If we take a personal journey of our lives whether we profess that Jesus is Lord or not we will find as created beings in God’s image that all commit and have committed various wrong doings or sin. The disobedience to authority as youth and the prevalent indulgence in lusts of various kinds have colored our existence, until we finally come across the believer in Jesus Christ who is possessed by the love of God. An individual who is on fire or as some may say “the zeal of the Lord hath eaten them up.” Whatever it may be, this desire to please God makes this individual, a candidate for God to use strategically in such a way as to bring others into the very fire and love of God as the one in which at first before being exposed to Christ was cold. This fire and zeal for Christ does not mean the individual has ceased from sin in such a way as to be without fault, but the excess of sin has been removed.
The excess of sin is drinking alcohol without being able to cease. The excess of sin is wild parties that do not cease. The excess of sin is not controlling sexual desire to consist within the bounds of marriage, but pours out sexual desire on any willing to pick it up. The excess of sin is unrestrained desire to undermine others to increase ones wealth. Sin in excess has the destination of destruction, death, and ultimately hell.
The person who confesses Jesus Christ as Lord and believes him, God transfers his righteousness and through becoming a new creature in Christ we receive his righteousness and have access to heaven. Conversion confirmation is this, those in Christ, through his Holy Spirit, do not walk in excess of sin, but through his power and the knowledge of his word demonstrate a different lifestyle than seen on the rich and famous, through excess of drugs and alcohol and sex. Selfishness subsides as our reason for living is to please God and his will is that we love him and our neighbor.
What does it mean to abide in Christ? It means no longer living the way an individual has lived without Christ. Previous to the life of Christ a person lives with no regard for the creator’s desire. The creator has allowed this individual to live on earth and even fed this person but the individual lives within the parameters of his/her carnality. This person is not living under any rule but the rule of self-fulfillment. Whatever the person desires, sex outside of marriage, drinking an excess, cheating, lying and stealing, nothing is too far outside this person’s ability or completion, but Christ has shown us another way. To abide in his love is to keep his commandments (John 15:10). In order for one to keep the commandments of God, one must know them. The commandment is to love one another (John 15:12). A person is most like God when they love God and love people also. We demonstrate this love through our commitment to abstain from having sex outside of marriage, drinking an excess, cheating, lying and stealing. We demonstrate our love to God by not forsaking the gathering together of the brethren and by spending time in prayer. We abide in Christ through the spiritual formation of fasting and isolation. All these things encased in the love of God are abiding in Christ. It is a continuing process that requires daily attention. Our desire is with regard to our creator. Our power in prayer becomes effective because unlike a life previous to Christ we begin to learn how to pray. Our heart prays the things God desires. Intertwined with the life of Christ represented in our love for the brethren. We love so much because God loved us so much and the things we commit to doing are always out of this heart of love for our neighbor. If a person hates his brother the Bible says how can the love of God be in this person (1 John 3:15). Abiding in Christ is rolled up in loving God in reading the word, prayer, and fasting inwardly and outwardly through love seen and felt by people around the one abiding in Christ.