Summary: Resolutions are quite popular during this season. Everyone is working on them though not many really understand what they mean. According to the dictionary, a resolution is “the process of reaching a firm decision about something; to deal with [somethin
Resolutions are quite popular during this season. Everyone is working on them though not many really understand what they mean. According to the dictionary, a resolution is “the process of reaching a firm decision about something; to deal with [something] successfully; to make [something] clear and understandable.” The problem with so many resolutions going unfulfilled is because the person making such resolutions does not understand that it is important to make a firm decision and to make it clear in one’s mind that nothing will keep him/her from fulfilling such decisions successfully. Some people resolve to lose weight, but they do not stop eating junk food. Some people resolve to read the Bible, but they don’t even attempt to open the Holy Book. Some people resolve to exercise, but they become “busy” and have no time to even start.
Today, I would like to tell you about a few resolutions that as Christians we must adopt and fulfill. We have to make the firm decision to follow these resolutions. We have to have it clear and understand that there is nothing that can keep us from following these resolutions. What are these resolutions for the New Year?
I. RUN AWAY FROM SIN
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.” (Hebrews 12:1, 2 – New Living Translation)
A. Sin is failure to comply with God’s orders
1. Sin is disobedience to His words
“Everyone who keeps living in sin also practices disobedience. In fact, sin is disobedience.” (1 John 3:4 – ISV)
“All who indulge in a sinful life are dangerously lawless, for sin is a major disruption of God’s order.” (1 John 3:4 – The Message)
B. Follow the example of God’s Champions
5. Moses’ parents
7. The Israelites
C. All of them were sinners, but they resolved that sin would not hold them back
1. Because of that resolution, God used them in awesome ways
“Through acts of faith, they toppled kingdoms, made justice work, took the promises for themselves. They were protected from lions, fires, and sword thrusts, turned disadvantage to advantage, won battles, routed alien armies. Women received their loved ones back from the dead. There were those who, under torture, refused to give in and go free, preferring something better: Resurrection. Others braved abuse and whips, and, yes, chains and dungeons. We have stories of those who were stoned, sawed in two, murdered in cold blood; stories of vagrants wandering the earth in animal skins, homeless, friendless, powerless — the world didn’t deserve them! — making their way as best they could on the cruel edges of the world.” (Hebrews 11:33-38 – The Message)
D. The same message is for you today
1. Run away from sin!
“Don’t put it off; do it now! Don’t rest until you do. Save yourself like a gazelle escaping from a hunter, like a bird fleeing from a net.” (Proverbs 6:4, 5 – New Living Translation)
2. Sin will eventually destroy you!
“The payment for sin is death.” (Romans 6:23 – New Century Version)
E. The story of Antoine Yates
1. A man who lived in a Harlem public housing complex
2. He lived with a 400 lb. Bengal tiger and an alligator
3. One day the tiger attacked Yates and almost ripped off his arm
4. Yates called the police and reported he had been bitten by a pitbull
5. Police found the huge tiger in the apartment and had it removed along with the alligator
6. Yates’ reaction? “I feel heartbroken. I miss him a lot. He’s like my brother, my best friend, my only friend, really.”
7. How terrible that some of us are like Mr. Yates. We love and want to hold on to the very thing that can kill us!
As this first month moves along, make it your resolution to run away from sin! This means that you make a firm decision to stay as far away from sin as possible. It also means that you will deal with that decision in a successful manner. You may think that this is impossible for you. But remember what the Bible says, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:9 – ESV). Run away from sin and run to God. He will give you the strength to do the impossible!