Thursday, December 1, 2011

DECEMBER 1 "WHY DO SAINTS, CALL THEMSELVES SINNERS?"

     I'M tired of hearing Christians, call themselves sinners.  Paul never wrote in his Epistles, "to the Sinners at Corinth" even though he probably very well could have done so, based on what we read about them and maybe they were, some of them. Buy he gave them the benefit of the doubt and wrote, "to the Saints at Corinth".  Paul always addressed his letters to the less than perfect people in those churches as "The Saints, The Saints at Ephesus, Corinth, Galatians, etc...etc...
     I have Evangelicals allowed ourselves to succumb to the false doctrine of Catholicism that to be a Saint you must be enshrined and have performed so many miracles and be voted in to "sainthood" by the Archbishops?  So then why did Paul write to living, imperfect beings, "To the Saints at Corinth, to the Saints of Ephesus? The mantra today within the church is, "well, we're all just sinners".  I don't think so, maybe you're a sinner, but I'm not.  I was a sinner, now I've been redeemed, I've been washed, cleansed and forgiven. I am Born Again, I am an heir to God's Kingdom, I am a Child of a King, adopted into his family, with my past erased, forgotten, thrown into the sea of forgetfulness, according to the Psalmist, sins separated as far as the East is from the West, need I go on??? 
     And so of course the question that begs to be asked is, "you telling me you don't sin anymore" and the answer is of course I sin, but I am not a sinner.
      The Sinner wakes up with the intent to sin that day and he does.  I wake up with the intent "not to sin" and some days I am successful.  A sinner has no desire to please God with his actions that day, a Saint does.  I sinner wakes up, pre-meditating, lusting with anticipation of the sins he will commit that night, with absolutely no reservations or guilt.  The sinner wakes up with adulteries, drunkenness, fornication's, hate and/or vengeance on this mind. He wakes up with the intent to sin, the intent to get high that night, the intent to "hook up" that night.  The sinner is bent towards sin, enjoys his sin and lives for sin. His delight is in sin, not in God, he is... A SINNER. Does the person I just described sound like you, I hope not.
  The Saint is a redeemed sinner, his has been Born Again, he is a New Creation, his mind has been transformed.  Does he sin, yes, but is it pre-mediated? No!  This is what John is trying to explain in our text today.   1 My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One."  Why does he say "if" we sin.  Isn't it safe to assume that if we're sinners we are going to sin that day? Or is John assuming the opposite, that we are Christians and we who claim Christ ought not to sin?  Why doesn't he just say, "ah, we're all a bunch of dumb helpless sinners, i know you're going to sin today and when you do, ....."  If you go on to read all the way through 1 John and 2 John you will find that John's stance is that we, who claim the name of Christ, "ought not to sin, we should not be sinning".  We will sin, yes, because we fall, we have our not so good days I'm sure, but when we are on our game, we do not sin.
       Even the Courts of Law understand that there is a much higher sentence for one that kills with the intent(murder) vs. someone who kills without premeditation (manslaughter).  Even though we still have a human being's life that has been taken from him (which we have no right to do except in war and even then there are rules and conduct for that which we don't need to get into here) The Law determines that, "yes, a life has been taken, this is sin, this is wrong, but we will judge the man, the woman much more severely who woke up today, or whenever it was, with the full intent of committing this sin, verses the man who woke up that day, not knowing that by the end of that day he would have taken some one's life.  Perhaps he lost his mind, got into a fight, things got carried away, and next thing you know he has committed a great sin, but it was not his intent when he woke up that day to murder anyone.  The Christian does not wake up with the intent to sin, a sinner does.  Do I sin? Yes I do, but it is not pre-meditated, and if it is, it's because my heart is not right and that's another blog.  Perhaps as the day went on, I lost my temper, perhaps I cussed, perhaps I was stern and mean, perhaps I got backed into a corner with an issue and ending up lying...., these are all sins, sins that need to be repented of, sins that need to be forgiven, and John says, "there's Grace, there's forgiveness through Christ. We ought not to sin, but if we do, then....". 
     To listen to Christians put us in the same boat as sinners is both an insult to those of us that have repented and it is an insult to God who has forgiven us and called us redeemed.  Sinner's dont' get into heaven, so if we are all sinners than I guess Heaven will be empty.  "Well you know what I mean", no I don't know what you mean! "Well, what I mean is we are redeemed sinners", exactly, and the Bible name for that is SAINT, not sinner.  Do I go around calling myself a Saint?  No, but I don't go around calling myself a sinner either.  When the sinner sins, he licks his chops, when the Christian sins he feels guilty and repents.  I live everyday trying not to sin, and some days are fare well, especially if I am praying, in communion with God and in His Word. 
     One last metaphor here to drive the point home. I have acted in a play or two, but I do not act for a living.  When applying for a Loan with a Bank or a job, I do not put "actor" because I do not act for a living.  Yes I sin, but I don't sin for a living.  The sinner does sin for a living, it is his life, take away his sin and he would not know what to do with himself.  I remember when I was first confronted with my sin, as "a sinner" I remember thinking, "if I gave up my sin what in the world would I live for?" this is the mindset of "a sinner".  Am I being redundant, I hope so because we "the redeemed" need to stop this nonsense of trying or thinking we will gain favor with sinners by admitting we are just like them, that is crazy!  God says, "come out from among them!"  "Come out from who?" you may ask and the answer is come out from "the sinners" because you are not one, anymore! 
     There's another motive behind this mantro too and I believe that the underlying factor in this whole "we're all sinners" is an allowance for us not to have to live up to Godly expectations from the World and if this is your underlying motive in proclaiming all of us as sinners it is probably because you have some issues, n'est ce pas?(as they say in French). The apostle Paul says "examine yourself to see if you be in the faith, unless of course you fail the test".  Paul says, "if" you have the Holy Spirit you will not commit these sins".  Paul also says, "why do you live a mere men do?" Well how should we live?"  We should live supernatural lives, through the Holy Spirit, the supernatural is made natural in us by God's Grace and His Spirit we are able to live a life free of the power of sin, free of bondage.  "We're all just sinners..."  I think not, maybe you are, but I'm not.  I am redeemed, I am heaven bound, I'm Born Again, I am a Saint of the most high God and I don't plan on sinning today, tomorrow or the day after and I will do my best, by the Grace and  His Strength, but IF I do sin (and that is a possibility) then I will confess my sins and He (Jesus) is just and faithful to forgive me and cleanse me from all unrighteousnes I move on with God as his mercies are renewed upon each day.