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Biblical, battle-tested, real-life help for "living by faith in the Son of God" (Galatians 2:20). — Steve Fuller

Posts On How To Fight Sin

Wrestling from everystockphoto by familymwrHow To Fight Sin

Every believer hates sin, because it dishonors his Savior, destroys his joy in God, weakens others in the body of Christ, and threatens his own soul.

For those reasons, and others, God calls us to fight sin.

Not toy with it, bargain with it, or surrender to it.  But fight it.  Tooth and nail.  No holds barred.  Taking no captives.

But How?

How do we fight sin?  For years I tried to fight sin by trying not to sin.  At best, that brought a temporary victory in outer behavior.  But it was white-knuckled obedience.  It was not free and willing obedience from the heart.

But then I was shown from God’s Word that the only way to fight sin is by the power of the Spirit (Rom 8:13).

And that what the Spirit does is so satisfy us with the glory of Christ that the inferior pleasures of sin lose their power (Jeremiah 2:12-13).

And that to receive this work of the Spirit we must hear God’s Word with faith (Galatians 3:5).

And what does that mean?  It means asking God to strengthen our faith (Mark 9:24), and praying over relevant Scriptures (Romans 10:17).

When we do that, God will work in our hearts by the Spirit so we once again see and feel that Jesus Christ is our all-satisfying Treasure (2 Corinthians 3:18).

Just like the chorus of the old hymn says —

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.

So here are some posts which go into more detail on this crucial topic — how to fight sin.

My Blow-By-Blow Battle With Discouragement

Sunday afternoon I was deeply discouraged.  But God gave me grace to fight.  Here’s a blow-by-blow account —

How Can I Overcome Temptation?

Moses faced an overpowering temptation.  But by God’s grace he was able to overcome it.  Here’s what he did —

The Christian And Anger: How To Overcome It

Here’s what I learned about how to overcome anger — by applying the Gospel to the root cause.

Why Are We Blind To Biblical Motivations?  Here’s One Reason

It’s puzzling. Many of us see commands in God’s Word, but not the motivations God gives to help us obey those commands. Here’s one reason that happens —

How To Obey God When It’s Costly

What helped Abraham obey?  Here are two words from Heb 11 which will transform our obedience —

I Don’t Feel Like Obeying God — What Should I Do?

Should you just obey anyway?  Here’s why that’s not such a good idea — and what you can do instead.

 Is Biblical Obedience Motivated By Gratitude?

 Gratitude is essential.  But it’s not what motivates biblical obedience.  Here’s what does.

If Faith Without Works Is Dead, What Can I Do?

If I just try to produce works, I’m missing the point.  In this post I explain the point — and how it can transform your life.

Questions About How To Fight Sin?

I’d love to hear them.  Leave a reply below — thanks.

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(Picture is from everystockphoto by familymwr.)

Category: Motivation for Obedience, Overcoming Sin and Temptation

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6 Responses

  1. Yohannes Afewerki says:

    Dear Pastor Steve, I read this morning your recent post on the Holy Spirit & my soul was helped so much that, I was sending my blessings your way and thinking of asking you to help me comprehend or show me in the incredible way of making things easier to understand that you often do what you mean by “We must hear God’s Word with faith.” How do you do it practically to hear with faith? Would you be able to make analogy for this as you often do? I just love the way you break concepts and facts, from the bible, down with corresponding scriptures. If you already have in your blog would you point me to it?
    Bless you & praying for you.

    Yohannes-

    • Steve Fuller says:

      Hi Yohannes,

      You raise a very important question about what it means to hear God’s Word with faith.

      Here’s one analogy I heard. It’s like we are in a river being swept downstream where we will go over a water fall to our death.

      But we are blindly clinging to a rope of the world’s promises, which are lies and won’t save us.

      But in great mercy, through Jesus Christ, God throws us the rope of His promises. So hearing God’s Word with faith means letting go of the world’s promises, and clinging instead to all that God promises to be to us in Christ Jesus.

      As we prayerfully set our hearts on God’s promises in Christ, the Holy Spirit will strengthen our faith so we see and feel that Jesus Christ is our all-surpassing Treasure, and that everything we need now and forever is ours in Him.

      That’s the best I can do. Does that help? Let me know —

      In Christ,

      Steve Fuller

  2. Paul Walton says:

    Steve,

    Here’s a small sample size of a sermon by John Piper about how we are to kill sin… our sin!

    “Until you believe that life is war – that the stakes are your soul – you will probably just play at Christianity with no bloodearnestness and no vigilance and no passion and no wartime mindset. If that is where you are this morning, your position is very precarious. The enemy has lulled you into sleep or into a peacetime mentality, as if nothing serious is at stake. And God, in his mercy, has you here this morning, and had this sermon appointed to wake you up, and put you on a wartime footing.

    Jesus said in Matthew 11:12, “From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and violent men take it by force.” Do you want to enter the kingdom of heaven? Take it violently! But violence against whom – or against what? Listen to Jesus’ answer: “If your hand or your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it from you; it is better for you to enter life crippled or lame, than to have two hands or two feet and be cast into the eternal fire” (Matthew 18:8). Do you want to enter life? Take it violently. Cut off your hand or your foot if you must to keep from stumbling. It’s a picture of the most radical kind of assault on our own sin. Not the sins of others – our sins.

    Lay that on top of Romans 8:13, “If by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live.” Do you want to enter into life? Do you want to live? Get violent. Get a wartime mindset. Stop making peace with ears and eyes and tongues and hands and feet that betray you like Judas, and go over to the side of the enemy and become instruments of sin and make war on your soul. Put to death the deeds of your body.”- John Piper

    Of course Jesus is speaking figuratively about cutting off body parts, because our hearts produce the evil desires that our bodies lives out. But our mind set must be one of war against sin, against our sin. We are experiencing the devastating results of the effects of sin, even in the church body (on a grand scale), and the outcome is divorce, and families being torn apart.

    “We must be killing sin, or it will be killing us.”

  3. reb61 says:

    can you help me understand what you mean by “pray over” scripture?

    • Steve Fuller says:

      Hi Reb61,

      When I talk about praying over Scripture I’m trying to help us see that it’s not enough just to read it and agree with it mentally. That’s essential. But there must be more.

      By praying over Scripture I mean talking to God about what He’s saying in His Word. That can mean different things, depending on the topic of the verse and the state of my heart.

      It could mean confessing my sin, asking Him to help me believe what He is saying, thanking Him for what He is saying, asking Him to enlighten the eyes of my heart so I see and feel the truth of His Word, and so forth.

      The goal of all of this is to meet God in the truth of His Word — to see His glory, feel His love, taste His goodness. We are not able to make that happen ourselves. But as we pray, He will, at the perfect time and in the perfect amount, pour His Spirit upon us.

      I hope that helps. Let me know —

      In Christ,

      Steve Fuller

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