5 For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, 6 knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer […]
There is a transformation that happens to us right exactly when we believe. However, it is not the transformation we were looking for, having been immersed our whole lives under the threat of the law. The real change is a shift in trust away from self to God. If the change were a change in success at keeping the law instead of a change of trust, why would we need the new testament imperatives?
Whenever the devil harasses you, seek the company of men or drink more…
We will in all likelihood find it impossible to see change in one another on a day-to-day or even a week-to-week basis. Genuine growth happens slowly, like trees, and not everyone is even a healthy tree in the first place.
Leave as you are – because you have been eternally and completely loved beyond all measure by the God who is Real, no matter what. You have not simply been forgiven – you have been justified.
There is a profound level of cognitive dissonance in the standard atheist position. The hallmark of the atheist viewpoint is rationality. Yet, if there is no supreme intelligence, no design, no rational plan at the root of existence, why would rationality be of any use in discerning the nature of things?
Here’s the real issue: do you really think that your strong moral stance is going to convince sinners to reform? Your harsh rejection is going to inspire them to get right? Isn’t that a little bit like the terrorists thinking that bombing the World Trade Center towers would help the cause of Islam? Mercy and kindness and acceptance and forgiveness are the things that lead us to repentance.