By Ron Halbrook
The gospel of Christ conquers sin in two important ways, First, through the precious blood of Christ our past sins are forgiven by God when we accept the gospel. We accept it by believing in Christ, repenting of our sins, confessing Jesus as God’s Son with the mouth, and being immersed in water (Mk. 16:16; Acts 2:38; Rom. 10:10). Second, the love of Christ constrains us to resist temptation, to fight sin in all forms, and to conquer it in our daily lives. “Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness” (Rom. 6:17). The gospel of God’s love is more powerful in changing lives for good in time and eternity than civil laws, prisons, secular education, social reforms, or human philosophies could ever be (Rom. 1: 16; 1 Cor. 6:9-11).
War Against Drugs
Our society is engaged in a war against “hard” drugs, but Time Magazine’s special reports on “America’s Crusade” points out a larger problem: “Coke and heroin cause much less overall harm, in statistical terms, than alcohol or tobacco” (15 Sept. 1986, pp. 60-73). When cocaine-related deaths tripled between 1981 and 1985, 563 died in 1985. But in 1980, there were 98,000 deaths related to alcohol and 300,000 from tobacco use. The demand for all kinds of drugs is created by the emptiness of materialism, the pressure of peer groups, and the lies of liberalism. The article concludes that the demand can be broken only if people can learn three vital lessons. After noting each one in italics, we want to observe how the gospel of Christ meets these needs and conquers sin.
1. How to Develop a Proper Sense of Self-Esteem. In other words, who am I? Material things, our friends, and evolutionary theories cannot supply the needed answer. Only the gospel can. We are made in God’s image, separated from him by our sins, and desperately needing fellowship with him through Jesus Christ.
2. How to Deal With the Strains, Pressures and Tensions of Life. In other words, who will help me in life? Ultimately, our help must come from God. We are utterly alone and hopeless without His strength, love, wisdom, and fellowship. God gives us all those spiritual blessings in Christ -through the word of truth of the gospel.
3. How to Resist Peer Pressure. In other words, who is my example, my guide, my God? Can “the group” determine our ultimate standards, daily conduct, and final destiny? Which “group” do I follow – social, business, family, neighbors, political, educational, recreational, etc.? In the final analysis, no person or group of people can take the place of the true and living God! He sent his divine Son to be my perfect example and sent his Spirit to reveal a perfect revelation of truth.
Will you accept and obey the gospel of Christ so that sin can be conquered in your life?
Guardian of Truth XXXI: 17, p. 521
September 3, 1987