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Christians are both sinners and saints. All human beings are sinners because we are born in sin. But not all humans are saints. According to the Bible, a saint is not someone who has done wonderful...
Before Christians are born again we are sinners. We sin because we are sinners, we are not sinners because we sin. After being born again, we are a NEW creation...2 Cor 5:17...we are no longer the sinners we were. We now belong to God, we do not belong to the devil... 1Jo 3:8 NKJV - He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil. 1Jo 3:9 NKJV - Whoever has been born of God does not sin, for His seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he has been born of God. That's how we know who belongs to God and who belongs to the devil... 1Jo 3:10 NKJV - In this the children of God and the children of the devil are manifest: Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor [is] he who does not love his brother. I'm sure we agree that Christians are not under the law. When one is not under the law sin is not charged against you... It's like driving down a road without any speed limits, any speed you travel at will not be violating the law... Rom 5:13 NIV - To be sure, sin was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not charged against anyone's account where there is no law. 1 Cor 8 and Rom 14 speak to issues that we are to individually consider whether we are doing them out of faith. If we, individually, are not sure that what we are doing is in the will of God, if we have doubts then we are sinning.... Praise be to God!
We are both. The new man, the new creation "creature", the new nature is the Holy Spirit that indwells every truly born again believer. This new nature, new man cannot commit sin because God cannot sin. However, we still retain our Adamic, sinful nature. This battle between the two natures is what the Apostle Paul explains in Romans 7:13-14. "For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin. For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. (Read the entire chapter). Galatians 5:16-18 "This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law."
We are now discussing, what I consider, the most important understanding we need! OUR IDENTITY IN CHRIST! When John baptized Jesus, he exclaimed, "Behold, the Lamb of God who TAKES AWAY THE SIN OF THE WORLD!" The last words on the cross said by Jesus were, "IT IS FINISHED!" On that dark Friday afternoon Jesus BECAME SIN THAT WE WOULD BECOME HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS! So my understanding is when we accept & trust Jesus as our Lord & Saviour, we are born again. With that decision, our old self or sin nature is crucified on the cross with Jesus & is obliterated from our life! (Romans 6:6) we are then given a new spirit & become a new creation. We also are given a new heart of flesh (Ezekiel 36:26) to replace the heart of stone we had before being regenerated. We also receive the mind of Christ & are admonished to "renew our minds. The incredible also occurs... we receive the Life of Christ! As Paul said, "The mystery of the gospel, Christ in us!" He also said, "It is no longer I who lives but Christ who lives in me & I live by faith in the Son of God who loves me and gave Himself up for me." Also, "It is by grace you have been saved, through faith, and it is a gift of God so no man may boast." We also see it is written that "But when Christ had offered FOR ALL TIME A SINGLE SACRIFICE FOR SINS, He sat down at the right hand of God... (V14 Hebrews 10)" For by a SINGLE OFFERING HE HAS PERFECTED FOR ALL TIME THOSE WHO ARE BEING SANCTIFIED!" We, who are born of the Spirit of God, are perfected for all eternity! So God is telling me that I am no longer a sinner, that he is not dealing with me on the basis of sin any longer! He tells me that my debt for sin has been paid 100% and that He will come a second time, as to salvation, WITHOUT REFERENCE TO SIN! He tells me that I am a saint! His grace, which is His ability in me, motivates me to walk in the Spirit each day and He tells me He has given me EVERY SPIRITUAL GIFT I NEED TO LIVE A GODLY DAILY LIFE! So I believe I am who God says I am and not what religion or our enemy, satan, the accuser says! Jesus said, "I came to give you Life & Life more abundant." His life! In us who are born of the Spirit of God! Are Christians sinners? No! We walk in the fruit of the Spirit...joy, peace, love, patience, kindness, gentleness, faithfulness, goodness, & self-control each day! God lives in a blood economy not a word economy. "Without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sin." Jesus shed His blood ONCE FOR ALL! He is not anywhere continuing to shed His blood over & over & over again! There is no more forgiveness for sin available. "It is finished!" Once you have trusted Jesus & are truly born of the Spirit of God.... You are declared a saint! God's righteousness! You, the sinner, were crucified on the cross with Jesus and He became sin that you would become His righteousness! So, sinner, no! You are a saint! God's righteousness in Christ! So let's spend our lives being ourselves and letting the LIFE OF CHRIST live through us and let Him touch a hurting world through our lives & and not listen to the accuser or give in, to the temptation of the flesh, which you have the power over in Christ! Is it that simple? Yes it is! But it has taken me 33 years to really get it! Remember, "renew your mind" as all attacks come in the thought process. That is where the enemy attacks and where the temptation of the flesh comes from. We all know the saying... "Garbage in, garbage out!" How about "Christ in & the love of Christ out!" Much love and blessings to you, Closie,
Saints, that refer to all believers (Acts 26:10; Rom 1:7; 1 Cor 1:2), are but guilty sinners pardoned by the grace of God. That man’s redemption from the curse of sin rests solely on the Messiah - The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! (John 1:29) The believer that is utterly corrupt in body, soul, and spirit has been justified and redeemed from the curse of sin and death by the atoning work of Yeshua. And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world (1 John 2:2). Jesus, being the propitiation (satisfaction) for the sins of man once for all, is sufficient for all but effectual for some. What does this mean? It means that His exhaustive work at Calvary, albeit sufficient for all, is effective only for those that have embraced Him as The Christ of God (Luke 9:20; John 1:11; 17:6-26). Only those who have believed The Christ of God can enjoy the divine exchange: that when God vented His wrath at Jesus on the cross at Calvary, our sins were imputed on Him and the righteousness of Christ imputed on us. RC Sproul in teaching The Atonement of Jesus explains that the “double imputation” was made possible only because Jesus appeased God as the perfect sacrifice (Heb 9:1–10:18). It is therefore apparent that believers in Christ are saints only because God has justified us by faith in The Christ of God. Are we as saints any better than sinners? Saints in being sanctified (or set apart as holy) are no better sinners if only better off eternally! For there is no difference; for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed, to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? Of works? No, but by the law of faith (Rom 3:22-27; 1 John 1:8). What then is the saint to boast of himself when he still sins deliberately? For of the 613 Laws of the Old Testament called the Mitzvot and 38 Commandments from the four Gospels or 1050 commands via repetition in the New Testament for believers to obey, pray tell, which of these sins - venial, mortal and all - is not violated by the saint? To think that saints are sinless is delusional! Give the Lord His due then, the preservation of the saints rests on the laurels of Christ alone! For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes (Rom 10:4). Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, to God our Savior (Jude 24, 25).
Are Christians sinners, saints, or both? We sure are not sinners, for that's what Christ our Lord died to deliver us from. "How shall we, that are 'dead to sin', live any longer therein?" Romans 6:2. Romans 6:7, "For he that is dead is freed from sin." The Lords death made a way for us to be 'dead to sin,'1 Peter 2:24, "Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being 'dead to sins', should live unto righteousness:" Suspect that's why Paul looked upon believers, as Saints, Philippians 1:1, "Paul and Timotheus, the servants of Jesus Christ, to all the 'saints' in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi..." "But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law." That's right, its true, but if you sin you are back under the law, for 1 John 3:4, say's, "Whosoever commits sin transgresses also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law." That is why we should be shunning it (sin) with our full might, through the Spirit walk. But this is not the habitual life of the true believer, for he knows the consequence of willful sin, Hebrews 10:26, "For if we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remains no more sacrifice for sins," Hebrews 10:39, "But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul." The writer of Hebrews was confident, as so should we, that God would bring us through. We are not to 'sin willfully' (Be called a sinner), but "if we sin" (as a saint), 1 John 2:1 "My little children, these things write I unto you, that you sin not. And 'if ' any man (saint) sin, we (saints) have an advocate (someone who will plead our case) with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:" We are one or the other, not both! There is a dire warning from the Lord in Revelation 3:16, "So then because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of my mouth."
Once we become a child of God by faith in Christ alone, all of our sins have been paid for, because we all sin because we are not perfect. Only God is Holy. We have been given His righteousness and have none of our own. In first Corinthians there was a believer who was sleeping with his fathers wife. Paul said they should run him out of the church and turn such a one unto Satan to kill the flesh so that his spirit would be saved in the day of the Lord. First Corinthians 5:5 We can sin so bad that God will take our life, but we can not lose our salvation. When we become a child of God, we are a child of God forever. We can get out of fellowship with him through sin, but never our relationship. There are sins unto death. But our soul/spirit is saved. God does chasten those He loves and if we go off and live in sin, we better plan on being chastened. But it is up to God to decide the chastening. Although if you rob a bank you will probably have to pay the price. We do reap what we sow. All sin has a penalty. That is why we all die. God does not chasten those that are not His. Only His own children. But all our sins have been paid for and we can not lose our salvation. First Corinthians 15:1-4
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