Jesus Christ is Lord of All

Wednesday, August 29, 2012


(Sequel to “Notes to Self on the Secret Sins of the Flesh”)

1.     Dormant Roots of Evil

Each of us has seen myriads of weaknesses and sins of the flesh that have dwelt in us prior to this moment. As we acknowledge the journey of our conscience, we realize that over time, not only did our awareness and sensitivity to evil increase as we were further conformed to His Image, but we have experienced instances where sins that remained hidden within us were drawn out by some new circumstances or temptations. We perhaps were unaware of our capability and propensity to fall in these areas because the roots of these new-found evils had lain dormant within ourselves. There are at the present time, countless hidden evils that must be yet purged from our being with the roots. In His forbearance He allows us to fellowship with Him and now, in His grace, the Spirit is working on our behalf as the Son intercedes before the Father on the basis of His own blood. The work of the Spirit in the saint is the crux of his/her holy choice. The heavenly Father will utilize such discipline as He deems best at His chosen times to so tenderly make known to us the extent of our frailty and to reveal yet another movement of His righteous right Hand to ultimately deliver us, restore us, and make us strong, firm, and steadfast, unmovable, and holding firmly to the hope which we profess.

21 Therefore, putting aside all filthiness and all that remains of wickedness, in humility receive the word implanted, which is able to save your souls. James 1

2.     Temptations which Necessitate the Seeking of Him

We were all, and still are in many respects, nominal in our experiences of the glory of Christ. This shallowness of our Spiritual depth could be explained by our failure to zealously pursue Him in prayer, our harboring of secret sins of the flesh which hamper with the holiness that precedes seeing God’s glory, or even the lack of knowledge in, our dull heart towards, or the absence of the moment-by-moment retention of the Word of God. For many, perhaps all, of us, if our lives consisted of no trials, no temptations, and no testings, and we remained in a state of Spiritual stagnancy amidst our apparent earthly prosperity, we would not know Jesus Christ in His fullness, we would not share in the fellowship of His sufferings becoming like Him in His death and thus attaining to the resurrection from the dead, and perhaps we would even be unable to stand firm in our faith until the end unto salvation. Thus, it remains likely that our Father utilizes the secret sins of the flesh to firmly urge us to pursue Him. For in the midst of the addictive and compulsive nature of such sins, we find ourselves unable to achieve any victory or success at all. And the thought of leaving behind some of these sins is appalling because we feel that we would not be able to survive physically or emotionally without them. But because we have known His Word and we have seen glimpses of His glory through the Gospel, we know that He must and surely is able to save us from these sins. We also know that the satisfaction, joy, peace, and ecstasy of His love would far surpass the deception of the pleasures of these sins if we were to behold them. Thus, the true sheep, when faced with enslaving patterns, are, in a sense, coerced into seeking their God with all their heart. For they know that if they do not find God, they will not be able to achieve victory over the flesh, and if they do not seek God, they will be unable to find Him. The sins of the flesh have resulted in some of the most intense passionate seeking of God in prayer and in His Word ever experienced among mankind. And a sobering thought is that perhaps without these sins of the flesh, the saints would not be inclined to seek Him, unless the Spirit so chose to move by another means. Thus, we may use the hopeless conditions of the sins of the flesh as opportunities to pursue God wholeheartedly in the way that He deserves and commands us: with all of our heart. His promise is that if we seek Him with all of our heart, He will be found by us!

17 Fools, because of their rebellious way,
And because of their iniquities, were afflicted.
18 Their soul abhorred all kinds of food,
And they drew near to the gates of death.
19 Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble;
He saved them out of their distresses.
20 He sent His word and healed them,
And delivered them from their destructions.
21 Let them give thanks to the Lord for His loving kindness,
And for His wonders to the sons of men!
22 Let them also offer sacrifices of thanksgiving,
And tell of His works with joyful singing. Ps 107

3.     The Refining Effect of Finding Him

     An endearing aspect of the nature of God towards His children is that without the Spirit dwelling in us, we would be utterly incapable of repentance. The fact that we have ever truly been able to repent prior to this day indicates the presence of the Spirit within us. He is our deposit and seal guaranteeing what is to come. There is a splendid effect of receiving victory over even one secret sin of the flesh. For in order to have achieved that victory, we will have tasted deeply of the grace and goodness of our God. We will have experienced His glory and felt His unconditional love. We will have eaten of His Body, the Word of God, and we will have drunk of the New Covenant in His blood poured out for the forgiveness of sins and of the Living Water, which leaves the consumer never thirsty again. As the apostle Paul states, “He who suffer in the flesh is done with sin”. The complete restoration of the saint from sins of the flesh, regardless of the hideous nature of such sins, will result in the use of this saint as a profound tool in the Kingdom, a great bearer of the Image of Christ, and a jar of clay that reveals the excellence of the true Light. The faith of such saints, though it has been tested by fire, will be found to result in praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ and the fulfillment of the salvation of the soul.

 In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ;and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, obtaining as the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls. I Peter 1

4.     Iron Sharpening Iron

     There is a way in which our laboring on behalf of the progress of each other in our struggles against the secret sins of the flesh and our continuing in the faith will refine our own souls. For it is often the case, that as we stay by the side of another who achieves victory over the flesh, the glory of God that is revealed to that person is revealed to us. And as we behold the breaking of the curse of sin on our friend’s flesh, that same curse is broken from our flesh in the process. Think about the concept of dormant sin that we have discussed in item 1. If, for example, a friend came and asked us to help them through his/her struggle with a certain sin that was apparent to him/her but that dwelt dormant within us, it is very likely that in the process of exhorting that friend, we became aware of the hidden roots of the same evil within our own flesh. And thus, the Father trains His children together with Christ as the Firstborn elder Brother. There is a sense in which by laboring for the victory of the sins of the flesh in our Spiritual family, we are laboring for our own souls. We remember that Jesus prayed to the Father that all of His disciples would together see His glory (John 17). Our self expenditure in laboring with one another is not so selfless, for the Father has so chosen to work in all of us by the same Spirit, and to purge each of us in His due time. The Scriptures are clear that such sharpening friendships are vital for avoiding having our hearts hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.

Iron sharpens iron,
So one man sharpens another. Prov 27:17

5.     Excellent Quotes

"To go to God for happiness is to confess that without him we are frustrated, depressed, joyless creatures."
-        John Piper

“They, who are once effectually called and regenerated, having a new heart and a new spirit created in them, are further sanctified really and personally, through the virtue of Christ's death and resurrection, by His Word and Spirit dwelling in them; the dominion of the whole body of sin is destroyed, and the several lusts thereof are more and more weakened and mortified,  and they more and more quickened and strengthened in all saving graces, to the practice of true holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.”
-         Westminster Confession of Faith READ HERE, Chapter XIII, Clause v

Me: Dad, do you think that we should confess all of our sins publically? (8/28)
Dad: I talked to my friend and he said that we ought to confess our sins to the offended party: always God and sometimes another person. (8/29)

2 Corinthians 4:1-12 goes well with what you were writing yesterday”
-         Mom (8/29)

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