To the just, to get back up • Denis’ Blog, Portfolio and Resumé

To the just, to get back up

Never relent from perseverance

Zurich 2011 - Standing Tall by ND Strupler under Attribution 2.0 Generic

The real problem is not to fall, but to be incapable of getting up again.

he who is slack in his work is brother to a great destroyer. Proverbs 18:9
for a just one falls seven times, and rises up again; but the wicked shall fall into evil. Proverbs 24:16

As Christians, we are called to fight the good fight and to end the race. (2 Timothy 4:7) Sometimes however, combat becomes difficult and heavy. We get muddled in evil, and our sin is always before us. (Psalm 51:3) We do wish to turn from it, but how should we do, since we have so often insulted the holiness of God?

Let us never cease to get up again quickly. A characteristic of the heathen is that they stay in their sin without ever turning from it. But we have recognized our faults and confessed our imperfections in front of God. In that way, having not stayed in our sins, let us fight valiantly to get back up without discouragement.

But how many times must God forgive?

Then Peter came to Him and said, Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Until seven times? Jesus said to him, I do not say to you, Until seven times; but, Until seventy times seven. Matthew 18:21-22

If Jesus, the Son of Man come as servant and supreme example of the man of good, gave such counsel to His disciples, will He not follow it, He who delivered the world from sin? Certainly! Let us therefore consider the depth without limit of the well from which we draw forgiveness, and how impossible it is to make dry.

An encouragement which produces zeal

In the example of Christ, we must also forgive those who do us evil:

forgive us our debts as we also forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil. For Yours is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen. For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you; but if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. Matthew 6:12-15

That those who forgive are also forgiven of their debs, but that those who do not forgive are not forgiven either is very clear. That obliges us to put the grace which is given us into practise, and to recognize our evil before God.

Paul adds more:

But working together, we also call on you not to receive the grace of God in vain. (For He says, In an acceptable time I heard you, and in a day of salvation, I helped you; Behold, now [is] the accepted time. Behold, now [is] the day of salvation.) [We are] in nothing giving cause of stumbling, in no way, so that the ministry may not be blamed 2 Corinthians 6:1-3

Therefore, not content in receiving the grace of God, we must also put a dignified restraint so as not to sin against our brother and be for him an occasion of falling.

The reception of forgiveness is difficult

Sometimes, we are completely disgusted of ourselves—and with reason. We progress from fall to fall, without ever being able of feeling any regret towards God, nor to produce any favourable change. We continue thus until feeling hypocritical and incapable of presenting ourselves before God.

Our reaction is then to separate from God until feeling changed. But let us never operate by feelings: we must never get away from God, even when we feel more false and disgusting than ever, and repeat the same sins without ceasing: the day where we will have become better far from God will never come. “he who is slack in his work is brother to a great destroyer.” Let us be characterised, not by never falling—which is impossible in the flesh—but rather in always rising again. We must accept the consequences of our faults, remit our sins to God, and persevere with zeal.

When you fall once, get up.

When you fall twice, get up.

When you fall three times, arise again.

When you fall four times, arise quickly.

When you fall five times, forget your pain and get up.

When you fall six times, get up again.

When you fall seven times, get up rapidly and do so until He comes again.

For I am persuaded that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:38-39

The day when we give up is our defeat, and not the one in which we fall.

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