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Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Can Believers Be Sinless?

Some people believe that people will be able to live sinlessly here on earth as Christ did.
True believers are positionally righteous, but we still have to battle the flesh here on earth. 
Believers are no longer slaves to sin, but we are not practically without sin here on earth.

For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 
Colossians 3:3 NASB

Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.
Colossians 3:5 ESV

I find then the principle that evil is present in me, the one who wants to do good. 
For I joyfully concur with the law of God in the inner man, but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members.
Wretched man that I am!  Who will set me free from the body of this death?
Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!  So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind am serving the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh the law of sin.
Romans 7:21-25 NASB

Repentance & fruit will be evident as the Spirit works.

If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us.
If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us.
1 John 1:8 -10 NASB

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
Galatians 5:22-23 NASB

Christians have been sanctified and are being sanctified and will desire to obey. 
Believers are told in Scripture to walk by the Spirit and not carry out the desires of the flesh. 
As Christians, we are to do good deeds (but they are not the means - in part or in whole - of making us right positionally with God). 

This is a trustworthy statement; and concerning these things I want you to speak confidently, so that those who have believed God will be careful to engage in good deeds.
These things are good and profitable for men.
Titus 3:8 NASB

There are those who claim to be saved but do not have a living faith.   
Their lives demonstrate that they do not truly believe.
 A living faith will have fruit (James 2:26).

So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.
Philippians 2:12-13 NASB

By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments. 
The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him; but whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected. By this we know that we are in Him: the one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.
1 John 2:3-6 NASB

If there is no love for God at all (and I realize sometimes we as believers question our love for God due to seeing the remaining sin in our lives), & if there is no desire to submit to the Lord - then a person should examine themselves.

Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves!  Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you-- unless indeed you fail the test?
1 Corinthians 13:5 NASB

"Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter.
Matthew 7:21 NASB

There are believers who stray, and they are disciplined to bring them back.
God will not lose any of His true sheep, but we may suffer.

My brethren, if any among you strays from the truth and one turns him back, let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.
James 5:19-20 NASB

Hebrews 12:6 NASB

What we do to obey cannot make us right before God or keep us saved.  
Only what Christ did can justify us before God.   
We are saved by His grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.
It is His blood that cleanses us from our sin...not our deeds.  
Jesus is the only one who was sinless on earth as God.  He was the only acceptable propitiation for sin.  

He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. 
2 Corinthians 5:21 NASB

To summarize:
There are no sinless believers.  We aren't justified by deeds in whole or in part.  Believers should be growing.  True faith will have some fruit.  If we disobey as believers, we will be disciplined.  

So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, "If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine;
John 8:31 NASB

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