How Do We Motivate Each Other Not To Sin?
Every Christian seems to have their technique for keeping from sin. We have to—if we are trying to follow God, we will be aware of our sin. It must be dealt with.
The Easter season makes this more prevalent because of the so many participating in the tradition of fasting things for Lent. This is wonderful tradition to prepare us for the Easter celebration.
Some of the tools Christians use for motivation not to sin are the following:
- Accountability: If I sin, I’ll have to tell someone what I have done.
- Consequences: If I sin, I’ll do something. This may be 100 pushups, give someone money to pay “the fine,” run an extra mile, etc.
- Think It Over: If I sin, I’ll go contemplate how bad that decision was, how it made God feel, and how bad I feel afterwards.
- Guilt: If I sin, I’ll sit in guilt.
- Shame: If I sin, I’ll beat myself up. Sin is bad, and if I sin I must be bad.
- Ignore It: If I sin, I’ll quickly move on. That’s not who I am. Plus, I am forgiven already.
- Sense of Value: I am too good to sin.
I have heard each of these options from preachers over the years, and not all of them are bad ideas. Very rarely have I heard how God motivates us not to sin.
How Does God Motivate Us Not To Sin?
God’s main motivation is love. It’s His kindness that leads us to repentance (Romans 2:4). Jesus said if you love me, you will do what I have commanded (John 14:15). Find out what pleases the Lord and have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of the flesh (Ephesians 5:1-13). We are not to beat ourselves up over our sins. We are not even to focus on how bad it makes God feel when we sin. Sin has been dealt with. Our motivation for not sinning is an expression of love to the One who loves us. When Jesus comes to Peter after his denial, Jesus gets Peter to focus on his love. “Do you love me?” (John 21:15-17)
Finally, our love should extend to the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit has been given to us to exalt Jesus, to comfort us, and to give us power over sin. The Holy Spirit is the power for us to not sin therefore it benefits us to maintain our relationship with Him. Our sin grieves the Holy Spirit and breaks the connection we have with Him (Ephesians 4:30). We don’t lose the Holy Spirit, but we weaken our access to His help. We must love Him as much as Jesus and the Father. He is our lifeline.
How does God motivate us not to sin? It is not fear or law, but relationship. If you want to stop sinning, dive into your relationship with each of the Godhead. If you sin, dive back into God. Love Him. Love Him. And, keep on loving Him. Then the things of this world will grow strangely dim…
May you have a great Easter basking in the warmth of God’s love.