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Purpose of the Cross of JESUS CHRIST
by E. A. Wilson



Paul, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised him from the dead;) And all the brethren which are with me, unto the churches of Galatia: Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ, Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father: To whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed. For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ. But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ. (Galatians 1:1-12)

For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. (Titus 2:11-14)

Present Deliverance

Please notice a verse of Scripture in each of these passages. Galatians 1:4, “Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father.” Titus 2:14, “Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good words.”

Did we notice the burden of our first reading? The people of Galatia had been misled, and Paul told them that the Gospel had been perverted. He let them know that there’s not another Gospel, that there’s only one, but that men were perverting the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Now, this is yet true today! We’re living in a time when the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been perverted until countless millions fail to see the real purpose of the Cross of Jesus Christ. We won’t go into the negative side of it, but it’s sad to see the perversions of the Gospel today.

We need to look at the purpose, or reason, of the coming of Jesus Christ expressly to die on Calvary’s Cross. By “the express purpose of His Cross, I mean what you and I derive from Jesus’ death and His resurrection from the dead. It’s almost needless to remark that this precious Gospel has been so perverted that many gain nothing but a mere profession. As far as their lives having been changed, they’ve found no power in the Cross of Jesus Christ whatsoever. I pray that God will help us to look into these Scriptures and see what Jesus came to do for us. If we haven’t found the answer: the experience, there’s good news for us: it’s here; we may have it today.

First of all, Galatians 1:4 lets us understand that we may expect a present deliverance from the evil world through the Cross of Jesus Christ. Let’s read verse 4 again: “Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our father.” We must bring this deliverance up to the present time. We have too many today who supposedly are living by faith in Jesus Christ, who have subscribed to one system of religion or another, and who expect that through the love of God they’ll eventually be delivered from an eternal hell. The truth is: Jesus Christ, through His death on the Cross, paid the price to deliver us from this PRESENT evil world, the one in which we live, right now. Do you still hope for deliverance in the future? Well, when we get deliverance from this present evil world in a real experience of salvation, we need not worry over future deliverance.

All the torments of hell are kept in reserve only for those who continue to live a life of sin in this present world. Oh, how these truths need to be sounded out over and over again. We have a present deliverance! He died to deliver us from this present evil world. Now, when we speak of deliverance from this present evil world, people’s minds start wandering in many avenues. Some say, “Well, He died so you and I could be delivered one of these days from this present evil world.” But, we need to see that salvation is something up to date.

Jesus came to bring a “now” experience. We want to put this right where it belongs: There’s deliverance for us today from this present evil world. You may, just now, be bound by the evil of this world, but if you’ll accept Jesus Christ as your Savior in a real experience of salvation, you’ll be delivered from the power of this evil world and can go forth able to reign over the evil of this world. This is what the Scripture teaches.

Let’s take apart that phrase, “this present evil world,” with the Bible. When we begin to speak of the present evil world, many think immediately about the earth on which we live and the people on it. There are many ideas about what the present evil world is. Well, let’s see what the Bible means when it says, “He gave himself to deliver us from this present evil world.”

Partakers of the Divine Nature

Second Peter 1:1-4 expands on the theme of “this present evil world.” I praise God for deliverance, and we want us to be able to see by the Scriptures that Jesus died to bring perfect deliverance to us. “Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Savior Jesus Christ: Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord. According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.”

Peter was speaking of some who had been delivered from this present evil world. Through knowledge of Jesus Christ, these men came in old-time repentance, confessing their sins to God, and escaped the corruption that’s in the world through lust. Immediately, a plain picture emerges…of deliverance from this present evil world. Do we understand what the Apostle is telling us in 1 Peter 1:4? He tells us that if we will grasp God’s promises in His Word and meet the conditions thereof, we can be partakers of God’s divine nature. When we partake of God’s divine nature, the work of salvation places us in a position where we have escaped! I’m glad I’ve made my escape…how about you?

I don’t know about your experience. We can listen to preachers who testify that they’re sinners and that they live in sin, but I’ve made my escape and trust you have too! Jesus died to deliver us from this present evil world. We don’t have to live like the world; we don’t have to desire those things the world desires; we don’t have to go where the world goes anymore. Take any attribute of the world, and we’re able to say that we’ve escaped it, that there’s been a change in our life.

Peter tells us that we’re able, through the promises of God, to partake of God’s divine nature and escape the corruption that’s in the world through lust. In this fourth verse is the sum and substance of the religion of Jesus Christ. First of all, Jesus died to open up a way through which we can be a partaker of God’s divine nature, whereby we can actually be born of God’s Spirit. Secondly, He died on the Cross that, when we become partakers of God’s divine nature, He saves us from the corruption in principle and fact that is in the world, of which the source is lust. Shortly, we want to see what it is to be delivered from this present evil world.

What Lust Is

The word “lust” here is used (as it is in several other passages in the Scripture) to mean “irregular, unreasonable, inordinate, impure desire.” Do we know why people sin? They sin because there’s something in them greater than they are that wants to do what God doesn’t want them to do. We need to see this picture. Peter tells us that we’ve been delivered from the corruption that’s in the world. If we want to know more about what corruption is, just look in the daily newspaper!

Every restraint that was ever put on sin, is being lifted and our world is turning to sin as never before. If we don’t have a real up-to-date experience of salvation, we’re going “down the funnel” right along with the rest of them

When Peter spoke of escaping the corruption that’s in the world through lust, he was talking of “irregular, unreasonable, inordinate, impure desire.” We hope to prove it shortly. Someone may wonder how we can tell if a desire is an impure one. An impure desire or lust is, to want to have, to do, or to be what God doesn’t want us to have, to do, or to be. Someone asks, “Do you mean we have an impure desire if we want to do what God prohibits?” We surely have! Peter says some have escaped the corruption that’s in the world through lust.

In 1 John, Chapter Two, the Apostle makes the issue clear and plain. Verse 15 reads, “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.” If a man loves the world, there’s one reason: the love of the Father is not in him, and he has never really been born again. One of the first things God does in real salvation, when we come in old-time repentance, confessing our sin, is to shed abroad the love of God in our heart. When God has bestowed His love on us, we’ll begin to love what God loves and hate what God hates.

Let’s study about this present evil world a little more. I’m sure that the real corruption is in the world, and this is that, from which Jesus came to save us. First John 2:16 says, “For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.” Some may not understand what this has to do with being delivered from this present evil world. If all there is in the world is the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, then when we’ve been delivered from these three things, we’ve been delivered from this present evil world! That’s all that’s in the world.

Lust, or impure desire, is the source from whence all corruption in the world springs. In James 1:15, James sets forth the manner in which men commit their first sin. There he lets us know that lust conceives; when it conceives, lust brings forth sin; when sin is finished, it brings forth death. Here, he lets us know that a man’s own lust draws him away and tempts him

Now, we’re going to get into “a deep truth” here. The Bible definitely teaches a difference between our own lusts and sinful lusts. We’ll never be without lusts, or desires, as long as we’re human. James said that we commit our first sin when, with our own lusts leading the way, we’re drawn away.

The Corruption That’s in the World

In 2 Peter 1:4, The Apostle said that we have escaped the corruption that’s in the world through lust. In 2 Peter 2:20 he writes, “For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ…” Verse 18 tell us that the pollutions are “the lusts of the flesh.” He was writing of false preachers who had fallen away and gone back into sin. He said they had escaped the pollution that’s in the world by the knowledge of Jesus Christ. So, we see how to escape.

In the first chapter, verse 4, Peter spoke of the corruption that’s in the world. In 2:20, he talks of the pollutions of the world. We need to see that when he talks of the pollution of the world, he’s speaking basically of the human nature without God. Human nature without God is described as the corruption that’s in the world through lust. The Word of God lets us know that it’s like fungus: it’s like a foul smelly, slimy, poisonous substance that’s ever working to bring spiritual death to everyone. This is a true picture of human nature without God. When sin begins its work in our heart and life, we’re sold to sin, and then corruption and pollution of every kind will begin to work on us.

In 2 Peter 1:4 he brings two thoughts to our attention: being partakers of God’s divine nature, and escaping the corruption that’s in the world through lust. Note that in this verse: is an “either-or” proposition. We try to preach the Gospel as simple as we know how. There are only two kinds of people: we’re either partakers of God’s divine nature and have escaped the corruptions that are in the world, or if we’ve not been partakers of God’s divine nature, we’re partakers of the corruption that’s in the world. There’s no middle ground: we’re one or the other. Yes, there are many who hold themselves aloof. Through their own human nature and will, they say, “I’m not going to get into any of the corruption that’s in the world.” These need to understand by the teachings of God’s Word that they’re partakers of one or the other. Again, there’s no middle ground. If one hasn’t been a partaker of God’s divine nature, then he’s a partaker of the corruption that’s in the world through lust. We’re either in God’s divine nature or in the putrid rottenness of the world. We’ve either escaped it or we’re being destroyed by it.

Out of the Hearts of Men

According to these Scriptures, we may note that the very root of this rotting fungus is in lust. Second Peter 1:4 reads, “Having escaped the corruption that’s in the world through lust.” The root of this world’s corruption is the unbridled, godless, sinful desires coming from the sinful heart of man. Peter spoke of a people who had real salvation when he spoke of those who had escaped the corruption that’s in the world through lust. We want to stay right around that thought: sinful lust is the very basis and root of the rottenness that’s filling our world. It’s in the heart of man that wickedness is desired. It’s from the heart of sinful man that all wickedness comes.

Read Mark 7:21-23. It’s not that which goes into a man that defiles him, but that which comes out. Out of the heart of sinful man comes: adultery, lying, theft, and pride. Where’s the fountain that gushes forth corruption today? Out of the sinful heart of sinners. We need to face some old-time Bible facts. People wonder, “How does this happen? How does our world get in the shape it does?” Repeating, all the corruption that’s in the world originates out of the hearts of men---every bit of it! The devil didn’t kick it up out of the “potato patch”. We need to note, again, in the light of these Scriptures, that the corruption is not only in the world, but in the heart.

Carefully now, we want to pin-point this thing. If we don’t get rid of sinful lusts, we’ll never quit sinning. We need to note, as 2 Peter 1:4 and 2:20 tell us, corruption not only is in the world, but also in the heart of man. If it were just in the world, we could get out of it by getting out of the world. This is the reasoning behind the false religious theories of cloistering men in monasteries, cutting them off from the world; that’s the darkness of ignorance. We can’t stop this fountain by shutting ourselves off from the world. It’s in the world, but HOW is it there? This corruption is in the world in the lust of men. We can’t shut ourselves off from the world and stop the corruption because the fountain is right within the heart. We can shut ourselves in the monastery, but the fountain will flow right within the cloistered walls.

The Bible plainly tells us in this verse that it’s in the world in the lust of men. We need to realize this truth. Someone may ask, “Well, if it’s in the world in sinful lusts, and that lust flows out of the sinner’s heart and he carries that fountain within himself, what can he do about it?” So glad “they” asked! First of all, there’s no way of escape through physical help. Since the corruption is in the world through lust, and lust is in the sinful heart of man, there’s only one way to be delivered from it: that’s to have the unclean thing removed from the heart, from the soul.

Servants of Sin

This is just what Jesus came to do. John 1:29 finds John baptizing in the river Jordan. He turned and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world.”

Jesus came to take away the very sin of the world. You may ask, “What does that have to do with sinful lust?” In John 8:34, Jesus taught, “whosoever committeth sin is the servant (or slave) of sin.” WE want to understand John 1:29. Jesus came to take away the sin of the world; He said in John 8:34 that whosoever commits sin is the slave of sin. When we come to the age of accountability and commit sin, then sin enters our heart and we become a slave to sin.

Many don’t understand sin, or they’d not keep confessing their sins over and over again. They keep on confessing their sins because they keep on committing them, and they’ve not gone deep enough. Jesus came to deal with the sin in the heart, and we’re not referring to “inherited sin.” He that committeth sin is the servant of sin.” When we commit sin, sin enters our heart, it takes over and we’re “sold under sin”.

Carefully now, and we’ll see the difference between our own lusts and sinful lusts. In Romans 6:12, Paul speaks of sin. Keep in mind Jesus’ words, “Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.” See, we can’t commit a sin, and then say, “That’s all I’m going to do. I may do this, but I won’t do anything else.” Let’s not be deceived: when we commit sin we’re a servant of sin.

This is hard on mass evangelists who stand before the people and say, “I sin, you all sin.” They’re not the servants of God; they’re the servants of sin. Now, when we commit sin, we become the servant of sin. Paul said in Romans 6:12, “Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.” When does sin begin to reign? When we commit our first sin, then it enters our heart. There was not sin there until we committed sin. When we committed our first transgression, sin entered into our heart, and we became the slave of sin.

Look at this chapter of Paul’s letter to the Romans. Verse one asks the question, “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?” Well, some say, “Yes,” but Paul said emphatically, “God forbid!” He’s teaching people that they must go deeper than merely having their transgressions forgiven. We need to realize that when we commit sin, it enters the heart, and Jesus Christ came to take sin out of the heart. He came to dry up the very fountainhead of sin. Some may think this says nothing about sinful lusts. They didn’t read it right, then.

Let’s look at verse 12 again: “Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.” Sin reigns in our mortal body because we come into servitude to sin when we first commit it. This is why men sin more or less in some religions, and why their preachers get up and say, “Sin-you-will, sin-you-must, and sin-you-can’t-help-it.” Sin is reigning in their mortal bodies! They stand up and testify that no one can “get out of this mess”. They tell us, “Don’t you say you’re free from sin.” They’re like a lot of men locked in prison telling one another, “There’s no way we can get out of this place.” I thank God we’ve made our escape. Do you remember our subject? Deliverance from this present evil world is our theme. Where does the corruption of this world lie? It lies in sinful lust, and we’ve escaped sinful lust. Romans 6:12, “Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.”

Let Not Sin Reign

Scrutinize this verse carefully: “That you should obey it [sin].” When we committed the first sin, sin entered our heart, and then out of a sinful heart came all these sins that Jesus listed. Paul said, let not sin reign. See, we need to realize that sin enters the heart when one commits the first transgression, and as long as it’s there, it will reign.

This is why we disagree with the teaching that we still have sin in our heart after we’re born again. If we don’t, sin is reigning! If sin is in our heart we’re not living holy, and the Bible teaches that holiness starts in the work of justification. Paul’s teaching that when we commit sin, it enters the heart, and Jesus taught that from the heart, flows these many things. So, Paul said, “Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that you should obey IT [sin] in the lusts thereof.” The Greek Scriptures render it, “that you should obey sins’ lusts.” Those lusts are not ours, but sin’s. Sin’s lusts are the inordinate affections, those desires we can’t handle.

Romans 6:12 says we should not obey sins’ lusts. James 1:14 speaks to the brethren, to people who had been born again, who had escaped the corruption that’s in the world through lust. They had been delivered from their sinful lusts, and he taught that we’re tempted when we’re drawn away of OUR OWN LUSTS. These are our human desires, which are controllable in the Christian; sinful lusts, on the other hand, are uncontrollable. Paul said if we allow sin to reign in our mortal bodies, we’ll obey it in its lusts. This is the thing we escape in real salvation. Thank God, sinful lusts, the uncontrollable lusts, the inordinate lusts, the unreasonable lusts, the impure lusts are gone. These lusts are gone because when sin goes, they go. The reason one has sinful lusts is because sin is still in the soul. We’re not making it so close that we’re no longer tempted: we can control our own lusts by the help of God; but sinful lusts will get the best of us.

Sold Under Sin

This is what Paul taught in Romans 7:14. Let’s listen to him as a preacher of the Church of God. The Bible says that he persecuted and wasted the Church of God, and that after his conversion, he preached the very thing he had before persecuted. So, if he persecuted the Church of God before his conversion, he preached for the Church of God after his conversion. As a Church of God preacher, he said that he did not know what had held him when sin held him in its grip; but after God gave him understanding, after he could look back and see what had controlled him, he wrote to the Romans of his pitiful condition while in sin. Now, we want to show that Paul taught there’s a difference between sinful lusts and one’s own lusts.

He said in Romans 7:14b, “I am carnal, sold under sin.” We may wonder how he got that way: He committed sin, and when he committed sin, he became a slave to sin. He was sold under sin. Read verses 15-17: “For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good. Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.” This is a picture of what sinful lusts will do. Can we not see how we’re wasting out time confessing our sins over and over again?

If we’re a sinner, we’re not doing those sinful deeds, but sin that dwelleth in us. Paul is saying, “If I do that which I would not do, and if I do not that which I would do, it’s nor more I that doeth is, but sin that dwelleth in me.” So, it does us no good whatsoever to repeatedly confess our sins. We need to realize we’re not doing it, but sin that‘s in there. We ought to go deep enough to get the sin out of our heart. When we get sin out of our heart, the lusts of sin stop. Sinful lusts come to an end when sin is expelled from the heart.

We’re all tempted. A man is tempted when he’s drawn away of his own lust or human desires. Before their fall, Adam and Eve knew no sin; they were holy people, but they were drawn away by their own lusts. If we allow sin in our heart, we can keep confessing and never be delivered from it.

This is the sad thing about much of modern religion, and it stirs our soul deeply. Men are going back to the priest confessing; they’re going to altars confessing; they’re kneeling by their bedsides night after night confessing their transgressions; and they’ll turn right around and go back into sin. I ask such, “Why, don’t they go a little deeper and allow Jesus to remove the fountain of sin?”

Jesus Christ came to make us a partaker of God’s divine nature, sin withdraws from our heart, the blackness disappears, and the fountain is dried up and removed. When sin goes, its lusts go with it! Then, we’re brought back to a plane of holy living; and when our own lusts would draw us away, through the power of God, we can handle those human lusts and desires. As long as sin is in there, however, its lusts can’t be controlled or conquered.

Remember the words of Paul: “let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof [in sin’s lusts].” Paul said, in so many words, “Look here, I want to do right. The real me delights to live according to God’s law, and I have learned something: when I would do good and can’t, and when I don’t want to do evil and I do anyway, I’m not doing it. It’s sin that’s within me.” Who wanted sin? Paul didn’t; sin within him desired evil, while Paul wanted to do right, but sin was stronger than he.

Sin Is Stronger Than Will Power

Let’s see how strong sin really is. How we need to ponder over verse17: “Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.” Oh, if we could only just receive this revelation of truth: If we keep sinning and don’t really want to sin, we need to realize that it’s not us doing it, but sin that’s within us. Jesus came to take sin out of us! When sin has been removed, if we don’t want to sin, we no longer have to. Of course, if we want to sin we can go back and sin, but we don’t have to do so, because that driving force is gone. Paul said, “Church, I was awakened and realized that it was not me, but sin that was in me.” Brother, let not sin reign in your mortal body (and if it’s there, it WILL reign), for you’ll then obey its lusts. Jesus came to take it out of our heart.

Yes, Jesus came to do more than forgive our transgressions. Too long the church has been taught that Jesus just came to cut off the branches. John said that the ax is laid to the root of the tree: Jesus came to stop the sin business. When we’re born again the sin business stops, and Jesus takes all sin out of our heart and gives us a pure heart. When the sin goes, then sinful lusts also go. When the sinful lusts are gone, we’ve made our escape from the corruption that’s in the world through lusts.

Romans 7:18, “For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh), dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.” When he said there was nothing good in his flesh, he was saying that when in the sinful condition, there was nothing in his flesh that was strong enough or good enough to overcome sin. He dissected this thought that we might understand it. He said, “To will is present with me, but sin is stronger than the will.” There’s no good thing in a sinner’s flesh whatsoever! Now, don’t protest: “But you don’t know my genealogy!” Well it makes no difference who our father or mother was, sin is stronger than our will or ancestry! There’s no good thing in our flesh to overcome sin: we need outside help. Verse 22, “For I delight in the law of God after the inward man”; yet he sinned. Sin is stronger than the inner man. Verse 23, “But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin…” Sin is stronger than the mind. We want to understand why he said there’s no good thing in the sinner to throw off the yoke of sin. He needs outside help.

Paul analyzed the sinner’s condition and saw that the will is powerless, the mind is impotent, and the inner man and the outer man are both helpless. He searched his flesh and he searched his soul, and he said, “There’s no good thing in me, whatsoever, to war against sin. I guess I’ll just have to succumb to it.” But the last two verses “cry in anguish” and then, answer in hope, “O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death? I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord.” See, a person is wretched who desired to do right, who makes up his mind to do right, but who finds something stronger than his mind, stronger than his will, stronger than his innermost being that wants to do wrong. What’s the answer? “Thank God through Jesus Christ.”

Jesus Is Stronger Than Sin

There’s One stronger than sin, One stronger than the transgression and the sin that reigns in our heart and life. Again, when we commit sin we’re a sinner, and when we’re a sinner, sin reigns in our heart. We can kneel at an altar as often as we like, confess our transgressions, say “I’m sorry”; but if we don’t go deeper and have sin removed from our heart, sinful lusts will cause us to overstep our right judgment, and do wrong again. Thank God we CAN go deeper. Jesus Christ will deliver a death blow to sin; we’ll find our escape when sin goes out, and sins’ lusts will go with it; we’ll be free from the sinful nature.

Sinful lusts exit when the blood of Jesus Christ is applied to our heart. Jesus went to the Cross to deliver us from this present evil world, and the only corruption there is in the world, is that which is through lust, sinful lust.

Let’s again consider Romans 7:24-25: “O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” This death is that terrible death of sin that kept him separated from God. Sin still separates from God.

Paul began to write in the eighth chapter these glorious words, “There is therefore now no condemnation [Sin is gone; sinful lusts are gone.] to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law [the Mosaic Law] could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh.”

I always ask the question, “Whose flesh?” He didn’t condemn sin in His own flesh, for He had no sin! He came to condemn sin in our flesh. A better translation would translate that word “condemn” as “to put to an end.” He stopped the flesh from being used for sin. Just as they condemn a building by saying it can not longer be used for what it’s presently being used, so Jesus condemned sin in my flesh and your flesh, notifying Satan that this body can no longer be used as a house of sin. He came to condemn sin in the flesh that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh but after the Spirit. He didn’t say righteousness was fulfilled “by us” but “in us” by Jesus Christ. There’s only One who can fulfill the law.

He said in Matthew 5:17, “I am not come to destroy the law, but to fulfill it.” Only One can fulfill it, and His Name is Jesus Christ. When we have Him in our heart, we’ll fulfill the righteousness of the law right within our heart. When Jesus comes in, we’re made a partaker of God’s divine nature. When Jesus comes in, sin goes out.

Wells, Without Water

Second Peter 2:20, “For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ…” The preceding verses show that Peter was speaking of false preachers who kept not their first estate. Let’s begin at verse 17: “These are wells without water.” He’s speaking of the preacher in the black coat whose appearance makes the people think, “Man, we’re going to get a drink today.” But he only talks for twenty-five minutes and no one gets a drop of water. They received no water because he had none to give them: he was “a well without water”. The water is the Spirit.

There’s no greater shortage of any one commodity than there is of the Spirit. “These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest.” Just whichever way the wind blows, that’s were they go. I used to see that so much when I was still in a religious “movement”. You couldn’t find out what some preachers upheld in the way of a standard until they went to the State Ministers’ Meeting to see how the other brethren were going to stand; how ever the brethren stood, that’s how they stood. “Clouds carried about with a tempest” pretty well describes them. They have no God given convictions of their own, nothing within to give them a spiritual backbone to stand for something because it’s God’s eternal Word. Let’s continue reading. “…to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever. For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error. While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption.”

What corruption does he mean? He’s speaking of that corruption, which we escape: they still have sinful lusts; they’re still delving in the corruption of this world. Jesus talked of the blind leaders of the blind (the Pharisees) who were offended at His words. He told His disciples, “let them alone. They’re blind leaders of the blind. If the blind lead the blind, they will all fall in the ditch.” My, what a multitude we see in the ditches, today. There aren’t too many on the road, but millions have gone into the ditches on both sides because they failed to live according to the teachings of God’s eternal Word.

In verse 20 Peter continued, “For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ…” He tells how their second estate is worse than their first. The point I want to make is this: He said we can escape the pollutions that are in the world through the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.

When we gain “a knowledge” (get a divine revelation) of Jesus Christ, we’ll have made our escape from the pollution, the corruption, that’s in the world through lusts, for when Jesus comes in, sin goes out… [The End]




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