How to Stop Sinning

…walk in the light…confess our sins…have an advocate with the father, Jesus Christ the righteous. ESV 1 John 1:7, 9; 2:1

On Sundays I consider my relationship with God. I consider my sin life (not a pleasant thought, but necessary nonetheless). As difficult as it may be, I try to ascertain if I am finding victory over whatever sins persist in my life. Sometimes I find it easy to walk away from a particular sin (especially those that God has recently opened my eyes to and that aren’t deeply seated in my flesh). At other times, God continues to convict me of some of the deeply rooted sins that choke my soul. Only recently have I begun to understand the Biblical principles that enable victory in these areas.

In his first letter John lays out a simple process to stop sinning. First, he encourages us to walk in the light. Light drives out darkness and exposes what was hidden in the darkness. Walking in the light involves exposing our sin to God and others. While it may be easy to expose our sin to God (He already knows of course), it’s often much harder to share our struggles with a friend, elder or pastor. However, this is the first step to conquering this sin. Secondly, we must confess our sin to God. Yes, Christ has died and salvifically we have already been forgiven. However, confessing each sin reminds us of its significance and brings the power of Christ to bear on that area of life. Finally, we must remember that we will always struggle with sin. When we sin again, we must not give up or hate ourselves or try even harder not to sin next time. Instead, we must embrace our advocate: Jesus Christ the Righteous one. By doing this we again acknowledge our weaknesses and His strength and live in His power.

I’ve found increasing victory over sin in my own life as I began to bring my sins into the light, confess them to Christ, and then cling to Christ as my advocate when I do sin. The hardest thing for me was to confess my sin to others, but I have found this to be one of the best steps to overcoming that sin. May I encourage you to apply these steps and find victory over whatever sin may be ensnaring you.

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