Why Do You Keep Sinning, Falling, & Messing Up?

Think for a moment out of all the teachers you’ve had in school, which one comes to mind the easiest? Which one is your favorite? Who’s teaching had the greatest impact on you? Mine was Ms. Bear. She was my 2nd grade teacher. She was your typical elementary school teacher who looked like she had just been transplanted out of Mr Roger’s neighborhood. I loved her. Why? Because she was a great teacher, but mostly because I really knew she cared about me. That made all the difference. She took time to invest. 

It reminded me of a passage in Titus 2:11-14:

For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.

What does the beginning of that verse say? It says grace trains us to put off sin. It doesn’t say grace compels us to keep sinning. It doesn’t say God’s wrath trains us to put off sin. It says that grace trains us to stop sinning. Grace is our teacher. Now, the word train can mean a million different things right? Soldiers train. Kids train. Computer engineers train. But they are all different types of training. I’d hope my kid doesn’t get trained the same way a Navy Seal gets trained. So what kind of training does it mean in this verse?

 

The greek word used is παιδεύουσα (root word paidĕuō). It literally means to train up a child. Do you see how beautiful that is? The Apostle Paul is communicating to us in this verse that the same way a Father in tenderness trains a child is the same way grace trains us to stop sinning. It’s not the same as a drill sergeant. Grace will never fire you. Grace will never kick you out of class. Grace will never ask for your letter of resignation. The more you stray or mess up, the more grace gets deeply involved with you. Isn’t that true with a Father? At work when you mess up, you get fired. But when a child messes up, the parents usually expend more energy on that child. Discipline is a beautiful tool of Jesus to actually prove we are legitimate children of the king (See Hebrews 12:7-11).

 

So for those struggling with sin, know that your moral effort, or your white knuckle obedience won’t cut it. Come on, be honest, everyone has that one sin they can’t seem to stop doing. The guilt, the shame, and the embarrassment of thinking you are better than that. So you rationalize and think you just must have not had enough faith. This time you will definitely trust in Jesus more, try harder, and finally succeed. But here’s the truth-making more rules won’t cut it. Mustering up more effort won’t cut it. It doesn’t depend on your will or exertion, but on the mercy of God (Romans 9:16). Are those things good? Sure, but as a response to grace, not a merit for grace. Grace is what teaches us to say no to the world. It teaches us to say no to ungodliness. It teaches us to say no worldly passions. Have you ever let that sink in? Do you really believe that? Or do you think reading your bible more in the morning will do the trick? Do you believe that the unmerited favor of God towards you because of Jesus is what kills the power of sin in your life?

“For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace.” || Romans 6:14 ESV

Sin only has dominion when you are under law. When you think you are an employee of God, rather than a child, sin has power. When you think you are under contract, rather than under covenant, sin has power. But, if you are under the waterfall of grace, you can begin to slowly but surely put away sin. It’s not a freeway its a dirt road–and sometimes you crawl. The beauty of it though is that along the journey grace is your teacher. You receive the full and perfect grade before you even start the class. The standing you have the minute you trust Jesus is the same standing you will have the minute you die–perfect, spotless, and blameless. If that truly penetrates your heart, when you fall you’ll run towards Him, not away from Him. Below Pastor Matt Chandler shares a story, that I’ve used plenty of times, that illustrates this point beautifully.



So is grace your teacher? Or are you still struggling under the unbearable weight of the law? Come to Jesus. He bears the burden. He takes the load. He does it for us. That is grace.

 

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  • http://www.1Latham.com/ Dennis C Latham

    WHY DO YOU KEEP SINNING, FALLING, & MESSING UP?

    Because of the lack of LOVE FOR GOD. That’s why.

    • Adem Cindrah

      I beg to disagree. Maybe to some people and in some situations that is the case, but not all. We all know that apostle Paul loved God. But even he struggled with sin. For as long as we are human, we will sin at one point or the other. The important thing is to ensure that our heart is always focused on God. Always quick to repent when we sin. Since there is no condemnation for those in Christ

      • http://www.1Latham.com/ Dennis C Latham

        I see and understand where you’re coming from – but using Apostle Paul, David or any others besides JESUS CHRIST as an example is a very bad thing to do – because none of those others is CHRIST and none of those others can take anyone to THE FATHER – and only CHRIST can do that – and only LIVING IN and LIVING LIKE CHRIST can assure a resting place with THE FATHER ETERNALLY.

        If you look deeper – and I mean much deeper.
        You can possibly see – it is hatred of GOD, CHRIST, THE HOLY GHOST, SCRIPTURE and / or TRUTH that leads to sinning – falling – and messing up.

        I know to some – hatred is too strong of a word ….. but it is TRUTH.
        Specially when it comes to purposely sinning ….
        compared to sin by mistake.
        Sin my mistake is just that – a mistake – but those who LIVE IN CHRIST EMBRACE, LOVE and WANT CORRECTION. However – there are so many under the doctrine of devils – one can not correct someone who doesn’t want to be corrected.

        Now …. pertaining to the article written ?
        I have to say – GRACE fully covers those who are LIVING IN CHRIST – but not those not LIVING IN CHRIST – as much as it does those who are LIVING IN CHRIST.

        I have to say it like that – because I have ran across many un-saved people who claim to be under GRACE – but they commit purposeful sins – they rebuke, refute and reject SCRIPTURES and TRUTH of CORRECTION.

        anyway … that moment – when you do something that hurts someone else ?
        or you do something – not carrying about who it hurts – because all you want is your own satisfaction ? That there is hatred of GOD – and selfishness to put self above and ahead of GOD in your life.

        • Adem Cindrah

          Dennis,
          I fully understand where you are coming from. And I acknowledge that we agree on a number of matters, of prime being the fact that grace is a cover for those is Jesus. I however, still think it is not such a bad idea to use examples of those apostles who went before us, why? They are human. And they are relatable. I know Jesus was tempted in every way we are- but he was still God. And ultimately, we should all thrive to get to the threshold he has placed for us.
          Why do I think the apostles make a great example? It is because (and this is true for me, I dunno about you), one of the ways the devil uses to keep us in sin is too make us feel condemned. Like since we have already sinned, we are done with and we might as well keep on sinning. Or that we have asked for forgiveness too many times, God must surely be tired of us. And I have been in such a dark place myself. Where I did not feel like I deserved to be called a Christian and I was such a shame to the kingdom for not having enough faith.. And here is where the words of the apostle speak to me… About having a thorn in the flesh that Jesus refuses to get rid of. So that we may jolly in the strength of Christ since we are weak. It keeps us praying. And trusting.

          And that is why I said, the status of our hearts- deep inside is what God, thankfully looks at. Like He did the prostitute who kept coming back to ask for forgiveness.

          • http://www.1Latham.com/ Dennis C Latham

            1.) what prostitute kept coming back to ask for forgiveness ? I never read, researched or studies anything about that in my 15+ years of EDUCATION on this matter.
            2.) Many people use David – Moses – and others – along with the apostles as scapegoats – to continue on in sin – CHRIST is the only way to THE FATHER … not the apostles – not David – and not Moses. Although they all have GREAT ACTS we all should follow – but we shouldn’t follow their bad acts or failures.
            3.) The abundance of our hearts – come out through our mouths ….

          • Christopher Harker

            Here is what i think. Tell me if I’m wrong. When i sin its not because of hate towards God or else i would not feel guilty about it or pray for strength to repent. Jesus is God and with out sin and without fault. So, He is our standard. His teachings give us insight to how we should be living and His parables give them meaning to the human mind.How do we achieve this standard? How do we learn not to sin from someone who never sinned? Do we learn to cook from someone who only eats? That is where the others come in and why God put them there. David, Moses, the apostles, they are all examples of humans trying to live for Christ. Without them i would be lost on what do when i make a mistake. I have faults and I was born into a world full of sin. So this makes the others important for that reason. They help us to learn what to do and what NOT to do. Paul was the most well known murderer of Christians of all time and became a leader in spreading Christianity around the world. To repent means to turn away and this example speaks volumes and gives me confidence that I can, which the devil would have me think otherwise. There is no excuse to continue on in sin living for Christ. We are not exempt like they believed during the crusades. Meaning they could sin as much as they wanted because Christ already paid the price. This is not living to the standard that Jesus gave us and pays no respect to his sacrifice. Praise be to God for the gift of His son who succeeded in our our failures and all out of love. Jesus is the success and offers to to share his reward. We should should be so humbled.
            Every person in the bible will have some purpose to someone in some way in efforts to leading the lost to the one and only. Whether its learning from their mistakes or finding more ways of being a faithful servant. I dont think anything in the Bible should be discredited because its not about Jesus. Yes, Jesus is the ONLY way, but i was not born without faults. Everyone in the Bible should be used as an example to help live a life that is pleasing to God. I dont hate God when I sin or keep sinning. I am weak and unwise and i am constantly a work in progress. I continue to work on repenting and educating myself in the Word because I love God and Jesus and the Holy spirit and want to do everything i can to please them.
            I’m not sure if anyone will even see this, but i feel a lot better having typed it down.

          • http://www.1Latham.com/ Dennis C Latham

            “”Here is what i think. Tell me if I’m wrong.””

            Sure thing ….

            “”When i sin its not because of hate towards God or else i would not feel guilty about it or pray for strength to repent.””

            Depending on the sin …. all sins are not the same depth or size ….
            some are greater than others – don’t believe the cliche or myth all sins are the same size ….. the only thing all sins have in common is they all lead away from GOD and to darkness and death.

            To sin purposely is to hate GOD and even hate your own soul – and the people you include in those sins.

            EXAMPLE – shacking up – living together – having sex.
            adultery or fornication.
            No one puts a gun to your head – but it’s so common – people do it – because GOD just doesn’t strike you down with a bolt of lightning.

            When you do this – and you know better – you do it out of hatred for GOD and hatred of your own soul and the soul of the person you’re committing adultery with or fornication.

            “”Jesus is God and with out sin and without fault. So, He is our standard. His teachings give us insight to how we should be living and His parables give them meaning to the human mind.””

            TRUE

            “”How do we achieve this standard? How do we learn not to sin from someone who never sinned?””

            Easy – RESEARCH and STUDY GOD’S DEFINITION OF PERFECT.
            Check out this short video. It’s easier than man tells you it is.

            https://youtu.be/HHmLwVs_oJE?list=PLx_m1Xun8I3evz3wVnGzSwbYkswW1ulYf

            “” Do we learn to cook from someone who only eats?””

            Someone who only eats ? Can get to know what they are eating.
            The contents – The seasonings and so on …

            “” That is where the others come in and why God put them there. David, Moses, the apostles, they are all examples of humans trying to live for Christ.””

            Personally ? I use them to learn from their mistakes – not to fall over the same things they fell over – CHRIST is THE PRIME EXAMPLE …

            many false doctrines, false prophets and false teachers use them to condone, promote and support failing, falling and sinning.

            “” Without them i would be lost on what do when i make a mistake. I have faults and I was born into a world full of sin. So this makes the others important for that reason. They help us to learn what to do and what NOT to do.””

            Understandable – but personally ?
            again – I learn from the mistakes of others – and try not to fall for what they fell for.

            “”Paul was the most well known murderer of Christians of all time and became a leader in spreading Christianity around the world.””

            After he met JESUS and became a follower – he was no longer a killer of CHRISTIANS …..

            “” To repent means to turn away and this example speaks volumes and gives me confidence that I can, which the devil would have me think otherwise.””

            TRUE

            “” There is no excuse to continue on in sin living for Christ. We are not exempt like they believed during the crusades.””

            crusades who killed because people wouldn’t conform to their form of a false christianity – were not of GOD but of satan – sent by a satanic pope.

            “” Meaning they could sin as much as they wanted because Christ already paid the price.””

            Lots of false doctrines, false prophets and false teacher lead people to believe this – because they want the numbers of the masses following them – so they lead people to believe – it’s ok to sin – GOD STILL LOVES you –

            and other false doctrines – you’re no longer under THE LAW because you’re under GRACE ….

            When in reality ?
            Only those who LIVE IN CHRIST are under GRACE and no longer under THE LAW.

            those who live on the outside of CHRIST ?
            Are not fully covered by GRACE and are under THE LAW.

            “”This is not living to the standard that Jesus gave us and pays no respect to his sacrifice.””

            TRUE !!!

            “”Praise be to God for the gift of His son who succeeded in our our failures and all out of love. Jesus is the success and offers to to share his reward. We should should be so humbled.””

            TRUE

            “”Every person in the bible will have some purpose to someone in some way in efforts to leading the lost to the one and only. Whether its learning from their mistakes or finding more ways of being a faithful servant””

            TRUE

            “”I dont think anything in the Bible should be discredited”””

            TRUE

            “”because its not about Jesus. Yes, Jesus is the ONLY way, but i was not born without faults.””

            But we can become without faults – if we TRULY FOLLOW and LOVE CHRIST and HIS FATHER and THE COMFORTS of THE HOLY GHOST.

            “” Everyone in the Bible should be used as an example to help live a life that is pleasing to God.””

            TRUE

            “” I dont hate God when I sin or keep sinning.””

            I don’t agree – if you know it’s a sin – and you keep doing it – it sure isn’t LOVE – and I don’t believe there to be any grey areas between LOVE and hate – RIGHT and wrong.

            “” I am weak and unwise and i am constantly a work in progress. I continue to work on repenting and educating myself in the Word because I love God and Jesus and the Holy spirit and want to do everything i can to please them.””

            Understandable ….

            “”I’m not sure if anyone will even see this, but i feel a lot better having typed it down.””

            well ? I certainly saw it …. and hope we continue this conversation.
            Please check out that video I shared with you and others.