*** This post is written upon the basic Truth that
All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work. – 2 Timothy 3:16-17
All Scripture. Not some. Not segments. Not sections are inspired and others no longer apply. ALL Scripture – – even the hard to comprehend parts is inspired by God Himself.. ***
Sufficient is defined by good ole Webster as “adequate to accomplish a purpose or meet a need” (c 1995). If you need a more updated definition, dictionary.com defines “sufficient” as “adequate for the purpose; enough”.
Jesus is defined as an All-Sufficient Savior. If you choose to read through Scripture you will see the definition of “All-Sufficient” fleshed out. (And even if you choose not to read through Scripture, it doesn’t make Him any less Sufficient.) So for those of you who enjoy definitions, All-Sufficient would therefore be defined as “All-Adequate” or “Fully-Adequate”.
Now I’m not a theologian or a major in apologetics. I don’t have my masters in anything, actually and while participating in a debate class in High School, I don’t consider myself to be particularly skilled in debating a case and point so as to “hold and persuade the attention of the audience”. BUT that does not mean that the “common man”, like myself, cannot apply their mind to Scripture.
I often hear in Christian circles a swirling and “normal” topic of battling sin. I’m talking everyday sins. Anger (rage). Frustration. Being quick-tempered. Selfishness. Pride. Disobedience. Apathy. Laziness. The list could go on and on…. and sadly it does. Paul describes it as a battle between flesh and Spirit. See, the Holy Spirit is a Guide in us, Christians, and we wouldn’t need a guide if the navigation was easy.
But all too often I hear an unanswered grumbling or groaning from the body of Christ. It looks like this: someone in the group admits to struggling with a particular sin. Throw anything in there: pride, apathy, a quick temper… whatever. And the group agrees. “That is really hard to battle” or even “I know, I’ve been there” or “I know, I’m there too”. And that’s the conclusion of the conversation… we return to the Bible lesson, or change the subject, or excuse ourselves to another scheduling demand.
And so what do we leave the other Christian with? An insufficient Savior.
Christ takes on the mask of a weak Savior who can save us from our sins’ consequence, “once and for all” according to the Scriptures, but fails to save us from our daily lives. And, therefore, we just have to play this tolerance game for the 2 steps forward, 3 steps back battle with our sin nature.
Why in the world would anyone come to that kind of a Savior and lay down their life?
If I’m struggling with the exact same sin without conquering it in the least, then what did Christ save us for?
Christian, I’m not saying that there aren’t repetitive themes of sin in our lives. Some of us are certainly more prone to specific sins. Man, my fiery temper needs self-discipline just the same as Moses’ did. But we are forgetting the KEY POINT in this battle with sin: CHRIST.
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. – Philippians 4:13
Paul is 100% right. It is a daily, minutely battle with sin. We are still in the flesh and it is completely unnatural to think in the Spirit while still being in the flesh. But that is why we must train our minds to be like Christ. I mean check out the whole New Testament, Christian, it’s jam-packed full of “putting off the old self” and “putting on the new”. If the old self fell off easily we wouldn’t be instructed to PUT it OFF. But furthermore, trying to conquer sin in the nude is not going to do us any good either. We PUT ON the new self. Who is the new self? Christ!
I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. – Galatians 2:20
The Scripture doesn’t say that after putting off the old self we now have faith in ourselves because we have a new self. No, it says we can now have faith in CHRIST who is the new self within us.
How are we to overcome sin? We cant! CHRIST in us can. We find ourselves, I find myself, stuck in a pattern of sin, struggling with the same thing over and over again without really making any advancing headway when I look to myself to “fix my sin problem.” There are hundreds (thousands?) of self-help books out there – and so many are stocking the “Christian Reading” sections of libraries and bookstores. But we need to wake up and remember that we couldn’t overcome sin. That’s what lead us to the cross on our hands and knees. We can’t do it! But Christ can… and already has overcome ALL sin. He is ALL-SUFFICIENT. He is more than enough to overcome anything we ever face… even the darkest, hardest stuff. Are we living our lives like we believe that? Does our daily, minutely Christian walk reflect that? Are we teaching our kids that truth (whether they are “in Christ” or, even more importantly, especially if they are not “in Christ”)?
No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it. – 1 Corinthians 10:13
Who is our way of escape?
Sure being Christ looks different in different circumstances. Sometimes being Christ looks like showing up for the test. Sometimes being Christ looks like fleeing from the temptation. That’s where we need to pray and be in tune with the Holy Spirit’s guiding and not our own agendas or self-reasoning to try to out-smart our way out of sin.
So next time we struggle, or hear of someone struggling… run, bringing the Word, and searching for Christ. The Holy Spirit will guide you if you are seeking. There IS a way of escape. We are not left on our own to battle our daily, minutely, sin lives. We are not just as entrapped and ensnared in our inability to fight sin as we were before Christ… WE HAVE CHRIST NOW.
It’s time to start harnessing Him, Christian (and I’m talking to myself here too!). We cannot overcome sin.
And He has extended His own Self into our very beings that we can live out sanctification, which is a fancy word for being and looking more like Christ daily.
It’s time to take faith and trust and stake our daily, minutely lives on the Truth that He is, can, will, and has been more than enough.
He is All-Sufficient.
Sin life… He is All-Sufficient.
– Stand on that FIRM foundation.