New Westminster Chapel

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Posts Tagged ‘overcoming sin’

Genesis 13

Posted by New Westminster Chapel on January 25, 2012

Separate yourself from me. If you take the left hand, then I will go to the right, or if you take the right hand, then I will go to the left.” (Genesis 13:9)

Choices, choices, choices!  They are easier to make when we are thinking of what we will get for ourselves than when we are thinking about what we may lose.  Choices must be made and each choice brings its own set of consequences.  We cannot have it all!  Moreover, not everything we have or can have is good for us.  As human beings, we long for attachments – be it with God, people or things.  God made us that way so that we would desire and attach ourselves to Him. But alas! Sin has skewed that!  More often than not, our desires are ungodly, evil and spiritually unprofitable.

When God called Abram, He commanded him to leave his people and go to a land that He (God) was going to show him.  For some reason, Lot went along and that had grievous consequences for both. Indeed in their case the grass looked much greener on Lot’s “side of the fence” and yet that was only momentary. God gave Abram eternal blessings for separating himself from Lot and all the evil associated with Lot’s choice (Sodom & Gomorrah).

In life, many things occupy our attention, time and energies.  However, the wise know that only what is essential, beneficial and profitable will be good and worth pursuing.  Nothing is more worthy of our pursuit than walking with the Almighty God all the days of our lives!  In following Him we are given a blessed life here on earth on one hand, but we also lay up for ourselves eternal treasures in heaven on the other hand!

But as long as sin abounds in our hearts, it is impossible for us to truly and fully experience that blessed life in Christ. Sin entangles us and chokes that life within us.  Insatiable and lustful desires rage within us. O, how difficult it is to resist and how dreadful to separate ourselves from the things, people and activities which hinder us from fully realizing and embracing the blessings and promises of God in Christ!

Yes, the grass does often look greener on the other side of the fence, but beloved, we are not unaware of the devil’s schemes! True blessings are found in Christ.  In Him alone, can our lives yield true blessings to others. Therefore dearly beloved, “Let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12: 1-2)

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Genesis 4

Posted by New Westminster Chapel on January 5, 2012

Cain and Abel, ivory panel from the cathedral ...

The LORD said to Cain, “Why are you angry, and why has your face fallen? 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.” (Gen 4:6-7

The greatest war in the world is not yet to come or gone by. It remains and rages on. Indeed, the biggest fights are not between siblings or enemies or countries or ethnic groups – the biggest of them all is that within our hearts.

We wrestle every day with one desire or another, with the next need or want or craving. Our minds are restlessly making decisions or avoiding them. Honestly, many of us do not win half of our battles and things go awry and not our way.

In this chapter, sibling rivalry was quiet intense to the point of murder. But God had assessed the situation for Cain and told him exactly what was going on, how to overcome and avoid the terrible the result of his bitterness and jealousy. He did not listen. He killed his brother.

Maybe in wrestling within yourself – about your desires, ambitions and feelings – you haven’t yet resorted to killing a man. But what about your own soul? James says, “But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.”

Pause and think on this. Desires lead to sin and that brings death. How many of your desires are sinless? You may carry them out or keep them in your heart, but needless to say, your heart and mind are brewing and storing sinful desires that are accumulating into DEATH. This is not only physical death, but also spiritual death, eternal separation from God!

So when you think on this story, especially Gen 4:6-7, God speaks that word to each of us daily. Sin wants to overcome us unto death but we must master it! The only way we can do that is by God’s power and grace offered through faith in His Son Jesus. And then immerse yourself daily in His word to learn to discern and choose what is good (Heb 5:11-14). I urge you to take this devotional journey with me through the bible, one chapter at a time so that we may be equipped to resist and overcome sin.

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