1 John 3:4-6
New American Standard Version
4 Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness. 5 And you know that He appeared in order to take away sins; and in Him there is no sin. 6 No one who abides in Him sins; no one who sins has seen Him or knows Him.
Anyone who sins has broken the law of God because that is the essence of sin – breaking God’s laws. But the reason that Christ came was to take away our sin and He could do so because He never sinned. No one whose life is a continual pattern of sinning has the life of Christ in them. Indeed, no one can continue in a life of habitual sin if they have seen the Lord and come to know Him in their heart.
“How does this help me become more like Him?”
I am amazed and amused by all of the different dialects and accents of the English language. I was listening to a message on Christian television recently from a church in Australia. The pastor had that distinctive accent that only those from “down under” have. When you hear someone talk that is from New York, they have a sound all their own. Others from up north, such as from Minnesota, pronounce “about” more like “aboot”.
And then there are those of us from Texas! I don’t have to wear a “ten gallon hat” for people to ask me when I am traveling if I am from Texas. And there are many more twangier than I..me? We Texans have been known to be grammatically challenged. Anyway, my friends from deep East Texas tend to make my name two syllables rather than one. Instead of “Ed”, it’s “Eyuuuhd”! How we speak is often a “dead giveaway” as to who we are and where we are from.
Those who truly know Christ as their Lord and Savior – those who have been genuinely born again have an accent as well. It’s not the inflection of their vowels but rather the content of their speech – and their actions. The redeemed may occasionally sound and look like they are not from their homeland but if you observe them over a long period of time, the origin of their eternal citizenship will become unmistakably evident. Over the long haul, we will act like who we really are.
A New Yorker might be able to sound like a Texan in his speech for a short time if he worked at it very hard, but sooner or later, that “New Yawk” accent will come through. He can’t hide it - that is who he is. If a person is truly a naturalized citizen of Heaven through faith in Jesus Christ, his speech, actions, and even thoughts will reflect that heritage. Over the sustained course of one’s life, he will act like who or what he really is. When Christ comes in, He changes our heart and He changes our life. We may sometimes forget who we are and act like who we’re not for a while but our true identity will soon rise up from within and evidence itself.
For the unsaved, sin is a reflection of their unredeemed nature. They act that way because that is who they still are apart from Christ. For the redeemed child of God, sin is departure from who and what God has created us to be in Christ. We may fall into it but we cannot live there for long. Sooner or later, we will get homesick and come home.
How should I pray for Him to change my life?
Pray for any believers that you know who are living outside of and apart from their birthright. Ask the Lord to make them even more miserable than they already are until they get up and come back home. Pray for those who are trusting in some superficial religious experience in their past but have never been truly born again to wake up to God’s call to genuine salvation.