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Is your faith worth defending?

What are you actually fighting for?

What springs to most people’s mind when you say the word “Christian” or “Religious?” Maybe the word “scandal” is high up on the list, maybe even “hypocrisy”, “pointless” or not least, “irrelevant.”  Is this really the faith the Bible exhorts us to fightAlmost all talk of battles and wars when concerning a Christian life refers to the inner battle that arises when a sinful thought tempts you. God’s Spirit and the flesh are at odds. When you have decided to only do God’s will and are being led by the Spirit, a conflict between the flesh and the Spirit arises: there is... More for?

“Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.” Jude 1:3.

Thankfully when Jude wrote what he did, he wasn’t referring to any of the above; he wasn’t referring to the connotation of “modern day Christianity.” He was writing about the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints! Once for all, as in don’t come later on and try to pretend that Christianity is something other than that original faith that has been delivered to us! Jude 1:17: “But you, beloved, remember the words which were spoken before by the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

What are you actually defending?

So what exactly is this faith that you are fighting for? What are you actually defending when you stand up and say, “I’m a Christian?”

Being a “Christian” means being a “follower of Christ;” having the same mind as Him. Peter writes,“Therefore, since Christ suffered for us in the fleshThe “flesh” is all of the sinful desires/temptations/lusts, etc. that dwell in human nature. It is the source of temptation, and nothing good dwells there. (Galatians 5:19-21; Romans 7:18; Galatians 5:24; Romans 8:5) Other phrases meaning the same as the flesh include: the body of sin, sinful human nature, fallen human nature, sinful nature, fallen nature The term “flesh” can... More, arm yourselves also with the same mind, for he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin.” 2 Peter 4:1. In other words, if you arm yourself with the same decision, that when you are tempted to sinTo commit sin is to consciously do something that you know goes against God’s will. This can be in word, deed, or even thought. (James 1:14-15)... More, that you would (as Jesus did) rather suffer than give in to temptation, you can actually cease from sin! Peter describes it as “sufferingThe Bible often mentions suffering. Though this can refer to outward, physical suffering, in the New Covenant it mostly applies to the suffering that occurs when you deny your own sinful lusts and desires and put them to death. It is an inner suffering that occurs because your lusts are not being satisfied, rather than a physical, outward one –... More,” because when you say “no” to your lusts and desiresThe desires that we experience that go against God’s will. In other words, a desire for anything sinful. See James 1:14. Also called “sin in the flesh.” Although the expression “youthful lusts” is  often thought of in connection with sinful sexual desires, lusts include anything that go against what is good and right in God’s eyes. (2 Timothy 2:22.; Galatians... More, it goes against your nature, and that is painful. But the suffering leads to something good – it leads to true freedom from sin. It means truly following in Christ’s footsteps. Now that’s a faith worth defending!

You can’t defend your faith if you live in sin

A life of giving in to your natural sinful tendencies – what the Bible calls ‘lusts’ – is like living in a dark prison cell. No matter what religion you choose to profess, your life – what you do and say – still testifies that you are a slave of sin. As long as you remain in this ‘cell’, then how can you defend your faith convincingly? After all, everyone can see by the words that come out of your mouth – your reactions and your actions – that you are bound by your sin!

When the Jews told Jesus that they had never been in bondage to anyone, Jesus answered them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin. And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever. Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.” John 8:34-36.

Start to live like a Christian – Free from sin

“Free indeed…” means free from sin! Not just freedom because Jesus forgave your sins, but also free to get up in the morning, and deny your egotism. Free to take up your crossWhen the cross is mentioned in the Bible, it most often does not refer to a physical wooden cross, except when specifically describing Jesus’ crucifixion on Calvary. “Taking up your cross” refers to the metaphorical cross that Jesus’ speaks about in Luke 9:23. “Taking up your cross” is the act of denying the sinful thoughts that come up in you... More and follow Jesus. Free to overcome as He overcame. Then your life becomes a testimony in defence of your faith.

Thankfully we are not alone. “For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted.” Hebrews 2:18. Jesus knows what it’s like to be a person, with human inclinations. He knows what it costs to come to a victorious life, and that’s why when you pray to Him, He will help you to overcome the sinful thoughts and reactions that live in your nature. Every temptation is an opportunity for victory, and each time you overcome you will become more and more liberated from sin!

If this is what you want, then don’t waste any time. Pick up your Bible and read for yourself. Pray and ask God to give you faith that it’s possible to become liberated from sin.  Then start to live like Christian – a Christian with a faith worth defending.

 

Key teachings

Explore how God’s Word challenges and empowers us to live 100% according to His will, so we no longer need to fall in sin, but can come to a life of victory.

I am crucified with Christ
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I Am Crucified With Christ

This booklet is based on Paul’s words in Galatians 2:20: “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me …” Here Elias Aslaksen explains what this means and how the reader can have the same testimony as Paul in their own life.

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