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Devotional by Ray Stedman – The person who rationalizes sin – A daily devotion for May 4

Topic:The person who rationalizes sin

My little children, these things I write to you so that you do not sin. But if anyone has sinned, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ, the righteous. He is the propitiation for our sins.
1 John 2: 1-2a

Ray Stedman devotion
Ray Stedman

There is never a need to sin, but if we realize that we are doing it, we have a perfect defense within our reach, a defense that the Father will receive with great joy, one that has already told us that it will be welcome. We have a Lawyer with the Father, who will come immediately to our defense, but His defense is of no use if we are still defending ourselves. You can either depend on His way of defending you, by manifesting His work on your behalf, that you have eliminated all the stains and all the sins you will never commit, or you will have to depend on your own defense. Here you are, before God, telling Him defiantly that you are not guilty, that you have a defense.

Whenever you appear defiant or evasive, you continue to justify and apologize to yourself and, therefore, the Judge can only allow the inevitable, allowing the intrinsic judgments that follow you to be embarrassed, defeated, torment, that make him feel bewildered, leaving him weakened and foolish. But if you stop being justified, He will justify you. The blood of Jesus Christ can not clean excuses, only cleanses sins. If you are willing to say: “Yes, it was not the pressure, it was not the circumstances, it was not that these things are not as bad as you say they are; that is why I have decided to show myself impatient and resentful. I’ve decided to worry and let anxiety take over. ” If we get to that place, we will discover that there is One who is in the presence of the Father and reveals to Him the righteousness of His life, so that we can be cleansed and accepted. The force flows again in us; we feel peace again in our hearts; we are cleansed of our sins, cleansed and restored by the grace of God. Then we can return to the same circumstances, under the same pressure, discovering that our hearts are being protected by the grace and strength of God.

Why does John say: “He is the propitiation for our sins, and not only for ours, but also for the sins of the whole world”? The answer is this: It is to help us see ourselves. Why is it that these other people, whose sins have already been atoned for on the cross, are living apart and acting with hostility towards the God who loves them and who seeks them? The answer is, naturally, because those people do not want to believe in Him and are not willing to accept His forgiveness. That is the same reason why we Christians are not enjoying the absolute flow of the Spirit of power, life, love and wisdom as part of our experience. All these things are available to us, but we will not receive them. Like the world, we are turning our backs on them. We are saying to God: “I am not interested in cleaning, because I do not really need it. After all, this is not a sin, it is simply a weakness and I can not help it. ” That kind of thing is destroying the basis of all the redeeming work of Jesus Christ on our behalf. Although His power is entirely at our disposal, we do not experience it because of that attitude.



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Father, examine my heart. Make me open and be honest. Teach me to stop making excuses and totally accept the work of my lawyer, Jesus Christ.

Application to life
When we sin, what happens if we justify our actions or make excuses for our disobedience? Do we have God’s forgiveness for the sins we committed in the past, in the present and in the future?

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