Your Starting Point
James 1:14-15 KJV “But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.
 Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.”
What is lust? Lust is defined as strong desire. Sin is the last act or action of lust. Death is the consequence of the action. Trying to bring our body into subjection to God is difficult because the body/flesh is born into sin. If sin is the last act or action, what precedes this action and how do we correct the action?
Sin is the act or action of conduct and behaviour. But before your conduct and behaviour, was a decision you had to make. And before you made the decision you have a desire aka lust. Lust can involve anything because whatever you have a strong desire for, you are lusting for it.
For years churches taught on conduct and behaviour. Pastors preached on conduct and behaviour. People judge other people based on conduct and behavior. But the root of conduct and behaviour is desire. Because the desire thought is placed in your mind.
Once the desire thought is placed in your mind you make a decision. Your decision brings a conduct and behaviour. And if that conduct and behaviour is against God or God’s word, then it is sin.
If I do not have the desire then I do not need to worry about my conduct or behaviour over a particular issue. And if I attack an issue by attacking the conduct and behaviour, I get religion.
For years I heard in church about conduct and behaviour. This teaching turns people away from God because people realize they can not stop or they can not be good enough. Trying to force people into church required conduct and behaviour only makes the people religious not free.
But when you teach people when they choose to get saved they choose to crucify the person they were. You choose to change the way you think, change the way you walk in this world, change what you speak, change your goals, change your plans all to line up with God and his ways and God’s plan and purpose for you. You choose to let God establish your destiny, not you.
That is what baptism pictures. When a believer is baptized they are immersed in water showing their old man has died and is buried and they are raised in newness of life. They are raised for a new life in Christ and with Christ. That is why scriptural baptism is immersion not sprinkled.
Remember when Jesus was baptized? After Jesus was baptized the Holy Ghost came upon him (a dove was seen) and a voice from heaven was heard (God the Father). Then Jesus’s life changed, he started his earthly ministry at about 30 years old.
We don’t read much about the life of Jesus before his baptism. But we do know Jesus was about 30 years old when he was baptized by John the Baptist. We also know Jesus’s ministry was about 3 1/2 years and then they crucified Jesus. The gospel ‘s focus is on the ministry, death, burial and resurrection of Jesus.
I remember about four years after I got saved my brother asked me why I was allowing myself to be put into difficult situations. He knew I was saved and he said, so was he, but he didn’t understand what I was doing. I tried to explain my life was no longer what I wanted but I wanted to live by God’s direction.
If you say you are saved and your life has pretty much stayed the same as it was before you were saved, I would question your salvation. Did you get saved in your head or in your heart?
Until next time.