At present, we are working with the light of truth presented by Dr. Francis Schaeffer from his book True Spirituality where we are discussing the basic considerations of the Christian life, or true Christianity.
Continuing yesterday’s final thoughts……It is only as we consciously bring each victory to ‘His’ feet, and keep it there as we think of it—and especially as we speak of it—that we can avoid the pride of that victory, which can be worse than the sin over which we claim to have had the victory. The greater the victory, the greater the need of placing it consciously (and as we speak of it, vocally) at his feet.
Yesterday we said that there are two false attitudes against which we must stand, and not just one. The second is just as mistaken as the first.
In the Westminster Catechism there is the emphasis that we sin daily in thought, word, and deed. This is not wrong, but it can be distorted by our sinful hearts into something which is exceedingly wrong. As we teach our children that we sin daily in thought, word, and deed, we must be very careful to warn them of the danger of thinking that they can look lightly or abstractly at sin in their lives. If I count on Christ’s victory for my entrance to heaven, will I deny him the glory he would gain in victories won, in me and through me, in my present life? If I look to Jesus Christ and his victory on the cross for my entrance into a future heaven, dare I deny to him what that victory should produce in the battles of the present life—the battles before men and angels and the supernatural world?
The Bible makes a clear distinction between temptation and sin. Christ was tempted in every point like as we are, yet, the Bible says with great emphasis, he never sinned (Hebrews 4:15). Consequently, there is a difference between temptation and sin, and the Bible says that just because we are tempted does not mean that we must follow through in that temptation and fall into sin.
No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. 1 Corinthians 1:13 ESV.
For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome. For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. 1 John 5:3-4 ESV
It is not we who overcome the world in our own strength. We do not have a power plant inside ourselves that can overcome the world. The overcoming is the work of the Lord Jesus Christ, as we have already seen. There can be a victory, a practical victory, if we raise the empty hands of faith moment by moment and accept the gift. “This is the victory that has overcome the world.” God has promised, and the Bible has said, that there is a way to escape temptation. By God’s grace we should want that escape.
Thoughts developed or used directly from the work of Schaeffer, Francis. True Spirituality . Tyndale House Publishers, Inc