What is Habitual Sin?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Zaac, Jan 15, 2014.

  1. Zaac

    Zaac
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    And when does it become habitual?

    I meant to start this before the Paul Washer thread in reference to another thread. But I think it's a good time to look at this subject.

    Saturneptune asked in the other thread how do you know what side someone falls on?


    I know people who have struggled with porn, who have been addicted to drugs, and a whole lot of other stuff for years. They stay away for a while, but get pulled back.

    Does the blood of Jesus only cover sin to a certain point??
     
  2. Yeshua1

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    Habitual/continual sinning would be when one allows themselves to become dominated totally by their sin issue, when they feel NO remorse/conviction/repentence towards doing that thing, that they accept is as being normal and acceptable to God!

    that person needs to get saved by grace of god, in order to have thre means thru the bible. Holy Spirit, new nature, community of saints etc to help them overcome that issue!

    the blood of jesus continually cleanses from all sins, as his death paid for all sins to ever commit, BUT the saved person cannot jusy keep living in their sinful ways and have no desire to repent of their sins, to try to forake, as saved will evidence that to some degree!
     
  3. thisnumbersdisconnected

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    I'm not sure anyone can answer that specifically, but we can see biblical evidence that we all have things with which we struggle.
    James 3, (NASB)
    2 For we all stumble in many ways. If anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to bridle the whole body as well. ​
    Now, I'm sure the hypers and ultras around here will claim "all" doesn't mean "all." That's their argument against anything in the Word that contradicts their closely held doctrines. However, the half-brother of the Lord makes it clear, in a someone sarcastic manner, that if a person doesn't stumble, well, he must be perfect. Which we all know is impossible, since only Jesus is Perfect in the flesh.
    I agree, and it provides a place where -- for at least a short time -- we can discuss it intelligently until the emotionalism and "disreason" migrates over here from that thread. :laugh:
    I don't know anyone, nor do I believe anyone, can discern when someone has fallen into habitual sin. The main reason being that those in habitual sin manage to hide it for an extended period of time before it becomes obvious. Many time, their family and/or friends help them hide it, make excuses for them, even deny they have a problem of addiction, adultery, lying, or whatever sin they may have difficulty overcoming.
    The blood of Jesus covers all believers' sin, forever, from Adam's sin, to the potential sin of the last person born in the Thousand Year Reign. But all will still be subject to James' declaration, " ... we all stumble in many ways." We all sin, even Christians, when we walk in the flesh instead of in the Spirit.

    Part of the process of overcoming these habitual sins is in recognizing the transformation that has indeed taken place within the believer.
    Romans 6
    11 Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus.​
    Paul is telling us to remember that in coming to Christ, the power of sin has been broken in our lives. He uses the metaphor of slavery to make this point. We were at one time slaves to sin, but now we are slaves to righteousness.
    Romans 6
    17 But thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed,
    18 and having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness. ​
    At the cross, the power of sin was broken and in becoming Christians, we are set free from sin’s slavery over us. Therefore, when a Christian sins, it is no longer out of the necessity of his nature, but because he has willfully submitted himself to sin’s dominion.
    Galatians 5
    1 It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.​
    The next part of the process is recognizing our inability to overcome habitual sin and our need to rely on the power of God’s Holy Spirit, who dwells within us. Back to Romans 7, which I quoted extensively on that other thread.
    Romans 7
    24 Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death?
    25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind am serving the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh the law of sin.​
    The Christian’s struggle against sin is one in which our ability does not match our desire. That is why we need the power of the Holy Spirit. We should be using the power of the Holy Spirit within us like an F-22 burning jet fuel, but we get "stuck on stupid," forgetting the real power and might available to us through Him who lives in us.
    Romans 8
    11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.​
    The Holy Spirit, through God’s Word sanctifying us through its truth (as John wrote in 17:17 of his gospel), works sanctification in the people of God. Habitual sin is overcome as we submit ourselves to God and refuse the temptations of the flesh. Again, Jesus' half-brother James spoke of the assurance we have in Christ.
    James 4
    7 Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
    8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.​
    Why do some think these verses are in the Bible, if it is not possible for a Christian to become entrapped in habitual sin? Guess we'll have to ask them. I fall back to the Scriptural basis for my counseling theory, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, which was developed by Dr. Aaron Beck, a Christian psychologist.
    Galatians 6
    1 Brethren, even if anyone is caught in any trespass, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness; each one looking to yourself, so that you too will not be tempted.
    2 Bear one another's burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.
    3 For if anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself.
    4 But each one must examine his own work, and then he will have reason for boasting in regard to himself alone, and not in regard to another.
    5 For each one will bear his own load. ​
    Clearly we are to support, love, and counsel one another, and if things get beyond the ability of the layman to help, then the afflicted one is to turn to his/her pastor, a Christian counselor, or other professional who can help them learn about, understand, and negate their addiction or sin through disciplined biblical methods.

    Good thread idea, Zaac. Thanks for starting it.
     
    #3 thisnumbersdisconnected, Jan 15, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 15, 2014
  4. Zaac

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    I agree with that last part. But where do you get the first bolded part from? And if that is true, how would you outside of that person ever know if they were repentant/convicted/remorseful or how they see a particular act. Now we all know you're saying what you do because of homosexuality, and thus you've added this "They think is normal and acceptable to God" bit that I see nowhere in Scripture as a marker for sin being habitual.
     
  5. Zaac

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    :applause::applause: Now THIS is a Biblical answer. i just don't see how, without as you said, knowing someone really well and being able to see a pattern of behavior that anyone outside of that person could begin to surmise that they have fallen into habitual sin.

    True repentance is a turning away so if something is a stronghold in someone's life, why would we expect true conviction...true repentance until the stronghold is broken?

    But to say that someone cannot be saved because they aren't measuring up to a subjective line of something being habitual sin just seems kinda weird.
     
  6. thisnumbersdisconnected

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    I believe that is where we're to get our answers, not from some guy who 400 years ago offered his opinions of what God said. :laugh:

    Thanks, Zaac. As I said, good thread topic. :thumbsup:
     
  7. prophet

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    "Habitual" is done out of programmed response, and no longer out of temptation. The sin has become a choice, a decision, adopted, a way of life.
    The sinner identifies himself now, by the habit.

    For instance, addiction: The cigarette addict is a "smoker". He chooses companions who smoke. He frequents places that allow smoking. He takes regular smoke breaks at work, etc.
    He may often say " I need to quit".
    This is a way of saying "I acknowledge that other people who are concerned for me have a point". It is not a way of saying, "I want to quit".
    Very different in a child of God, is the ever present ability to lay aside any particular sin or weight at any given time. The indwelling Spirit of God constantly working, to remove pleasure from vice, and comfort the hurt that normally pushes one to withdraw to narcotic caves.
     
  8. thisnumbersdisconnected

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    A child of God can make the same excuses for not allowing the sanctifying work of Christ to prevail in his/her life. Often it takes a crisis of one proportion or another for one to decide that His work must be allowed to completion.
     
  9. prophet

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    Agreed. And we are able to resist, though it does bring chastening.
    You know well, given your work, that after the born again child of God is restored, they readily testify of the presence of the Holy Spirit in their life, through the times of resistance.
     
  10. thisnumbersdisconnected

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    Amen. :thumbsup:

    Many of them shake their heads and moan, "How did I get so far off track?" As I quoted in that other thread:
    Jeremiah 17, (NASB)
    9 "The heart is more deceitful than all else
    And is desperately sick;
    Who can understand it? ​
    For that, obviously, I have no answer. I can only assure them that there is power within them as believers to overcome, but they have to access it.
     
  11. HAMel

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    ...it begins at birth.
     
  12. saturneptune

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    Thank you for starting this thread. First, let me say there are others who have struggled with porn, drugs, and drinking and never gone back. Also, I was wondering why you picked out these sins. IMO, one of the most addictive and destructive sins in the array of sin is gossip.

    I talked to Icon at length about this in the other thread. Maybe, just maybe, there is no defined line, and this is why. When I worked as an electronics networking tech for various government departments, we were expected to be on time daily. When we failed to do that, there were five steps of progressive discipline. A verbal warning, letter of warning, one week suspension, two week suspension, and out the door. Workers would always try and get a number of times absent that would trigger discipline. They never got an answer, as each case was judged individually. If they had of gotten an answer as to a defined number, they would have played the game of being off and staying out of trouble to the edge. In the same manner, I believe we in our fallen state would do the same thing. How many times can I do this or that?

    The point is, our minds should not even be pondering that sort of stuff as Christians. We should be focused, through the power of the Holy Spirit in us, of being like Christ and living a victorious life. When we sin (and we will) the surest sign we are saved is that we do not walk but run back into the arms of the Lord. We do not wonder how many more times means we are really saved.
     
  13. Yeshua1

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    I am jsut curious though why some here seem to ahve such a hard time accepting that some behaviour cannot be 'legalized' and made acceptable, for though many in culture says that, and many in church now also, Godstill forbids it!
     
  14. thisnumbersdisconnected

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    I don't think anyone thinks habitual sin can be "legal" or "acceptable." Maybe you aren't referring to anyone on this thread -- and if that be the case, then please ignore the reply :laugh: -- but I believe what has been said, certainly what I've attempted to say, is that habitual sin is not legal or acceptable, but it is a fact of life in some Christians. The key viewpoint, however, is that it doesn't have to be. Those who are caught in "strongholds," if you will, have not tried to access the power that abides in them through the grace of God and the indwelling Holy Spirit. He forbids sin, certainly. He forgives sin, certainly. He knows -- not accepts -- that Christians will sin, and is gracious to forgive them, and has "provided the way of escape" (1 Corinthians 10:13) when temptation arises. I am firmly convinced that "way of escape" is to call upon that power -- call upon the Holy Spirit -- and deny, refute, turn away from, the temptation.
     
  15. Judith

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    First off the bible never uses the term habitual in reference to sin. In 1John3 when it speaks about those born of God not sinning (KJV) the Greek structure points to the practice of sinning as a way of life. It is not just about how much or how often, but about what comes natural. It is out of character or unnatural for a believer to be sinning. For a true Christian to sin it will shock those who knows them and more important it will shock themselves. The lost are not shocked by their sinning as it is their practice. What comes from the mouth is what lies in the heart. Mat 15:18,19 Contrary to what most the church teaches today You can know them by their fruit.
     
  16. righteousdude2

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    Though I can't read the OP.....

    If a picture is worth a thousand words, this one should say it all, based on 2 Peter 2:21-22 (NIV), "For it would be better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than having known it, to turn away from the holy commandment handed on to them. It has happened to them according to the true proverb, "A DOG RETURNS TO ITS OWN VOMIT," and, "A sow, after washing, returns to wallowing in the mire."

    [​IMG]
     
  17. thisnumbersdisconnected

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    Among Christians, because that is who the epistle is written to. Sinning as a way of life is nothing more than habitual sin.
     
  18. Yeshua1

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    Habitual sinning is one commiting active sinning, one whose desires and practice/behaviour is to continue and stay in that sin!

    a Homosexual saved by jesus can at times struggle against those temptations can even commit that sin again, but they will recognise that it was sin to do that, and will have a desire to confess/repent before God...

    Its the intent and desires of the person in play here, as the bible CLEARLY states that a saved person by his new nature and the Holyspirit in him will not want to keep on sinning, will seek to stop, and when sinning, will seek to have it confessed/repented to God!


    AHomosexual who attends a church, sings praises to jesus, yet has NO defire, nor see even the need to forsake, to stop is not saved, as per paul and John!

    Do you see the bible teaching one can be saved, and still ahve NO repentence/conviction/desire to cease from know sin areas?

    NOT saying are perfectnow. attaining sinless perfection, but MUST evidence some fruit of a new life now in christ!
     
    #18 Yeshua1, Jan 16, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 16, 2014
  19. thisnumbersdisconnected

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    What about the habitual sinner -- homosexual, alcoholic, wife beater, whatever -- who claims salvation and seems faithful, but repeats the sin, failing to fight off the temptation?
     
  20. Archie the Preacher

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    Habitual Sin. As Judith points out, the term is not defined in the Bible. But I think it's fairly safe to go with the common meaning of the words; sin which is '...done regularly or repeatedly'. The sins to which we continue to return.

    When God accepts a sinner and forgives the sinner's sin, He forgives them all. Never forget, God exists in Eternity and isn't bound by human experience and 'time'. So ALL sins are forgiven - past, present and future. Which is NOT to say that God just mutters "Kids will be kids" and ignore our wrongdoing.

    When I was a child, my late, honored Lady Mother would tell me - at times - "I will slap the sass right out of your mouth!" On a few occasions, she demonstrated the ability. (Don't get this wrong, she wasn't brutal, but I confess to not appreciating the function.)

    So it is with our lives. God reserves the right to 'chastise' us, as Scripture so quaintly words it. The fact is, God has slapped the sass right out of my mouth on occasion. But always to get my attention so I focus on avoiding those temptations which so easily beset me. So I not resist His work in making me into who and what I should be, in His will. Happily, God has no limits on His love or patience.

    I suppose there are few occasions where a believer simply will not get with God's program. I have known one or two people who were believers, but were not in fellowship with God - by their own words; not my judgement. They were fairly quiet and rather sad men. Much like they were sent to their room, due to their rebellious nature. Were they saved? Not my place to judge the matter. Based on what I know of Scripture, an argument could be made either way. But God knows and will ultimately decide. As Sergeant Tyree said, "That ain't my department".


    Homosexuality. Contrary to popular belief, homosexuality is NOT a special case sin. It is a sin much like all others; it is the rebellion of the individual against the directions of God. One notes in the passages where homosexuality is mentioned, it is included in a list of other sins, including "... sexually immoral, idolaters, adulterers, [homosexuals,] thieves, the greedy, drunkards, the verbally abusive, and swindlers..." (This list abstracted from 1 Corinthians 6:9-10).

    By the way, the 'verbally abusive' are those who say mean things about others. Gossips. The sin of 'gossiping' is on a level with the sin of 'homosexuality'. Therefore, if 'homosexuals' - based on past or present conduct - cannot be accepted into the Kingdom, then neither can gossips.

    Then Paul goes on to say (in the passage above) "Some of you once lived this way" referring to the recipients of the letter of 1 Corinthians. So the fact of past sin does not disqualify anyone from future grace. (For which I am really quite grateful. Just trust me on that.)

    Paul then says "...you were washed, ...sanctified, ...justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God."

    So the guilt of sin is gone. Temporal consequences remain. Alienation from God remains if we choose to ignore His directions. But if we even slightly attempt to follow God, He starts fixing things.
     

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