Tuesday, March 17, 2015

1 John 5:18 -- On Acclimating to Heaven

"We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not."
1 John 5:18

This is an interesting verse.  It says that "whosoever is born of God sinneth not," but we certainly know of people who have been baptized or converted who have most decidedly sinned.  So, how does that work?  I know some people favor the no-personal-responsibility option, where if we were once born again in God, that's all it takes.  We're saved forever.  And if we just want to be saved physically, then that's true.  We don't even need that much, actually.  We just have to be born here on earth.  Christ overcame death for us, and we will all be resurrected.  But the spiritual part is different... and this verse shows us how.  Being born again isn't just a one-time shot and then we can do whatever we want.  It is a total rework of ourselves, and one that we have to maintain... by not sinning, by keeping ourselves out of the way of temptation.   It isn't about God not caring or not wanting us to have what he offers... it is that by the very nature of the change, we *have* to want it, to choose it... consistently, not just once.  Otherwise, when we get the reward God offers, we won't want it.  We have to want a sin free life in order to appreciate a sin-free life.  We have to want the light in order to appreciate God's presence.  If we prefer sin, or want to slink off into the shadows now and then, then we won't want what God offers.  Being born of God isn't just a statement that we make that we accept Christ's atonement.  It is an overhaul of ourselves, internally as well as externally.  It is wanting what God wants.  It is letting go of the bad part of ourselves, permanently.
Today, let's work on being born of God, and maintaining that change of heart.  Let's give up our sins and our souvenirs of Hell as we strive to accept God, and Heaven, and be the kind of people that can live in that kind of society.

1 comment:

  1. Absolutely!! ... later in John (17), Jesus prays to his father about being one; and wanting his apostles and disciples to be one (which I believe is the glory and the exaltation part of the plan). In verse 16 it says sanctify them through thy truth, Dallin Oaks has greatly elaborated upon these "works:"


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