He Cannot Sin
Text: I John 3:1-10
I. It is amazing the lengths people reach to avoid responsibility for sin
A. Often the same groups who teach that people cannot help but sin because they are born sinful also teach that once saved they cannot sin.
B. It is a difficult deception to hold on to because it is clear to all that people who are supposed to be saved still commit sin.
C. There are two ways to avoid the obvious:
1. Claim that the person wasn’t really saved in the first place.
a. Which gives rise to the question, how do you know your saved?
b. No matter how confidently a person asserts that he feels saved, the same can be said for some people they claim never really was saved.
2. Claim that sin doesn’t impact the person’s soul.
a. Sam Morris, pastor of the First Baptist Church in Stamford, Texas: "We take the position that a Christian's sins do not damn his soul! The way a Christian lives, what he says, his character, his conduct, or his attitude toward other people have nothing to do with the salvation of his soul. ... All the prayers a man may pray, all the Bibles he may read, all the churches he may belong to, all the services he may attend, all the sermons he may practice, all the debts he may pay, all the ordinances he may observe, all the laws he may keep, all the benevolent acts he may perform will not make his soul one whit safer; and all the sins he may commit from idolatry to murder will not make his soul in any more danger ... The way a man lives has nothing whatever to do with the salvation of his soul."
b. This the claim is that salvation somehow disconnects a person from his actions.
II. A popular justification for this is I John 3:9
A. “Whoever has been born of God does not sin, for His seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he has been born of God.” (NKJV)
1. The translation is accurate, but misleading in English because “cannot sin” can be taken as “unable to sin”
2. A.T. Robertson’s New Testament Word Pictures: “And he cannot sin (kai ou dunatai hamartanein). This is a wrong translation, for this English naturally means "and he cannot commit sin" as if it were kai ou dunatai hamartein or hamartêsai (second aorist or first aorist active infinitive). The present active infinitive hamartanein can only mean "and he cannot go on sinning," as is true of hamartanei in verse 1Jo 3:8 and hamartanôn in verse 1Jo 3:6. For the aorist subjunctive to commit a sin see hamartête and hamartêi in 1Jo 2:1. A great deal of false theology has grown out of a misunderstanding of the tense of hamartanein here.
B. A Christian quits living in sin - Romans 6:1-2, 10-13
C. John doesn’t contradict himself - I John 1:8-2:1
1. We have sinned
2. We do sin
3. We will sin
D. But because of God’s seed, Christians won’t stay in sin
1. The seed is the word of God - I Peter 1:22-23
2. As David taught - Psalm 119:11
III. Using I Corinthians 5:5 to say the body is destroyed but the soul is saved.
A. The claim that adultery, lying, stealing, murder, profanity, hatred, bitterness, etc. are all sins done in the body, which is destroy, but will not effect the soul.
B. But what is done in the body does effect the spirit - I Corinthians 9:27
1. Notice “I” (the inward man) keeps the body (the outward man) in control so that “I” (the inward man) will not be cast away.
2. We are not to let sin control our bodies - Romans 6:12-13
C. Sin often uses the body as a tool for sin, but where does sin originate? - Matthew 15:19-20
1. They come from within, from the spirit of a man.
2. Murder doesn’t come from the body. The sin comes from the heart. The body carries out the sin.
D. The word “deliver” translates the Greek word, paradidomi, which literally means a betrayal or a surrender.
1. It means that the church is acknowledging their failure to keep this brother out of sin.
2. It is a public statement that they lost a brother to Satan, so they are letting him go in hopes that the misery, which will result, will teach the person not to willfully disobey God - Matthew 18:17; II Thessalonians 3:14
3. This same word is used when a person is cast into prison - Matthew 4:12
a. That is how Christians view it. They are free from sin - Romans 6:7
b. But when a Christian returns to sin he is also returning to bondage or imprisonment - Romans 6:16
c. Thus Satan is looked upon as a jailer and the person who refuses to stay out of Satan's realm is released to fall back under Satan's control.
d. But it is done in hope that the person will realize what they lost and return; that he will destroy his fleshly desires so he might be saved - Romans 8:13
E. Paul isn’t talking about a person being saved despite his continued sins. He is demanding that the church take action so that a person will leave sin and thereby may be saved.
IV. If a child of God cannot be lost, regardless of what he does, then why all the warnings?
A. Take heed lest you fall - I Corinthians 10:12
B. If you do what is right, you won’t fall - II Peter 1:10
C. The danger of acting like the Israelites - Hebrews 3:12
D. Don’t come short - Hebrews 4:1
V. Doing sin will keep you out of heaven - I Corinthians 6:9-10
A. Be like the Corinthians - I Corinthians 6:11
B. The opportunity awaits you at this time.