In Touch - Dec. 7, 2007
In Touch Daily Devotional
by Dr. Charles Stanley
December 7, 2007 – How to Handle Sin After Salvation – 1 John 2:1-2
Am I really saved if I sin? Many new believers wonder this as they start to learn about their faith. But even longtime Christians may question whether their salvation is secure—unless they correctly understand their relationship with the Lord.
Two things happen when someone receives Christ. First, Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross pays that person’s sin-debt in full—past, present, and future wrongdoing is forgiven and removed. Since sin was the barrier separating mankind from holy God, the new believer is now welcome in His presence. Second, the Father does away with the person’s original, rebellious nature and sends His Holy Spirit to indwell and guide the new Christian.
By trusting in Jesus, we each become a new creature (2 Corinthians 5:17). Yet, since the body and mind don’t change automatically, self-serving habits developed before salvation can remain ingrained and tempting. Though we may sometimes give in, we aren’t suddenly unsaved because we sinned. Once God’s grace is bestowed, it can’t be removed— salvation cannot be lost, nor can the Spirit’s power be revoked. Our relationship with God remains intact, though it does need repair in the form of confession and repentance.
Being saved is not about keeping a perfect record of behavior. If we could do that, we wouldn’t need the Father’s grace. He knows we are human and prone to making selfish choices contrary to His will. When we do, Jesus Christ acts as our Advocate, because His sacrifice is what makes possible our relationship with the Father.
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