I remember when I was young and getting ready to go to college sitting down with my father and learning from him how to do my taxes. It wasn't the happiest time we spent together for sure but I remember after taking it all in, (my father was a good teacher) concluding, "Dad, it's really easy to cheat on your taxes." My dad had taught the subject well but my conclusion I could tell saddened him and he said - "Yes son it is - but that also determines the type of man you will become." The worst enemy that we have is ourselves. The Bible calls this nature, living inside us - the flesh. He occupies the same skin that we occupy. He uses the same brain that we use in thinking his destructive thoughts. He uses the same hands that we use to perform his own deeds. This enemy can do you more harm than anyone else. He is the greatest handicap that we have in our daily Christian life. There are two reasons that make dealing with the flesh difficult. First, we are reluctant to recognize and identify him. We are loath to label him as an enemy. The fact of the matter is most of us rather like him. The second problem is that he is on the inside of us. In Joshua 7 and 8 the defeat at Ai represents the flesh of the believer. There was something wrong on the inside of Israel. This was supposed to be the land God had promised, but something stood in their way - themselves. Specifically, there was sin in the camp (Achan's sin affected everyone). Steps in the sins of the flesh are: I saw -- physical; I coveted -- mental; I took -- volitional. There can be no deliverance until sin is dealt with and the believer humbles himself and prays to the Lord for forgiveness. Achan had committed a serious offense because it was in direct defiance of an explicit command (Deuteronomy 20:16-18). And when we sin there are ALWAY'S consequences. Notice the results of Achan's sin: (1) Many men died (7:5); (2) Israel's army melted in fear (7:5); (3) Joshua questioned God (7:7-9); (4) God threatened to withdraw his presence from the people (7:12); (5) Achan and his family had to be destroyed (7:24-26). When Israel eliminated the sin from their community, these were the results: (1) God's encouragement (8:1); (2) God's presence in battle (8:1); (3) God's guidance and promise of victory (8:2); (4) God's permission to keep the plunder and livestock from the battle for themselves (8:2). Throughout the entire history of Israel, blessings came when the people got rid of their sin. We too will experience blessings when we turn from your sin and follow God's plan wholeheartedly. If you haven't accepted Christ then your sins have not been washed in the blood of the lamb. Not only will you be blessed in turning from sin when you have Christ as your Savior but you will gain an eternity in heaven with all the saints that have gone before us. God loves you (John 3:16), Everyone is a sinner (Romans 3:23), Sin has a price that must be paid (Romans 6:23), Jesus died to pay for your sin (Romans 5:8), Pray and ask Jesus to forgive you of your sins and to be your Savior and Lord. (Romans 10:9-13). Resources: Thru the Bible by Dr. J. Vernon McGee, Life Application Bible Notes

Last modified on Wednesday, 09 August 2017 01:48

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