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Wednesday, October 21, 2009
I recently finished John Owens' book, Of the Mortification of Sin in Believers (found as the first of three Owens books in the linked-to book), and found it one of the most helpful and challenging books I've ever read. In it, Owens explains in depth what the Apostle Paul meant when he said Christians should be "putting to death the deeds of the body" through the strength of the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:13). Christians tend to forget that last part: the Holy Spirit. We hate feeling guilty, so in our own strength we work to kill (or more accurately, subdue) certain sins that beguile and annoy us, rather than first repent, have God kill our flesh in Christ, give us a new heart, and then rise to abundant life. Only after having faith in Christ can we ever hope to make successful war against our flesh. But that war will never end while we exist in this life, and the victory against our flesh won't ever be fully complete while we still draw breath.

It's not an easy read (both Owens' use of highbrow English and the thoughts he propounds are difficult to digest), but one you will find both wonderfully rewarding but terribly convicting. The Church needs to read books like this instead of junk like The Shack or Your Best Life Now.


Steve said...

Sin was put to death in me (by God) in my baptism. (Romans 6)

"Now you are to consider yourselves dead to sin."

I do. Sure, I still sin. But that is not the truth about me for righteousness sake.

I was baptized into a death like His. And I was raised along with Him to new life.


It's all there.

Darius said...

Yes, we are dead to sin. But Paul also tells us that we are to kill the sinful flesh that we still live in until we die. But this is not of our own strength, it is by the Holy Spirit.

Steve said...


"He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion..."

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Darius' book montage

The Cross Centered Life: Keeping the Gospel The Main Thing
Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God
Overcoming Sin and Temptation
According to Plan: The Unfolding Revelation of God in the Bible
Disciplines of a Godly Man
Money, Greed, and God: Why Capitalism Is the Solution and Not the Problem
When Helping Hurts: Alleviating Poverty Without Hurting the Poor. . .and Ourselves
The Prodigal God: Recovering the Heart of the Christian Faith
Respectable Sins
The Kite Runner
Life Laid Bare: The Survivors in Rwanda Speak
Machete Season: The Killers in Rwanda Speak
A Generous Orthodoxy: Why I am a missional, evangelical, post/protestant, liberal/conservative, mystical/poetic, biblical, charismatic/contemplative, fundamentalist/calvinist, ... anabaptist/anglican, metho
Show Them No Mercy
The Lord of the Rings
Life at the Bottom: The Worldview That Makes the Underclass
The Truth War: Fighting for Certainty in an Age of Deception
Cool It: The Skeptical Environmentalist's Guide to Global Warming
The Chronicles of Narnia
Les Misérables

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