WHAT TO DO AFTER YOU SIN?
The Answer May Shock You
If you have reached a place of sinless perfection, there is no need to read this article, but there is the need to read 1 John 1:8-10.
What should a born again Christian do after he sins? Here's the answer: Go help someone else! To this, some may respond with: WHAT are you talking about?!?! Are you crazy!? Go do ministry?! Are you crazy Todd?! How can a person who recently sinned do ministry or show God’s love?!
“Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation (atoning sacrifice) through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God.” Romans 3:24-25
Remember when Peter was going to deny Christ, even with cursing, etc.? What did Jesus say for His child Peter to do after he had sinned and was restored back to rightful relationship with Him? Check this out:
"And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren." Luke 22:31-32
Jesus told Peter what to do after he was recovered from that fall. Note initially here that Jesus didn't instruct Peter (nor does He instruct anyone) to go do some kind of catholic penance to work off his sins and display some kind of outward work of false humility, but rather the refreshing command to "strengthen thy brethren." What a freedom! We are to go and pour out God's mercy to others as it has been abundantly poured out on us! Remember that one day Jesus spoke to a sinful woman and said: "Her sins, which are many, are forgiven (freely); for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little." As we realize how much undeserved mercy has been shown to us by God, we will naturally rejoice to share this unspeakable gift with others. Our sins were/are many and His mercy is enormous and endures forever to those who fear Him (Psalms 103:11).
Here are some of the things we glean from the words of Christ in this passage (Luke 22:31-32):
- Satan seeks/desires to "sift (separate) you" from God - to cause your fellowship with God to be interrupted. This is how the devil works. Yes, there is a real devil and he hates God and you because you are the Lord's. If the leadership of your church doesn't acknowledge a real devil and a real spiritual battle that rages daily, let me encourage you to either talk to them about it or find an honest fellowship where God's Word is truly honored.
- Jesus is praying for each of His saints (YOU) - "I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not" (see also Hebrews 7:25; John 17:9).
- "When thou art converted" - When we sin, we are to be restored to fellowship with our Lord who loves us and has our best interests in His heart and is "ready (postured) to forgive" (Ps 86:5,15).
- "Strengthen thy brethren" - Strengthen the brothers and sisters around you when you are restored - and consequently refreshed - (Acts 3:19-21). Nothing could be more important than your vital union and communion with your Lord. Rejoice in His goodness toward you! Rejoice that He has shown you mercy and ponder sharing that same mercy with others as you have received such. "Freely ye have received, freely give." (Matthew 10:8) Comfort others who have fallen or are in a season of difficulties with the comfort you have received from God (2 Cor. 2:1-4).
Nothing could be more important than your vital union and communion with your Lord. Rejoice in His goodness toward you today!
Chris Sitter writes:
"I can relate to that scripture that says Satan hath desired to sift you as wheat. But, because of His mercy and blood, and longsuffering, and merciful kindness, I must share what He – in his great grace, has chosen to share with me – with His sheep. For only He, can make me accepted in the beloved. Oh, that I can share a part in the Savior’s blood. A thousand hymns will not be able to capture the greatness of HIS UNSPEAKABLE GIFT! Let us press on towards the mark – one moment at a time, for there is no promise of tomorrow. Grateful for Calvary,"
Wait just a minute!! What about the people who know I sinned? What will they say? What if they condemn me and call me a hypocrite because I am seeking God afresh, putting the past behind me, and serving Him by ministering His grace, love, and truth to others - after I sinned?
"He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God th
at justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?" Romans 8:32-35
When we lapse in our faith for some reason or the other, perhaps we shouldn't wallow in the mire of that experience, but get right back to being about our Father's business. After Peter had sinned many times, Jesus told Him to “Feed my sheep.” (Jn. 21:16-17)
"For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief." Proverbs 24:16
It’s no time to wallow in the mire of past sins, but rather to rise up (yes again) and seek the infinitely beautiful face of the LORD. This one thing is what is needful.
“Seek the LORD and his strength, seek his face continually.” 1 Chronicles 16:11
“One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to inquire in his temple.” Psalms 27:4
ORIGIN OF RIGHTEOUSNESS
Every false religion in the world has some type of penance or asceticism (personal works or torment to earn God’s forgiveness or favor). Christians stand alone, placing all of their trust and hope in the Son of God for full and complete forgiveness for all of their sin. Scores of true believers have given their lives for this very truth, which is at the very heart of the Gospel. Jesus Christ + nothing = total forgiveness and eternal life. Now this is a good moment to verbalize our thanksgiving to our heavenly Father of this unspeakable gift!
“Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.” Titus 3:5-7
Please allow me to strongly urge you to memorize this text above.
For the record: God is the only really holy One and we are made holy only by being in communion with Him. So, when we have truly repented, turning fully back to Him, He makes us holy again, instantly!
Friend, as a believer, you may struggle within with the fleshly temptation towards doing penance - trying (after sinning) to do enough good works to somehow satisfy the claims of God’s holy justice and regain His favor. Nothing could be more antichrist. Nothing could strike at the heart of the Gospel more than such unbelief in the hearts of those who call themselves His children. There could be no more severe denial of the blood of Christ than this, whether one realizes it or not. Such is a clear denial of the precious propitiatory blood of the Savior, and reveals a complete misunderstanding of the Gospel. Either Christ’s blood was the full payment for all of your sins, AND/OR 1) God is a liar, 2) His whole Word (the Bible) is not true, and 3) You should immediately give up playing the part of a Christian because there is no amount of perfect works you can do to pay for your own sins.
“But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.” Isaiah 64:6
Let me encourage you to study Romans 1-5 at least 7 times. Get this essential Gospel truth deep down in your heart. Pour over this text. Hi-lite, outline and cross reference. Write down on index cards select texts the Holy Spirit puts His finger on and memorize them.
“As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one.” Romans 3:10
No person can begin to understand divine forgiveness until he first understands the utterly depraved and sinful state of unredeemed men and the ultimate righteousness and sinless perfection of Christ Jesus. Listen and let your heart be blessed by this life-changing passage from Romans:
“Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin. But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.” Romans 3:19-26
WHEW! Does this truth not lift the heavy and vain burden of self-righteousness? Read this last part of Romans 3 until it does. Pour over this passage until it saturates you heart, mind and thoughts.
Is our righteousness based on self-works, goodness or merit, OR the one supreme work of the Son of God? Such is a matter of life or death. Any person who leaves this earth trusting in any of there own righteousness instead of Christ’s, is going to certain damnation. There is no neutral ground - “And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith.” (Phil. 3:9)
If you are going to try to be justified by your own works, instead of relying completely upon Christ’s work on the cross to make you righteous, you better not make even one slight mistake of sin:
“For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.” James 2:10
Saints, have we not all lusted, coveted, hated (heart murder), and committed adultery by entertaining evil thoughts? How can we repay Him? What are we going to do to merit His forgiveness and righteousness? What have we to offer the infinitely holy God of all that is? What are we in comparison to His Majesty?
Friend, is it time for you to put away the notion or practice of self-dependence? If you are ready to repent of all traces of self-reliance and self-works for righteousness, then it is time to get excited and rejoice in the Savior who came from glory to pay the full price for all of your sins - to make you free to love and serve Him now and forever!
“Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.” 1 Peter 1:18-19
Let’s get something straight: As a believer, living in this sinful world, we do not proclaim or declare our own goodness or righteousness - we have none other than what is imparted from God through Christ, the perfect One. Hello! No, rather, we declare Christ Jesus the LORD, the One who said “It is finished”, as He drew His last breath in dying and becoming the supreme and only sacrifice for our sins and the sins of the world (Jn. 19:30; 1 Jn. 2:2). Yes, we ”worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.” (Phil. 3:3)
“And he is the propitiation (atoning sacrifice) for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.” 1 John 2:2
We should not sin again with "an evil heart of unbelief" by not accepting God's forgiveness through Christ who lives forever to make intercession for us at the Father's right hand (Heb. 3:12-15, 4:14-16, 7:25). The fact is that we were never personally worthy to be forgiven in the first place, but God did such on the basis of Christ propitiatory sacrifice.
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.…My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.” 1 John 1:9; 2:1-2
What do you think? Do you have a testimony of forgetting those things which lie behind you and getting back up and running the race - full speed? Will you accept His mercy and forgiveness in faith without which you cannot please the LORD? (see Heb. 11:6) Is your sin greater than Christ's divine, holy, sinless blood and the power of His divine grace to break all shackles in your life?
"This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope. It is of the LORD’S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithful
ness.” Lamentations 3:21-23
Maybe something you say could strengthen another believer. The LORD truly is working and orchestrating all things together for the good to those who truly love Him. In conjunction with their obedience to Him, God is conforming their lives to the image of Jesus (Rom. 8:28-29).
Remember that YOU have a personal "advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous", who restores your soul in the green pastures of His grace as you present yourself before Him in love. What a SAVIOR!!! What a Counselor!!! What a Shepherd!!! What a God of Restoration!!! What words could possibly do justice to His majesty?!
"For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee...But thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth." Psalms 86:5,15
Jesus is coming soon saint of the Most High. Remember to be about your Father's business so that Christ will find your hand to the plow of worshipping Him supremely and feeding His sheep, helping others come to repentance and place all their trust in "the great Shepherd of the sheep." (Heb. 13:20)
Restoration is the aim of the Father. Sin is wrong because God (not men) determines what is sin - it is a violation of the holiness of the LORD (1 Jn. 3:4). No excuse can be made for our sins (Rom. 6). Yet, the past sins of others should never ever be utilized by other sinners (forgiven sinners) to manipulate or control that person. Jesus did no such thing with Peter, nor anyone else. To in any way use another person’s sins against them, is unmitigated witchcraft and actually happens in local fellowships. If this is going on with people you are in relationship with, send them this article and lovingly call them to repent. If they don’t, run for your life beloved (see 1 Tim. 6:3-5 KJV). Also, for more in-depth study on this topic of control, order a copy of Deceivers & False Prophets Among Us. Two whole chapters are dedicated to exposing the control of other men and its detrimental effects.
Have you considered getting some Gospel tracts and beginning to sow the seed of God's Word? Visit the TRACTS page on this site for more information.
Blessings In Christ,
todd tomasella - less than the least of all saints (Eph. 3:8).
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