Can a believer go through a day without sinning? The answer is no, it is
impossible! Even though the believer is given the power to say “No” to sin,
the struggle with sin that we face daily will continue to be present. We
still struggle because we are in the mortal flesh. That is why Apostle Paul
says: “… but I am still carnal” (Rom 7:14b). This carnality speaks
of the mortal flesh which will be destroyed at the point of death. Though
carnal, believers must always remember God wants them to be perfect even as
He is perfect (Matt 5:48). This perfection refers to the keeping of God’s
Word. God wants them to obey Him and receive the blessings through the
keeping of His Word faithfully.
As believers, we are given the new man and this new man is not under the
law of sin but under grace. Only our mortal flesh is under the law of sin
and therefore it is dying each day. It does not get better but becomes
weaker and weaker till it finds its place in the grave. However, the new
man (or the “the inward man”) is renewed day by day (2 Cor 4:16).
This renewal is the spiritual growth that is the result of obeying God and
drawing closer to Him. Believers are to grow in holiness and godliness.
Holiness is when we confess our sins to God and repent of them. God knows
we will sin and He wants us to repent whenever we sin. Godliness is when we
obey God in His Word and be more like Him. We become more godly when we
become more like Christ in our thoughts, words and actions. We become
better Christians when we grow in holiness and godliness. And we are not
without any help. We have the Holy Spirit to guide us and teach us through
God’s Word. As such, we must yield ourselves to the Holy Spirit. The more
we yield to the Holy Spirit and less to the flesh, the better our testimony
for Christ. It is not going to be easy because we are prone to wander from
God and incline toward sin. This is the struggle we will face until the
Lord brings us home.
But unbelievers do not have such spiritual struggles. They may feel guilty
when they do something morally wrong. And they may even repent of the wrong
they had done. But their repentance is not towards God. Their repentance is
only to soothe their conscience so that they will not feel bad anymore.
This is not true repentance. Repentance without God is a false repentance.
But how will unbelievers repent towards God since they are ignorant of Him?
They do not know God personally or intimately. There is no relationship
between them to begin with. But as for us, we have a relationship with God,
restored through the Lord Jesus Christ. Now we know God personally and we
are able to understand His perfect Word according to His wisdom. And now we
know that each time we sin, it is always sin against God first. We may be
said to sin against a person when we tell him a lie that cause him to be
deceived. But when a lie is told, the ninth commandment is broken
immediately. We sinned against God first and directly each time we bear a
false witness against our neighhbour. The same goes for other commandments.
True repentance therefore must always be made toward God.
Even though it is impossible in this earthly life that we will not go
through one day without sinning, let us not be discouraged. Instead let us
be encouraged to fight the good fight of faith by trusting in God’s power
to stop sinning and to always repent, and to keep on obeying God in His
Word faithfully all the way to the end! May God help us. Amen!