preachthecross.org Blog

March 24, 2009

Mark’s Response to Comment from M.V. on 3-08-09

Filed under: Uncategorized — Administrator @ 3:26 pm

Take heart, my friend, for what I understand seems to you to be “impossible” really is not at all; as “all things are possible with God”. Your struggles are not the least bit strange to God, nor “impossible” for Him to quite effectively deal with. You have simply been “sowing” or investing your time and efforts in the wrong places, and in the wrong way. You have also erred in assuming that mere human reasoning or logic can address spiritual phenomena (warfare); e.g., assuming the only dialectic is “human effort & works to be holy” or “wanton sin”. Sexual sin is not your problem; rather, it is your not understanding the depth and power of the Grace of God, and the Resurrection of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
We don’t grow in righteousness in “recovery” groups, or “support” groups, or “accountability” groups, or any other form of human (wordly) wisdom, reasonings, and works. We grow in righteousness in small imperceptible increments which HE crafts while WE are investing our entire focus on Christ and Him Crucified.
Perhaps you recall the scene of Jesus coming to visit at the home of Mary and Martha. Martha was “distracted and burdened with much serving” (human effort/works), while her sister Mary “sat at the Master’s feet and heard His every Word”. You have been as Martha, when you need to be as Mary.
This is the same lesson of the children of Israel being bitten by serpents in the wilderness (sin–including perverse sexual sins). The “remedy” was for Moses to fashion a serpent of brass on a pole (Christ and Him Crucified), and “lift it up before the people”, commanding them to keep their entire focus fixed on it. While they stared intently on it, the healing process ensued, and they lived. When they looked away, or attempted traditional remedies (human works), their symptoms got worse, and they died. Talk about a “test of faith”. Our situation is no different.
God is asking that you direct your “faith” at Him, rather than your own weakness and failings. God sees all that, but it doesn’t matter to Him. What matters is what He did for you, and in you, at the Cross of Christ. That is what HE focuses on.
Satan’s game is to condemn you in your conscience for every sin and every failure at trying to stop sinning. He does this to get you to focus on yourself, inspire self-loathing, and eventually get you to renounce “faith” because it “didn’t work”. We help him win when we take our eyes off the serpent of brass, and scramble frantically for traditional remedies we understand and can control (accountability groups, support groups, abstinence, etc.).
Romans 12:1,2 says we are “transformed by the renewing of the mind”. The mind is renewed at the Cross of Christ. That’s where you need to park yourself and focus all of your attention and devotion. 1 John 1:9 is the interim “bar of soap” as we go along in the process and fall in the mud from time to time. The key is to confess EVERY sin to the Father immediately, never attempting to hide anything. THAT is the ONLY “accountability” God commands: to Him, not other fallen, failing men. Like salvation, this process is meant to be a one-on-one, personal process between you, Jesus and the Father. Don’t let anyone else into this process except someone who knows what is going on and keeps you focused on the Cross.
Go to my website and read some of the tenets under “About This Ministry”, and the scriptures in the Further Study/Exegesis.Read Paul’s prayer to the Ephesians in Chapter 1. Then, ASK God to give you a “spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him” –Jesus Christ, and the “work GOD DID in Him, and YOU, there at the Cross”). Like Peter walking on the water, the “trick”, if I can use that trivial term, is to not focus on the natural circumstances (sin and your own failure), but to look at Jesus, and the COMPLETE work at the Cross. That word “complete” is the a hint at something very profound; and that is your first “assignment” in your new spiritual outlook. Go dig up the the treasure God buried there. (It is what Paul referred to as a “mystery” in 1 Corinthians 2, and Ephesians 3). Then write me when you start to “see”.
May God bless you in His infinite and unfailing love and Grace, M.V. I will pray for you.
In Christ,
Mark

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