1. Friend, I have been thinking about how even a small child knows how to be bad. Children know how to steal, lie, disobey and other such things. Isn't that amazing?
2. Yes, my friend, it is. What you say is true. At an early age they learn to do such things.
1. And when they grow up, they even do worse things.
2. You are right. It is just like the Bible says, "The imagination of men's hearts is only evil continually." In another place it says, "All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God." Think about that.
1. How clearly the Bible speaks. But, tell me, why is it that sometimes we determine not to do bad things anymore, but we go ahead and do them again anyway?
2. Hmm. That is a difficult question. Let me give you an illustration. A pig is always dirty, isn't it? Is it possible for a pig to stay clean?
1. No, no, it cannot. That is the way they are. They like to wallow in the mud.
2. Right. It would be foolish to wash a pig, because it would immediately lie down in mud again.
1. Yes, it would.
2. Now, let's think about a cat. A cat always keeps itself clean. That's the way they are. Cats are always clean, pigs are always dirty. They cannot change.
1. Yes, that's the way they are (by nature).
2. Really, this is the way it is with people, too. They are born with a nature that likes to sin. They sin all their lives. Their children are just like they are. Some sins they learn from their parents; other sins they commit naturally. This is the way we are, and to stop sinning, we must have a change of nature.
1. But how can a person change his nature?
2. We cannot change our nature - but God can. God can, and He wants to, but we must ask Him to do it. God will change our nature when He sees that we want to turn away from our sin and follow His Son, Jesus. We must reject sin and accept Jesus. Though we cannot see Jesus, He will put His Spirit within us and help us. It is for this reason that Jesus was punished for our sins - to redeem us from sin. Jesus gives us new life by His Spirit. A new life begins within us. It is a new life with a new nature, a nature to obey God and do good. If you want this new nature, you can ask God for it right now.
REFERENCES: Gen. 6:5; Gen. 8:21; Rom. 3:23.