Showing posts from June 12, 2011

Good Resistance

You have not yet resisted to the point of shedding blood in your striving against sin. (Hebrews 12:4)
That is an issue that I have thought about a lot. It is an element that is central to understanding the real truth about hell as well as our relationship with God.
But this verse that came to my mind this morning speaks of a resistance that is different than the resistance that keeps me from maturing and advancing in my relationship with Jesus. It speaks of striving against sin to the point of shedding blood. But I sense that the typical assumptions about what resisting sin means keeps most people trapped in confused attempts about how to do that. If we don't have correct definitions of sin then the kind of resistance we are likely to put up may all be efforts in a completely wrong direction and ironically may even strengthen sin rather than eliminate it. We too often are fighting a battle where the real battle is not taking place.
I decided that the best way to explore wh…

Deny Him or Deny Himself

And He was saying to them all, "If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me. (Luke 9:23)
And He said, "I say to you, Peter, the rooster will not crow today until you have denied three times that you know Me." (Luke 22:34)
In these verses the Greek word translated 'deny' is defined by Strong's this way. aparneomai; to deny utterly, i.e. disown, abstain:--deny.
What motivated Peter to deny that he knew Jesus, that he was a disciple of Jesus? It was fear: fear of what others would think about him, fear of what might happen to himself if he were too closely associated with Jesus when He was extremely unpopular and nearly everyone was intent on hurting Him.
In a sense Peter was actually telling the truth. He didn't really know Jesus very well at this point in his life. But to deny that he was even a disciple of Jesus was an outright lie and an act of cowardice motivated by natural desire for self-preservation. …