Are you a believer in Jesus?
If so, here is a verse to challenge your status quo:
Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.John 14:12
Here a flat statement in the scripture of Jesus’ purpose:
He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.1 John 3:8
Do you suppose Jesus’ works, spoken of in John 14:12, might be associated with His stated purpose? Can you imagine any aimless works of the perfect Son of God?
Do you want to know what the works of the devil look like? See Romans 1:18-32
How can we have the power to combat this evil onslaught?
Consider this – God is sovereign. By that, I mean that He is bound only by His own word and his own nature. He cannot violate His own nature or His word and still be the God described in the Bible. I do NOT mean, as some do, that the sovereignty of God decides everything. I believe He has given us free will. One reason is that love does not function under coercion. When the scripture says we are made in His image (Genesis 1:26), we might understand that God has free will and He made us after the same pattern. How might we know? The strongest scriptural evidence I can cite is 1 John 4:8, which says that God is love. That is, love is his very nature. I believe He gave us free will that we would not be precluded from relating to Him in love. However, we misused our free will and followed a twisted lie about Him instead of having faith in His perfection. This choice gave the devil access to the things we were given to rule over in the beginning (including our selves). Can you say “diabolical plan”? We continue to reinforce that capitulation every time we choose to operate in our “own” will, instead of God’s revealed will. (Matthew 7:21, 26:39) We all know from painful experience the difficulty in subjugating our stubborn self will.
But God… provided a solution to our dilemma. Jesus went to the cross and voluntarily bore the penalty of our sin. If we can accept the completeness of this selfless act and lay down our impotent self efforts, we can find freedom:
If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.John 8:36
The power to operate in freedom comes from the indwelling Spirit of God, whom Jesus sent:
Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.John 14:7
How can we know if the Spirit of God is indwelling and we have yielded to Him (rather than continuing to habitually yield to our “old man”)?
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.Galatians 5:22-23
Remember that free will? Here is some really good news:
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.1 John 1:9
I believe 1 John 1:9 is talking about transgressions of the believer who has lapsed into “walking in the flesh” or the unregenerate part of our nature, instead of the part of us that is saved (the Spiritual part, look back at John 14:17). Further, we don’t have to contest the free will of others to defeat the works of the devil in ourselves! All it really takes is to recognize we are displaying traits in the list in Romans 1:18-32 and not the ones in Galatians 5:22-23. If we do, we can pray something like: “Father, I am walking in the flesh again and not in the power of Your Spirit. Thank You that Jesus has paid the price of His life to break that bondage! Please help me to consider myself dead to these things, but alive to your Spirit. I want to do that which is pleasing in Your sight!”
Do you want to make some real change in the world?
Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven.Matthew 18:19