I discovered that the only way to be completely sin-free, is to end my earthly life.
Jesus came, lived and died to save me. From what? From the sting of sin — the eternal death of my soul.
While on earth, we are given a chance to strive to be like Jesus. But, we should not be too concerned about perfection, for it is not the destination but the journey that matters most. Perfection is not the goal. Knowledge of Jesus is. Try as we may, we cannot be sin-free while we are alive. But, we can stop living a sinful life while we are following Jesus.
How is that? Here me out.
Perfection is not the goal. Knowledge of Jesus is.
Because if we are STRIVING to know Jesus and become like Jesus each day, the effort itself to know him and be like Him is counted as righteousness, even if we commit sinful acts at times. While on earth, the effort and the journey towards becoming like Jesus is what matters. As long as we are striving, working towards our salvation with fear and trembling — even if we occasionally commit sin, I believe it is not counted as “living a sinful life”.
True believers of Jesus strive to become like Him. And when I say I am striving to be like Jesus, I am not being proud of it. For in my mind, it means the carnal man in me sometimes gets the upper hand, and I succumb to my own fleshly desires; which is swiftly followed by a painful sting of guilt and self-condemnation.
The word “striving” should paint an image of struggling and persevering over our own worst enemy — ourselves, it is never an easy battle and should never be easy. It should bring to mind a picture of yourself bringing your own cross, occasionally failing and tumbling over and over again until we reach our goal — the place where we will forever crucify ourselves in Him — the day of our own earthly death (or His second coming, whichever comes first).
Striving for holiness is a lifetime journey of perseverance towards learning what it takes to become like Him. And yes, that includes having to deal with your “darling sins” and facing it head on, sometimes failing for the same weakness over and over again.
Because the only way to be completely sin-free, is to end our earthly life.
“For I am sure of this, that He who started a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus (Phil 1:6) — or until the day you meet Christ Jesus — whichever comes first.