Why You Can’t Stop Sinning

Guilt, Shame, and Condemnation

These 3 enemies of God increase our propensity toward sin. They are lies that can lead us away from fellowship with him. They alone are the driving factors behind perpetual cycles of unwanted sin. The 3 enemies of God insist on measuring your worth according to your works, and you will never, ever measure up. When you believe you don’t measure up, you fall into sin.

Love

Love increases our propensity toward outward holiness. In this context, I am not speaking of love as an outward act. While giving love is important, it is secondary to receiving it. If we don’t first receive it, we’ll will have nothing to give. It is the fuel to our fire, the foundation through which our outward holiness is sustained.

The Solution

The solution to compulsive sin is doing nothing but receiving God’s love for you. God is most pleased with you when you are most satisfied in His son, not when you are doing all the right things and avoiding all the things you shouldn’t do. Again, we do not bring glory to God by trying to live upright, rather we bring the most glory to God when we are most satisfied in his son. If you can’t stop compulsively sinning, whether it’s an addiction, anger issues, or anything else that God has promised you freedom from, try resting in the truth that Jesus has made you righteous, by grace through faith, entirely apart from what you’ve done, haven’t done, or are doing.

When you base your righteousness on how “holy” you are living, you invite guilt, shame, and condemnation to judge you. But when you recognize that Truth is higher than your feelings and circumstances, you can then stand on the truth that you are righteous, pure, and holy!

So throw away how you feel. What you did last night or last week or 10 or 20 years ago has no bearing on your righteousness. When you can look at your past mistakes, no matter how long ago or how recent they are, and say, “God doesn’t remember you, so neither will I,” you will find true freedom in Christ. After all, if God doesn’t remember your sins, who are you to remember them? When you choose to no longer remember your own sins, you are thinking like Christ, and the desires of your heart will automatically transform and you will find yourself living in the center of God’s will.

Photo by Hugues de BUYER-MIMEURE on Unsplash

Preventing Church Splits

I wonder how often the cause of church splits are due to their leaderships’ unwillingness to plant more churches, or even simply acknowledge or bless their members in their own calling to plant a new church in the very same area.

Maybe the color of the new carpet isn’t the reason they left. Maybe the reasons some churches split over aren’t as petty as we make them out to be. Maybe it’s because we’ve become competitive in our own locale, having forgotten that we are still on the same team. Maybe if we would plant more churches, even if that means it’s across the street, we would see fewer splits, thus avoiding the pain, suffering, and confusion it causes for so many congregants.

Personally, I don’t believe there is such a thing as “too many churches in one area.”

Featured Image-Timothy Meinberg

This Series Changed Our Life

This guy Jim Baker from Zion Christian Fellowship in Columbus, OH is the real deal. I saw him at a weekend conference at a local church called Life Center Lynchburg, where he taught on healing the sick. At the end of it, I went to his merch table to see what kind of goods he brought with him, and one of them was a series on finances. I did not know what to expect with this teaching, but his teachings on healing the sick were so good that I had to get this.

I cannot overstate what I am about to say. . . this may have been the best investment I have ever made, and it is not even about how to manage your finances, rather it is about maintaining a biblically-based heart toward wealth and prosperity. Watching just the first two of these messages caused us to repent from old ways of thinking about money and instead take on new ways of real stewardship. We have virtually no fear or worry with giving our offering at church anymore, no matter what situation we are in, and our own needs are not just met, but exceeded, every single month since watching this series.

The series that I purchased contains 16 sermons on the topic, however ZCF’s YouYube channel contains an 8 part series of the same series, just condensed. Again, I cannot recommend this series enough. It has changed our lives, and if you give it a shot, I have no doubt that it will change yours as well. Here is the first one. You can watch the rest on YouTube.

If you know of an awesome message or series on this topic, please share in the comments below. I’d love to check it out. And don’t forget, if you are interested in supporting me, and you are interested in downloading a new web browser from Brendan Eich (creator of JavaScript and co-founder of Mozilla and Firefox) that is a full ad and tracking blocker, I will get $5 worth of its associated cryptocurrency called BAT when you use our referral link: https://brave.com/emi816 – Thank you!

Featured Image by rawpixel on Unsplash

Prophetic Dreams

I’ve been considering publishing some of my prophetic dreams lately. I don’t know how beneficial it could be for readers, but my primary motive is to simply record them. That being said, I’ll go ahead and share a prophetic dream that I had on Sunday night. I will also share with you how I interpret them, but I would also like to invite you to give me your thoughts on them. If there are any additional meanings or symbolism that you notice, please do share in the comments.

The Dream:

An old friend named Anthony was standing in front of me. I offered him to eat from a bowl of grapes that I had sitting on a table. I had no expectation of him taking any, and I was correct as he refused to eat any. After a brief moment, he reached over and grabbed a couple of them and began eating. I was very surprised, and very glad.

My Interpretation:

I don’t believe this old friend of mine in this dream literally represents him, rather it’s about what he reminds me of, and that is based on the last few interactions I had with him, where he was closed-off to anything I had to say.

I believe that Anthony represents the attitude I expect to be met with when I begin to bring a stronger message of grace into the church, which again is closed-off to what I am teaching. I believe the grapes represent a toned down message of the Gospel for non-wine drinkers (ie. legalists who have never had a sip of the new wine that is grace). In other words, I believe Abba is showing me not to force wine down people’s throats, but rather ease them into it with something that is more palatable for them.

Again, I would love to hear any feedback on this. If you think my interpretation is way off, please let me know. If you think I might be missing something big, again, please let me know. If you think it’s just a dream and nothing more, lol, let me know!

One Way to Support Me

Lately I have been considering being more consistent in these blog posts, however I am very busy and it is not exactly a profitable activity for me, lol. So if you would like to support me or encourage me to keep writing, here is one way you can do it:

My wife and I are invested in a cryptocurrency called Basic Attention Token. I won’t go into the details, but in short, this token will be utilized on the Brave platform. Brave is a new secure web browser that protects user data by blocking all ads and trackers, and it will even be releasing a new feature for Tor tabs in the coming weeks. The reason we are invested in this cryptocurrency is because I had several prophetic dreams about it last fall where a stranger would approach me and tell me about it, even suggesting that I buy some. We have already made quite a bit from this investment, and yet it still has a long way to go!

If you want to give the browser a test-drive on mobile or desktop, I just ask that you use my referral link, as I will receive $5 worth of the token for each download.

You can get it here: https://brave.com/emi816

Thank you!

Brave browser basic attention token photo

Matthew 7:21 Has Become the Anthem for Every Pharisee

I’m a sermon junkie. I’m also a live-worship junkie. I get the majority of my favorite content the same way as most of you, from YouTube. While most of my consumption of that content is a very positive experience, the comments section can have a way of grating on my nerves. I’m sure you can relate. I *hope* you can relate, and that aren’t one of the ones that I am currently complaining about.

To put things into context, I just watched a video of a celebrity leading worship with probably the most popular worship band in the world, and the comments section is filled to the brim with judgments completely devoid of any sort of grace. Whether it’s a preacher they disagree with or a secular musician making a heartfelt attempt at worshiping the Lord, the Pharisees will always come out to show their sympathies for the prodigal sons’ older brother, and their favorite verse to pull out of context to sling these deadly accusations at their brothers and sisters is Matthew 7:21, which reads, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.

A classic text-grenade. You did it. You just blew him up. Now he’s going to think twice about leading worship ever again, because that’s certainly not what God would have him do. Why would he? He’s not good enough. His lifestyle isn’t as good and upright as yours, so clearly God hates him and has no grace left over for him. Right?

Ok, I probably need to settle down, because the root of the issue isn’t necessarily with the individuals that are blasting these preachers and celebrities. The root, in my opinion, stems from an awful mixture of law and grace that is found in the vast majority of churches across the nation. I believe this disgusting, lukewarm mixture of law and grace is what leads so many believers to praise God for his unending grace in their own lives but then from the other side of their lips come condemnation and judgment.

If you’re one of these Pharisees, then please understand that if the grace you think you have received has not caused you to approach even your enemies with compassion (Luke 23:34), then I challenge you to dig deeper into understanding his incredible grace. It’s for your own sake, but more importantly it’s for the sake of others who are looking to you as a way of connecting with God.

#dontbethatguy #pleasenoseriouslydontbethatguy

The Prodigal Sons’ Father Does The Unthinkable

The Fathers rewards are not based on his kids’ behavior, good or bad, but according to who they are.
What if we raised our children this way? I remind my kids daily that I’m proud of who they are, especially when they mess up. Behavioral correction and discipline should always be accompanied with edifying words of security.

Ava and Owen cannot choose to stop being my kids, therefore they can do nothing to escape my love. Whether or not they choose to accept my rewards is entirely up to them, but they will always be available to them.

How we think He looks at us and treats us determines how we look at and treat our children. If we do not respond to our kids the way Abba responds to us, we are wearing the wrong lenses.

How can I be holy?

For starters, if you’re a believer, you are holy. Regardless of how you feel about yourself on any given day, Jesus’ righteousness has been imputed to you. You are His. When God sees you, He sees Jesus, because Jesus is all there is to see in you. I challenge you to stop trusting your feelings and start standing on God’s Word, which states over and over again that you have been bought at the highest price imaginable, that you are holy, pure, and righteous. You have entered into this through faith, not by what you have or have not done.

One might say, “But where’s the fruit of holiness in my life? Why do I continue to struggle?” Holy behavior can only come from holy thinking, and that is through Grace. Stand on the truth of your identity as a son or daughter of the King, and pursue a greater revelation of His Grace. A greater revelation of His Grace will lead you to a clean conscience.

The fruit of holiness can only grow from a clean conscience. A clean conscience can only be attained through trusting that you are who God says you are, holy, righteous, and pure.

If you are a believer and yet are powerless against sin, it is because you do not have a clean conscience.