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You Are Not Your Vices

An increasingly common mindset today says that your vices are nothing to be ashamed of, and your sins don’t need to be overcome.  Rather, your vices should be proudly upheld as part of your identity and personality. This mindset says that by gratifying every impulse and doing whatever you want, you are simply expressing and getting in touch with your true self.

 

Paul, however, warns against indulging and glorying in your sinful nature. He says of those who do, Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things.” (Phi 3:19)  To those who gratify every impulse as if doing so were something to be proud of, Paul says, “You’re headed for destruction.”

 

Some in the church are upholding God’s grace as a license to indulge their vices, saying that God’s forgiveness lets us do whatever we want (Jud 1:4).  We must remember that true grace doesn’t just liberate us from the penalty of sin.  It also liberates us from the practice of sin.  As Paul says, What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it?” (Rom 6:1-2)

 

To those who call sin freedom Jesus says, "Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin.” (Joh 8:34)

 

We are not our vices.  We were made to bear God’s image.  We cannot find freedom until we achieve mastery over ourselves and learn to imitate Jesus.

 

We will achieve mastery over ourselves and we will conform to Christ’s likeness only with the power of God’s Holy Spirit in our lives.  “But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.” (Gal 5:16)

 

There is one way to find your true self.  That’s to find the God who made you. -Paul

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