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Welcome to my blog! I hope to be a resource to help you in your walk with God. Now more than ever we need to get back to the basic fundamentals of moral living and take a stand for what is right and truthful with God as our ultimate authority. His Word is reliable and preserved and can be trusted, so that is the basis for my advice and teaching. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or topics you would like me to cover. I look forward to sharing what God has placed on my heart. See my website at http://www.dawnfoss.tateauthor.com and http://www.dawnfoss.com/ for books and music I have written that will enrich your life!

Ezekiel 22:30: "And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none." Let's stand in the gap together!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Are you sliding?

A term we have often used when referring to a Christian who is getting "sloppy" in his or her behavior or attitude is "backsliding."   Well what exactly does that mean?  My Pastor, Dr. Chris Atkinson from Meriden Hills Baptist Church, preached a wonderful sermon this past Sunday morning  on "The Slippery Slope of Sin."  You can hear the whole sermon by clicking on this link: http://meridenhillsbaptist.org/sermons/the-slippery-slope-of-sin/

However, I am going to just post the outline, as it's a great outline to remember.  The passage of Scripture is Romans 1:28-32:

Romans 1:28-32King James Version (KJV)

28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;
29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; [NOTICE THAT RIGHT HERE IT CHANGES FROM NAMING SINS TO NAMING PEOPLE'S CHARACTER] whisperers,
30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,
31 Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:
32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

The whole issue with trying to avoid a slippery slope is to avoid a downward slide into deeper and deeper sin that will have undesirable consequences.  Think of going down a metal slide, and how hard that is to stop when momentum has begun and the slide is slippery.  You don't usually stop until you hit the bottom.  What is the bottom?  Well, sliding on a playground is a lot of fun!  Sliding into sin seems fun at the time, but where it leads you is somewhere you do not want to be!
1.  A tempting thought can become a sinful desire.  Resist that thought!  It's not sin yet!  Don't worry if sinful thoughts pop in your head; this is just the result of being sinners in a sinful world. These thoughts are going to come.  They do not become sin until you stop and coddle that thought, fantasizing, developing that thought into a desire.  Then it becomes sin.  
2.  A sinful desire can become an evil deed.  Evil deeds don't just happen.  They start with a desire, which might have started with a hateful thought or a lustful thought, and was dwelled upon until it developed into a plan of action, and an evil deed was done.  Repent and confess to God that sinful desire, naming it what it is, before it turns into an evil deed!
3.  An evil deed can become a wicked habit.  When you commit an evil act, it may shock you at first, but it can become addicting, and you may find yourself doing it again and again until it no longer pricks your conscience.  You have now developed a habit, and may eventually lose your sense of guilt about the wicked deeds.
4.  A wicked habit can become a corrupt character.  When you become a person who can do evil things and not feel guilty over it, or you can easily ignore the guilt and now this becomes a lifestyle for you, you have found yourself with a changed character and maybe even personality. Your mood may be different, and the good character you once possessed is now replaced with a corrupt one. 
Note: Your conscience can become what the Bible refers to as "seared."  One test of your salvation is that a true Christian cannot sin and enjoy it; the Holy Spirit will convict the Christian that it is sin.  However, a Christian can quench the Holy Spirit if rebellion continues, and that is a terrible place to be spiritually.
5.  A corrupt character can become a deadly destiny.  James 1:15: "Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death."  It can lead to physical death, as you are hanging around the wrong crowd, or inheriting the natural consequences of sin.  The severity of the consequences depends on the sin committed.  If you never trust Christ as your Savior, it could lead to spiritual death as well, as you chose a deadly destiny instead of a destiny of life through Christ.
God can't bless you in the pigpen.  Come home!  That is the good news; just like the prodigal son came home, so can you.  See Luke 15:18-29.  You decide when to stop the slide.  You don't have to go all the way to the bottom.  Pray and with God's power, you can have the victory, get off the slide, and God will bring you back up and restore you.  You may still have consequences to pay, but He will help you through it, and you will have a changed destination.  If you are truly a Christian, God's child, then you can't lose your salvation, but you could have broken fellowship with Him.  Repent, and that can be mended, and you can once again walk in the joy of the Lord!

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