1 John 1:5-2:2
1:5 This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all.
6 If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth;
7 but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.
8 If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us.
9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us.
2:1 My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous;
2 and He Himself is the propitiation (God’s wrath satisfied by Christ) for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world
As sinners we rationalize our sins away. We normally and naturally can compare ourselves (our sin life) with other people. (“I am better than her” or “At least I am not like her or like him!” )
When we compare ourselves to others we are absolutely wrong and completely missing the “mark” or the target that God has set for us. When we compare ourselves to others we are deceiving ourselves and even sinning more than before we set our own standard of holiness.
When we compare ourselves (our sins) to others we have made our own standard of holiness to follow. This standard is self-created and has no truth in it. (God is truth. God’s truth). When we set our own standard of “holiness” we are lying to ourselves----AND LYING TO GOD.
God is 100% pure which means He has no darkness at all. He is the One we are to compare ourselves. When we compare ourselves to God we can certainly see that we miss the “mark” or the target God has set for His standard of holiness.
But the story is not finished because God gave a way for each of us to be reconciled to Him even though we can never get close to His holiness. Trusting Jesus as our Savior is God’s marvelous plan. When we give ourselves to Him, the Father looks at us through what Jesus did for us (His blood shed, spilled for the penalty of our sins) and the Father sees that we are now white as snow. We are holy because He is holy.
Do we still sin? On this earth we will still have our “old sin nature” or “the old man in us” but we are not slaves to sin any longer! We have the Holy Spirit living in us and we can overcome any temptation! We are more than conquerors!
31 What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?
32 He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?
33 Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies.
34 Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.
35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?
36 As it is written:
“For your sake we face death all day long;
we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”
37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers,
39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
So what do we do when we realize that we have set our own standard of holiness and “pish-poshed“ away our sins?
Sin is like eating a powdered sugar donut. It is almost impossible to eat one of these donuts without some of the powdered sugar falling on our clothes or being smudged on our face. There is some sort of residue that shows you have eaten a powdered sugar donut.
Look at your life. Look at the residue of sin in your life---no one else’s residue of sin---look at YOUR residue of sin.
Confess to God and call your sins what they are: they are sins. Don’t allow yourself to “pish-posh” them away as “I am not so bad”, or “Mine are not as bad as hers”.
Confess your sins to God and He is faithful and just to be there, and forgive your sins.
Jesus intercedes for us. Jesus is our Advocate. He is better than any lawyer. (Luke 22:31-32) He goes to the Father for you.
God’s standards do not change. Don’t make God the liar. You are the liar when you say you are not sinning. When you say “no” to God you damage your ability to hear from Him. You sear your conscience (1Timothy 4). It is a dangerous thing to say “no” to God.
Instead, open yourself up to His word which is sharper than any two edged sword (Hebrews 4:12). His light will show you your sin.
1 Corinthians 2:10-13
10 For to us God revealed them through the Spirit; for the Spirit searches all things, even the depths of God.
11 For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so the thoughts of God no one knows except the Spirit of God.
12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may know the things freely given to us by God,
13 which things we also speak, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, combining spiritual thoughts with spiritual words.
God expects truth from us. You must compare yourself to God who is absolute purity and then be real and truthful with God about your sins. He will meet you where you are. He will not abandon you, but be with you throughout your new desire to choose to be a conqueror!
Praise His name!
HT to FBC, Pastor Steve