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The Persecuted Church

 

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What does John mean when  he writes Whosoever is born of God does not commit sin;

John 5:9. “Whosoever is born of God does not commit sin; for His seed remaineth in Him: and he cannot sin, because He is born of God.”   “whosoever is born of God, cannot sin.”  This cannot be what it means because it would contradict what John said meaning to what John is saying.  We can look at what the men of God, the apostles and prophets and none claimed a perfect spiritual condition. Neither Abraham, Isaac, Jacob; or Job who was called righteous; Moses, David; Peter, John, or Paul, were not guilty of sin. John is not teaching that ALL Christians are perfect. Paul said He was the chief of sinners and continued to do what he did not want to despite his knowledge and being empowered by the Holy Spirit. It is just as much a sin to say we have no sin, than to do the act of sin.  It is as if we are calling God a liar and the truth is not in us, which means something else is in us.

Peter calls the word is implanted in us (sperma) meaning the seed sown on the soil of our heart; it means something which germinates. Seed can mean literal or figurative –in this case 1 Pt. 1:23. We are born of God- regenerated by His Spirit. Jesus told us the seed is the word that produces fruit in those who understand it. The new nature battles against the old to overcome it. If this scripture “Whoever has been born of God does not sin,” means absolute holiness and is used to referring to the doctrine of absolute perfection, it proves that all Christians are perfect, not some of them.  

“Cannot sin” means one who is born again does not CONTINUALLY sin, as he once did or is not HABITUALLY a sinner as he was before he came to know Jesus. There is a difference, as light has come to rule over the darkness. The born again believer has no compulsion to do sin over and over as He once had been driven by his fallen nature.  If a man continually and habitually sins, it may prove that he has NEVER been renewed. He who is born again will not continue in, or like their sin for “His seed remaineth in him.”

We still possess the mental and physical ability to do wrong, as believers we are free moral agents who can make a choice; one who is a true Christian will want to what is right because of his knowledge of the word and will have a willingness for submission to the new nature, he will choose God’s way more than to choose to sin. As John writes previously I Jn 5:4: “For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world-- our faith.”

It’s not a matter of “if we sin” but what we think of  as we are doing it, are we convicted. and what do we think after and understand its affect on us. If one likes to sin and finds little consequence from it, they are not being grieved by what they have done they probably need to question if the Holy Spirit has His convicting work in their life. When one is sinning habitually, willfully without feeling any remorse and it does not lead them to repentance, this shows that he is under the influence of the old nature  which has the natural inclination to sin. 2 Cor.7:10 shows us the difference between worldly sorrow and true godly sorrow that is repentance. Again it is matter of how one feels after they sin or how they are affected by it.

I Jn 3:10 In this the children of God and the children of the devil are manifest: Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is he who does not love his brother.

  The phrase “children of the Devil” does not occur anywhere else in the New Testament. Jesus does allude to this in Jn.8:44 when he says to those Pharisees who rejected him that their father is the the Devil. Paul calls Elymas the sorcerer the son of a devil. Acts 13:10 children of the Devil and children of God, two families--light and darkness -- the contention between two worldviews, two ways of living. John is stressing a nature that is in all before they know Christ. Eph. 2:1-3 does show this concept is New Testament theology – stating those who once walked according to the course of this world, “the sons of disobedience”, by nature “children of wrath” (also Eph.5:6; Col.3:6). They are those who have God’s judgment to look toward unless they repent.

We can often tell who is who by how they live, what are their standards, are they loving the brethren and wanting to fellowship, do they love the truth and defend it or do not distinguish it from falsehood. Do they “Practice righteousness.” Those who practice (not perfectly) God’s ways are His. Those who have no affinity to righteousness are under the fallen nature.  

 

 

 

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