Do we believe that we have been set free from all sin for all time, or don't we?
That is what it all comes down to.
The fires go out when we rest in the truth of God's Word.
Then we believe what the woman caught in the act of adultery had believed:
"11She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more." (John 8:" 11)
At this time, I am upset, but for one simple reason: for so long, I was lied to, I was told what was not the truth.
I was taught the Twelve Steps.
Yet even in writing this, I must recall that another man had every right to be bitter, Caleb, but he was not:
"6Then the children of Judah came unto Joshua in Gilgal: and Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenezite said unto him, Thou knowest the thing that the LORD said unto Moses the man of God concerning me and thee in Kadeshbarnea. 7Forty years old was I when Moses the servant of the LORD sent me from Kadeshbarnea to espy out the land; and I brought him word again as it was in mine heart. 8Nevertheless my brethren that went up with me made the heart of the people melt: but I wholly followed the LORD my God. 9And Moses sware on that day, saying, Surely the land whereon thy feet have trodden shall be thine inheritance, and thy children's for ever, because thou hast wholly followed the LORD my God. 10And now, behold, the LORD hath kept me alive, as he said, these forty and five years, even since the LORD spake this word unto Moses, while the children of Israel wandered in the wilderness: and now, lo, I am this day fourscore and five years old. 11As yet I am as strong this day as I was in the day that Moses sent me: as my strength was then, even so is my strength now, for war, both to go out, and to come in. 12Now therefore give me this mountain, whereof the LORD spake in that day; for thou heardest in that day how the Anakims were there, and that the cities were great and fenced: if so be the LORD will be with me, then I shall be able to drive them out, as the LORD said." (Joshua 14: 6-12)
God kept Caleb strong and healthy. Age did not touch him or slow him down one bit.
The Prophet Joel records the blessings of honor restored, and lost things found for us:
"Be glad then, ye children of Zion, and rejoice in the LORD your God: for he hath given you the former rain moderately, and he will cause to come down for you the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month." (Joel 2: 23)
Not only can we expect the former and the latter rain, but it will come upon us without warning, and that is for the first month. I cannot imagine what the second, or even the third month may bring, for there is no limited with God our Father.
Isaiah prophesied of the honor which we all receive because of Jesus, too!:
"For your shame ye shall have double; and for confusion they shall rejoice in their portion: therefore in their land they shall possess the double: everlasting joy shall be unto them." (Isaiah 61: 7)
Paul describes this victory thus:
"37Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. 38For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 39Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 8: 37-39)
God is in the redemption, restoration, and resurgence business. Even in this fallen earth, we can believe that God our Father, who took us from dead in our trespasses to alive and seated in heavenly places in His Son (Ephesians 2: 4-6), is bringing all our enemies under our feet (Psalm 110: 1).
The time will come very soon, when I can see the grace of God taking every hurt and pain, every setback and loss, and seeing how He has richly turned all things toward my good (Romans 8: 28).
Thank you, Jesus!