A. IN BAPTISM ALL OUR PAST SINS ARE CLEANSED( Acts 22:16 ).
B. THIS DOES NOT END THE PROBLEM OF SIN( 1 John 1:8,10; 1 Pet. 5:8 ).
C. SIN MUST BE OVER COME IN TWO WAYS:
1. By getting sin out of our lives( 1 John 2:1a ).
2. By knowing what to do when we do sin( 1 John 2:1b-2 ).
D. WE NEED TO KNOW HOW SIN DEVELOPS AND HOW TO OVERCOME.
A. THE FIRST STAGE IS "TEMPTATION."
1. In vs. 14, we see that "temptation" includes two things:
a. Lust, epithumia, "denotes 'strong desire' of any kind." The word is used
of a good desire in Luke 22:15; Phil. 1:23; 1 Thess. 2:17, Vine.
a. Enticement, "Opportunity and encouragement to satisfy the desire.
2. Illustrate: I like Ice Cream. Is Ice Cream available? Am I enticed?
3. It is not a sin to be tempted. Jesus was tempted, yet without sin( Heb. 4:15 ).
B. THE SECOND STAGE: SIN OCCURS WHEN WE ACT ON TEMPTATION
( James 1:15 ).
C. THE THIRD STAGE INVOLVES THE CONSEQUENCES OF UNFORGIVEN
SIN: "DEATH( Jas. 1:15; Isa. 59:2; Rev. 21:8 )."
A. CHANGE OUR DESIRES. WORK ON THE HEART.
1. Since this is where the process of sin begins, it is the best place for us to begin
2. It is a part of our growth to change our desires( Rom. 12:9; Ga. 5:24 ).
3. How do we change our desires?
a. The Bible helps overcome sin( Psa. 119:11; Matt. 4:3-10 ).
1) Reading about God creates a desire to obey( Psa. 116:12-14 ).
2) Sin's consequences cause us to hate it!( Psa. 119:104 ).
b. Phil. 4:8. Think about good things( Psa. 1:1-3 ).
4. Studying God's Word overcome sin by "nipping it in the bud"!
B. LIMIT OUR OPPORTUNITIES.
1. First, ask for God's help( Matt. 6:13; 26:41 ).
2. Purposely avoid situations that might excite wrongful desires
1) Following the example of David( Psa. 101:3-4 ).
2) And the example of Job( Job 31:1 ).
3. Avoiding those whose evil behavior encourages us to sin with them
1) Again, David sets a good example( Psa. 101:6-7 ).
2) Paul also adds his warning( 1 Cor. 15:33 ).
4. People, places and things.
C. EXERCISE SELF-CONTROL.
1. How can we better exercise self-control?
a. Self-control is but one aspect of the "fruit of the Spirit"( Gal. 5:22-23 ).
b. A spiritual perspective produces this( Gal. 5:16-19; 1 Cor 2:14-16 ).
c. By the Spirit we put to death the deeds of the body( Rom. 8:12-16 ).
e. As Paul said: Phil. 4:13.
2. The Spirit strengthens us through the word.
a. Our Shield in the Gospel Armor?( Eph. 6:16; 1 Pet. 1:5 ).
b. Where does faith come from?( Rom. 10:17 ).
b. We must act upon it, trusting Jesus( Matt. 28:19-20; Phil. 2:12-13 ).
c. As the shoe commercial says it: JUST DO IT!( James 4:7-8 ).
3. The Christian, has no excuse for yielding to a temptation( 1 Cor. 10:13 ).
D. WHAT DO WE DO WHEN WE FAIL? OBTAIN FORGIVENESS.
1. Through the blood of Christ we obtain forgiveness!( John 2:1-2 ).
3. Christ is truly the "propitiation" for our sins!
a. By His blood, we are forgiven of past sins when united with Him in
BAPTISM( Rom. 6:3-4 )
b. By His blood, we can be forgiven when we REPENT, PRAY, and
CONFESS our sins to God( Acts 8:22; 1 John 1:6-7, 9 ).
E. SOME OBSERVATIONS ABOUT OVERCOMING SIN.
1. God is able and willing to help us overcome sin!
2. We don't abuse God's grace by waiting till the last step to overcome sin.
( Rom. 6:1-2 ).
a. In baptism, we were freed from sin, and should now present ourselves
to God as servants of righteousness( Rom. 6:12-13 ).
b. There are still temporal consequences of sins( Gal. 6:7-9 ).
c. We don't want to sin willfully!( Heb. 3:12-14; 10:26-31 ).
c. So don't take the grace of God lightly and abuse it!
A. ENDURING TEMPTATION IS A BLESSING( James 1:12 ).
B. QUESTIONS TO STIMULATE YOUR THINKING:
1. Are you engaged in a daily Bible study program which will help you develop
the proper kind of desires?
2. Do you "watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation"?
3. Do you avoid circumstances and companions that would entice you to sin?
4. Do you ask God daily to forgive you, and to help you overcome sin in your life?