As Christians, we all desire to live a good life. We wish to live morally. Obviously this is not the end goal of a Christian life, but it is one thing that is definitely a priority in our Christian walk because sin weakens our relationship with the Lord. Thus, we try and try to eliminate sin from our life, so we can strengthen our relationship with the Lord.
But are we doing this all wrong? Do we have our cause and effect backward?
Don't get me wrong, having unresolved sin in our life does indeed harm our relationship with the Lord, but do we too often try to eliminate this sin without actually increasing our relationship with the Lord? Perhaps what I mean to say is that too often we view living a good life as an end in itself and thus find our ways to get there pretty impossible.
But beyond just seeing it as a means to a higher end, we need to seriously rethink the way in which we try to eliminate our immorality. We can't just work with our own power to try to tackle our sin problems. This is simply flesh fighting against flesh, and let me tell you a secret, flesh wins. This is not a winning formula in the end.
We must have a relationship with the Lord upon which we can build before we can think to eliminate our wrongdoing. This is what I meant by Christians having it backwards in their Christian walk. Rather than eliminating sin to get a relationship, we have to have a relationship in order to get rid of sin.
This particular method is specifically outlined in the latter half of 2 Timothy 3, where the Bible says,
"But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works."
In other words, we must read and obey the Bible. The Bible is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness. We all remember this, but what we seem to forget is why. Verse 17 tells us that these four things are there "That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works."
Obviously, it's not as simple as that. There will still be difficulty in fighting off temptation in our every life, but we know that we cannot do this by ourselves, and must have assistance from the Holy Spirit, so why do we try to do it without that assistance?
We must know that if we want to be "Thoroughly furnished unto every good work," we MUST read the Bible and form a relationship with the Lord.