For I know that nothing good dwells ain me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. 19 bFor I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. Romans 7:17-18 (ESV)
Jesus Christ combats our sin with His mercy and grace not shame and banishment! If He didn’t do that to us in our unredeemed state, why would He do that in our redeemed state?
But, you may ask, what if we choose to commit the same sin over and over again? What about when we fall in the same area time after time and continue to plunge headlong into a particular area of sinful behavior?
If this describes you, what I can tell you is you are not living as though you believe Romans 6. One who struggles with a repetitive sin either doesn’t care about that sin, or they don’t believe they are able to stop sinning.
What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it? Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? Romans 6:1-3 (NKJV)
These verses tell us that we have been freed from the power that sin holds over us, and that any sinning we do now is by choice. We are no longer obligated to obey those sinful thoughts and desires but on some level you must not believe that is true. That sin meets some perceived need in you, and you worship it.
For example: a woman who has as a sinful habit using curse words when she becomes angry knows that she does not have to curse, yet she does anyway. She knows the theology behind her position in Christ and yet she continues to behave in this way. On some level, using those words meets some perceived need within her. She wrongly believes that no other words can convey her true feelings about a subject, or the depths of her anger. It soothes her desire to be understood as “angry” and it is so important to her to be understood in this way that she willingly sins to prove it. In those moments she is not worshiping God, but she is worshiping herself.
Willingly living as a slave to sin, a bondservant to unrighteousness is to deny what Christ has done for her! Anyone who lives as a slave to sin is owned by it in practice while not being its slave in position because we have been freed!
And remember, if you were a slave when the Lord called you, the Lord has now set you free from the awful power of sin. And if you were free when the Lord called you, you are now a slave of Christ. God purchased you at a high price. Don’t be enslaved by the world. 1 Corinthians 7:22-23 (NKJV)
When living in the victorious position means enough to you, you will do it. Until then you live as its slave and deny the power He gives you to overcome – that is a decision. You know that the guilt is there you live with it as a consequence of your sin. A part of you most certainly hates that sin, but not enough to jettison it. Yet the closer you grow to Him the more you know you are living in willful disobedience in that area and you will experience the consequence of guilt.
It has to be about Him and not about you. You have to want to glorify Him more than you want to satisfy you and become willing to run away from yourself to avoid the sin. You have to decide it is more important to you to live your position, and to stop living as a slave to sin.