From The Heart

Publish date: 08/19/2001

Now when a man works, his wages are not credited to him as a gift, but as an obligation. However, to the man who does not work but trusts God who justifies the wicked, his faith is credited as righteousness. David says the same thing when he speaks of the blessedness of the man to whom God credits righteousness apart from works: "Blessed are they whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man

whose sin the Lord will never count against him."  Romans 4:4-8 NIV


The gift of salvation, of righteousness and of forgiveness from sin is priceless. We cannot pay for it. If we owned the whole world, we would not have enough money to buy one drop of Jesus’ blood. That is why the Lord had to offer this awesome gift to us totally free. The only price we pay is to yield ourselves to Him. Isaiah 55:1 (Amplified) says that it is takes self-surrender to accept the blessing of priceless spiritual wine and milk!


Those who are washed in the blood of Jesus, whose transgressions are forgiven, and whose sins are covered are blessed, blessed, blessed! Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will never count against him. What a joy to be forgiven! Even though we have sinned – even sinned deliberately – we can still be forgiven and washed clean as if we had never sinned.


You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love. The entire law is summed up in a single command: "Love your neighbor as yourself."

Galatians 5:13-14 NIV


Just because your salvation was free, does not mean that it was cheap. It is not a gift that we should misuse. Freedom is something to be valued and enjoyed. Don’t use your freedom as an excuse for sin. Just because you have experienced freedom from religion and bondage and just because your conscience is clean now and forgiveness is just a prayer away – that does not mean that you are free to indulge your flesh.


Some people think that in order to be “not religious” you should indulge your fleshly desires. Of course they all think that they are “in control” and they can “handle” it. But every person who is in bondage to their flesh now, started out originally, thinking that they were in control! The problem is that you are usually firmly in bondage long you even realize you are. Being carnal and yielding to carnality may be the opposite of being religious, but it is not spiritual by any means and neither will it benefit you in any way whatsoever.


For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.

Romans 12:3 NIV


The key to protecting your heart from sin is humility. Don’t think that you are impervious to temptation. Don’t trust yourself near temptation. Don’t place yourself in a position where you can possibly be tempted.


Abstain from all appearance of evil.  1 Thessalonians 5:22 KJV


Don’t participate in any thing that even looks like sin. If you are not going to be religious – then be spiritual – fall in love with Jesus again.


See to it, brothers, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness.  Hebrews 3:12-13 NIV


Sin is deceitful and it will harden your heart. When we sin, we have the option to turn toward God and confess our sin and ask God for forgiveness. However, if we begin to enjoy our sin or if we are prideful and defensive about our sin then we will make excuses for ourselves. We will find fault with God, the preacher, and everybody else. We will blame others for our problems. When your heart is hard you are in big trouble. You become completely insensitive to the Holy Spirit and that is a sad place for a Christian to be.


Protect your heart from sin and you will protect it from becoming hardened toward God. Stay on fire for God and allow the Holy Spirit to burn out any bad attitude before it can come between you and your Lord and Savior.