Renounce All Known Sin!

Renounce All Known Sin!

Richard Hollerman


We are aware that some people think that they never sin. I met a person like this when I was living in Alabama many years ago. He said that he had not sinned for X-number of years. He had remained sinless for these many years! This person believed in what has been called the doctrine of “a second work of grace” or “entire sanctification.” Apart from this theology, almost everyone else will admit that he or she does sin, even if it may be inadvertent sin or unknown sin.

At this point, however, we wish to discuss the serious matter of sinning with the full knowledge that some action or attitude is sinful before our holy God. This is a step beyond the matter of sinning unintentionally and involves sinning in a defiant way against God and His will. In reading the Law of Moses, we can see how vital it is that we avoid known wrongdoing for there was no provision for forgiveness for deliberate offenses. Notice particularly Numbers 15:22-25, 30-31; Leviticus 4:1-5:13; Deuteronomy 4:41-42. We have discussed this somewhat thoroughly in our booklet, The Disaster of Deliberate Sin!

Let me ask these questions of you, personally: Do you regularly and consciously sin? Do you commit what you are convinced is sinful, without a determined effort to avoid it? Do you do wrong with the full consciousness that this violates what God would want of you? Do you have a careless attitude toward certain sins even though you are aware that they are sinful and hurt the heart of God? Let’s discuss some of these that may bring guilt into your life.

  1. Bad language

Most people know when they use bad language of various kinds. Some knowingly use vulgar or filthy language. (We won’t give examples here for you probably can think of certain words that you have heard from the mouth of others or maybe you yourself have used these filthy words in the past.) Others use profanity by taking God’s name or Christ’s name in vain or taking these names in a careless or thoughtless way. Some people use such words in nearly every sentence or maybe every several sentences in their conversation. While people may not deliberately use this filthy or irreverent language, they are aware that they use these words and don’t really try to overcome it.

We’ve often been amazed at the religious people we’ve met or heard (including pastors and preachers) who use questionable language. They take God’s Name (“God!” “Jesus!” “Lord!”) in a careless and vain way. They use other words (“Heavens!” “Holy……!” etc.) as part of their working vocabulary. It is time that they recognize what they are doing and renounce these compromises.

Scripture is clear about this. We are to put aside “malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth” (Colossians 3:8). This could be translated as “obscene talk” (ESV), “filthy language” (NIV), or “abusive language” (NET Bible). Is this the way you talk? In another place, we read: “Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear” (Ephesians 4:29). This could be rendered as “unwholesome talk” (NIV), “corrupting talk” (ESV), or an “unwholesome word” (NET Bible). The term in the Greek means “decayed, rotten” (Bauer, Arndt, Gingrich, Danker, Greek-English Lexicon), or “rotten, putrid, of poor quality, bad, unfit for use, worthless” (Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon). If your speech may be characterized in this way, you stand guilty before our Holy God and you need to repent.

  1. Fornication

Some of us may think that everyone knows that fornication is sinful, but there may be a few people out there who are not as fully conscious of this fact as others. Some also commit fornication or sexual immorality and know it is sinful and displeases God, but they go ahead and follow their flesh anyway. A surprising number of young people in their teens and twenties (and older people too) who claim to be Evangelicals or “Christians,” do commit fornication. They even “live with” their boyfriend or girlfriend, openly living in fornication. Fornication is from porneia (from which we get “pornography”) and it means “illicit sexual intercourse” (W. E. Vine, Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words). It can refer to “prostitution, unchastity, fornication, of every kind of unlawful sexual intercourse” (Bauer, Arndt, Gingrich, Danker, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament).

God’s Word is quite clear that no fornicator will “inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-10). Sometimes this is translated as “an immoral person” (1 Corinthians 5:11, NASB), “sexually immoral” (NIV, NET Bible), “sexual immorality” (ESV), or “lives in sex sin” (Beck). Much is said about those who commit this sexual immorality. For instance, Scripture says that “the body is not for immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord is for the body” (1 Corinthians 6:13). If we use our body in an immoral way, we are taking “the members of Christ” and making them members of the opposite sex (v. 15).

We are to “flee [sexual] immorality” (1 Corinthians 6:18a). The one who uses his body to commit sexual sin actually “sins against his own body” (v. 18b). We must avoid sexual sin since the Christian’s body is “a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God” (v. 19a). Further, since Christ died to purchase our body, we don’t belong to ourselves—but to the Lord. Thus, we are to “glorify God” in our body (vv. 19-20). For these reasons, we must avoid all sex sin. We must also avoid all sins of a similar nature—homosexuality, pornography, etc.

This is a crucial subject for, as we mentioned earlier, no one who is sexually immoral can inherit the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9-10; Galatians 5:19-21). The wrath of God abides on the fornicator (Ephesians 5:3-7; Colossians 3:5-7). God will judge the fornicator (Hebrews 13:4) and those who are guilty of fornication will have their part in the lake of fire or hell (Revelation 21:8). Regardless of how common this is, we must run from it! Regardless of family members or friends who commit fornication, we must avoid it. Jesus even said that fornication comes from within, out of our heart (Mark 7:21-23), and even the sexually immoral thought is counted as the immoral act (Matthew 5:27-30>

  1. Anger

How often this sin is committed in the world around us! We suspect that nearly everyone knows that anger is sinful, except for instances of anger directed against sinful behavior (cf. Mark 3:5; Ephesians 4:26). Generally, a person becomes angry because life is “not treating him well,” or because someone has violated his assumed “rights,” or someone has offended him. We think that we deserve better than someone has given us, thus we become angry. Or it may be that we think life is not fair, thus we become angry.

Some may even become angry with God! If He allows a tragedy, a sickness, a loss, or death to invade our life, the person may react in anger and thus becomes resentful of Him. The thought is, “Since God didn’t rescue me when I needed Him, I’m angry at Him. I refuse to love and serve Him!”

Sometimes anger is manifested in words.  Paul writes about those who are guilty of “outbursts of anger” (Galatians 5:20, NASB) or “fits of anger” (ESV). He connects anger and wrongful words together at Ephesians 4:31: “Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice.”  He likewise says, “Put them all aside: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth” (Colossians 3:8). Anger in the heart often is expressed in what comes from the mouth since “the mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart” (Matthew 12:34).

An angry person must be avoided if at all possible: “Do not associate with a man given to anger; or go with a hot-tempered man, or you will learn his ways and find a snare for yourself” (Proverbs 22:24-25). Notice how strife and transgression are connected to this sin of anger: “An angry man stirs up strife, and a hot-tempered man abounds in transgression” (Proverbs 29:22). Although anger remains common in the world, let it never be found in our hearts! This destructive sin will prevent one from inheriting the Kingdom of God (Galatians 5:19-21).

  1. Adultery

The term adultery (moichos) denotes one “who has unlawful intercourse with the spouse of another” (W. E. Vine, Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words). But it can also refer to having a sexual relationship with a single person if you, yourself, are married. The verb moicheuo is always translated “to commit adultery,” unlike “porneuo, which means to indulge in any kind of illegitimate sexual intercourse” (William D. Mounce, Mounce’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words). This means that whereas porneuo refers to any kind of sexual immorality, adultery relates to one who is in a sexual relationship in which a violation of marriage is involved.

Most people recognize that adultery is sinful before God. However, since it has become so common in our world (as found in movies, songs, college campuses, and elsewhere), people take a superficial attitude toward it. Instead of men and women recognizing this sin as a utterly grievous and wicked violation of the covenant of marriage, they often refer to it as merely an “affair” or an acceptable romantic relationship. Surveys suggest that marital unfaithfulness is much more common than we would suspect.

Just as common as outright adultery within an acceptable marriage is the matter of adultery that comes from divorce and remarriage. Jesus said that “what therefore God has joined together, let no man separate” (Matthew 19:6). When a husband (or wife) divorces his spouse when there is no permissible grounds for such a divorce, and then marries someone else, he commits adultery against the first wife. As the Lord put it, “Whoever divorces his wife, except for immorality [porneia], and marries another woman commits adultery” (v. 9). This means that if a legitimately married person puts away his wife (apart from the cause of immorality) and then marries another woman, he commits adultery. This is adultery against his first wife.

Further, the woman who is joined to such a man also commits adultery. Jesus declared, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery against her; and if she divorces her husband and marries another man, she is committing adultery” (Mark 10:11-12). The Lord then expands this teaching: “Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and he who marries one who is divorced from a husband commits adultery” (Luke 16:18; cf. Matthew 5:31-32; Romans 7:2-3). This is important since “adulterers” “will not inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-10) but will be judged by the Lord (Hebrews 13:4).

All of us have known of professing Christians who have put away their wife (or husband) and married another person, and they may continue to claim to be Christians! “Big name” televangelists, pastors, and authors frequently divorce a wife, then marry another woman—often being younger and more beautiful than the first wife! Sadly, they may continue to claim to be a Christian and continue their tainted ministry. Many seek to justify their adultery, claim that God approves of it, and even say that God is blessing the second marriage! All of this is a way to “sweep under the rug” the adultery that Scripture says will be judged in hell (cf. Revelation 21:8). Regardless of the “happiness” and “blessing” that people claim for themselves, this second marriage remains adulterous and one must suffer the consequences of this unrepentant sin—unless the person is willing to repent (Acts 2:38; 3:19; 8:22; 26:20; Romans 2:4-6).

  1. Lying

Sadly, we know that most people—including professing “Christians”—admit that they sometimes or regularly lie. A lie is deliberate telling an untruth. It is “a false statement made with deliberate intent to deceive; a falsehood” (Random House Webster’s College Dictionary). Some people feel justified in lying for they claim that, if they tell the truth, the consequences for themselves or another person will not be good. They may try to avoid an even worse situation that would come if they tell the truth. But this is still lying. Calling a lie a “white lie” is still wrong, for the Bible knows nothing of a “white” or “black” lie. It is still deliberately saying something that is untrue and gives the other person a wrong impression.

The Lord Jesus said that a “false witness” comes “out of the heart” and thereby “defiles the man” (Matthew 15:19-20). “Deceit” likewise comes from the heart (Mark 7:21-23). We read that “lying lips are an abomination to the LORD, but those who deal faithfully are His delight” (Proverbs 12:22). Paul wrote, “Laying aside falsehood, speak truth each one of you with his neighbor” (Ephesians 4:25). He also wrote, “Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices” (Colossians 3:9).

How serious is lying? Scripture says that “all liars” will be cast into “the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8). No liars will be admitted to the Heavenly City (21:2), but they must eternally be excluded from this blessed abode (22:15). Regardless of how common lying is, and regardless of the number of professing Christians who practice this sin, lying remains a sin that will bar one from heaven—unless one is willing to humble himself and repent and change!

  1. Smoking

We know that the term “tobacco” is not found even once on the pages of Scripture. It is not explicitly condemned by name. Neither are other forms of tobacco use. Why would this be the case? Clearly the reason is that no one thought of breathing smoke into his lungs! Further, tobacco had not yet been discovered!  Columbus found Indians using tobacco when he arrived at the “New World” in the fifteenth century then he introduced it into Europe. If it had existed in Bible times, surely it would have been utterly condemned in no uncertain terms.

The use of tobacco may be condemned on many counts. No one can imagine that Jesus Christ, the Holy Savior, would have defiled His lips with the use of tobacco (1 Peter 2:21) and we are “to walk in the same manner as He walked” (1 John 2:6). The apostles would not have used tobacco either (Philippians 4:9; 1 Corinthians 11:1). Tobacco harms the body in many ways, a body that belongs to the Lord and in whom the Holy Spirit dwells (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). Further, the use of tobacco would be a harmful example to young and old who observe this practice (1 Timothy 4:12; Titus 2:7). It also is a waste of time and money (Ephesians 5:14-15). For these and many other reasons, we must renounce this filthy and sinful habit and seek to live a clean and exemplary life before others.

  1. Apathy

Can you imagine the offense it must be to the Lord for us to live an apathetic or indifferent life? The world around us may go through life with a careless attitude, almost giving the impression that one is going to live for 500 years, but the Christian knows that he is to use his time on earth to the greatest advantage. Many (or most) people who profess Christianity, wile away their time watching sports, viewing TV, playing games, and doing a hundred and one things that have no real meaning or importance! They waste that which is irreplaceable!

Paul wrote, “Be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil” (Ephesians 5:15-16). This may also be translated as “making the best use of the time” (ESV). He also wrote, “Conduct yourselves with wisdom toward outsiders, making the most of the opportunity” (Colossians 4:5). Arndt and Gingrich point out that these passages “cannot be interpreted with certainty,” but they do suggest that we should use our opportunities to the greatest advantage. We spend our time in light of Christ’s coming and eternity! Ralph Earle notes, “Since the Greek word for ‘time’ (kairos) does not signify merely chronological time (chronos) but an opportune or appointed time, this passage may be rendered: ‘making the most of every opportunity’ (NIV)” (Word Meanings in the New Testament). Do we do this?

We should use our limited and irreplaceable time well in light of James’ words: “You do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away” (James 4:14). Note also these sobering thoughts: “All flesh is like grass, and all its glory like the flower of grass. The grass withers, and the glower falls off, but the word of the LORD endures forever” (1 Peter 1:24-25a). You and I are only here on earth for a very, very tiny amount of time as compared to eternity, thus we need to use this brief time for God’s glory and His work. Instead of passing our time in a careless or irresponsible way, we need to take Paul’s words to heart: “. . . not lagging behind in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord” (Romans 12:11). We can see how time-wasting is a common but frequently-overlooked sin. We need to repent and begin looking at life with the soberness it deserves!

  1. Food

The Lord Jesus already made it clear that food should not dominate our thinking and actions. He declared, “Do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink” (Matthew 6:25a). He went on to say, “Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will be drink’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing.’ For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things” (vv. 31-32). The problem Jesus seems to address is people who don’t have sufficient to eat or drink, whereas we generally have an abundance of all of this—and this dominates our thinking. The Lord then commands, “Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” (v. 33). The Lord tells us what should occupy our mind: His kingdom and His righteousness! Does this describe you and me?

People generally eat too much and what they do eat is unhealthy. They seem to be largely unconcerned about good nutrition but, instead, they make their food choices according to taste and sight! They are fleshly-oriented and lose all self-control and rational thinking. They make good into a “god” of their own invention. This idolatry of food is demonstrated by the fact that the majority frequent fast-food establishments, one of the most unhealthy places to buy a meal. Observe people as they go into the neighborhood grocery store and you will see that they fill their grocery cart with all kinds of tasty non-foods but give little thought to what is really nutritious—the vegetables, the whole grains, fruit, and other produce. They have probably read enough or seen enough to realize that fast foods, junk foods, sweet foods, and high-fat foods bring havoc to one’s health, yet they close their eyes and ears to sane and sensible food choices and continue to focus on that which will bring degenerative diseases that wreck one’s physical health.

The Bible says that our body is “a temple of the Holy Spirit” who is in us, and we are not our own (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). Paul admonishes us, “Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31). We are to present our bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is [our] spiritual service of worship” (Romans 12:1). Let’s open our eyes and heart to what we already know—that we are mere stewards of our physical bodies and are responsible to use it for God’s glory and His service.

  1. Materialism

This term is not found, per se, on the pages of Scripture, but the meaning is found throughout the Bible. The term may be defined as “preoccupation with or emphasis on material objects, comforts, and considerations, as opposed to spiritual or intellectual values” (Random House Webster’s College Dictionary). It is an attitude that prevails in our country and dominates the thinking of the majority. It may be connected with greed or covetousness, the desire for more—and usually this would be more material “things.”

We think that people inherently know that it makes no sense to focus on material things that will pass away and neglect the spiritual things that will last. Paul puts it this way: “We do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison” (2 Corinthians 4:16-17). If we were to have this attitude toward life, how this would change our purpose here on earth! The apostle goes on, “. . . while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal” (v. 18). People generally focus on the things that are seen and the things which are temporal. Deep down, we know that we should center our attention on the things which are not seen and the things which are eternal!

Although we know these things, the vast majority of people can’t take their thoughts off the “here and now” and begin to live for the eternal future. Have you ever noticed these plain words: “The world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God lives forever” (1 John 2:17)? Does this describe you and me?  Do we allow the passing things of this life to lead us astray and to overcome us? Scripture says, “The form of this world is passing away” (1 Corinthians 7:31). Are we willing to pursue that which will outlast us?

The patriarchs are an example for us: “All these died in faith, without receiving the promises, but having seen them and having welcomed them from a distance, and having confessed that they were strangers and exiles on earth” (Hebrews 11:13). We too are to be people of faith who “walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7). We too are “aliens and strangers” here on earth (1 Peter 2:11). If this is so, why are we overcome by present earthly success on the job, why are we dominated by buying more luxurious houses and cars, and why do we relish the accumulation of more worldly things? All of this will burn up one coming Day (2 Peter 3:7-13), thus we should spend our time, our money, and our energies on the “spiritual” matters of life—glorifying God, loving Him with all our heart, loving others, giving to meet people’s needs, sharing the good news of Christ with the lost, praying to the Lord, studying His Word, and everything else that has true meaning in life!

  1. Worldliness

It would seem that most people who outwardly profess Christ have allowed themselves to be pulled into the way the world looks at reality. Quite frankly, although they claim to be Christians, they are deeply enmeshed into this world system, and we know that “the whole world lies in the power of the evil one” (1 John 5:19). They follow the enemy, Satan, who is “the god of this world” (2 Corinthians 4:4) and who is “the ruler of this world” (John 12:31; cf. 14:30; 16:11).

By worldliness we mean viewing the world through the secular eyes of the unbeliever or unsaved person. It has to do with pattering our thoughts, our words, and our behavior according to the world around us. We are in the world but not of the world. As Jesus said, in prayer to His Father, “I do no ask You to take them out of the world, but to keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world” (John 17:15-16). He went on, “As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world” (v. 18). We are not of the world but dwell in the world where we seek to influence the world with saving truth (v. 17).

We are not to be “conformed to this world” but are to be transformed by the renewing of or mind (Romans 12:1). We are to be “unstained by the world” (James 1:27) and are to have no “friendship with the world” which is “hostility toward God” (4:4). “Do not love the world nor the things in the world,” warns John, “If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him” (1 John 2:15).

I recall when I first read and memorized these verses. I was absolutely shocked and could see that nearly everyone around me was part of this world system. They simply refused to be separate from the world or “this present evil age” (Galatians 1:4). John explained further what he meant: “All that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world. The world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God lives forever” (1 John 2:16-17). I could see that this addresses all of those things that people deem desirable and enjoyable, including much of the entertainment, the fashions, the occupations, the possessions, the food, the houses, the cars, and much more!

Most professing “Christians” have been sucked into this fallen and evil world. Let us open our eyes to this deception and seek to have the mind of Christ.  Let us be crucified to the world (Galatians 6:14). Let us die to “the elementary principles of the world” (Colossians 2:20). Let us live for the Lord Jesus and not the surrounding world system.

  1. Learning God’s Word

Nearly everyone who claims to be a follower of the Lord Jesus knows that God wants us to seek His will and His truth through His inspired Word.  We all know that God’s Word is “inspired by God” and “profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16). But we fail to receive teaching based on Scripture, we refuse to be admonished by reproof from Scripture, we reject the correction of Scripture, and we are indifferent toward being trained in Scripture.

Unlike Timothy’s own background, we have not “known the sacred writings” which “are able to give” us the “wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus” (v. 15). We are apathetic toward growth that would help us to be “adequate, equipped for every good work.” Basically, people just don’t care. They are not intensely interested in reading, studying, learning, applying, and obeying God’s inspired Word!

Does this describe you and your own situation? Are you interested in local and national sports and set aside God’s Word that leads to salvation? Are you pushing yourself to earn more and more, but have little time left to pursue the truth of God? Are you willing to let a professional teacher or pastor give you simple little “sermonettes” fit only for “Christianettes”—but are unwilling to apply yourself to deligent study of God’s saving truths? Are you indifferent toward learning verses of Scripture, or unconcerned about seeking how God wants you to live, or are uncaring about how you should change your life to be conformed into Christ’s likeness, or apathetic toward the precious commands and promises of God’s written revelation? Let’s remember that only those who have a love of the truth will be saved (cf. 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12).

  1. Sins of Omission

It would seem that at least some people are concerned about sins of commission—those sins that violate known commands from the Lord. But what about sins of omission—those sins committed when we fail to obey what God has commanded of us? People seem to be less concerned about fulfilling what God wants us to do or commands us to perform. Scripture teaches, “To one who knows the right thing to do and does not do it, to him it is sin” (James 4:17).  “Like doing evil, failing to do good (i.e., obey all the exhortations of this letter) is also sin” (NASB Study Bible). “It is not only what people do that matter; the good that they fail to do is equally important to God” (ESV Study Bible). We might remember the great parable of the judgment scene (Matthew 25:31-46) when those who failed to do the good they knew was God’s will were condemned by the Lord (vv. 41-45).

In your own life, do you fail to do God’s will when you know to do it? Do you even refuse to do what pleases God when you are aware of what that will is? We go, day by day, without much regard for God’s positive will for us. Although we know that God has said, “You shall . . . ,” we give little thought to it. Although we are conscious of our duty to God and what God wants us to do, we close our eyes and ears to such admonishments.

This could be applied in many ways. God says to help the poor and needy, but we fail to carry out this command (cf. James 1:27; Galatians 6:9). God says to meet with the saints to receive edification and to give edification, but even when we know of a Scriptural community nearby, we give little interest (Hebrews 10:23-25). God says for believers to be baptized into Christ, but some put off fulfilling this command for a week, a month, a year, or longer (Acts 22:16). We know of one person who has put off obeying the Lord in baptism for maybe 28 years! God says for us to study the Scriptures, but we seldom open the covers of our Bible for daily seasons of Bible study (Matthew 4:4; Psalm 119:105). God says to pray “without ceasing” but many of us fail to lift our voice to the Lord (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18). In a hundred other ways, we know the right thing to do, but we carelessly omit to obey or steadfastly refuse to obey.

What about You?

We’ve noticed ten different areas in which we find ourselves apathetic or indifferent.  Numerous people know that certain thoughts, words, and actions are opposed to the pure will of God, but they are either unwilling to do God’s will or they carelessly set it aside and fail to submit to it. Instead of “trembling” at God’s Word (cf. Isaiah 66:2), they take it all casually or carelessly. Does this describe you?

If you are like many, you will simply read and reject the warnings of this article. Somehow, you will just take it all in but will do nothing at all about it. Your religion is too comfortable and you refuse to have your boat rocked.  Instead, you need to be shaken to your core about these matters! This is a salvation issue, not just something that you can take or leave. You will either take these admonishments and apply them to your life or you will reject them as too radical and extreme.

James writes, “In humility receive the word implanted, which is able to save your souls” (1:21). He goes on to warn, “But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves” (v. 22). You and I both need to hear God’s words on these important topics and then submit to Him in all things.  James continues, “One who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in what he does” (v. 25). Will you be one who abides by God’s Word, who obeys that Word, and thereby will be blessed in what you do? That is the only way of blessing.

Are you one who will knowingly allow deliberate sin in your life? Conversely, will you run from all forms of sin and begin to live your life with new purpose and a desire for holiness and truth?  We are to pursue holiness for without it “no one will see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14).We are to pursue truth for Jesus declared, “If you abide in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free” (John 8:31-32). We can only be saved from sin and have eternal life if we are willing to seek holiness and purity (Matthew 5:8) and seek the truth of God’s Word (2 Thessalonians 2:10-12).

It has been said, “If Jesus is worth anything, He is worth everything!” That is correct. We must not allow half-measures regarding our spiritual condition and response to God. God is the Supreme Ruler of the universe, the Maker of heaven and earth, and the Savior of the ends of the world. If we love, trust, and submit to Him, we must seek His will and His truth with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength!  Let nothing stand in your way of pursuing His will today! Submit to Him in all you think, say, and do. There is no other way.


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