Saint or Sinner?

Why do I sin?

As discussed in my last blog Jesus has paid the perfect sacrifice for you to have perfect righteousness.

Your sinful nature was crucified on the cross.

It is dead.

It wasn’t raised up with Christ but rather a completely new you arose.

Paul refers to this new you as a completely new creation in 2 Cor 5.

The word used in 2 Cor 5:17 for “new” is quite interesting.

There are two words in the Greek for “new” – “neos” and “kainos”.

“Neos” means something of the same kind but new in relation to time.

For example, I have a 1995 Toyota Corolla.

Imagine I said, I’m going to get a “neos car”.

I would come back with a 2015 Toyota Corolla.

It’s the same car, it’s just brand new.

“Kainos”, in contrast, means something new in every sense of the word. A completely different unique thing.

To follow the same example, it would be like me saying I’m off to get a “kainos car”. I’d take my 1995 Toyota Corrolla to the dealership and come back with a 2015 Aston Martin prototype!

This is NEW!

So all that to say we must understand that we have been made a kainos creation.

We are not sinners with a second chance. The sinful self is completely done away with and we have been made righteous!

If this is still hard for you to swallow I recommend you signup for my mailing list and get a free copy of my eBook – “You Do Not Have A Sinful Nature”

The Big Question

Many Christians, myself included initially have a gnawing question when faced with this reality.

“If I’m righteous by nature and my sin nature is dead then why am I not perfect?

Why do I still sin?”

The answer surprisingly is incredibly simple.

As simple as it is offensive.

We still struggle with our old sinful nature because we believe we should.

In fact, the reason there is any sin whatsoever in our lives in any area is because we have a framework of belief that empowers it.

I’d encourage you to read through the New Testament again.

Every time you come across the topic of seeing grace appropriated in your life, read the verse in its immediate context.

You will see that while we HAVE everything through grace, we RECEIVE it by our faith.

Ephesians 2:8 – For by grace you have been saved through faith…

Romans 4:16 – Therefore it is of faith that it might be according to grace…

Romans 5:2 – Through [Christ] we also have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

There are countless verses about faith and grace.

Even Solomon understood this principle in the old covenant when he said “For as a man thinks in his heart, so is he” (Prov 23:7)

As a side note, look at what Ephesians 2:8 actually goes on to say.

‘For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God‘.

Your faith isn’t even yours, it’s a gift from God! Lest you could boast in your own faith! haha

(For more on this I encourage you to listen to my audio message “Grow Your Faith Or Lose It?”)

Activating Grace

So if the grace has already been paid for and given to us on the cross by the power of what Christ did, then how do we see it activated in our lives?

By faith.

By believing.

This is what Paul means in Romans 12:2 when he stated that we will be transformed by the renewing of our minds.

You see, transformation cannot be brought by you trying to do better.

This is what Jesus was talking about with the vine producing fruit, he called you branches for a reason.

We don’t try to produce fruit. We can’t.

[Tweet “Our job is to just be who we are, knowing that it is our nature to produce good fruit.”]

In our old nature we constantly had to fight against the current of a stream flowing towards unrighteousness.

If we did nothing we would just float down the river towards sin. If we fought hard enough we might do some good acts but with effort and strain that ultimately is not good enough (Isa 64:6, Phil 3:9).

However, now we have a righteous nature, we flow down the stream towards righteousness!

We do good by nature!

In fact – and this will be a hurdle for some – you striving to do good actually produces sin in your life! If you try to follow the law it will always lead to sin. (1 Cor 15:56, Rom 4:15)

(For more on this see “What’s the role of the law in the New Covenant?”)

So why do I sin?

Because somewhere along the line we were taught that we are still sinners. Or worse, that we are righteous but we have to “work out our salvation”.

The key then is to stop resurrecting the old man and operating out of that nature!

Given the world around us and our old thought patterns, this can be harder than it sounds.

However it really does boil down taking our thoughts captive.

Warring Against The Flesh

Consider 2 Cor 10:3-4 – “…we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God”

It is not in the flesh that we war. We aren’t fighting against our nature. We fight against the strongholds of the mind and arguments/high things that war against the knowledge (i.e. the way you think) of God.

Eph 6:12 says “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.”

Again you are not fighting your flesh and blood but rather you’re combatting the attacks of the enemy.

And we all know the ONLY way he can attack – through our beliefs. It was the only way he could attack Adam and Eve in the garden, it’s the only way he could attack Jesus and it was the only way he could attack the NT believers.

[Tweet “The walk of faith has always been a war over what we think… never about what we do.”]

In The Beginning

Look at Adam and Eve, they had absolute authority over everything. They were put entirely over every thing on the earth and yet they had one area that Satan could attack them – their beliefs.

Notice that this is all Satan did. He challenged their beliefs.

“Did God really say that about you? The fruit? Are you really like Him?”

The funniest part is they were both perfect in nature and in their environment (bar one bothersome snake).

Yet we believe there is no way we could be perfect in nature because we sin!

[Tweet “It would appear from Adam and Eve’s experience that being perfect doesn’t mean you can’t sin.”]

In Conclusion

Here are the facts.

  • Your old sinful nature is dead.
  • Your belief in this fact determines how much you will experience it
  • If you believe you are the righteousness of Christ you will start bearing His fruit
  • If you believe you are a filthy rotten sinner, don’t be surprised if you bear sinful fruit
  • God has done everything in Christ to set you free from sin

So my question to you is…

Will you choose to believe what God says about you, or will you believe what your experiences say about you?

Enjoy the post? Share it…


  1. It is a great one!
    We will act what we believe about ourselves!
    Jesus Christ is our only true identity! As He is now, so are we on this earth!

  2. Good Word there Phil. You are a great disciple of both Steve and Wendy Backland and Joseph Prince and are spreading the NEW WINE for the NEW WINE SKIN! Go bro.

    • I only just saw this – thanks so much Maureen! I have been so blessed to come under such amazing father’s and mother’s to disciple me and teach me the gospel :) Thanks for your kind words!

  3. Even the concept of taking every thought captive has been preached as a work that leaves many in bondage feeling ashamed at having bad thoughts. Your teaching sheds like on this. Thanks. I’m also wondering does this mean more like take every thought pattern captive? ie. recognise the very belief system underlying individual thoughts.

    • Yes it’s a huge deal! I think you’ve hit the nail on the head there by talking about it being a belief system rather than just individual thoughts. Sure it’s important to get those but that can become work if we don’t deal with the roots causing individual thoughts, which are our beliefs!

  4. Challenging teaching, as always, thanks…probably an Aston Martin, though an Austin Martin really would be a “kainos” car!

    • Thanks for pointing that out Jon! That certainly would be new! Although they might get sued for ripping them off ;) I’ll go change that now.

    • Yes that’s such a great verse isn’t it?!

      Thanks for the encouragement Amy, I’m glad you liked the article!

  5. Bro Phil, Thank you for this post!! You explained why we still sin very well. It’s so important how we believe. This information transcends other aspects of our life. If you believe you we’re wonderfully made you would have self confidence. If you believe you can’t control your flesh you won’t. But if ypu believe you are more than a conquerer you will reign!!! Thank-You keep teaching.

    • Thanks so much for the encouragement Denise, glad you liked the post. Thanks for sharing too… far too true, we really do forget the power of our beliefs all too often!

  6. I understand your teaching regarding your belief system and that we should not be sin conscious. I was taught that we go from glory to glory and that we still sin. Even before we pray I was taught that we repent of our sins because anything we think or do that is against God’s Will is a sin. I will continue to meditate on the Word and ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to me these truths. I know the Battle is in the Mind, and being an intercessor it is with utmost importance that I have Understanding. Thank you for taking the time to teach, I feel we are all searching and that is a good thing…because we will find the Truth.

    • Thanks for sharing Licia! I bless your journey diving into the riches of God’s goodness as you grow in your relationship with Jesus – who after all, is the very Truth we are all growing in. :)

  7. Thank you for your free ebook, “You Do Not Have a Sinful Nature,” and also this blog, “Why do I Sin?”

    Sharing now on FB!

  8. Eph 6:12, read within context, is telling us our wrestle isn’t against flesh and blood (as in human beings here).
    It’s not saying “THE flesh”, as in our own flesh. Which further proves it doesn’t have to do with our own flesh.

    2 Cor 10:3-4 – “…we do not war according to the flesh. . . .”
    Means exactly what it says. Neither does this verse say we have no battle with our own flesh.

    See, we do have a struggle with our own flesh. But the flesh is not the same as the sinful nature, which the Bible is clear that a Christian doesn’t have (Eph 4:22; Col 2:11, 3:9; Rom 6:6).

    “For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do.” Galatians 5:17 ESV.

    Certainly Paul isn’t contradicting himself.

    “For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.” Romans 8:13

    If the flesh wasn’t a problem, why would we be told not to live after it, and to mortify the deeds of the body (the flesh, I guess)?

    “But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.” 1 Corinthians 9:27 KJV

    • Thanks for sharing Jonathan,

      I agree – “the flesh” and the sinful nature are not the same thing – although anywhere we see “sinful nature” referred to in certain translations there we find the same Greek word “sarx” so this is where the confusion comes in for many.

      Ultimately the phrase “the flesh” can be summed up best and most concisely like this:

      Anything we try to do without Jesus. Anything we do in our own strength… the flesh.

  9. I am crumbling under the sheer, almost unfathomably far-reaching impact this message has in my life.

    I can scarcely comprehend how to articulate it.

    “Everything we thought about pleasing God is garbage. We ARE pleasing to Him. Everything we thought about controlling our sin nature was a lie. Our sin nature is dead. Everything we thought about changing our lives through effort is actually as worthless as it feels. We are changed. We’ve just been lied to about it.”

    Thanks again, Phil. I thank God for the grace that He’s poured out in you, and pray for even more. Love you bro.

    • Ethan man, I love you and I’m so excited about the journey you are on! I’ve got an email from you in my inbox that I plan to reply to later today. I’d love to Skype but it might be next week (or even the week after) as I have a busy trip to New England on Thursday for 12 days.

  10. Romans 8: 13 . If we live according to the flesh you will die. Phil drydale , is this telling me my physical body will die but the real me, the spirit, will go to heaven. Living according to the flesh on earth. So how are we to put to death the deeds of the body and what are the deeds or actions ? By the spirit you put to death the deeds of the flesh, how?

  11. This is an awesome post and is very eye-opening! I would like to point out that your link “Grow Your Faith Or Lose It” is broken. I would really like to hear your teachings on this topic.

    • Hi John – thanks so much. Sorry about that my “related posts” plugin needed to be re-indexed as I updated a few things. I’ve started that process and the links should be sorted within 2hrs.

      In the meantime I have a link for you to an even better version of the same message from my podcast :)

      Hope you enjoy it!

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