Author: Creflo Dollar
The most amazing thing about becoming born again is that something miraculous happens to our spirits. When we accept Jesus as our Lord and personal Savior, we literally receive a new spiritual nature. God takes away our sin nature that once controlled us and places His nature on the inside of us. As a result, sin can no longer control us like it did when we were unsaved because His spirit now lives inside of us. This phenomenon is only possible through God’s grace. It is through that grace that we are empowered to overcome sin. We must, however, cooperate with His grace by obeying His Word, otherwise we cause ourselves to remain in bondage to sin when we have been set free from it. When we understand the grace of God, we are empowered to be winners in life.
Keep in mind that grace is not a cover up for sin. Grace actually helps us overcome sin when we resist it. God will never require something of us without giving us the tools to carry it out. Titus 2:11, 12, in The Amplified Bible, says: “For the grace of God (His unmerited favor and blessing) has come forward (appeared) for the deliverance from sin and the eternal salvation for all mankind. It has trained us to reject and renounce all ungodliness (irreligion) and worldly (passionate) desires, to live discreet (temperate, self-controlled), upright, devout (spiritually whole) lives in this present world.” God wants us to live godly lives in the midst of an ungodly world, and He has equipped us to do so.
Salvation through Jesus Christ is a true manifestation of God’s love for us. He predestinated us to have His inward nature and character (Romans 8:29, AMP). Before we were even born, God had already decided to allow us to partake of His divine nature. Therefore, sin’s dominion over us has ultimately been destroyed. Through the empowerment of His grace, sin has lost its power forever. As free moral agents, we can decide whether we will allow sin (or our old sin nature and its tendencies) to govern our lives.
Remember that before we were born again we actually possessed the nature of Satan, and it wasn’t because of something we did or didn’t do. Just by virtue of being born into this earth, we were born into sin because of Adam’s disobedience thousands of years ago. As sinners, our lives were governed by sin because it was in our nature. As a result, we led sinful lifestyles, without any conviction or sense of wrongdoing. However, once we accepted Christ, our spirits were recreated and infused with the life of God.
Getting saved does not mean that we no longer have a part to play in experiencing the benefits of salvation in our everyday lives. Our souls (the mind, will, and emotions) did not get born again at the point of receiving Jesus into our hearts. We must make a decision to renew our minds on a daily basis so that our behavior begins to line up with our new nature (Romans 12:1, 2). This is the only way we can begin to actually live the way God intends for us to live. When we renew our minds, we enable the grace of God to do its work in our lives.
Many Christians are being held captive by their own ignorance. They suffer defeats in life because they do not truly know God and the power of His grace to set them free from sinful behavior. These Believers don’t realize that they have a choice in the matter, and they don’t have to sin! They can be free of the bondage that comes from sin, rather than remain in it. With the knowledge of God’s grace, we can resist the urge to sin and overcome every temptation. As a result, God’s grace supports and empowers our decision to turn away from the things that once held us captive. This helps us to remain free, even when we are tempted to do wrong.
The Word of God works like a seed, because a seed contains within it the nature of its parent. Likewise, the Word of God contains within it the power of God. When we plant the seed of God’s Word in our hearts by reading, meditating, and acting on it, we position ourselves to receive the benefits of God’s grace, and release the empowerment necessary to have complete and total victory over sin, every day of our lives.
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