is to put an OPPOSITE thought IN the mind. So often I have noticed parents of babies strive so hard to "shush" up the baby when it is crying in church. There's something in the baby's mind that is causing its crying or fretting. Just saying "shush!" or commanding the baby to stop fussing doesn't usually get very good results. We have raised four children, and long ago I learned the trick of quieting the baby by GETTING ITS MIND ON SOMETHING ELSE. Instead of commanding it to stop crying, attract its attention with some new object — get it interested in playing with that object (I have often used my fountain pen with excellent results) — and before you know it the child will forget all about its crying. Try using this same method on yourself. But instead of material or worldly things, a mature person should use self-discipline and set his mind on spiritual things. Open your Bible. Put the study of some SPIRITUAL subject in your mind. Next time you are tempted, try it. Pray over it. Ask God to help you. See how rapidly you begin to win the victory over temptation and sin, and how marvelous will be your spiritual and CHARACTER growth.
How Do I Stop Sinning? Overcoming Your Worst SinsJune 2, 2013 By Beginning and End

We cannot stop sins on our own. But through Jesus Christ all things are possible. Why Do I Keep Sinning? How Do I Stop Sexual Sin? What Are Ways to Stop Backsliding?
Overcoming Your Worst Sins The Biblical Way
These are all valid questions that Christians face. No matter where you live, your age or your background, all Christians will be tried and tested with sin in their lives. Living in a world full of sinful temptation makes the battle for Christian purity that much tougher. But the Bible of course, holds the solution to battling and in some cases, eliminating certain sins in your life. This article will explore one of the methods to overcoming your worst sins and keeping them away for good.
The story of King Josiah is a remarkable account of spiritual revival and re-dedication to God in a time of deep sin. Josiah, who became King of Judah at age 8 after his father King Amon was assassinated, led a sinful nation back to holy living and a right relationship with the Lord. Through his actions, a pattern emerges that every Christian can apply to help overcome sin.
Know Your Condition

“for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.” – 1 Samuel 16:7.
Josiah’s grandfather, King Manasseh, was one of the worst, most wicked Israelite kings of all time. The king was the spiritual leader of the nation and Manasseh’s reign was one of the lowest points for pure evil, rebellion and satanic behavior:
And [King Manasseh] did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD, after the abominations of the heathen, whom the LORD cast out before the children of Israel. For he built up again the high places which Hezekiah his father had destroyed; and he reared up altars for Baal, and made a grove, as did Ahab king of Israel; and worshipped all the host of heaven, and served them. And he built altars in the house of the LORD, of which the LORD said, In Jerusalem will I put my name. And he built altars for all the host of heaven in the two courts of the house of the LORD. And he made his son pass through the fire, and observed times, and used enchantments, and dealt with familiar spirits and wizards: he wrought much wickedness in the sight of the LORD, to provoke him to anger. And he set a graven image of the grove that he had made in the house, of which the LORD said to David, and to Solomon his son, In this house, and in Jerusalem, which I have chosen out of all tribes of Israel, will I put my name for ever: – 2 Kings 21:2-7.
This list is staggering for the amount of evil Manasseh had fallen into. He built altars of worship to the false gods of the Canaanites, Israel’s enemies. He worshiped Baal, one of the chief pagan gods of that time. In the temple of God, the holiest place in all of the world, he set up altars to worship demons and fallen angels. The King consulted with wizards and communicated with “familiar spirits”, which were demons that impersonated the dead. He even took a graven image of a false god and placed it inside the temple, the very place where God Himself would reveal His presence once a year. On top of all this, Scripture tells us that he performed an occult ritual sacrifice of his own son, causing him to “pass through the fire” or burning his child alive as an offering to a pagan god. This man’s evil is stunning and the Bible says he “led the nation” in performing evil.
Amon, the son of Manasseh, continued all of the evil of his father and reigned only 2 years before being assassinated. And this was the state of the Kingdom of Judah when Josiah took the throne. God’s chosen people, the Israelites, had fallen deep into rebellion. And this is a picture of how far a Christian can fall today. Thought a Christian is not committing the same sins as Manasseh, they can fall into rebellion from the “small sins” in life. The first step to stopping sin is to recognize it. Lying, stealing, being covetous and blasphemy are all evil in the sight of the Lord just as worshiping a pagan god. Sexual sins – whether it be pre-marital sex, watching pornography, adultery or lusting for another person who is not your spouse, are all sins that are can pull a person into a feeling of addictive behavior, where it seems like there is no way to stop the urges to disobey the Lord.

The internet can be a gateway to sinful temptation.
The Bible says with regards to sexual sin:
Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body. What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? – 1 Corinthians 6:18-19.
If you are a born again Christian, your body is literally the temple for the Holy Ghost, who you received at the moment you believed in the Lord Jesus Christ. Notice that the the Apostle Paul explains this concept in the context of sexual sin. Fornication, which is sexual activity outside of marriage, is just as sacrilegious and disrespectful to the temple of God as Manasseh setting up satanic altars. How have you treated the temple of the Holy Ghost? Have you protected your body from sin? Have you kept it pure from demonic and satanic influence? Have you kept your eyes and mind away from sinful sexual imagery and thoughts? Have you used your body to seduce others into evil? We all have committed these sins in one form or another. So understand that The Lord sees this as pure rebellion against Him and will judge any Christian who is committing such sin. Thankfully, Scripture provides an example in King Josiah of how to get out of this sinful state.
Put your focus on The Lord

Getting deeper into God’s Word will help avoid sin.
And [King Josiah] did that which was right in the sight of the LORD, and walked in all the way of David his father, and turned not aside to the right hand or to the left. And it came to pass in the eighteenth year of king Josiah, that the king sent Shaphan the son of Azaliah, the son of Meshullam, the scribe, to the house of the LORD, saying, Go up to Hilkiah the high priest, that he may sum the silver which is brought into the house of the LORD, which the keepers of the door have gathered of the people: And let them deliver it into the hand of the doers of the work, that have the oversight of the house of the LORD: and let them give it to the doers of the work which is in the house of the LORD, to repair the breaches of the house.. – 2 Kings 22:2-5.
Despite the rampant sin around him, Josiah was seeking God. He walked “in all the way of David his father”, meaning he was not going to serve false gods, but only worship the true and Living God of the Bible. And he wanted to repair the temple, that had was neglected and damaged over the years of his father’s and grandfather’s reign. In order to overcome sin, a Christian has to acknowledge it and have a heart to get right with God. If you are reading this article, that is a sign that you want to remove sin from your life. [B&E: And this article is specifically for those who are born-again Christian believers, whose sins, past, present and future are already forgiven. If you are not 100% sure that you are going to Heaven when you die, please see our Gospel page first].

Confess yours sins to God and pray for His Spirit to continue to work in your life.
And Hilkiah the high priest said unto Shaphan the scribe, I have found the book of the law in the house of the LORD. And Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan, and he read it… And Shaphan the scribe shewed the king, saying, Hilkiah the priest hath delivered me a book. And Shaphan read it before the king. And it came to pass, when the king had heard the words of the book of the law, that he rent his clothes. And the king commanded Hilkiah the priest, and Ahikam the son of Shaphan, and Achbor the son of Michaiah, and Shaphan the scribe, and Asahiah a servant of the king’s, saying, Go ye, enquire of the LORD for me, and for the people, and for all Judah, concerning the words of this book that is found: for great is the wrath of the LORD that is kindled against us, because our fathers have not hearkened unto the words of this book, to do according unto all that which is written concerning us. — 2 Kings: 22:6-13.
The Kingdom was so far gone into sin that “the book of the law”, the first 5 books of the Bible (which was the entire Bible for Jews at that point in history) was lost! There were no Bibles in use at all in the Kingdom of Judah. The High Priest happened to find a copy of one during the temple reconstruction project. Josiah at this point was 23 years old and had never even read the actual words of the Bible. But when he heard it, he immediately repented. He understood just how sinful the nation had been and how much of God’s wrath was kindled against them. Where there is sin, there must be repentance. Do not hesitate to get into prayer and confess your sins to God.
Scripture is clear: “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.” (1 John 1:8-9).Frequent, repeated sin is almost always a sign of lack of time spent in Scripture and prayer. Some Christians have several Bibles in their home, but without reading them regularly, the “book of the law” is just as lost as it was in the days of Josiah. Commit to daily Scripture reading as a way to strengthen your walk, prepare your mind for battling temptation and to increase your faith. As the Book of Romans says: “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:17). You cannot change your behavior on your own. Every person, Christian included, has a sin nature that continues to desire sin as long as we are in our earthly flesh. But it is The Lord who has changed you through faith in Jesus Christ and will continue to work on you through the presence of the Holy Spirit within you.
The refining of a Christian is a supernatural process and trying to use “willpower” or “determination” alone will lead to failure. It is The Lord who works change in us and seeking Him daily is essential to living for Him. Jesus Christ taught: “the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.” (John 6:63). Fill yourself with God’s Spirit! Reading the Bible daily and praying several times a day make it very, very hard to live a wild life of constant sinful rebellion. It is God’s Word that will increase your faith, convict you of sin and bring you to repentance and seeking forgiveness from The Lord.
Now some people at this point may say “I do these things. I acknowledge my sin. I truly feel bad when I commit them and I confess them to God. But yet, I still fall back into the same old sinful habits.” Well beloved, understand, that Josiah was just getting started in his battle against sinful rebellion and so are you.
Commit To Live Holy

Removing sinful behavior from our lives is our reasonable service.
And the king sent, and they gathered unto him all the elders of Judah and of Jerusalem. And the king went up into the house of the LORD, and all the men of Judah and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem with him, and the priests, and the prophets, and all the people, both small and great: and he read in their ears all the words of the book of the covenant which was found in the house of the LORD. And the king stood by a pillar, and made a covenant before the LORD, to walk after the LORD, and to keep his commandments and his testimonies and his statutes with all their heart and all their soul, to perform the words of this covenant that were written in this book. And all the people stood to the covenant. And the king commanded Hilkiah the high priest, and the priests of the second order, and the keepers of the door, to bring forth out of the temple of the LORD all the vessels that were made for Baal, and for the grove, and for all the host of heaven: and he burned them without Jerusalem in the fields of Kidron, and carried the ashes of them unto Bethel. -2 Kings 23:1-4.
Josiah made a commitment to live for God and stop the cycle of sinful rebellion that was plaguing the nation. And the foundation of that was The Word of God. The King gathered the entire nation and read them the Bible as the opening of his pledge to lead the people in living for The Lord. Notice he did not make the commitment in private. He made it publicly. Are you ready to stop sinning? Tell people. You do not have to tell them all of your business, but you should let your family and friends know that you have committed to living holier and no longer sinning in the ways you have in the past. This not only holds you accountable to those around you, it is a way to serve as a witness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. As a Christian, your life is your testimony. How you live can affect the ways those around you see the Christian faith. What do those close to see as your Christian testimony?
Josiah followed up his commitment by destroying the vessels made to false gods that were in the temple. This is yet another challenging aspect of overcoming sin. Whatever objects in your life that help contribute to your sinful behavior need to be removed from your life. If it is sinful music or DVDs, throw them away. If they are pornographic or inappropriate websites, have someone place a password-coded filter on your computer that can block the websites you do not want to go too (or just remove the electronics altogether). If your temptation is New Age books or occult-themed entertainment, get rid of them. It may be alcohol or drugs which may require more intense methods such as a hospital or rehabilitation center, but the first step is getting rid of your “supply.”Similarly, if there are places that lead you into more temptation, whether it is a strip club, a certain person’s home, parties, the shopping mall, Facebook, a bar or night club, then cease from them. Galatians 5 explains how critical this spiritual battle is to the Christian life:
For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God… And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. – Galatians 5:17-24.
As long as we are still in our sinful flesh bodies, we have a constant war between our born again Spirit, which only seeks to serve God and the sinful lust that remains in us. And if you are of Christ, the command is to “crucify the flesh” – or in other words, destroy the sinful ways in your life. But notice that same verse commands the crucifying of the“affections and lusts” as well. And this is where more of a challenge comes in – are you ready to stop sinning backsliding? Do you really desire it enough to stop going to the places that lead you into sin? This is what the Bible commands Christians to do who want to live after the Spirit and not the flesh.Living for God is not just about resisting temptation to sin – it is also about avoiding the temptation altogether. 2 Corinthians 10 says: “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds. Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;” The easiest way to get rid of sinful imaginations and bring your thoughts to be more Christ-like is to find the things that are defiling the temple that is your body and remove them from your life.
This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. –Galatians 5:16.
Get Rid of Your Idolatrous Priests

Certain friends are always ready to lead you back into sinful behavior.
And he brought out the grove from the house of the LORD, without Jerusalem, unto the brook Kidron, and burned it at the brook Kidron, and stamped it small to powder, and cast the powder thereof upon the graves of the children of the people….And he put down the idolatrous priests, whom the kings of Judah had ordained to burn incense in the high places in the cities of Judah, and in the places round about Jerusalem; them also that burned incense unto Baal, to the sun, and to the moon, and to the planets, and to all the host of heaven…And he slew all the priests of the high places that were there upon the altars, and burned men’s bones upon them, and returned to Jerusalem… Moreover the workers with familiar spirits, and the wizards, and the images, and the idols, and all the abominations that were spied in the land of Judah and in Jerusalem, did Josiah put away, that he might perform the words of the law which were written in the book that Hilkiah the priest found in the house of the LORD. – 2 Kings 23:3-24.
Many of the toughest sins to overcome involve other people. Whether it is a someone from a relationship that involves fornication, friends who lead you into sinful behavior, someone you enjoy gossiping about others with or maybe fellow gang members, there is no shortage of people in one’s life who can serve to pull you away from following the Lord Jesus Christ and instead serving sin. There are even people you may not speak to who lead you into sinful thoughts whether they be sexual, feelings of envy, racist hatred or mockery. King Josiah was well aware of the many people who were assisting Satan in providing temptation into evil and made it his mission to remove every last person who was leading the nation into sinful rebellion and idolatry. This was not a casual effort. Josiah traveled the nation removing and in some cases killing those wicked priests. And this of course is an example for our own lives, that while we should not harm anyone who leads us into sin, we should certainly no longer have them as major factors in our lives.Again, the question arises: are you serious about overcoming your worst sins? If so, then the people in your life who participate, contribute or help lead you into rebellion against God should not be so influential in your life. If this sounds extreme, it should beloved. Look at the extreme lengths that Josiah went to in order to reconcile his nation back to God and end the downward spiral of sin. Friends can be a major influence in leading a Christian into rebellion. So if they are a major source of continuing in your worst sins, limit the interaction with those people. Share the Gospel with those friends and let them know you have no desire to participate in those sinful acts with them anymore. If the pressure from those friends is too great to bear, then cease from spending time with them. In some cases you do not have to, or sometimes cannot, disassociate with people. If there is a family member who you are angered with, cannot stand or leads you into sin, reconcile with them. If this is not possible at present, then try to limit interaction with that person. If it is your own spouse that is driving you to extreme anger, bitterness and resentment,forgive them. God has forgiven you for all of your worst, most evil sins and thoughts, without condition. And you are to forgive in a similar fashion. Ephesians 4 says: “If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus: That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness… Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: Neither give place to the devil.” The things or people who arouse sinful desires in us are “places” for the Enemy to gain a foothold and introduce more temptation to commit that sin. The reader would do well to remove them to the best extent possible.
If you are in a sinful dating relationship and think: “I love my girlfriend/boyfriend. How am I supposed to just end our relationship?”, there is a simple solution: marry them. The Bible says: “Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband…for it is better to marry than to burn.” (1 Corinthians 7). If you are so attached to a person who you are in a sinful sexual relationship with, the Bible commands you to get married. If you are not ready to marry that person, then you are just using the relationship to serve your own rebellious lusts and it should be ended if it cannot be kept holy (as in dating without fornication). Jesus Christ said: “He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.” (Matthew 10:37). Putting relationships with people who lead you into sinful behavior over your relationship with the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is on par with nottaking up your cross to follow Him. So again, the question is, are you serious about overcoming your sin? If the answer is yes, the steps from Scripture are clear.
Call Upon The Lord “I sought the Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears…This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him, and saved him out of all his troubles. The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them.” – Psalm 34:4-7. When you find the temptations of challenging sins returning, call upon the name of Jesus Christ. Pray to God for help with that specific sin in your time of testing. 1 Corinthians 10 says: “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.” In any sinful temptation that seems too hard to resist, pray to The Lord for that escape at the time you are experiencing the temptation. King David, after falling deep into the sin of adultery and murder said: “Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.” Pray for a right spirit when Satan challenges you.
The Blessing

“[God] he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” – Hebrews 11:6.
Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. –Psalm 1:1-2.
When a man’s ways please the LORD, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him. – Proverbs 16:7.
Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, As touching the words which thou hast heard; Because thine heart {Josiah] was tender, and thou hast humbled thyself before the LORD, when thou heardest what I spake against this place, and against the inhabitants thereof, that they should become a desolation and a curse, and hast rent thy clothes, and wept before me; I also have heard thee, saith the LORD. – 2 Kings 22:8-9. The Kingdom of Judah was so far gone into sin, that God had declared a judgment against them to punish the people for their evil. However, because of Josiah’s amazing efforts to cleanse the nation of its sin and remove the places of evil in the land, The Lord provided a reprieve of His judgment for the entire life of the young King. The entire nation was spared God’s wrath for years, providing more people time to repent. Christians today can avoid the chastening of God by living for Him and showing how serious you are about removing the worst, most difficult sins in your lives. Jesus Christ said: “If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” You can be freed from the bondage of sin. You can conquer lustful desires. But it is done through the power of Jesus Christ. And in your efforts, you will continue to be blessed by The Lord.
There is no sure-fire way to remove all the sins in your life. The account of Josiah is just one of many examples in Scripture that show that individual sins can be conquered. Before being saved, the Apostle Paul spent years hunting down Christians, delivering them for punishment and execution. And it took one encounter with Jesus Christ to bring that horrible sin to an end. The Apostle Peter denied even knowing who Jesus Christ was three times and then went on to proclaim the name of Christ to the point that he was killed for being so outspoken. Did they ever sin again? Of course. The great men and women of the Bible were just human beings going through the same daily fight against sin like we all do. But through Jesus Christ they did overcome certain sins and were blessed for deciding to live for God over living for the world. God will bless you for committing yourself to battle against sins that are plaguing you. And while every Christian (this author included) will continue to sin as long as we are alive in these earthly bodies, we can trust and know that God will forgive us and give us strength and faith to fight even harder.

You Can Overcome and Prevent Sinby David C. PackSo many seem trapped, unable to overcome—to grow in areas of weakness, fault and sin. Instead of overcoming their problems, most are overcome by their problems. This should not be—and need not be! You can overcome. Here is how.Through the years, I have pastored thousands who have been called to God’s way. All have struggled against the pulls of the flesh and the temptations of Satan and his world. Some overcome. Others do not.
Christ said, “Enter you in at the strait [difficult] gate: for wide is the gate, and broad [easy] is the way, that leads to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait [difficult] is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leads unto life, and few there be that find it” (Matt. 7:13-14). Most seek the easy, “broad” path.
Overcoming is hard—difficult—it is a life-long struggle. But it IS possible. You can overcome. If you are a Christian, you must overcome!
Yet, this world is drifting along, completely unaware of God’s great purpose for man, which is to build character in this life. He is preparing a team of those who will qualify to be part of restoring His government to earth at Christ’s Return.
The Bible PatternThe Bible is filled with accounts of God’s greatest servants battling to overcome sin. In nearly every case, they had to learn difficult, and sometimes painful, lessons. When examined collectively, Moses, Noah, David, Samuel, Peter and others are seen to have fought every kind of problem known to man.

The world has been ignorant of the TRUEPURPOSES of sex. The result has been untold pain and suffering for the masses! This misery—now epidemic—is measured in disease, new kinds of perversion,… Order Now
They battled sins, weaknesses, faults, attitudes, and pulls and temptations of the flesh. David fought sins and wrong attitudes and overcame them. Moses lacked faith and confidence and had a temper that he had to overcome. Yet, he will hold a great office in God’s kingdom. Both Job and Elijah fought discouragement and depression, even to the point of wanting to die. But these men endured—they overcame. They slew their problems, rather than being slain by them!
These men were actively trained by God and had to OVERCOME Satan, the temptations of his world and the pulls of the flesh. A Christian is one who overcomes his problems, weaknesses, sins and wrong attitudes, rather than being overcome and defeated by them!
To the OvercomerThrough the apostle John, Christ said, “And he that OVERCOMES, and keeps My works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron…” (Rev. 2:26-27).
In His instruction to LAODICEA, He adds, “To him that OVERCOMES will I grant to sit with Me in My throne,even as I also overcame, and am set down with My Father in His throne” (Rev. 3:21).
These verses picture Christ re-establishing God’s government over all nations of the earth. Christians will receive REAL POWER to RULE. But first they must overcome.

The world has long been ignorant of the true purpose of sex. Lack of knowledge has caused the masses great pain and suffering. The reason for sex is infinitely greater than what is commonly believed.…
Christians are those who follow—who copy—Christ (I Pet. 2:21). Then what is the pattern Christ established for us to follow? Did He overcome?
In reference to His own struggle to remain free of sin, perfect in character, Christ said, “In the world you shall have tribulation [how true!]: but be of good cheer; I HAVE OVERCOME THE WORLD” (John 16:33). Christ had overcome both the world and its god—Satan (II Cor. 4:4). Recall that Christ said, “EVEN AS I ALSO OVERCAME, and am set down with My Father in His throne.” Christ overcame and qualified to rule. Just as He qualified to replace Satan, so must we!
Such enormous power to rule could never be given to people who are unprepared—who have not qualified to properly use it. God will not hand great authority to people who might rebel and revert to Satan’s ways. God’s servants must use this life to build His very character, so necessary for those holding offices of great authority.
Experienced in SinUnderstand! You have been practicing yielding to the flesh and Satan’s way for your entire life. You have probably become very good at both. Believe me, as you strive to overcome and resist the pulls at work within you, you will find that wrong patterns of conduct are “second nature” to you—more than you now know! Left unchecked, human nature consists of vanity, jealousy, lust, greed, envy, resentment, hatred, anger, pride, rebellion, foolishness, deceit and hostility toward God. This is what you have been practicing—possibly for decades.
Overcoming will not be easy or happen overnight. It is a life-long struggle against well-established attitudes and a former way of life that the Christian has now rejected and turned from. The one who is walking God’s path is striving to curb and withhold himself wherever God’s word instructs. He strives toexercise himself in all matters where God says to do so. When God gives instruction to do something, he strives to do it! When God gives instruction not to do something, he strives not to do it!

While newspapers, magazines and other news media report what happened, The Real Truthanalyzes and explains the root cause of whyevents happen—why humanity is at a loss to solve today’s problems.
Learning to do this takes a lifetime. But remember: Building character is why you were born. Your job is to “put off” the fleshly pulls of human nature, and to “put on” the character of God and Christ (Col. 3:8-13). Though this is not easy, the reward is great.
God looks on the intent of your heart. It is your overall desire and motivation that is important to Him. He wants to know if, after you sin, you are sorry for it and are determined to strive to do better. He understands the temptations that beset us even better than we do. He watches to see if we will be sober and vigilant as we root sin out of our lives. Will we carelessly fall back into old patterns? Will we try to overcome on human strength and energy?
God’s Power at ConversionA Christian is led by the Holy Spirit of God. It enters at repentance and baptism (Acts 2:38). It is this Spirit in a converted mind that empowers one with the strength to change what human “steam” alone cannot. II Timothy 1:7 states, “For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of POWER, and of love and of a sound mind.”
The Greek word for power is dunamis. It means “special miraculous power or force.” At conversion, you were literally given real power! This power builds up and establishes the righteousness of God within your character. You must draw upon the strength from God’s Spirit to successfully overcome. This strength is unlimited and is sufficient to defeat any sin, problem or attitude—no matter how large and foreboding such may appear!
But make no mistake! We must not build our own righteousness. This does not impress God. He sees it as so many “filthy rags” (Isa. 64:6). Paul wrote of his own personal hope, as a Christian, to “be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ,THE RIGHTEOUSNESS WHICH IS OF GOD BY FAITH” (Phil. 3:9).
The Role of FaithExactly what role does faith play? It does play a role, but how?
Ephesians 2:8-9 states, “For by grace are you saved through faith; and that [the faith] not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast.” The faith of Christ in us is a gift. And salvation comes as a free gift, by grace—through faith! But Paul explains that even the faith must be a gift. Otherwise, it would be a “work” generated by human effort. (Request our free booklet What IsReal Faith? to better understand this subject.)
It is the very faith of Christ that works in a Christian. But grasp this. It does assist in performing works in all those who are led by God’s Spirit. Expect God’s help.
Almost universally, theologians, religionists and churchmen stop reading after Ephesians 2:8-9 (“by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast”) and ignore vitally important verse 10: “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God has before ordained that we should walk in them.” That is right! Christians must “walk…in good works” as “His [God’s] workmanship,” overcoming daily.
Christ at WorkQuite literally, Jesus Christ lives His life in the Christian. Without His help, you will get nowhere—fast! You must exercise the fruit of faith from God’s Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23), knowing that Christ is at work in you—if you are striving to yield to Him and do all that you can do personally at the same time.
In John 15:5, Christ said, “bring forth much fruit” and then stated, “…for without Me you can donothing.” Human power—human energy—only helps a person overcome in physical areas. SPIRITUALproblems cannot be conquered through physical effort.
Christ is the Vine and we are the branches (John 15:5). The branches must be connected to the Vine. This happens through God’s Spirit working in your mind.
When speaking of the way God’s Spirit works, Christ said, “out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spoke He of the Spirit, which they that believe on Him should receive…)” (John 7:38). As it performs good works, God’s Spirit flows “out of” the Christian. It does good works. Therefore, it mustbe replenished, or it will be depleted and disappear completely. This is why Christ said, “If you…know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him?” (Luke 11:13). You must regularly ask, in prayer, for more of the Holy Spirit.
Paul wrote, “my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might” (Eph. 6:10). Christ also said, “with God all things are possible” (Matt. 19:26). With God’s Spirit actively working and growing in you, this can also be true of you! Exercise the faith of Christ as you work on yourself.
And remember! Deep conversion does not occur overnight. Paul wrote to the Corinthians that they were “babes [babies] in Christ” (I Cor. 3:1). He described how they required “milk,” instead of “meat,” for food. The brand new Christian is much like an infant. By analogy, he first learns to roll over, then crawl, before walking (and, at first, in an unsteady, toddling fashion). Only later does he finally learn to run (spiritually).
Paul compares conversion to running a race (I Cor. 9:24). At some point, the runner must develop great speed, because Paul says, “run, that you may obtain [win].”
Such is the Christian way of life. Slow, steady growth, through daily practice, produces progress in the life of the person that is copying Christ. The new Christian sincerely strives, from the heart, to be different—to turn around and go the other way, the way of God, for the rest of his life!
Apply yourself! Push yourself to grow and overcome. Do not expect it to be easy, like “falling off a log.” Grow in knowledge as well (II Pet. 3:18).
How to Prevent SinIn his article “HOW TO PREVENT SIN,” Herbert W. Armstrong concluded with the following. Notice the important key he described. It will also help you:
“The way to put a thing OUT of the mind is to put an opposite thought IN the mind. So often I have noticed parents of babies strive so hard to ‘shush’ up the baby when it is crying. There’s either something causing pain, which should be removed, or something is in the baby’s mind that is causing its crying or fretting. Just saying ‘shush!’ or commanding the baby to stop fussing doesn’t usually get very good results. We have reared four children, and long ago I learned the trick of quieting the baby bygetting its mind on something else. Instead of commanding it to stop crying, attract its attention with some new object—get it interested in playing with that object…and before you know it the child will forget all about its crying.
“Try using this same method on yourself. But instead of material or worldly things, a mature person should use self-discipline and set his mind on spiritual things. Open your Bible. Put the study of somespiritual subject in your mind. Next time you are tempted, try it. Pray over it. Ask God to help you. See how rapidly you begin to win the victory over temptation and sin, and how marvelous will be your spiritual and CHARACTER growth.”
Resisting TemptationChrist taught His disciples to understand the pulls of human nature at work within them. Notice: “And He said, That which comes out of the man, that defiles the man. For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness” (Mark 7:20-22).
These same attitudes, pulls of the flesh and wrong patterns of conduct are also at work within you and me. They leave us fertile for temptation by Satan.
Therefore, many kinds of temptations will be thrown at you all through life. You must successfully resist them. They will often come when you least expect them. The devil will try to strike you where you are weakest—most vulnerable—least prepared. You must be on guard—ready! Do not assume that you are stronger or more prepared than you think. Consider Paul’s warning: “Wherefore let him that thinks he stands take heed lest he fall” (I Cor. 10:12).
The apostle James explained how temptation can turn into sin. Notice: “But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust has conceived, it brings forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, brings forth death” (1:14-15). Put out wrong thoughts. Don’t ease up or assume victory before they are gone!
The apostle Peter added, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walks about, seeking whom he may devour” (I Pet. 5:8). And James also instructed, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” (4:7). Peter continued, “Whom RESISTsteadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world” (I Pet. 5:9).
The second part of this verse offers encouragement: You are not alone in your struggle to overcome sin. All human beings face the same problems. Understand! “All have sinned” (Rom. 3:23) and “sin is the transgression of the law” (I John 3:4). God promises that “sin shall not have dominion over you” (Rom. 6:14).
Here is how Paul explained forces at work within him: “For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I…For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do” (Rom. 7:15, 19).
This pictures what we all face. When you feel like this, battle! Resist! Use God’s power within you. Call out to Him for help and always remember that you must “Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double minded” (James 4:8).
Certainly, fulfilling this verse in your own life is not an overnight process. It takes time and much effort.
Seek God through earnest, regular, believing prayer. Commune with God daily. Pray without ceasing (I Thes. 5:17-18). Study your Bible (Matt. 4:4) Drink it in as God’s Word—as Him talking to you personally, in the same way prayers are you talking to Him!
Above all, do not get discouraged and give up when the temptation is severe and appears unrelenting. Never forget that “There has 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 you are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that you may be able to bear it” (I Cor. 10:13).
This is God’s sure promise to all who seek to overcome!
Christ Overcame and Qualified to Replace SatanResisting the temptation of the devil was central to Christ overcoming sin. Matthew 4 contains the account: “Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit…to be tempted of the devil” (vs. 1). The devil repeatedlytempted Christ, in various ways. Carefully read the account. At the end of several attempts by Satan to break Christ’s will, the account climaxes.
You will notice that, after being offered all the kingdoms of the world, Christ rebuked Satan (vs. 10), stating, “Get you hence, Satan.” This is a nice way of saying Christ told the devil to “get out.” At this point, the temptation ended and the devil departed. Christ had successfully resisted!
Be prepared to tell Satan to “Get out” of your life as often as you have to. Successfully resist him by submitting to God completely—in all things!
Christ passed a very real test! He overcame the world, His flesh and the devil in overcoming sin and qualifying to pay for the sins of the world.
Recall, when speaking of having overcome the world, Christ said, “Be of good cheer.” You can overcome in the same way that Christ did.
Seven Steps to Permanent ChangeApplying the following SEVEN BASIC STEPS will help you overcome problems that you face. They represent principles that will work in the process of overcoming no matter the size of the problem or problems that you face.
If you diligently apply them, they will be a formula that will help you to permanently overcome in your life.
(1) HONESTLY FACE THE PROBLEM. Many people will not honestly face their problems. They hide their eyes from reality. Jeremiah 17:9 declares, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” Most people willingly deceive themselves about their problems. Honestly face your problems. Look them right in the eye and see them for what they are.
(2) DO NOT GET DISCOURAGED. It is very easy to get discouraged now that you have acknowledged your problems. It is easy to be disheartened. This is natural. Be ready for this feeling to possibly strike you, after you have honestly faced the weakness, sin or fault that you are now ready to tackle. Paul wrote of those who are “troubled on every side, yet not distressed…perplexed, but not in despair” (II Cor. 4:8-9). You may feel this way as you face your problems, but do not get discouraged. Move on to the next step.
(3) SET YOUR WILL. Absolutely determine that you are going to defeat each particular problem and that each will not defeat you! Take a do-or-die approach to the battle that lies before you. It has been said that the hardest battle is the first battle. Set your will to address each sin or weakness successfully. Tell yourself that you are going to defeat it—that you are going to rip it from your character. But recognize that you cannot fight the battle on your own. You must move to step four.
(4) FORM A PARTNERSHIP WITH GOD. If you set out to overcome on human strength alone, you will fail. That is assured. We have already touched on this. Paul wrote, “I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me” (Phil. 4:13). Jesus said, “I can of My own self do nothing” (John 5:30). On another occasion, when speaking to His disciples and talking about those who have certain things to overcome, Christ also said, “With men this is impossible; but WITH GOD ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE” (Matt. 19:26). Believe Christ’s words. If He could do nothing on His own, neither can you or I. Be sure that you have formed a partnership with God and that you are not working on your own.
(5) START RIGHT WHERE YOU ARE. Admit that the problem is whatever size that it is. Neither overstate nor understate it. If it is a BIG problem, admit it! This is part of honestly facing the problem. If you are trying to overcome any pull of the flesh or temptation that has existed for a long time—that has been part of you for many years—admit the size of the problem. It has been said, “The longest journey begins with a single step.” That is true for the Christian. No matter how long it takes, or where you are when you start, start wherever you find yourself. If you have wasted time in deciding to address the problem, admit it. Acknowledge where you are and “Redeem the time” (Eph. 5:16).
(6) BE WILLING TO PAY THE PRICE. The Bible describes some who “grow weary” and “faint in the day of adversity” (Prov. 24:10). Solomon wrote that “their strength is small.” Paul wrote, “And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not” (Gal. 6:9). Everything of value in life comes at a cost—a price. Sometimes this involves pain, suffering. Pay the price. Paul wrote that even Christ “learned obedience by the things which He suffered” (Heb. 5:8). None of us enjoy pain, but sometimes it is inescapable in the overcoming process. The Psalmist said, “Before I was afflicted I went astray: but now have I kept Your word” (Psa. 119:67). Four verses later, he added, “It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn Your statutes” (vs. 71).
(7) DO NOT GIVE UP BEFORE YOU HAVE SUCCEEDED. Paul talked of running in a race and finishing his course. He said that he “pressed toward the mark” (Phil. 3:14) on his way to the kingdom of God. Solomon wrote, “For a just man falls seven times, and rises up again” (Prov. 24:16). Do not give up. Do not EVERgive up! Wrestle, battle and struggle until you have completely overcome whatever obstacle, weakness, sin or problem you are facing!
Follow these points, always employing one step at a time. They have helped many to win the war of overcoming!
A Lifelong BattleRecall that “He that endures to the end shall be SAVED.” Living a life of growing and overcoming is not easy. It is a constant, daily struggle against the pulls of the flesh and the temptations of sin. But we are now being judged.
Peter wrote, “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God? And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?” (I Pet. 4:17-18).
Paul knew that he was being judged. Notice: “And this I do…that I might be partaker thereof with you. Know you not [most do not] that they which run in a RACE run all, but one receives the prize? So run, that you may obtain [win]. And every man that strives for the mastery [championship or victory] is temperate in all things. Now they [non-Christians] do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we [Christians] an incorruptible. I therefore so RUN, not as uncertainly; so FIGHT I…lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway [failure, loser]” (I Cor. 9:23-27) and “Wherefore…let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which does so easily beset us, and let us RUN WITH PATIENCE the RACE that is set before us” (Heb. 12:1).
Paul fought mightily against sin. He saw two opposing forces at work within his own mind. Notice the intensity with which he struggled to overcome the pulls within him: “For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwells no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not…I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members” (Rom. 7:18, 21-23).
He described Christianity as “wrestling” (Eph. 6:11-12) against the “wiles of the devil.” And he instructed the Philippians to “PRESS toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (3:14). He recognized that it takes great effort to run and win a long race.
Paul’s overcoming represents a classic example of how one of God’s greatest servants fought to overcome sin. At the end of his life, he was able to say that he had “fought the good fight” and that he had “run his course” knowing that a “crown” awaited him. But this did not happen without much wrestling, pressing, running, fighting and warring against the human nature that he strove to overcome.
But he also understood that his race was a marathon, not a sprint. So is yours.
What About You?If you are an adult, it took you fifteen to twenty years just to grow to a certain height. This long, physical growth process probably included a number of “growing pains.” No doubt, you fell and skinned your knee or bloodied your nose many times before you reached adulthood. Christianity is no different!Do not become discouraged and quit growing, any more than a child should become discouraged and “quit life” simply because he may have fallen down or skinned a knee. When your child falls, you tell him to get up, because it is part of life. Christianity is no different!
Children always want to grow up faster than life’s timetable allows. Though childhood is wonderful in so many ways, it seems that most young people cannot wait for adulthood. Christianity is no different!But full, mature Christian adulthood only comes after a long period of practicing the right way of life.
Perfection is a goal that carries with it a way of life that must govern one’s every thought, action and word. God looks on the heart, the intention of a person who is yielded to Him. As long as he is spiritually growing and overcoming—and led by the Holy Spirit—he remains a converted, begotten son of God.
It is only through regular prayer, Bible study, meditation and even fasting (going without food and water for a period of time) that the Christian will be able to overcome the three foes that lie in wait for him every day of his life.
Eventually, all nations will sit before Christ. Some will have qualified to rule and some will not. Notice: “When the Son of Man shall come in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then shall He sit upon the throne of His glory: And before Him shall be gathered all nations: and He shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats: And He shall set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. Then shall the King say unto them on His right hand, Come, you blessed of My Father, INHERIT THE KINGDOM prepared for you [all those who have overcome] from the foundation of the world” (Matt. 25:31-34).
The GOVERNMENT of God will soon be restored to earth, and all who have prepared themselves will “inherit the kingdom.” Only the overcomers, those who successfully submitted to God and resisted Satan throughout their lives, shall take part in this glorious future: “He that OVERCOMES shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be My son. But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone: which is the second death” (Rev. 21:7-8).
Will you overcome and INHERIT ALL THINGS?
Draw Near to GodMr. Armstrong concluded his article “How to be an OVERCOMER” with the following:
“If we draw nigh to God, and then KEEP close to Him, our problem will be solved. We will then have the FAITH. We will then be FILLED with His Spirit—His power to overcome.
“We can keep in spiritual training only if we keep our affections—our minds—our thoughts—onSPIRITUAL things. Read Col. 3:1-10. Most of us keep our minds filled with earthly, material cares and interests, turning to the spiritual only occasionally! Seek FIRST the Kingdom of God and HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS!
“Sometimes it takes a siege of FASTING AND PRAYER—earnest, determined, persevering prayer—seekingGod with all our might—with weeping—staying with it, DETERMINED, until we get through. Then we must keep in CONTINUOUS prayer. Cast ALL our cares upon HIM. We are not doing that. If we do, there will be many things each day to pray about! And it takes daily PRIVATE prayer, in real earnest, besides family prayer. Is eternal life WORTH IT?”
Avoiding Evil Companions While Befriending Sinners
Many Bible passages teach Christians that we should avoid temptation and evil influences (see Proverbs 4:23; 6:27; 13:20; 22:3; Matthew 5:8; 6:13; 18:8,9; Romans 13:14; 1 Corinthians 15:33; Genesis 39:7-12; Psalm 26:5; 1 Peter 4:3,4). On the other hand, other passages show us that Jesus was a friend of sinners, prostitutes, etc. (see Luke chap. 15; 5:27-32; 7:36-50). How can these concepts be harmonized?
First, please observe that both of these concepts are Bible teachings, so we should not neglect the one to obey the other. We must not deny the fact that we should seek to avoid evil associations, but neither must we deny the fact that we should seek to save sinners and this requires being with them. Consider these observations:
1) Being a friend to sinners does not in any way mean we should justify, condone, or participate in their evil practices. Jesus compared this to a physician who tries to cure people of disease (Luke 5:32). The physician does not like the disease and does not condone the fact it exists in the patient's life, let alone does he want to catch the disease. His association with the sick person is for the express purpose of trying to help them eliminate the disease. This expresses the attitude we should have toward sin in a sinner's life. Note passages about rebuking sin and refusing to fellowship it: Revelation 3:19; Galatians 6:1,2; James 5:19,20; 1 Thessalonians 5:14; Ephesians 5:11; 2 Timothy 4:2-4; 2 John 9-11; Ephesians 5:11; Proverbs 17:15; 2 Corinthians 6:17-7:1; 1 Timothy 5:22; Psalms 1:1,2; 1 Corinthians 15:33; Romans 1:32; Acts 7:58; 8:1; 22:20.
2) It follows that our association with sinners should be with those who are willing to consider the gospel, listen to the teaching of truth, and honestly consider their need to reform. When people have been shown the truth but reject it, and even worse when they try to influence us to accept and practice error, then we must back off from our relationship from them, as described in the verses about evil influences (note Matt. 15:14). This requires, among other things, that we must always constantly consider who is influencing whom. If it becomes clear that people are not listening to our efforts to lead them to truth, and especially if it becomes clear they are leading us to compromise with sin, then we need to back off the relationship.
3) Furthermore, it follows that we should limit our association with sinners to places and circumstances that do not promote and encourage their sin, avoiding places and circumstances of moral disrepute where people gather to commit immorality. That is, Jesus associated with sinners at morally upright or at least morally neutral places, such as meals in people's homes (see the examples above). Although He did try to teach prostitutes, there are no examples in which He frequented brothels to try to do so. Likewise, we should not conclude that befriending sinners means we should go into the taverns and CASINOS or attend wild parties to try to find people to teach. We may teach those kinds of people, but we do it at other times and other places, where they are more likely to be receptive and where we are not so likely to be tempted to participate in or appear to justify sin. (Note Psalm 26:5; 1 Cor. 8:10-12).
4) Furthermore, consider the principle of Heb. 5:12-14. The time comes when people ought to be teachers; but those who are babes in Christ are not necessarily ready to teach others, especially not in difficult circumstances. All of us need to learn to teach, but some Christians are not yet ready to teach. We may need time to be grounded in truth before we face people who are hardened in sin and may shake our faith, instead of us moving them.
This is especially true with regard to sinful habits that a new convert is struggling to overcome in his own life. The principle of "evil companions" would especially teach us that we need to avoid those people and places that have entrapped us in the sins that we are trying to overcome. We must avoid those people and those circumstances to whatever extent we need to do so in order to overcome our evil habits. Perhaps later, after we have overcome the habit and grown up in Christ, we can go back to those people to try to teach them the truth. But even then we must not do so in times and places where they are actively participating in their immorality, such that they may be a temptation to us to return to evil.
For more information about hating sin while loving the sinner, please visit our Bible Instruction web site at and study our free article about opposing the sins of others. Hopefully you want to avoid sin. All Christians should. But have you given much thought to why?
Dig under the surface. Why do you avoid sin?
If you avoid sin simply because you don’t want to look bad — which is why so many avoid it — or you don’t want to navigate the awkward conversations, it’s unbiblical. Non-christians have that motivation.
But we need higher reason. The best reason. The right one.
The Best ReasonWe don’t want to sin against God.
Joseph didn’t want to lie with the lust-driven wife of Potiphar because he couldn’t stand sinning against God (Genesis 39:9). And once David came to his senses, he realized he committed a massive crime — chiefly against God (Psalm 51:4).
The horror of legalism is obedience for obedience sake. And legalistic obedience is still disobedience.
This is akin to standing up straight when your grandmother comes around, because you know she’ll say something. You stand up straight when she’s around, and then assume the recoiled spine when she leaves. That’s not Christian living. That’s not freedom. Now, you should still stand up straight because you don’t want to look like you belong in a turtle shell when you’re 80. But the point is you stand up straight even when you know the inspection isn’t around the corner.
If you avoid sin to avoid getting in trouble, you’ve yet to grasp what the gospel is all about.
Treasure HunterWe avoid sin, to enjoy and glorify God. Christian living is in living in response to what Jesus has done for us on the cross. Anything else is a bunch of hooey. Your life should look like someone living for a reward — a treasure hunter — not one dodging a pop to the knuckles.
You don’t avoid eating raw chicken meat, just to avoid the stomach issues or impending doom. That’s not your thought process. You avoid raw chicken so you can enjoy cooked chicken. We avoid sin, not to avoid trouble, but to enjoy God.
Avoid sin for the best reason — God. how to prevent sin why do we sin ways to avoid sin

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