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Carnal Nature???
Does it die when we are born again?

A dear lady in one of my Bible classes wanted me to read Charles F. Stanley’s little booklet : “God’s Grace, You Can’t Live Without It.” He has some very good points, but on page 11, I CANNOT agree with the following words in paragraph four. “The moment you are saved, your sin nature dies . . . .” I simply cannot go along with this. I teach the Bible and also what God places on my heart. In the Bible, there are many places that to me . . . are saying this statement is not true. Let me bring forth a few passages.

Romans 7:16-20 If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good. [17] Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. [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. [19] For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. [20] Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. (KJV) . . . The apostle Paul was a great man of God. He is torn between his two natures in this Passage. He says: “I know very well that what I am doing is wrong, and the still small voice inside me shows that I agree that the law is good. Yet I don’t do the good I want to do; instead, I do the evil that I do not want to do. When I want to do good, I don’t. And when I try not to do wrong, I do it anyway."

Is it Paul’s new nature that does wrong? NO! It is the old nature that is still there. The old sinful nature and the new nature that tells us we should live in love, obedience, faithfulness and true devotion to God, will continue to butt heads until we die. Only when we receive our new bodies like Christ’s, will we ever cease to sin.

God clearly tells us we ALL are sinners. Romans 3:10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: (KJV) Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; (KJV) . . . IF Mr. Stanley were right, when we are saved (redeemed, born again), our old sinful nature would die and not cause us any more trouble. BUT, according to God (as I understand His Word), we will always be sinners. It seems to me that our old sinful nature is still alive.

2 Cor. 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. (KJV) . . . Christians are brand-new people on the inside. The Holy Spirit gives us new life, and we are not the same anymore. We are not reformed, or made better . . . we are made new creations, living in vital union with Christ (Col. 2:6-7). At conversion we don’t simply turn over a new leaf; we begin a new life under a new Master. But, as I see it, that old sinful nature is still within, and we must continue to battle it.

The word regeneration is found only found in Matthew 19:28 and Titus 3:5. It actually means a new birth (redeemed, saved, born again). We do become a new creature in Christ Jesus by being born again (John 3:5) into the family of God. Our mind is renewed (Rom.12:2). This change comes from the Holy Spirit, NOT anything that we can do (John 1:12-13; 1 John 2:29). What is the nature of the change? It includes giving us a new standard or make up in our soul. Spiritual life becomes very important to us now, where before we were “dead in trespasses and sins.” The necessary change must take place within us, as is made clear in Scripture (John 3:3; Rom.7:18; 8:7-9; 1 Cor. 2:14; Eph. 2:1; 4:21-24).

Ephes. 2:1-2 And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; [2] Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: (KJV) . . . Sin is actually the death of the soul. A man dead in trespasses and sins has no desire whatsoever for spiritual pleasures. An unbeliever (carnal man) simply conforms to this world. Unbelievers are slaves to Satan. Satan is behind all evil. He rules in the hearts of unbelievers. We ALL were slaves to sin before we allowed Jesus into our heart and life. God, and our stopping sin was not in our thoughts.

Every converted, redeemed sinner is a saved sinner; delivered from sin and wrath. The grace that saves us is FREE. A regenerated sinner becomes a different person. He truly desires to live a life of holiness. This does not come about by any thing done by us, so we certainly cannot boast about it. God’s Holy Spirit produces this change in us, makes us born again, but we still feel the desire for wrong things at times. Our old nature has not left us.

Ephes. 2:5-6 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) [6] And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: (KJV) . . . When we are saved, we no longer need to live under sin’s power. The penalty of sin and its power over us were miraculously destroyed by Christ on the cross, but our old sin nature has not been destroyed and will not be destroyed until we receive our new Christ-like bodies at the resurrection. Through faith in Christ we stand acquitted, or not guilty, before God (Romans 3:21-22). God does not take us out of the world or make us robots—we will still feel like sinning, and sometimes we will sin. The difference is that before we became Christians, we were dead in sin and were slaves to our sinful nature and we did not care that we sinned. But now we are alive with Christ.

Gal.2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. (KJV) . . . I think this may be one verse that makes Mr. Stanley think our old nature dies when we are saved. I believe that it is our sins that die with Christ, we are no longer condemned (Col. 2:13-15).

How have we been crucified with Christ? Legally, God looks at us as if we had died with Christ. We are justified (Rom.3:24; 5:1) Because our sins died with Him, we are no longer condemned (Col. 2:13-15). Intimately, we become one with Christ. Our new life began when we united with Him, we died to our old life (Rom.6:5-11). In our daily life, we must repeatedly crucify our sinful desires that keep us from following Christ. That means that that old sinful nature didn’t go anywhere. This too is, in a way, dying with Him (Luke 9:23-25).
We have been reconciled with God (2 Cor. 5:19). We continue to grow into Christ’s likeness (Rom.8:29). We have Christ’s resurrection power as we continue to fight sin (Ephes. 1:19-20). We are no longer alone, for Christ lives in us! He is our Power for living and our Hope for the future (Col. 1:27). With His help, our new nature shall win.

1 Cor. 15:42-44 So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption: [43] It is sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power: [44] It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. (KJV) . . . Even with a new nature, we will continue to sin . . . God says so! Only when we receive our new resurrection bodies, will we cease from sin, like Jesus!

Philip. 3:21 Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself. (KJV) . . . Our new bodies we will receive when we are raised from the dead will be glorious, like Christ’s resurrected body. Only then will our old sin nature die!

1 John 3:2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. (KJV) . . . Our old sin nature will be dead only when this happens.

2 Cor. 5:1-10 For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. [2] For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven: [3] If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked. [4] For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life. [5] Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit. [6] Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: [7] (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) [8] We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord. [9] Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him. [10] For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. (KJV) . . . Our future resurrection bodies will be perfect for our everlasting life. They shall never sin again! Our present bodies will continus to sin daily until we receive these new bodies. Paul describes our resurrected bodies in more detail in 1 Cor. 15:46-58. The Bible does not tell us everything about our resurrected bodies, but we do know they will be perfect, without sickness, without disease, without pain and without sin.

I absolutely agree with Mr. Stanley when he says that when you are saved, Jesus Christ abides in you. Unless the Spirit of Christ abides within a person they are NOT saved! Romans 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. (KJV)

When the Holy Spirit is abiding and working within you, you will:

  • (1) believe that Jesus Christ is God’s Son and that eternal life comes only through Him (1 John 5:5).
  • (2) you will begin to live as Christ desires (Rom.8:5; Gal. 5:22-23).
  • (3) you will have help in your problems and your prayers (Rom.8:26-27).
  • (4) you will be empowered to serve God and do His will (Acts 1:8; Rom.12:6).
  • (5) you will become part of God’s plan to build up His church (Ephes. 4:12-13).

But, just because the Holy Spirit lives within you, does not mean you will never sin again. That is just no so. Our old nature did not care about God, and it had no problem at all with sin. Our new nature really cares about God and desperately desires to do right by Him. And each and every time a born again believer sins, it lies heavy on our hearts. We are really convicted by our wrong, and we cannot wait to go to God and confess our sin (1 Jn.1:8-9).

CONCLUDING REMARKS ON REDEMPTION

God clearly tells us we ALL are sinners (Rom.3:10, 23). Those redeemed are brand-new people on the inside. The Holy Spirit gives us new life, and we are not the same anymore. We are not reformed, or made better . . . we are made new creations, living in vital union with Christ (Col. 2:6-7). At conversion we don’t simply turn over a new leaf; we begin a new life under a new Master.

The word regeneration is found only found in Mat.19:28 and Titus 3:5. It actually means a new birth (redeemed, saved, born again). We become a new creature in Christ Jesus by being born again (John 3:5) into the family of God. Our mind is renewed (Rom.12:2). This change comes from the Holy Spirit, NOT anything we can do (John 1:12-13; 1 John 2:29). What all takes place in this change? It includes a new standard or make up in our soul. Spiritual life becomes very important to us now, where before we were “dead in trespasses and sins” and God and things of God did not matter to us. This necessary change must take place within us, as is made clear in Scripture (John 3:3; Rom.7:18; 8:7-9; 1 Cor. 2:14; Eph. 2:1; 4:21-24).

Sin is actually the death of the soul. A man dead in trespasses and sins has no desire whatsoever for spiritual pleasures. An unbeliever (carnal man) simply conforms to this world. Unbelievers are slaves to Satan. Satan is behind all evil. He rules in the hearts of unbelievers. We ALL were slaves to sin before we allowed Jesus into our heart and life. Neither God or our stopping our sin was in our thoughts.

Every converted, redeemed sinner is a saved sinner; delivered from sin and wrath. The grace that saves us is FREE. A regenerated, redeemed sinner becomes a different person. He truly desires to live a life of holiness. This does not come about by any thing done by us, so we certainly cannot boast about it. God’s Holy Spirit produces this change in us, makes us born again, spiritually, but we still feel the desire for wrong things at times. Our old nature has not left us.

When we are redeemed, we no longer need to live under sin’s power. The penalty of sin and its power over us were miraculously destroyed by Christ on the cross, but our old sin nature has not been destroyed and will not leave us until we receive our new Christ-like bodies at the resurrection. Through faith in Christ we stand acquitted, or not guilty, before God (Rom.3:21-22). God does not take us out of the world or make us robots. We will still feel like sinning, and sometimes we will sin. The difference is that before we became God’s children, we were dead in sin and were slaves to our sinful nature and we did not care that we sinned. But now we are alive with Christ. Our sins die with Christ, and we are no longer condemned.

How have we been crucified with Christ? Legally, God looks at us as if we had died with Christ. We are justified (Rom.3:24; 5:1) Because our sins died with Him, we are no longer condemned (Col. 2:13-15). Intimately, we become one with Christ. Our new life begins when we are united with Christ. We die to our old life (Rom.6:5-11). In our daily life, we must repeatedly crucify our sinful desires that keep us from following Christ.

Redemption reconciles us with God (2 Cor. 5:19). We must continue to grow spiritually, to be more like Christ (Rom.8:29). We have Christ’s resurrection power as we continue to fight sin (Eph. 1:19-20). We are no longer alone, for Christ lives in us! He is our Power for living and our Hope for the future (Col. 1:27). With His help, our new nature shall win.

But, just because the Holy Spirit lives within you, does not mean you will never sin again. You will sin. Our old nature did not care about God, and it had no problem with sin. Our new nature really cares about God and desperately tries to do right by Him. Each time a redeemed believer sins, it lies heavy on our hearts. The Holy Spirit really convicts us of our sin. We must go to God and confess our sin, get rid of it (1 John 1:8-9). Only when we receive our new resurrection bodies, will we stop sinning. The new bodies we will receive when we are raised from the dead will be glorious, like Christ’s resurrected body. Our future resurrection bodies will be perfect for everlasting life in Heaven. They shall never sin again!

See: http://www.jesus-is-savior.com/BTP/i_never_knew_you.ht

Thank You Jesus!

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