Hope For The Christian Who Struggles With Sin

Hope For The Christian Who Struggles With Sin

Wednesday’s Column: Third’s Words

Gary Pollard

We are imperfect people trying to get to Heaven, and we make mistakes. Throughout scripture is a distinction between people who live to sin and people who struggle with sin, but live for God. 

I John 5.16, 17 and Romans 7.5-8.17 are perhaps the most encouraging passages for a Christian who struggles with sin. These passages demonstrate God’s willingness and great desire to keep us pure, even when we struggle with sin. 

Paul teaches us that sin is something we struggle with and should hate (Rom. 7.15-20). We don’t want to sin, but we do. We love God’s law, we recognize that it’s good, and we want to live up to it, but we often don’t (7.22, 23). Paul even goes so far as to say, “I don’t understand my actions. I don’t do what I want, but I do what I hate” (Rom. 7.15). It causes him great distress, and he expresses a desire that all creation shares: release from sin’s power and life with God without the possibility of sin’s influence (7.24; 8.22-24). He says twice that sins we struggle against are not held to our account (7.17 and 7.20). 

I John 5.16, 17 shows that a Christian who struggles with sin is still pure in God’s eyes. The key idea is struggle. We can’t fool God – He looks at our hearts to determine whether we hate the sin in our lives or welcome it with open arms (Rom. 7.27). If sin is something we hate, grace keeps us pure despite our weakness (I John 1.9, 10; 3.19-24; 4.13-19; 5.18-20; Romans 7.25)! 

This is so encouraging because it shows that God does everything within His power to keep us pure. We are lost when we reject Him to pursue a sinful lifestyle, certainly. But if we hate our sin and fight our sin, He keeps us faithful! 

Heaven is attainable, God is good. 

Over 50 members came to pray Tuesday night for our soul-winning plans, including our “Fill The Void” seminar (photo credit: Randy Simpson)

2 thoughts on “Hope For The Christian Who Struggles With Sin

  1. To me Romans chapter 7 is addressing living under the Law handed down through Moses while chapter 8 addresses living under the Law of Liberty, the Royal Law, the Law of Christ. I would like feedback on this if possible.

  2. Julia, thank you for your studiousness and your faithfulness in reading the blog. You are correct in identifying one of Paul’s contrasts in these two chapters (see also good and evil, flesh and spirit, law and faith). The Law of Moses served to raise awareness of sin, to prick the conscience about it (vs. 12 shows us the Law and its commands were holy, righteous and good). The inner conflict, though, which Paul wrestled he speaks of in present tense. It might have been “on his radar” because of the Law and it surely is remedied by Christ (per chapter 8), but the sense of our guilt and our struggle with sin continues until now and will until the world comes to an end (beautifully discussed by Paul in the middle of chapter 8). The point of the article today is God, through Christ, keeps us pure as we fight our flesh and strive to walk in the light. Thank you for your valuable input, as always!

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