As I said in my last post, I do not believe that we as believers in Christ can ever reach sinless perfection so long as we’re on this earth in these fallen bodies. We’re going to sin. The question raised was, what are we to do about it?
Well, first have to recognize that we are sinning, but after that, then what? Well, I am convinced the Bible does not tell us we must go through the ritual of “naming the sin privately to God,” or “rebound” as I’d been taught for years.
Instead, we simply stop doing the bad and start doing the good. Which is what “repent” means: we “change our mind” with regard to that particular thought process/activity — and then stop doing it. And not just stop, but do something else, instead.
In Ephesians 4 Paul lays it all out… Lay aside the old… put on the new…
Stop walking like the Unbelievers walk, in their old way of thinking…
But renew your mind (Ro 12) with the word of God and think on the truth you’ve learned instead of that old human viewpoint stuff.
Be angry, yet do not sin — that is, sin by holding onto it and replaying it in your mind and getting more and more worked up about it; or even worse becoming bitter… Do not let the sun go down on your anger. That is,
Let it Go!
Stop stealing, and set your hands to productive work so you may have an abundance to share with those in need.
Let all wrath and malice and clamor be put away from you and (instead) be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other because Christ has forgiven you.
Because He’s forgiven us of everything, we should gratefully forgive others of their transgressions against us. And in fact, it helps me to remember while I’m gnashing my teeth over what someone has done to me, that whatever their sin was against me, Christ died for it, every bit as much as He died for my judging or outrage. How can I hold anything against the other person, when my Lord has already paid for that failing and forgiven them? Who am I, to think I can’t?
This shifts the focus of our attention off what we’re doing wrong, and what others are doing wrong, and back to what Christ has done about it. And that brings glory to Him, rather than to ourselves and our little rituals performed to “earn” forgiveness…