But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God's people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy. 1 Peter 2:9-10
Well blogger family I'll share what started this whole question of sinner or saint shortly. First I want to thank all who participated in this discussion. You can click here to see the previous responses from the original post Dec. 2008. It is great when believers can come together and examine our practice in light of scripture. Through the power of the Holy Spirit may we be transformed even more into the image of Jesus Christ.
When God calls a sinner to receive salvation by the blood of Jesus Christ that individual becomes a saint. There is the greatest miracle! A walking, talking DEAD man or woman made ALIVE through the power and work of Jesus Christ on Calvary's Cross. That individual is now a saint and should no longer identify themselves with what was sin. It is like the Jews relying on the law. Christ fulfilled the whole law and for one to go back to it (the law) is to deny the power of the Christ. By identifying oneself with what God has called you out of is to say that Christ isn't enough!
Many struggle with this and so we should take a closer look at it. I'm a practical person and so my examples will be also. Once you are married your name changes. Along those lines if I am married am I also single? No I am married. Likewise if I cheat on my spouse am I no longer married to him? Nope, still married. I used that example to say, as saints we will struggle with sin, yet are not bound to or by sin.
There are lots of scripture that tell us not to look back to the former. See Luke 9:62, Phil 3:14, Eph 4:17-24, 1 Peter 1:13-16. Yes we need to remember how sinful we were but the memory should only cause us to worship, honor, and adore Christ all the more. Again it is not by your wonderful works (or should I say bloody menstrual pad) that you are a saint, but by the work of Jesus Christ and Him alone.
The payment for sin is death. Christ paid for your sin from 20 years ago, the sin from today, the sin of tomorrow, and the sin 20 years from today. It is PAID for by the pure, clean, spotless blood of the Lamb Jesus Christ! To continue the claim of sinner is to deny the saving power of Christ.
Oh yeah, how this started. I have been around many saints and I noticed there to be a strong connection with the sins of old and a very weak understanding of our present place in Christ. Tommy hit the nail on the head about defeated saints. We need to see ourselves as God sees us. We tell that to sinners all the time but not so much with saints. You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation....see above. God loves His children. No matter how you have messed up in times past, present or future, Christ blood is enough. When God looks at you saint, He sees Jesus (whom He was pleased to crush for you!). The righteousness of Christ is placed upon you and your sin was placed upon Him over two thousand years ago. Don't look back saint or you will make His crushing in vain (if it were possible).