by Neil Anderson
My little children, I am writing these things to you that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous
People who are caught in the sin-confess-sin-confess-sin-confess cycle eventually begin to lose hope that they can experience any real victory over sin. Sheer willpower can’t keep them from repeating the sin they just confessed, and Satan pours on the condemnation. Self-control seems like an illusion, and the Christian life is one of unending ups and downs.
Suppose there is a door you are commanded not to open. On the other side of the door is a dog that keeps insisting, “Come on, let me in. Everybody is doing it. You deserve to have a little fun. Who will know? You can get away with it.” So you open the door and the dog roars in and bits you on the leg. Ironically, the dog instantly changes its story: “You opened the door. I have a right to be here. You’ll never get away with this!” If such a thing happened, would you beat on the dog or on yourself?
Sin which is allowed to reign is like the dog that bits you on the leg and won’t let go. Not realizing there is a dog, you beat on yourself for leaving the door open and cry out to God for forgiveness. He forgives you, but the dog is still there. Why not cry out to God and beat on the dog instead of yourself? James 4:7 tells us, “Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.” We are correct in confessing our sin, but we have failed to follow the complete biblical formula which breaks the cycle: sin-confess- resist . We must first assume our responsibility for opening the door, then we must resist Satan and command him to leave if we are going to experience victory over sin.
We live as though God and a sick humanity are the only realities in the spiritual realm. We must turn to our righteous Advocate (1 John 2:1) and resist our perverted adversary if we are to experience victory and freedom over temptation and sin.
Lord, show me where I have opened the door of my life to sin that I may confess it to You and command Satan to leave in Your precious name.