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Legality or Life?

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Active Member
[COLOR=rgb(41, 105, 176)]Law addresses man in the flesh, in Adam. The life of the Lord Jesus, by the Spirit, directs and enables man in Him. It is the “law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus” (Rom 8:2). The former seeks to produce something from the man, subjecting him to this and that exercise and rule in order to produce a given result (and knowing it’s failure—NC). The latter, the Spirit of Christ in me, controls me according to the mind and nature of the Lord Jesus who is my life, and uses my body as a vessel.[/COLOR]
[COLOR=rgb(41, 105, 176)]
In the case of one using the law as a rule of life, there is an effort to attain by the flesh that which is not in it*. In the other case, the Holy Spirit only expresses the desire of the new man, and then demonstrates the qualities of the Lord Jesus, in spite of the flesh which has not only no sympathy with the Spirit, but on the contrary, has unceasing opposition to Him (Gal 5:17).

When I am legal* I am attempting to answer the law by my flesh (sin nature; old man—NC); I am only occupied with an attempt to extract something from the flesh and so long as I do this, it is in a way that is pleasing to the flesh, because the flesh is acknowledged. Now the spiritual man is quite different—he has the taste and the power to also accomplish what he aims at, and he in the Spirit resists and silences the flesh which interferes with him, and there is actual compensation and success at the same time. If there is suffering in the flesh (i.e. in the resisting), there is known joy in the Spirit.

There is not, as in the legalist, depression and excitement alternating according as there is hope or no hope from the process of training, or rather exaction. The spiritual man doubts not the power and good quality of that on which he depends, and he is happy in acting according to the mind of the Lord Jesus, no matter what waves and currents he may be exposed to.

Struggling to row a great boat is legality. There may be some progress where there is no opposition, but then all the tugging though very arduous and self-extracting is of no use. The spiritual life is like a boat powered by steam, and hence it goes everywhere according to the Captain’s orders. Tides, currents nor winds need be taken into account.

Where the legalist is baffled and exercised to no purpose, the spiritual man moves on with dignity and purpose, not attempting what is not in him, but answering by the great power in him to the mind of the Lord Jesus. The legalist is ever thinking of his oar; everything depends on his stroke. The spiritual attends only to the word of the Master, and by the simple movement of the helm turns to the exact point to which he has been directed. The legalist is ever thinking of his conduct (i.e. basing it for favor—NC). The spiritual is thinking of the Lord Jesus and His Word, and seeks strength to walk according to it.

You can always distinguish the legalist from the spiritual by the way each moves about or does any act. The former is thinking of how he is doing it, the latter of the intention of it. The former is thinking of his own manner, the latter of his company and how he can serve them. There is moroseness and severity about the former, but a glow of life and triumph about the latter, “who rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh” (Phl 3:3).

- J B Stoney




Poster’s Opinion:
* “attain by the flesh that which is not in it”: I understand it that the Law was God showing man that outward obedience performed by one in a sinful nature (old man) could not make one’s soul “complete” (Heb 9:9). The outward sacrificial ordinances of Israel cleansed only the body (flesh) but not the soul (Heb 9:13). This required One not in a sinful nature, who was the “perfect tabernacle” (Heb 9:11 – conceived of the Spirit, not the flesh). Thus the believer’s obedience is performed in the new nature which is in Christ (Col 3:10) and not in the sinful nature (flesh – Rom 8:9). Israel’s Law obedience secured God’s forgiveness (i.e. Num 15) but did not address the sin nature. It did not make one’s soul “perfect” (complete – new nature).

* “legal”: obeying with the thought of it addressing favor with God, which the believer already has in Christ; and which in no other way can God’s favor exist towards man. Our obedience pleases Him but will not affect favor and thankfully so. For if obedience affected favor then so would disobedience, even though ignorantly disobedient!




Excerpt from MJS devotional for November 20:
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[COLOR=rgb(41, 105, 176)]“The moment we begin to rest our peace on anything in ourselves, we lose it. And this is why so many saints have not settled peace. How can you have settled peace? Only by having it in the Father’s way. By not resting on anything, even the Spirit’s work within (i.e. concerning enablement for obedience—NC), but on what the Lord Jesus has done en[/COLOR]tirely outside you.” – W K
None But The Hungry Heart
 
Active Member
@NetChaplain,
I believe all legalistic performances are in the flesh. I also believe sin is the transgression of the law - which is legalistic. Do you believe those that commit sin are justifying themselves by the law?

Romans 3:19
Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law:that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.

James 2:9
But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are "convinced of the law" as transgressors.
 
Active Member
Hi Regi and thanks for your input! Myself, I believe the Law has been "taken away" to establish the present "Everlasting Covenant" (Heb 10:9).
I don't know if you meant it this way, but I know man could never in this life justify himself.

Blessings!
 
Active Member
NetChaplain,
Yes, that's in the same understanding. I believe 1John 3:5, 6 and 9 as it is written by the KJV, and I also believe that God is not imputing sin unto believers. I don't believe we as believers sin, but we do commit "unfruitful works." Sin developts fruit, but unfruitful works do not. I believe in the "Great Exchange" of God imputing man's sins unto Jesus, and imputing Jesus' righteousness unto believers.
 
Active Member
I don't believe we as believers sin, but we do commit "unfruitful works." Sin developts fruit, but unfruitful works do not. I believe in the "Great Exchange" of God imputing man's sins unto Jesus, and imputing Jesus' righteousness unto believers.
That's an interesting comment but Scripture is too ominous with evidence that believers do still sin, but the difference is it's not "willful" (Heb 10:26). Notice it does not write "if we sin," but if we sin willfully. To me this means walking in the sin nature intentionally, agreeably and in indulgently, which believers no longer will.

I think this is exemplified in the dichotomy that only believers encounter (Rom 7:14-25).
 
Active Member
@NetChaplain,
I don't read 1John as, "a practice" but I read it as it follows 1John 3:4-6. It's explained that, "whosoever commits sin transgresses the law." I don't believe we as believers are "justified" by the law. I believe it is "only" by the law is the knowledge of sin. We are Justified by Jesus Christ who is not "imputing" sins unto believers. Though Hebrews and other places speak calling it "sin," Jesus called it "unfruitful" works (Mat. 13:18-23). I believe they were speaking in the times without the complete understanding as we have. Knowledge had not increased to the degree it has with man today.
 
Active Member
I don't read 1John as, "a practice" but I read it as it follows 1John 3:4-6. It's explained that, "whosoever commits sin transgresses the law."
Only believers are transformed from transgressors to those who no longer transgress law. To transgress law means to intentionally commit wrongs against it, which does not descriptive of believers.

Jesus called it "unfruitful" works (Mat. 13:18-23). I believe they were speaking in the times without the complete understanding as we have. Knowledge had not increased to the degree it has with man today.[/QUOTE]
I believe only one out of the four examples of soil in that parable were true believers, who are not considered unfruitful, because this term always describes unbelievers.
 
Active Member
When a sinner accepts Jesus they are transformed in spirit and are delivered from the sin nature to the Righteous nature. Believers are dead to the law of justification. Jesus is not telling believers they sin – only the law did (Rom. 3:19).

Jesus died for all sins, whether intentional or unintentional (Rom. 4:25) Jesus died for the sins of the world while every man was in sin (Rom. 5:8; Col. 2:13). Jesus took our sins.

Yes, only one example of those were “true” believers, but 3 out of 4 were saved. Those on the “Stone,” and “Thorns” were saved, because they received the seed, but they became tares and were unfruitful. They had no fruit.

Do you believe in Eternal Sanctification?
 
Active Member
Only believers are transformed from transgressors to those who no longer transgress law. To transgress law means to intentionally commit wrongs against it, which does not descriptive of believers.
Oh... Also NetChaplain, help me understand, "To transgress law means to intentionally commit wrongs against it, which does not descriptive of believers." I've never heard it put that way. I've not seen it in scripture?
 
Active Member
When a sinner accepts Jesus they are transformed in spirit and are delivered from the sin nature to the Righteous nature.
Yes, I agree, but defining the "deliverance" only involves removal of sin's guilt and dominion, not its (old man) presence and effects.

Believers are dead to the law of justification. Jesus is not telling believers they sin – only the law did (Rom. 3:19).
True, the Law manifested that man is a sinner apart from God, and even still sins after rebirth. For in ourselves having the sin nature we within ourselves "fall short of the glory of God" (Rom 3:23), but at the same time we are not considered sinners in Christ. There are no scriptures relating the righteous as sinners, though we still sin.

Yes, only one example of those were “true” believers, but 3 out of 4 were saved (only true believers are saved, not false professors). Those on the “Stone,” and “Thorns” were saved, because they received the seed, but they became tares and were unfruitful. They had no fruit.
It's my understanding only the fruitful were saved (the last group) because one cannot be reborn and not manifest the fruit of the Spirit. A saint cannot be fruitful then become unfruitful, and this truth is not known common enough among those who profess faith.

Do you believe in Eternal Sanctification?
It's my opinion that many do not fully understand sanctification because they see it as a progressive work of God, but Scripture nowhere uses this word in such a capacity but only as a single occurrence. I find it's used in the same sense as holiness, righteousness, justification, etc., which are all a one time eternal application. I think "being conformed" (Rom 8:29; 2Cor 3:18) is often confused with sanctification.

Thanks for your input, as I appreciate our fellowship in "the Word of truth" (2Co 6:7; Eph 1:13; 2Ti 2:15; Jas 1:18).

God bless and God be blessed!
 
Active Member
Oh... Also NetChaplain, help me understand, "To transgress law means to intentionally commit wrongs against it, which does not descriptive of believers." I've never heard it put that way. I've not seen it in scripture?
There are no passages that are stated as such but I believe it can clearly be inferred by examples like Numbers 15:30; Heb 10:26, etc. Any sin regardless of intentional, in ignorance or unintentional is a transgression of the principle (law) of God, and all do because of the indwelling sin nature, but the issue is that only those reborn sin against their will and desire, which is Paul's meaning by "captive" in Rom 7:23. Prior to a believer's rebirth, sinning was not against your will but was always willing and intentional, unlike one with the new nature. Hence Paul's dichotomy in Rom 7.
 
Active Member
@NetChaplain,
There are no passages that are stated as such but I believe it can clearly be inferred by examples like Numbers 15:30; Heb 10:26, etc. Any sin regardless of intentional, in ignorance or unintentional is a transgression of the principle (law) of God, and all do because of the indwelling sin nature, but the issue is that only those reborn sin against their will and desire, which is Paul's meaning by "captive" in Rom 7:23. Prior to a believer's rebirth, sinning was not against your will but was always willing and intentional, unlike one with the new nature. Hence Paul's dichotomy in Rom 7.
From Adam until the Law of Moses there has always been intentional and unintentional sins. God is of no respect of person when it comes to sin. When Uzzah touch the Ark in a reaction to keep it from possibly falling, he was struck down and killed. His intentions were good, but he didn't think; he didn't intentionally sin and desire to die.

You refer to the indwelling nature. I believe we as believers are influenced by the nature of the devil because God allows it to be. If God was imputing sin to believers, all believers "would" sin. God is not imputing sin to believers. We are not just because "we do" all things right; but we have received a free gift of Righteousness that cannot be changed. Believers can never again be "IN" the flesh (therefore sin), but they can live "AFTER" the flesh (Rom. 7:5; 8:5-13). There is no sin in Christ. Believers have been bought with a price and we are not our own. Christ will never leave us, and we can ever leave Him. No man can pluck themselves out of the hand or body of Christ.

Sin is based on legalism. As you said, sin is the transgression of the principle (law) of God. But it was the law man was justified by (the Schoolmaster) that imputed sin. We are no longer "under" that schoolmaster that imputed sin to us. We are now "under" Jesus Christ who is "NOT" imputing sin to us because He healed all believers from sin (1Pet.2:24). If a person is not healed from sin, they are not saved. Jesus died and rose for our freedom and justification from sin. When Christ died, He took the penalty of sin. Jesus didn't take the penalty without taking the sin. The reason Jesus took the penalty, is because He took the sins. Without sins there is no penalty. This is why God is not imputing sin to believers. Jesus took the sins of the world. When Christ rose from the dead, He finished and completed the work of sin. If Christ had not "risen," then believer would still be "IN" their sins - they would still sin.

1 Corinthians 15:17
And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; you are yet in your sins.

Romans 4:25
Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.

G3900 (offences)
παράπτωμα [PARA/PTWMA] {paráptōma} \par-ap'-to-mah\
from 3895; a side-slip (lapse or deviation), i.e. (unintentional) error or (wilful) transgression:--fall, fault, offence, sin, trespass.

G1347 (justification)
δικαίωσις [DIKAI/WSIS] {dikaíōsis} \dik-ah'-yo-sis\
from 1344; aquittal (for Christ's sake):--justification.
 
Active Member
@NetChaplain,
Yes, I agree, but defining the "deliverance" only involves removal of sin's guilt and dominion, not its (old man) presence and effects.
True, the Law manifested that man is a sinner apart from God, and even still sins after rebirth. For in ourselves having the sin nature we within ourselves "fall short of the glory of God" (Rom 3:23), but at the same time we are not considered sinners in Christ. There are no scriptures relating the righteous as sinners, though we still sin.
Scripture teaches we as believers “are not” the old man in the flesh (Rom.8:9). We do not war after the flesh; we must learn to war after the Spirit; we do not know how. Jesus has crucified sin “IN” the flesh for us; this is why God sees believers in the Spirit. Jesus crucified sin out of the flesh while in the flesh.

Col 2:11 In whom also YOU AREcircumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:

The old man is the old nature which has been circumcised out of the heart of believers. We as believers are dead to the “old man” (to the nature) and have come alive to the new. Yes, we must learn to walk in the new nature, but that’s why we have Grace. Grace does not impute sin, but teaches how to walk in Righteousness. Under the law it was sin, he that “KNOWS” to do good, to him it is sin (Jam. 4:17). Believers do not know how to do good in many situations; we are learning to walk in the Spirit. Just as Paul s said: to will is present, but how to perform that which is good I don’t know how (Rom. 7:18). A believer that knows how to do right has learned to resist the devil in the temptations of life. God has chosen to apply Grace to every Christian. Not just to those who may learn faster than other, but to every believer equally regardless of one’s faithfulness.

I’m positive that defining the “deliverance” does not “ONLY” involve removal of sin’s guilt and dominion (that’s the penalty). Scripture does not teach this. It specifically teaches that guilt, death, condemnation and any punishment relating to sin has been applied to Christ; only because sin was imputed to Christ. God saw Christ as the wrong doer in our place (Dan. 9:24). I’m sure I’ve shown that sin and death were equally taken away according to scripture. Not “only” sin and not “only” the penalty of sin.

Rom 8:2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.

Scripture does not teach “anywhere” that Jesus delivered a man “ONLY” from the penalty of sin. Nowhere in scripture does it teach that Jesus took away the penalty, but did not take away
“all” sins.

I’m sure you understand what the law was incapable of doing regarding sin. I also know that you know the difference between the terms “taken away” as oppose to “covered.” The law covered sins, but Jesus “took sins away.”

Act 13:39 And by Jesus all that believe are justified;(made “Righteous”) from all things, from which you could not be justified by the law of Moses.

The “ONLY” thing the law could not do was give “life.” This is “only” because the law could not “take away sins.”

Gal 3:21 Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law.

Pastor, we have “Righteousness” because sin has been taken away. Scripture teaches us, the law made nothing perfect, but we know Jesus did where it pertains to sin (Heb. 7:19; 10:14)
 
Active Member
@NetChaplain,

True, the Law manifested that man is a sinner apart from God, and even still sins after rebirth. For in ourselves having the sin nature we within ourselves "fall short of the glory of God" (Rom 3:23), but at the same time we are not considered sinners in Christ. There are no scriptures relating the righteous as sinners, though we still sin.
Rom 11:24 For if you were "cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature," and were graffed "contrary to nature" into a good olive tree: how much more shall these, which be the natural branches, be graffed into their own olive tree?

Joh 8:34 Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever commits sin is the servant of sin.

Yes – there is no scriptures relating the righteous as sinners. This is why I don’t think we should assume that a believer sins; especially when there is overwhelming scriptural evidence we can't. We are not seeing ourselves in the flesh, but in the Spirit. Sin is done "IN" the flesh, not "AFTER" the flesh. Believers commit unfruitful works "after" the flesh. Which if they continue to do, they will die (Rom. 8:12, 13).

Rom 7:5 For when we "WERE IN" the flesh, the motions of sins, which were by the law, did work in our members to bring forth fruit unto death.

Rom 6:20 For when you "WERE" the servants of sin, you were free from righteousness.

There are no scriptural foundation regarding the principle of sin for a believer. A believer is not in the nature of sin, therefore, they cannot produce sin (Col 1:13). Believers are good trees that can "only" develop good fruit. If a believer does not develop good fruit, they are unfruitful. Sin produces fruit as Romans 7:5 says.

Joh 15:2 Every branch in me that "bears not fruit" he takes away: and every branch that bears fruit, he purges it, that it may bring forth more fruit.

Mat 7:18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.

Mat 7:19 Every tree that brings not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

Every tree that does not bring forth good fruit is “unfruitful” believers, also known as “tares” in the body of Christ.

Mat 13:25 But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.

We know the devil cannot place any person into the body of Christ. God alone places a believer into His body as it pleases Him (1Cor. 12:18). The devil can sow spiritual information that are lies among the wheat which are believers. This is how the Satan sows tares among the wheat.

Romans 3:23 was a quote from David which was before Jesus Christ’s Atonement (Psa. 14:2-4) A believer cannot “fall short” after the rebirth because we cannot “miss the mark.” A believer has no mark to hit because they are not justified by the law (Jam. 2:10). A believer does not have to be perfect as the requirement under the law.

Jam 2:10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.

Jesus taught a believer must bring forth 30 fold, 60 fold or one hundred fold fruit. Jesus is not requiring perfection as under the law. If a believer messes up, they are not guilty of all the law because of Grace. Anything less than 30, 60 or 100 fold fruit is unfruitfulness and the believer will be gathered out of God’s Kingdom.

Mat 13:23 But he that received seed into the good ground is he that hears the word, and understands it; which also bears fruit, and brings forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.

Mat 13:41 The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity;

Mat 13:42 And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

Pastor, Jesus said whoever “commits” sin is the servant of sin (Joh. 8:34). We know that a believer is no longer a servant of sin.

Rom 6:18 Being then made free from sin, you became the servants of righteousness.

Rom 6:22 But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, you have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life.

My last point regarding your post... Yes,ultimately only those that received seed on good ground were saved; but those that received the seed and believed were also saved, but they did not endure unto the end. Those that loved the pleasures of the world and those that fell away through tribulations did not continue in faith. They had faith to received the word, but they chose not to have faith to continue in God's word.
 
Active Member
From Adam until the Law of Moses there has always been intentional and unintentional sins. God is of no respect of person when it comes to sin.
I agree if you're in reference to those who choose to become believers, for there has never been forgiveness for those choosing to remain in unbelief.

When Uzzah touch the Ark in a reaction to keep it from possibly falling, he was struck down and killed. His intentions were good, but he didn't think; he didn't intentionally sin and desire to die.
I think you make an applicable point, but Uzzah knew what he was doing and already knew it would be an "error" (v 7), for I think they who were driving the cart were in charge of the Ark and knew well of the command not to touch it. I think Gill makes an accurate comment here:

"And God smote him there for [his] error; committed at this time, which was complicated; as that the ark was put upon a cart, to which he might be the chief adviser, as Procopius Gazaeus notes, when it should have been carried on the shoulders of the Levites; and that he touched it with his hand, which none but priests might do, supposing him to be a Levite, which it is not clear he was, however not a Kohathite; and he took hold of it in order to carry it in his arms, which even Levites, and those Kohathites, might not do, but with staves put into it, which only they were to hold; and besides, as Abarbinel observes, he showed little faith in the power and providence of God, as if he could not take care of the ark without him."
2 Samuel 6 Bible Commentary - John Gill’s Exposition of the Bible

You refer to the indwelling nature. I believe we as believers are influenced by the nature of the devil because God allows it to be.
I strongly agree here, even to the point that our sin nature is of the like essence of all who do evil (man or angle - Jhn 8:38, 41) but I believe there is a closer enemy than Satan--our sin nature--only through which self, Satan and society can attempt (but always fail) to hinder God's work in us. Spiritual growth in Christ can be delayed but never hindered!

If God was imputing sin to believers, all believers "would" sin. God is not imputing sin to believers.
We agree here!
 
Active Member
@NetChaplain,

I agree if you're in reference to those who choose to become believers, for there has never been forgiveness for those choosing to remain in unbelief.
Correct, only believers benefit. I was not insinuating that unbelievers are forgiven.

I think you make an applicable point, but Uzzah knew what he was doing and already knew it would be an "error" (v 7), for I think they who were driving the cart were in charge of the Ark and knew well of the command not to touch it. I think Gill makes an accurate comment here:
I believe intentionally doing something is not a lapse in thought; I believe it’s conditioned in a man to do. Uzzah did this out of concern for the Ark impulsively without thinking. One can say it was intentional because “he knew” they were not supposed to touch the Ark, but I know in life people do things without thinking. The motive to break the law was not intentional. Uzzah’s concern to keep the Ark from falling was intentional. In doing so - Uzzah did not consider the consequences. This is why I believe it was not intentional. However, his actions were wrong and he suffered for his wrong regardless.

I strongly agree here, even to the point that our sin nature is of the like essence of all who do evil (man or angle - Jhn 8:38, 41) but I believe there is a closer enemy than Satan--our sin nature--only through which self, Satan and society can attempt (but always fail) to hinder God's work in us. Spiritual growth in Christ can be delayed but never hindered!
I believe sin can only come from the heart of man and God recognizes who is in the heart. If Satan is in the heart of man, meaning the nature, then God imputes sin (if there is a law). If Christ is in the heart of man, God only imputes Righteousness. Jesus did not judge individual sins from the cross, but He judged the “sin nature” from the cross.

Joh 12:31 Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out.

Joh 16:11 Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.

Without Satan’s influence there can be no temptation. God teaches us that a city divided against itself cannot stand. Under the nature of “good and evil” man was divided; because the nature itself was divided. Under the nature of “Righteousness” there is no division. Righteousness is one in perfect unity. Believers are not fighting against themseles in Christ (Eph. 6:12). Jesus was not tempted of Himself. Scripture teaches every man is tempted when he is drawn away of his own lust (Jam. 1:13, 14). Jesus was tempted, therefore, He was drawn away of His own lust. We know that Christ did not lust; but was tempted in every point as we are yet without sin (Heb. 4:15). Jesus experienced Satan the same way we experience tempations. Just as Jesus was not one with Satan though He was in the flesh, we are not one with Satan as being in this body of flesh.

1Jo 4:17 Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.

Society cannot tempt anyone. Satan is the only being that can enter a person’s mind to tempt him through emotions. Nowhere in scripture does it teach that Eve was tempted. Eve was only deceived. Jesus could be tempted, but He could not be deceived. Adam and Eve could be deceived, but they could not be tempted. Once Adam sinned, at that point man could be tempted because Satan had right to their inner man. Jesus came in the likeness of sinful flesh; that is why He could be tempted. Jesus could not be deceived because He is the word of God and knew all things.
 
Active Member
Without Satan’s influence there can be no temptation.
I do not think man requires any outside source to be under the condemnation of his sin nature. It's not the sinning that incurs guilt, it's the possession of the sin nature, which is the seat of the "body of sin" (Rom 6:6) which are inward earthly "members" (Col 3:3).

Believers are not fighting against themseles in Christ (Eph. 6:12).
As I mention before, I believe the greatest opposition to the believer is the indwelling old man (sin nature). Without it we could not sin!

As we realize that our understanding varies a lot concerning many subjects, it's good to know we are able to share our beliefs with one another in the love of Christ and not strife. How believers communicate with one another is more significant than what is communicated, because the reason for communication is to "love one another"!

Blessings!
 
Active Member
@NetChaplain,
As we realize that our understanding varies a lot concerning many subjects, it's good to know we are able to share our beliefs with one another in the love of Christ and not strife. How believers communicate with one another is more significant than what is communicated, because the reason for communication is to "love one another"!
Blessings!
Since I've been chatting on this forum, I think you are the only one who is not verbally challenging to me based on what I believe to be true (apart from the staff). It is refreshing and relaxing to know I am communicating with someone that presents a true righteous character. Thank you for that. I've told someone on this forum, I use this forum to exercise my character in patience and self control; it's needed with some of these people. I can relax with you.

I do not think man requires any outside source to be under the condemnation of his sin nature. It's not the sinning that incurs guilt, it's the possession of the sin nature, which is the seat of the "body of sin" (Rom 6:6) which are inward earthly "members" (Col 3:3).
I don’t believe we are under any condemnation (Rom. 8:1). I believe sin has been condemned (Rom. 8:3). Speaking of character, scripture tells us, we do not fight against flesh and blood; which tells me, I do not fight against myself; but against an outside source. We as believers fight and resist against the devil's kingdom (Eph. 6:12). I believe scripture teaches man does not tempt himself. Temptation is an outside source spiritually that tempts a man. What God did not create at the beginning in man, came from an outside force. Satan entered man and became his god. Satan leads man through a spiritual emotional force. The four foundations of Satan's influence are fear, anger, lust and grief. These are the fiery darts of the devil used against mankind; believers and unbelievers.

Eph. 6:16

Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.

G4448 (fiery darts)
puroō
From G4442; to kindle, that is, (passively) to be ignited, glow (literally), be refined (by implication), or (figuratively) to be inflamed (with anger, grief, lust): - burn, fiery, be on fire, try.

I believe the influence of emotional temptation is only Satan. God teaches us this with Job and many others in scripture. God teaches us that there is no temptation that we encounter except for what is common to man. God will not allow us to be tempted more than we can bear. This was true with Jesus, and it s true with us. This is the outside force believers are up against.

Matt. 4:1
Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.

Matt.4:3
And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.

The exact way Jesus was tempted in the spirit, we are tempted. Jesus was led up into the pinnacle as a temptation by the devil. Jesus was led to cast Himself down in His temptation. These were thoughts in Jesus' mind; influenced by the devil.

Mat.4:5
Then the devil takes Jesus up into the holy city, and sets him on a pinnacle of the temple,

How was Jesus led up to the pinnacle? I believe by temptation of emotional overload like He felt in the garden when He asked His Father to take this cup. I don't believe Jesus had plans to go up to the pinnacle, I believe He went to the pinnacle emotionally drained. Jesus was tempted to commit suicide. People commit suicide because of the thoughts and emotional stress in their minds. Jesus cast the thought down but He was tempted and temptation is draining. I don't believe it was Jesus' idea to go to the pinnacle. The bible said the devil took Jesus up to the pinnacle as a temptation.

Without temptations, man can only experience peace. God has told us to cast down imagination and everything that exalts itself against the knowledge of God. Only Satan brings those types of thoughts. Whether believers or unbelievers, if we start doing something Satan corrupts what our good intention are. A person working can become a workaholic or a casual drinker could become an alcoholic etc. The heart of man is never content because of Satan the master of a blinded man. We as believers are no longer blinded from our influencer, but we must exercise Godliness in order to overcome.

As I mention before, I believe the greatest opposition to the believer is the indwelling old man (sin nature). Without it we could not sin!
2Co 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

We are new creature or a new creation. I believe we as believers died with Christ and by faith we have no old man. As I said above, we don't fight against ourselves, but against principalities, etc; that character is not who we are. We are free from the bondage of Satan, though we still are still learning how to walk in our freedom. Sin was a burden of guilt because Satan made us feel guilt. Because of Christ, God has told us not to let our hearts be troubled (Joh. 14:27). He's telling us to fight against and resist what we feel emotionally and learn to protect our peace. It is our responsibility. If we are obedient God will give us the victory (Phi.4:7).

Eph. 6:12
For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

If God does not impute sin, in His mind, a believer cannot sin.We know God is not imputing sin to believers.

Rom 4:8 Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.

2Co 5:19 To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.
 
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