Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Remember the Flesh

Re-Posted from "Meditations of a Charismatic Calvinist Who Does Not Speak in Tongues"

 "The devil made me do it." This is a false excuse used to duck responsibility for our actions. While I believe, and believe strongly, in the existence of demonic powers (Ephesians 2:2), it is a mistake to try to blame our wrong behavior on them. The basic source for our evil desires is within ourselves (James 1:14,15; Romans 7:17-20; Jeremiah 17:9). And while Satan and his demons may encourage us to do wrong (2 Timothy 2:26; 2 Corinthians 2:11; 1 Corinthians 7:5), we are ultimately responsible for our own sins. Nowhere in Scripture is casting out demons put forth as the standard procedure for dealing with sin, but rather, it is God's progressive working in us to transform us (2 Corinthians 3:18; Galatians 5:16; Philippians 2:13).  And while I am convinced there is a place for dealing with demonic influence (James 4:7; Ephesians 6:12; 1 Peter 5:8,9), this should not be used as an excuse to avoid responsibility, nor should casting out demons be regarded as a quick fix to obtain instant spirituality.  We must recognize that we are sinners, responsible for our own acts (Romans 14:10-12; 2 Corinthians 5:10), and while God will forgive our sins through the blood of Christ (Ephesians 1:7; Romans 3:23-26), He is not going to let us excuse them.

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