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How can we obey?

Discussion in 'Non-denominational' started by gideons300, Apr 16, 2012.

  1. gideons300

    gideons300 Guest

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    How are we saved? I agree fully that we are saved by grace alone. Period.

    But here is where the issue lies. What do we do then to work the works of God in us? You mentioned that we should obey, and again I agree fully, but HOW? That is the million dollar question.


    How can we obey?


    If the truth is that it is not just about outward obedience, not committing adulterty, or fornicating, etc, but about the heart of the matter, our heart, what acts of obedience can we do that will purify our minds, our thoughts, our innermost being? Is this not where our real battle lies?

    No wonder people fall into the trap of doing outer works! We start out in grace, but then we are thrown onto our own strength, our own resolve, our own efforts to hold our flesh down. We tie it up, sit on it, discipline it, and all to no avail. it is still as active as ever. And if we do have moderate success with our efforts outwardly, we then become religious pharisees and are proud of our accomplishments.

    This is the fly in the ointment we Christians fight with. How do we deal with out flesh? We all agree that it is all by grace that we are saved, but then what do we do from there? Our full obedience, heart obedience, must be by grace as well.

    Our old nature, our fleshly nature is not to be disciplined into submission. This error is why men and women spend decades trying and not succeeding in real tangible growth into the likeness of our Lord. Our flesh must DIE, and not in the time payment plan.

    Paul tells us in Romans, by a radical act of faith in what Jesus did for us on the cross and with his ressurection, to reckon ourselves dead indeed to sin, to put off our flesh as one gets out of a soiled garment. In the same way, he tells us to put on the new man...by faith alone. We must believe we are new, that victory is ours...now.

    We are asked to fight, but not for the victory, trying our best to attain it. This is works just as surely as if we try to work for our salvation. We are trying to work for our sanctification, and it is a gift! We are to fight IN the victory and with His strength in us, hold onto it. it is called the good fight of faith. We ARE new creatures and the old man is dead.

    This is our shield of faith. We are light in the Lord NOW. We have tried to "become light" by outer obedience, thinking that we will eventually get to the inside where the crud is. We never get there.

    New wine must be put into what? New wineskins! If we are not believing that, fighting the accusations of satan with our shield up, that we were fleshly sinners, but we are now children of the most high, with Him inside us, then we are sitting ducks, and it is only a matter of time until we fall....again.

    Blessings,

    Gideon
     
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  2. 1watchman

    1watchman Overseer Supporter

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    Just read and keep the words of the Lord Jesus and His Apostles, and do what you think the Lord Jesus would do in any situation ---He is a God of love (not rules), and did not come to penalize anyone; that will happen later for souls who dishonor and rebel against God. If we fail and sin, we can confess it and be restored to Him (1 Jn. 1:9). Look up always!
     
  3. setfreeandforgivin

    setfreeandforgivin Newbie

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    The real question that should be asked is how can we not obey?
    Obeying God is steping out in faith and in trust for what His word speaks to our hearts.
    Being obedient to God takes an act of one's will, saying yes to Him and no to one's flesh.
    After all we have Jesus's example to follow and many others that were examples for us to follow, they said yes.
    To quote an old phrase, "Let go and let God":)
     
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2012
  4. gideons300

    gideons300 Guest

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    Both answers make it seem so easy, but can we be honest here? May I then point out that if you get 1000 Christians in a room and ask them if they experience condemnation for things they do, that the vast majority will say yes. Why is this? Because sin is still in their lives.

    Let me be more pointed in what I put forth. God's word tells us that our Father will not allow us to be tempted above that which we are able to bear but will, with every temptation make a way of escape that we might be able to bear it.

    Paul tells us that our shield of faith WILL quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.

    These two promises alone shuld put us on our faces before our Father. God is not a man that He should lie. Yet, are these promises functioning properly in our lives? If not why not? Is our savior not meaning what He said? Or perhaps we are willfully choosing to sin when tempted? Now we are getting warm, and danger lurks.

    We are told furthermore that we are to count it all joy when we are tempted with various temptations. How is this possible if we fall when tempted? There can be only one answer. His salvation is to providefor us, weak and himan as we are, NOT TO FALL. So if we do not see this working in our lives, why?

    This is no small question posed. How do we get control over that part of us that wants to rebel at certain times? This is not optional for believers. Our old nature must be defeated...MUST, and it should bother us and greatly, to the point of tears, if we are walking with part rebel in our hearts.

    The bottom line is, what do we do with our flesh, that part that wants to run things its way, and not God's. God has given us an answer but who will submit to it?

    Blessings,

    Gideon
     
  5. setfreeandforgivin

    setfreeandforgivin Newbie

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    Short answer and by all means not all inclusive...
    The western world and church in general has a greek mindset that says God sits on a cloud somewhere waiting to beat us for every mistake, and that's why there is condemnation. It is rammed down our throats, so there is no wonder that we have such a mindset.

    Look at the grace God poured out on us with the death and resurrection of christ, the only thing you need to obey is the Spirit of the Living God, say yes, and allow God to help you overcome your old man.

    Paul says in Galatians 2:19-21 19 “For through the law I died to the law so that I might live for God. 20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. 21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!”

    I think Paul sums it up nicely..

    Paul also says, Ephesians 6:10-20 10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
    18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. 19 Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.

    The word also says that the devil comes like a roaring lion seeking whom he will devour and the word also says, resist the devil he will flee.

    Be blessed in Jesus
     
  6. thesunisout

    thesunisout growing in grace Supporter

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    Jesus gave us the blueprint on how to overcome sin in our lives. If we followed everything He said perfectly, we would never sin. Is perfection possible? John seems to say it isn't:

    1 John 1:8

    If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

    He also says, if we do sin, God will forgive us:

    1 John 2:1

    My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have one who speaks to the Father in our defense--Jesus Christ, the Righteous One

    Is it ever possible?

    Hebrews 10:14

    For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified

    Paul says yes. When is it possible?:

    1 John 3:2

    Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is

    Paul says we will be like Jesus when He appears, in other words, at the second coming.

    So if perfection isn't possible now, is it okay to sin? Jesus says no:

    Matthew 5:48

    You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect

    So what's going on here? God told us to be perfect yet if we say we are perfect, we deceive ourselves. It seems confusing on the outset, yet we know there is an answer, and in my opinion it seems to be this: that although we may never see perfection in this life, we must never settle for imperfection:

    2 Corinthians 7:1

    Since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.

    It says we are perfecting holiness. Meaning, it is an ongoing process that continues day by day. In what ways are we to be holy?:

    1 Peter 1:15

    but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct,

    In all ways. This is saying, we should never cease striving to be perfect; it must be our sincere desire to be perfect in all things, such as in this list I found:

    "in the love of God, of Christ, of man; perfection of heart, and feeling, and emotion; perfection in his words, and plans, and dealings with people; perfection in his prayers, and in his submission to the will of God"

    That's a tall order. Can we overcome sin well enough to do it? God says we can:

    Genesis 4:7

    If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is for you, but you must rule over it.

    If Cain prior to the cross can rule over sin, what excuse do we have?

    How do we do it?

    Philippians 3:7-14

    But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith— that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.

    Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus

    It says the righteousness from God that depends on faith. We know that apart from Him, we can do nothing. It is only by His righteousness, and not our own:

    Romans 3:22-23

    Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference

    For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God

    We've all sinned and our righteousness is as filthy rags to a Holy God. So, as you say, it is not by works, it is trust that comes from faith:

    Romans 4:5

    However, to the man who does not work but trusts God who justifies the wicked, his faith is credited as righteousness

    Where does faith begin?

    Romans 10:9-10

    That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved

    For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation

    It begins in the heart. How does that work?

    Matthew 6:19-21

    For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also

    So we come down to a root issue. To overcome sin we need the righteousness of God, which comes by faith. Faith comes from the heart, and the heart will be faithful to what it treasures. So how do we make Jesus our treasure? Feel free to add your ideas..here are some of mine:

    We must put Him first:

    Mark 12:30

    And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment

    Above anyone else:

    Matthew 10:37

    He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me

    Above ourselves:

    John 12:25

    The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life

    Above anything in this world:

    James 4:4

    Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God

    We must know what love is to God:

    1 John 5:3

    For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous

    Our eyes must be single, focused only on Christ..then we will have light to see:

    Luke 11:34

    The light of the body is the eye: therefore when thine eye is single, thy whole body also is full of light; but when thine eye is evil, thy body also is full of darknes

    We must do this:

    Luke 9:23

    And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.

    And live it:

    Galatians 2:20

    I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me


    If we give God everything, and live entirely for Him, we will be victorious, because Christ is victorious. The more we love God, the more we will obey Him. The more we love God, the more we will hate our own sin. The more we fear God (reverential awe), the more wisdom we will get to overcome sin. It all comes down to Lordship, and we must always remember that a broken and contrite heart, He will never despise. He wants us to be broken to His touch. In this world, we are to be His hands and feet. We can't do that living for ourselves. He purchased us with His blood; our lives are not our own anymore. If we want to overcome sin in our lives then we need to fall down before the cross and die, because that is where He defeated it. We need to die to self, and let Christ raise us to new life, to be remade in His image. That is what victory looks like.
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2012
  7. Neogaia777

    Neogaia777 Apprentice Supporter

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    [FONT=&quot]Complete obedience eliminates the need for anything involved with grace.
    [/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot]While we should always try our hardest to be completely obedient, it is not through obedience alone that one must get saved. Nobody, (no representative of God anyways) is completely obedient to God all their life, the entire old testament would prove that about all it’s prophets, kings, and leaders, save one, Jesus Christ, who was completely obedient all his life.
    [/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot]There is no one following/fulfilling the entirety of the law, except Jesus Christ. You all know the law, and you all know, that we all, fall short of it. Hence the need for grace or something to cover sins, Jesus paid the price to cover our sins[/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot]
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot]What about grace, does it cover sins and how so, should we always feel guilty about certain sins that we do, a lifetime spent in guilt isn’t what I believe Christ intended and makes you miss out on the fun moments in life, or makes you lose out on the moment, effectively missing out on your life. [/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot]
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot]At what point should we consider ourselves “good enough” for God and be able to rejoice instead of feeling unworthy?[/FONT]
     
  8. Neogaia777

    Neogaia777 Apprentice Supporter

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    You say "obedience" but then you talk about letting go, and letting God, but obedience is a resistance of something, and not a "letting go", requiring stoicism.

    Letting go, would seem to be the opposite of obedience to me.

    I will try to "let go, and let God" but it's not easy for me
     
  9. ReformedPharisee

    ReformedPharisee Messenger of the New Covenant

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  10. hwyangel

    hwyangel Newbie

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    Here is my confession. Please don't judge me just pray for me? I am being convicted. I have been smoking cigarettes for 30 years. Whether smoking is a sin for anyone else, I don't know. But for the last week God has been asking me to quit. I have every excuse and justification for smoking, but God has been speaking to me. Every time I buy cigarettes lately I am thinking about the amount I spend having the potential to feed a child. Every time I think about lighting one up I'm thinking that Im stealing from God. In 30 years this has never been the case and I know it's God speaking to me. It seems I'm doing a Jonah. Please pray for me. Thank you.
     
  11. Neogaia777

    Neogaia777 Apprentice Supporter

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    Ditto, I know God wants me to quit smoking too, I just can't seem to quit though no matter how hard I try. What do I(we) do?
     
  12. God is a Spirit. The Spirit of God... is God. Do you fully agree with this?
     
  13. hwyangel

    hwyangel Newbie

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    I suppose this is our cross. I feel ashamed that Jesus suffered so much for me but I can't even give up smoking for him. It's so easy to say that "God can do it if you only believe " and I don't doubt that he can. But I also believe sometimes that like Job there is a bigger plan. Like the experience and means by which we reach the end of our struggle.
     
  14. thesunisout

    thesunisout growing in grace Supporter

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    Smoking can be tough, but we serve a big God. We're talking about the God that heals the sick and raises people from the dead. What problem is there that is too hard for Him? Helping you quit smoking is not a problem for God at all. The problem is not on His end, as if He is unwilling to help you. You're simply rationalizing your sin by saying its all part of a "bigger plan". The real problem is that you're holding on to your sin and you refuse to let it go and turn away. Smoking is used as a stress reliever, which is a sin, because Jesus told us to cast all of our burdens on to Him. You also have to realize that any addiction is bondage from the enemy.

    It is not a matter of how much God suffered for you. It's a matter of how much you love Him, and love to God is to obey Him. Remember that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit.
     
  15. tranz4md

    tranz4md Redeemed by His grace

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  16. hwyangel

    hwyangel Newbie

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    I don't believe that to struggle with sin is a lack of love or faith. Even the prophets of Jesus struggled with sin.
    As far as I know Christians are the only people who actually struggle with sin. Non-Christians,for the most part,have no need to struggle with sin since they believe there is something they can do about it themselves. Only the Christian believes that he, or she,is in need of a Savior.
    I was trying to identify my struggle with growth.
     
  17. hwyangel

    hwyangel Newbie

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    Way cool. I like that song. Thanks.

    Just added it to my mp3 playlist.
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2012
  18. Neogaia777

    Neogaia777 Apprentice Supporter

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    Yeah how does that go again Jesus said about the "99 that had no need of repentance, and the one that did"?

    Were always (If your a christian) going to find a flaw within ourselves to work on, and were aware that we need help with it and cannot do it ourselves, To me Christianity is about working on and improving the self as a person.

    I believe that its much more important to work on sinful behaviors of the self, rather than sinful habits like smoking. I may have rationalized mine a little bit because I suffer from panic and anxiety attacks which smoking helps keep at bay. But, I really want to quit though. I'm just going to have to chew gum or something
     
  19. gideons300

    gideons300 Guest

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    I do. I am not sure whereyou are going with this, but feel free to continue....

    Blessings,

    Gideon
     
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