Wednesday, September 22, 2010
when I will be done sinning...
Beloved, we are God's children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. And everyone who thus hopes in Him purifies himself as He is pure.
1 John 3:2-3
Struggling in a sinful world with an inherited sin nature is difficult for any Christian. It is the battle for sanctification realized. And it will one day be fully realized for every believer in the presence of Christ. Until then we struggle and set our hearts on thinking, wanting, and doing the right things. And we will occasionally fail.
There is a day when I will be done sinning. That day will be when I see Jesus as He is, not as I have been taught and shown. Faith will become reality, either by His return for His church, or by my return to my Creator and Savior by death. Either of these experiences will be welcomed once I know Him as He is! This is a hope that helps maintain a commitment to self-purity. That is John's point in this passage. We shall be like Jesus, not in His omniscience or all-powerful ability, but in the fact that we shall be free from sin's corrupting influence. And that is a goal and a state worth longing for.
John states that this future hope is a good motive to strive toward obedience to the truth. It has a purifying effect on us in and of itself. We want to be free from sin like our Savior. John does not say we will achieve a sinless perfection in this life (in fact, that has "not yet appeared"). But what John does say is that we have a hope that on the day we meet Jesus, we will definitely be free from sin because He will see us safely to completion in His presence. The older I get, the more welcome that day is for me. I do not long to leave this world for many reasons... some of them selfish. I think I will make more impact... I want to see my kids succeed as mature people... My marriage is still so sweet that I cannot imagine life without it. But once I see Jesus, I know that will change in a split-second of recognition of my Savior. And that is a hope I am looking for... even now.
- Prepare your minds for action.
1 Peter 1:13