1 Timothy 1:15
Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst.
The Jewish apostle Paul wanted his fellow Jewish brothers to believe that Jesus was the Messiah. Paul tells us about his struggle with his sinful nature. There is a constant battle going on. And the faithful Apostle admits that He keeps on making mistakes after being saved. Thats why He writes that He «is» the worst of sinners. Not that he «was» the worst of sinners. Paul always considers others better than him self. We should try to follow his example.
I just want to say that I believe apostle Paul was talking more about the hopeless kind of struggle with sin before one is saved.
I’ve been reading from your site almost daily for a couple of months now. This is my first comment to you, and I want to take this time to tell you I agree with so much that you say. I have been blessed and encouraged by so much of your comments. Much Thanks.
Welcome. This comment made my day. Thanks a lot.
I am sure you have read this verses:
Romans 7:19-25 (New International Version)
For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.
So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!
So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in the sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.
(end of scripture)
Paul is not speaking about the past. He speaks about the present. «What a wretched man I am!».
How come, such a dedicated man as Paul?
Because the devil is after him every minute of the day. To take him down. Either by fear, temptation or deception. In our honest walk with Jesus, we struggle from the morning to the evening.
Another point. People do not struggle with sin before they are saved, because they are not aware of the meaning of the word sin.
First when the learned man Paul got saved, He understood the full measure of sins. Every mistake is a sin. Its poison. And the only medicine is the blood of Jesus. In Him every mistake we made, make and are going to commit, is covered by the blood of the Lamb. Amen.
I believe that Paul was talking about the hopeless struggle with sin before we are saved. Please tell me what you think of it after I explain more why I believe as I do. See in Romans 7:7-20, Paul is explaining how it is to live under the law before having the Spirit. See what he says in Romans 7:10 “ I found that the very commandment that was intended to bring life actually brought death. For sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment, deceived me, and through the commandment put me to death” In Romans 7:24-25 Paul says “who will save me from this body of death?
Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!” You see, through the Spirit, we are saved from the hopeless kind of struggle with sin . In Romans 8:37 Paul says “No, in all these things we are more than conquerors though him who loved us.” Yes we work out our salvation, but it doesn’t sound very hopeful and peaceful and life changing to believe that Paul is talking about life even after receiving the Spirit. See Romans 8, it is about how different our lives will be through the Spirit. Romans 8:12-13 “Therefore, brothers, we have an obligation—but it is not to the sinful nature, to live according to it. For if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live.”
If it is like you say, then how do you think we ever do give up any sins? 1 Corinthians 9:27 “No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.”
Also see Hebrews 5:14 “But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil.” You see, there is hope, we can give up sin., and it gets easier and easier to give up.
Yes we all mess up and sin, but don’t we all give up a lot more sin and live differently?
After giving up sin through the help of Jesus, we can now look at the sins we finally got out of, and we can really see now more clearly how ugly sin is. We get strengthened by the Lord. With your explanation of it makes us sound like hopeless slaves to sin, but we are not. See Romans 6:17-18 “But thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin, you wholeheartedly obeyed the form of teaching to which you were entrusted. You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness.”
The way I read the Bible in regards to sin.
A saved person will not continue to sin. But there will still be a constant battle between what the Spirit requires, and what the Flesh desires. I feel this is the struggle that Paul explain to us. It is not a past struggle. Its an ongoing battle.
Sin has in mainstream Christianity been reduced to a personal moral issue. But sin is more of a human nature issue. And the man made moral definition of sin, is different from the higher Biblical standard. Here are two verses:
Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn’t do it, sins.
Here James and Paul agrees.: What I am suppose to do, I am not doing, etc.
1 John 5:17
All wrongdoing is sin, and there is sin that does not lead to death.
Sin is also much more than a personal matter. We have sins of groups, Churches, culture, Governments (sinful laws and wrong priorities) and even national sins. So only God can save us from sins. By the blood of the lamb, only.
You say “…there will still be a constant battle between what the Spirit requires, and what the Flesh desires.”
Again, I feel I must say more, because the Lord has helped me, so I want others to know more of the hope in Jesus. It does get easier and not so much this battle like you talk about.
Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
And here is more for hope and encouragement…
2 Thessalonians 3:3 But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.
Romans 15:13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love…. 1 Peter 1:22
…. Aim for perfection, … 2 Corinthians 12:11
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; …. Isaiah 41:10
And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. Romans 5:5
Thank you for allowing me to have this discussion with you. It is a pleasure. In His love…
When i open my fridge, I fall for the small piece of chocolate. In the next hour, my son screams…..Paaaapppppaaaaaa!
I am sorry my son. I will buy two chocolate tomorrow for you, and I will improve!
Have you ever been in such a situation?
In the traffic, I should have given way for the other car. But I was selfish, and…..I guess a small mistake, but very much a sin?
Yes, I have got a new heart. I feel differently, I think differently, and I act differently from my days prior to surrender to Master Jesus. Thanks to Him, who has sealed me with his Holy Spirit. It convinces me about sins, His righteousness and about Judgment to come.
Without His mercy and grace, I am lost. But now I am saved. He saved a wreck like me.
Yes, I understand very well. It is just like you say. But even that too gets better, I think. Even those “small mistakes” seem to get fewer when we live more according to the Spirit, and not be so much of this world and what will be burned up. I do know that I enjoy being strengthened and listening and learning from the Spirit. And thank God, through Jesus for forgiveness! Right? Amen.
I want to say too how this example you give with you son and the piece of chocolate makes me have to smile.
“But thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin, you wholeheartedly obeyed the form of teaching to which you were entrusted. You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness.”
The Holy spirit will come and convince us of sin. I believe it is close to impossible for a saved person to willfully commit sins. (like stealing, injustice, false testimonies, corruption, etc)
But can we stop doing mistakes?
“In your anger do not sin” : Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry.
Can a born again Christian live without getting angry? And in his anger, always avoid saying something that he will regret? I guess its the Holy Spirit that tells us to go back and say sorry!
I see what you are saying. And what you say makes me think of what Paul says here..
Philippians 3:12 (New International Version)
Pressing on Toward the Goal
12Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.
We keep pressing on…
I tried so hard to help you understand before, but you could not see it. Before I leave your blog site, I feel I just have to reply one more time to your great misunderstanding of this passage. I will try again one more time: Paul was not saying he still is the worst of sinners after being saved! WOW. You got that so mixed up.
You misunderstood so many other scriptures. Maybe find a Holy Bible in your native language?
Shalom, and love in Jesus the Messiah.
Now, we are moving into other topics, than the girl in the shop. That is ok for me. I love to debate with you, and we have debated earlier.
Let see what the scripture say:
I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.
(end of scripture)
Paul could have said: ” I know, that nothing good WAS living in me”. Again the truth and the deception walks close to each other.
Apostle Paul was speaking of before being saved. Do you really believe Paul, after being saved, stayed the worst of sinners? Do you really believe that Paul, after being saved and having the Holy Spirit would say nothing good lives in him? Do you really believe that Paul, after being saved could not carry out anything good that he desired to do?
You are in great error. Just like in the other debate.
I am a servant of the Lord, and I just wanted to help you.
Paul explains that we need to repent. In fact every day. In our flesh, we are simply not able to do what we desire to do. We need to be lead by the Spirit of God.
I guess you can’t admit that you can still learn the correct meaning of something in the Bible? Do you feel less saved when you have been wrong about what a scripture means? Do you think that people won’t think as much of you if you are wrong about something? Believe it that some people know you are wrong, and they know you have a problem with humbling yourself. You should just be glad that the truth was brought to you. There is nothing wrong with making a mistake, yet still learning. And there is nothing wrong with admitting you learned something. In fact, there are others waiting for you to do just that.