Nov 27, 2015

Flee from these sins

We are in a war where the lord expects us to fight the world, the Satan, the flesh and the self inside us. Yet, there are some situations we have to flee from, according to the bible.

In the word of God, the lord asks us to wage a good warfare (1 Tim 1:18), he expects us to fight as steady battle, for a christian (one who is born again, and baptized to Christ) is in the midst of a waging war which started eons ago. We have been given the blessed weapons of warfare (Eph 6:10-18) which are strong and mighty (2 Cor 10:4), being spiritual weapons, not carnal. You see, the battle being a spiritual one can't be fought with worldly wisdom. The church is in the process of being formed, cleansed and prepared as a bride without spot or blemish for the mighty King of Kings and Lord of lords, our lord and savior Jesus Christ. (Eph 5:26-27) The church is aware (mostly) of the spiritual weapons and the power of the word of God, but in today's devotion, I hope to share what I found to be an extremely useful spiritual warfare tactic.

In my pre-conversion days, When I used to play Quake III (a multiplayer shooter game) with my friends, one of the consistent top scorers was not the most aggressive fighters who shot up everything on his path; Rather he was a person who was an expert runner. He used to avoid getting killed in the deathmatches, and used to pile up decent scores. He'll flee from the areas of danger and get his kills by stealth.

Fleeing from danger is an excellent warfare tactic. A good general is one who knows when to advance his troops and also when to retreat.

We are in no means required to flee from the devil , for the word of god says in Jas 4:7 Submit to God, resist the devil, he will flee from you. Once we are submitted to the lord Jesus, that submission gives us an authority, by which if we resist the devil (in the name of Jesus christ), he will have to flee from us.

But there are conditions which the word asks us to flee from. There is an element in us which wants us to sin and be enticed by what satan, the world offers. The flesh . Rom 7:19,23-24  God wants us to be able to stand in full fellowship with him and boldly before him always. The world, devil and flesh are planning to keep traps before us to entice us into sin, and thereby lose the precious favor of our lord - so run fast from them.

When we sin, we hide like Adam, hiding, afraid of coming into God's presence. So God advises us to flee from the following situations which are traps that the evil one lays for us. The bible says, Jas 1:13-14 we are enticed by our own lusts. The devil has a history of our past failures which his agents have reported. He knows what are our pet sins, he knows what has trapped us in the past, and unless we are careful he knows we'll fall again. The lord Jesus allows us to be tested and proved, so that we can finally emerge as victorious overcomers who are victorious over the world, the flesh and the devil. remember, the lord has broken the snare of the fowler and given us grace (Tit 2:11-13  ) power to lead godly lives and not submit to these unclean sins.

What are some of these situations or things we have to flee from ?

1) Flee fornication 1 Cor 6:18-20 

Fornication is a big word. And it represents a lot of the evil world that we live in today. The literal meaning of the word is sexual immorality - and it covers an entire gamut of sins ranging from adultery , illicit sex, incest, bestiality, lesbian/gay sex, right down to the lusting and the sins of the mind by which we desire unclean sexual experiences. Remember, Jesus says - he that looks at a woman to lust has already committed adultery with her (Mat 5:28). God is not to be mocked. And if you are still wondering , it includes pornography as well. (the greek word for fornication in this verse is πορνεία/Porneia and it is the root word for pornography). Yes, all these are habits and sins which are drawing billions away from the lord - and the world is really full of people and systems which encourage us into this lifestyle. It zaps a believer of all his spiritual vitality and the presence and favour of the lord is lost immediately and forever unless we repent and come back!)

The bible says - these are sins that destroy your body and your soul (1 Cor 6:18). We are designed to be the temples (dwelling place) of the most holy God. We are brought for a price (1 Cor 6:20) and that price was the blood of Jesus Christ ! what a costly transaction ! When we are purchased, we lose all our rights to "do our own thing". have you ever purchased a chicken to have it refuse to be roasted when you came home? Lets yield to the spirit of God and repent if we have not guarded ourselves. 

2) Flee Idolatry 1 Cor 10:14  

This is a sin that the lord hates from all of the old testament. How can man replace the glory of the one true living God and turn to idols (Rom 1:21-26) ? and yet, I believe almost all of us have fallen prey to this sin at some point. If there are idols in our life, let's confess and forsake and burn the idols, repent and turn to accept jesus as our only lord and saviour.

Moses was away in the mount receiving the law - Ex 32:1 - and he was delayed in coming down. 40 days in the presence of God away from the children of Israel. Time delays can bring out idols in us,especially when the lord seems to be absent (they didnt ask aaron when moses was around). Ex 32:4-6,8 . Idols are your own inventions in the times of testing - Psa 106:36-40

What is an idol? - Anything that you consider more important than god, anything you substitute instead of god - can be your self, intelligence, money, job, relatives. Experiencing the cross of Jesus is denying all these and following christ daily (Luk 9:23 ). i pray that we all have a deep cleansing period of cleansing our lives of ALL idols that make it polluted.

3) Flee love of money 1 Tim 6:9-11 

Jesus says - no man can serve two masters (Mat 6:24) - God and mammon are the two masters. We have to choose who is our master. It's either God or mammon. (mammon = money). Money is a very good slave - but a terrible master. Money is good to consume for god-appointed purposes, but it's a sad day when you take decisions based on the finance involved there. (example: if you are getting 2 job offers, dont blindly take the one with the higher pay. Ask god His will. )

The rich fall into all sorts of temptations and snares and they are drawn to lusts and drown in destruction and judgment. It's difficult to extract them from those. (1 Tim 6:9). the word of god says - money is the root of ALL evil. Some , desiring more money and chasing after it, have coveted, they have strayed from the simple faith in christ, and have pierced themselves with many sorrows. (1 Tim 6:10). So paul commands timothy to stay away from this risk and to flee from this love of money and pursue the eternal things (righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness (1 Tim 6:11)

today, let's remember the wise verse from the same chapter - 1 Tim 6:6 - Godliness with contentment is great gain - let's be content with food and clothing !

4) Flee youthful lusts 2 Tim 2:22 

How do I define a youthful lust ? apart from the sexual sins listed above, it's a desire for thrill, sensation, power, sensuality, admiration, ego-trips, typically seen in younger people. It may manifest in strange ways - may be the desire to travel at the top speed of a car, seeking adventures (even in mission trips), desiring a lot of fans, desiring to be the most admired, a desire to see the world with wanderlust, a desire to travel business class, a desire to have many cars, a desire to have nubile girlfriends, a desire to look and feel younger, etc.

This warning comes to us because it is even possible for old men to fall prey to this temptation. Timothy must have been a serving elder in the church for many years (about 35-40 years of age) when he got this letter from Paul. It was possible for him also to fall prey to these - else Paul wouldn't have warned him.

Today, shall we allow the lord to inspect our hearts and cleanse any such lust that may pave way to greater sins and issues in our life

These are some of the top sins and conditions to watch for if we are to please God. These are the sins with which satan tempts even the elect men of God. Rev 21:7 God wants us to be victorious over every wile of the devil so that he can give us our inheritance.

How can we do this ? we have victory in the blood of Jesus. the word says - 1 Cor 10:13 we will not be tempted beyond our ability and the lord will make the way of escape. 1 Cor 15:57 says we have victory through Jesus Christ.

May god keep us pure and holy in these days. Jude 1:20-21 says - build yourself up in your holy faith, praying in the spirit, keep yourself in the love of god ! Mat 24:13  says - He that shall endure even unto death, the same shall be saved.

Dear friend, as we read the above, I would urge you to look back into your life remembering the pits where you have fallen. The patience of the lord causes him to want us to repent (2 Pet 3:9) - I would urge you to repent of the past sins and failures (1 John 1:7-9), and receive the cleansing from the blood of Jesus when you confess those sins to Him (not to a priest!). Decide this day, to walk a new walk , one where you consecrate yourself to Him, and decide to please Him and not your self.

God bless you !