(Romans 13:14) “Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature.”
Friends, as Christians we live by the power of the Holy Spirit and find our direction by the Word of God. We are not like a piece of driftwood floating in the current of contemporary culture or selfish indulgence.
No, instead, in the power of the Holy Spirit and by the instruction of God’s Word we clothe ourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ. Our deepest desire is to identify with Jesus, to emulate Him to exemplify His qualities of love, humility, truth and service, which mean’s not giving our selfish desires any opportunity to lead us into sin.
Hence, Jesus’ words found in, (Matthew 5:30) “If your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away.”
Friends Jesus was talking about the willingness to take drastic measures to avoid sinning to avoid feeding sin in our lives. And so we need to ask ourselves that personal question, what kinds of triggers and situations most often lead me into selfish indulgence? Is it movies or soapies that feed my sinful desires? Is it the internet, Twitter, Facebook that stirs up lust or anger or covetousness in my heart? Is it playing sport or shopping that satisfies my desires more than God Himself? Is it those gossip sessions around a cup of coffee? The list may go on.
The Apostle Paul here is Romans is encouraging us not to make any plans that may open the door for sin to enter, “Do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature.”
Dear brother and sister in Christ, don’t prove your purity by exposing yourself to age restricted movies or your commitment to good stewardship by constant visits to upscale malls or your integrity in the company of gossips or your love for Jesus in a Facebook confrontation…we all need to take drastic measures if we are going to live as those clothed in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Are there any drastic measures that could render you more free to love Jesus and to walk in victory over sin?
- Dirk Coetzee (Pastor Grahamstown Baptist Church)