What in the world could I possibly mean by that? Yes, we have all seen the signs that tell us there is danger up ahead or nearby, but sometimes the danger is right in front of us and we fail to realize it. We are used to looking about making sure to avoid any obvious sin that is around us and yet can fail to see the seemingly small thing right under our nose, right in our heart. We tend to want to sugarcoat these little sins and hope they go away on their own. (They won’t just for informational purposes.) Once we open the door a little to something it doesn’t take much for it to turn into something big. Our flesh wants to be satisfied.
We may think that at any moment we can just walk away, never do it/think it/see it again, but in my experience that doesn’t do much. We do well for a little while and then for whatever reason something is triggered and we find ourselves right back where we said we would not go again. Sounds a lot like Paul doesn’t it. Romans 7:15 “For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.” Paul hated his sin nature, he hated the control it had on him. Even though he was a Christian he recognized that sin lurked in his heart and mind. He was not living a sinful life, he wasn’t going out looking for trouble to get into. He was a very moral man with a very real sin nature and his sin nature like ours wants what it wants.
Paul was not ignorant of where the sin came from. Paul recognized that sin and lust were there in his heart apart of his old nature, yet still very much able to rear their heads. His desire was to live a Holy life like that of Christ, yet even Paul had moments of failure, times when his old and new nature wared with one another. Paul knows he wants to act and do differently and probably most days he did, but like all of us our hearts are deceitful and sin can sneak in. Paul like us could not get his flesh to behave in the manner he wanted it to. Paul knew his body kept him from fully living the life that God requires of us. He could not fulfill the requirements of holiness and righteousness on his own.
We are to be holy and pure. We are to live righteous lives as Jesus did, but we don’t, we can not in and of ourselves. Our sin nature wants its way and there are times when we allow it to have its way. Even on our best days, we fall short. But here is the good news, God has provided the righteousness which we all lack and which he requires us to have. He also provided the means by which we can have it.
Romans 8 “Therefore there is now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. 3 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, 4 that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.”
Hallelujah, we have a Savior, the Savior who can do in us what we cannot do in ourselves. We are not righteous, but he is and once he is living inside of us we have his righteousness inside of us, we have his Holy Spirit at work in us giving us everything we need to walk away from the “Danger Zone.” We can ask for His help to turn away, look away, walk away and He will give us what we need. We do not have to be a slave to our flesh any longer. Will the desire to sin ever leave us, probably not until we are home in heaven, but with the Holy Spirit power inside of us we can make the right choice if we simply ask him to help us.
Some people like the “Danger Zone.” They like having their feet firmly planted in heaven, in other words they know they are born-again, yet they still want to dangle their feet in wrong places. They are drawn to these things like a moth to a light. If we know we have a trigger, something that causes all sense to leave us and we parade ourselves down a dangerous path thinking we will quit at any time…we are fooling ourselves and playing with fire. Eventually, we will get burned. Many times God allows us to have our way, He waits for us to turn to him in sorrow and ask for forgiveness. We are powerless against the flesh if we do not employ the Spirit. When we keep ourselves away from the church and Christian fellowship and we refuse to read and pray we are setting ourselves up for failure. We become unaware of the “Danger Zone” signs we are passing and we find we have crossed the line.
Maybe you have found yourself in a place spiritually you never wanted to be, or physically dallying with some sin that you have glossed over and made yourself believe it isn’t that bad. Now is the time to lay it at the feet of Jesus, let him take your shame and sorrow. Ask for forgiveness, when you do he is faithful and just to forgive you and will cleanse you from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9
Isn’t that awesome! We do not have to live in constant condemnation. When we say “Lord, forgive me.” He does, and just like that, we are made right again. We may have a sin nature lurking about inside of us, but the Spirit of God in us is stronger than any sin that tries to bind us. Remember that!!