Christian Challenge International, 300 Pearce Road, Pineville, LA 71360 (318)640-4300
  HOME Search   
About Us  
 Service Schedule  
 Statement of Faith  
 Meet our Staff  
 Members Section  
 Email Users Login  
 ACTS Studies  
 Ask The Pastor  
 Online Bookstore  
 Online Sermons  
 Video - Live & Archived  
 Radio Ministry  
 Jubilee CD  
Other Ministries / Outreach  
 School for Christian Workers  
 Hebraic Foundations Study  
 Studies for Pentecostals  
 CCI Devo Conference  





Ask The Pastor

January 10, 2003

> Question:

> Why is it no matter how I try that I just can't seem to shake off my
> old sinful practices? Could it be that I'm not saved? No matter how
> many times I ask the lord to forgive me I still fall back into sin.
> Please HELP!!!


It is more than a matter of salvation. You are simply being honest about something that every believer has to deal with. It has to do with understanding that a principle of sin is resident in our earthy bodies. The ancients spoke of this as the 'evil inclination.' I'll share on this briefly.

First, there are three levels of life that a believer can relate to. The first level is our former life as a sinner. At that time we sinned by nature and weren't much concerned about it. Another level is the heavenly life that we look forward to, that is, where sin will never again be present in our lives in any form.

But the problem is our NOW life. In our present life we are sort of betwix and between the other two lives. Sometimes we wonder if we are saint or sinner. At times we feel very refreshed and at liberty in our spiritual life, then at other times we feel our sins very deeply. But this only means that we are in good company. This is what makes the Bible such a wonderful book. It openly shares the struggles, the failures, along with the victories that are common to all God's people.

Read the testimonies of God's great servants of the past. You will find each of them expressing this very same struggle that you are expressing. Even the great apostle Paul spoke of it, when he said, "For the good that I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want." (Romans 7:19)

But it was also the apostle Paul who pointed us to the answer. The answer is three-fold. First, always keep in view that the sin debt has been fully paid. Paul said that our sins will not be called into account. This means that Jesus not only died for our sins, but He gave us His life in exchange. For this reason Satan can never successfully accuse us before the Father. We have an eternal advocate in the Son.

Secondly, Paul said that the only way we can walk in victory over the sins of the flesh is to realize that the victory of the Spirit. His point was that no believer can defeat flesh with flesh. You can't keep enough rules, or punish yourself sufficiently, or make enough vows and promises to bring the flesh into submission. It can only be done by the power or the Spirit. And every believer has this power of the Spirit deep within them.

Thirdly, is in learning to appreciate the work of the Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the one who convicts us of our sins, who causes us to receive our forgiveness, who actually points us in the way of release and victory. The reason for this is because the Spirit and the flesh are at enmity with one another, and the Holy Spirit will never let the flesh rest as long is it is taking advantage of a believer. The Spirit wins out by bringing the believer back to the cross.

This does not mean that we are without responsibility. The key is to learn to live in and by the Spirit. And even in times of slip up, come back to the cross. The blood will always be sufficient to cleanse our conscience from the workings of sin in our life.

Finally, and I say this as a way of helping in particular, it is important to understand that sin begins with a seed thought. If you will learn deal with these 'seeds' quickly, then the true victory will always be close at hand.

There is more to be said, but I hope this will help a bit. (Learn to replace bad habits with good habits.)



Bro. Buddy Martin - Ask the Pastor

Lawrence "Buddy" Martin

What would you like to "Ask the Pastor?"

Your full name: 
Your email address: (ex:
PLEASE include your email address or we won't be able to send the answer to you.

Your question
(Note: Please include your full name and email address. Answers will be sent by return email. Christian Challenge reserves the right to reprint your question and edit it for clarity and content on our "Ask the Pastor" web page. Please note that we will not divulge your full name nor your email address. Typically we'll use your first name only. Not all questions are posted on this page - many more are responded to privately. Please let us know if you do NOT want your question listed or if you'd prefer it to be listed anonymously. We respect your privacy and will NOT sell/give/loan your name and email address to any other organization/business/entity.)

Back to the Christian Challenge International home page!

Last updated Wednesday, September 19, 2007. (View the What'sNew page to see the newest updates.) The URL of this page is:

You can make an online donation from your checking account or credit card!

Copyright 1997-2005 Christian Challenge International.
All Rights Reserved.

Christian Challenge International
300 Pearce Road
Pineville, LA 71360