During the Days of Unleavened Bread, there are lessons to learn. We cannot get leavening (sin) out by ourselves, only Christ's sacrifice can make us white as snow and "perfect" in God's eyes.
Yet, God still expects us to search for our leaven and try to get the sin (leaven) out of our lives. As a converted person, it can be frustrating. We try to do what is right, but we are so imperfect. The human mind is a saboteur. It pops up thoughts that are rude, unkind, unwanted and sometimes, downright awful. (You thought you were the only one...)
Our own minds makes us feel like we are out of control of our own thinking process. Because, we didn't ask for that unwanted thought, but there it is. Paul could relate to this. See if you haven't felt this way? Paul felt wretched sometimes, because he wanted to do right, but he couldn't seem to carry it out...
As I say, we are not the only ones who have been through this. That should be a comfort. Even Christ was tempted like as we are, yet without sin. He had unwanted thoughts too....
Why doesn't God just take away all those sinful thoughts? Because, spiritual muscles are built through resistance. We get stronger every time we resist sin. Some of us should look like Arnold Schwarzenegger by now... Excuse my sense of humor. But really, there is a good purpose that comes from fighting our human nature. It makes us stronger. But, if you fail once in a while, don't condemn yourself.
1 John 3:20-24
"For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things. Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence (faith) toward God. And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight. And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment. And he that keeps his commandments dwells in him, and He in him. And hereby we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.
We will have sinful thoughts, but we cannot waste time by paying attention to them nor can we live by them. Just let them pass on through your mind and don't waste time dwelling on them, because, they don't have any real power over you. God's spirit in us supersedes the the law of sin and death. God's Spirit wins in a contest against sin and death, every time. That is a relief!
ONLINE STREAMING SERMON: God and Repentance
Sermon given by James E. Throgmorton
Copyrighted by the Churches of God sin