THERE IS A SEPARATE PATH that the saint walks. Scripture speaks about the prideful man and even gives us an accurate account of pride and self-centered behavior. Be aware that God resists the proud man, the man who loves the ways of this present evil world and it’s culture, and the selfish, self-centered man. Read James’ words to the church,
“Where do wars and fights come from among you? Do they not come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members? You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures. Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you think that the Scripture says in vain, “The Spirit who dwells in us yearns jealously”? But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: “God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.””
James 4:1-6 NKJV
Adjust as needed. Yet, there’s a self-abusing position that is just as bad. I say, “self-abusing” because you are constantly moving and walking in guilt and shame, beating yourself up with negative and unkind words. Self-abasing and self-abusing are not the same thing. Self- abasing is killing that nasty ugly flesh with its lusts and desires that are contrary to God’s holy Word. Self-abasing is humbling yourself and becoming a servant to all, preferring others above yourself. However, self-abusing kills the spirit. Self-abusers rob themselves of joy and peace, constantly wallowing in the stench of their past failures and mistakes. Self-abusers throw themselves a pity party and almost never get off the pity pot. This, too, is sin.
“I waited patiently for the Lord; And He inclined to me, And heard my cry. He also brought me up out of a horrible pit, Out of the miry clay, And set my feet upon a rock, And established my steps. He has put a new song in my mouth— Praise to our God; Many will see it and fear, And will trust in the Lord. Blessed is that man who makes the Lord his trust, And does not respect the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies. Many, O Lord my God, are Your wonderful works Which You have done; And Your thoughts toward us Cannot be recounted to You in order; If I would declare and speak of them, They are more than can be numbered.” Psalms 40:1-5
There is a separate path for the saint. The narrow path. Jesus told us, “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able.” (Luke 13:24) Why do we have to “strive”? Because it’s the road off self-abasing behavior. It’s the road of crucifying the flesh and living in obedience. It’s the road that says “I am Yours. I was bought with a price. My life is not my own.” The path where the child of God has placed all love and affection, all hopes and dreams, all their brokenness and sin on the altar and they live under the love, forgiveness and protection of the Almighty. They find themselves in Christ alone.
“For we are the circumcision, who worship God in the Spirit, rejoice in Christ Jesus (ALONE), and have no confidence in the flesh,” Philippians 3:3
This is that path that rejects the flesh and rejoices in Christ alone. This is the forgiven, blood-stained path where the saint walks as a new creation washed free from all shame. It is the higher road where it can get difficult to breath and you sometimes walk it alone, but it is the only path the saint can ever take.
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