Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny
Everyone who resides in him does not sin; everyone who sins has neither seen him nor known him. 1 John 3.6
This verse is difficult for many people to understand. They have the idea that once you become a Christian, one must live a life without a single sin. They feel, rightly so, that they cannot do that. But, James wrote in 3.2 that we all stumble in many ways. John also writes in 1 John 1.7 that if we walk in the light, the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. Then what does this verse actually mean? If I reside or remain in Jesus, I do not practice sin. I strive to live my life in obedience with his word. However, when I do stumble and sin on occasion, 1 John 1.9 says that if I confess my sin, God is faithful and righteous, forgiving me my sin and cleansing me from all unrighteousness. Righteousness is something that has to be practiced. It does not occur naturally. I cannot practice sin and call myself righteous. I deceive myself if I believe that this is possible. In the same way, everyone who lives a life of sin cannot claim to know Jesus. I cannot be in two locations at the same time. I cannot be living a life of sin and a life of righteousness at the same time. They are totally different lifestyles. I want to reside in Jesus for there I have hope.