In his book Fuzzy Memories, Jack Handey writes: “There used to be this bully who would demand my lunch money every day. Since I was smaller, I would give it to him. But then I decided to fight back. I started taking karate lessons. But then the karate lesson guy said I had to start paying him five dollars a lesson. So I just went back to paying the bully.”
Isn’t that most like us? Too many of us feel it is easier to pay the bully than it is to learn how to defeat him. Too many of us keep trying to function with the defect rather than getting it repaired. Too many of us succumb to defeat rather than learning the countermeasures that lead to victory.
An offensive strategy can protect you when the enemy attacks. The strategy includes the following action steps.
- Recognize sin for is destructive and diabolical nature.
Sin violates the covenant relationship with God. It is disobedience against a gracious and lovingly heavenly Father. Most of us never see the magnitude of our defect because the essence of sin is denial.
2. Resort to the proper tactics for defeating Satan.
We are in a battle with all the forces of evil. But it is a winnable battle. Fortunately, the Bible provides a workable strategy that will lead to victory over the deadly sins. In our day of unparalleled temptation, every person must know how to overcome Satan.
3. Release sin through the power of confession.
Confession does for the soul what the mechanic does for the defective car. Confession is the act of allowing God to work on our defective lives. Confession is not begging God to forgive us but agreeing with God about our sin. And there are times when we have to agree with the Father that we are in desperate need of repair and forgiveness.
Confession is owning up to the fact that our behavior wasn’t just the result of bad parenting, poor genes, jealous siblings, or a chemical imbalance. Any or all of those factors may be involved. After all, human beings are complex. But confession means saying that somewhere in the mix was a choice, and we made that choice, and we do not need to excuse it, explain it, or even understand it. Rather, the choice needs to be forgiven. And it is forgiven when we admit to our dishonesty of trying to live on our terms instead of God’s. That’s where the release comes in.
4. Remove sin from our lives.
First there is a why, then there is a how to removing sin from our lives. The primary reason we want sin removed from our lives is to restore our relationship with our heavenly Father. We are human beings created to be in relationship with God; as long as unconfessed sin exists, however, that relationship will be broken. Second, we will never experience victory in one area of our lives while sin exists in another area. In other words, we can’t receive blessings on the one hand while being disobedient on the other hand.
How, then, do we remove sin from our lives? Honestly, we can’t. We have neither the strength nor the moral completeness to accomplish such a monumental task. For that, we have to rely on another person, and that other person is none other than Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world. Jesus’ sacrificed Himself on the Cross, bearing the sins of all humans so that our sins would be removed permanently from our record.
The penalty for sin is death. Someone—either we or a substitute—has to die for our sins. We are given a choice: allow sin to take its course, leading ultimately to death, or trust in Jesus, who died for our sins.
Regardless of whether we realize it, we are in a war. The bombs and bullets of Satan’s attacks are all around us. Many people have succumbed to the deadly darts and lie defeated. But we don’t have to be victims. We don’t have to lose the battles or the war if we employ countermeasures against our enemy.
My book The Sins of Highly Defective People is a militant call to employ those countermeasures. They are effective in winning the battle against the seven deadly sins.