Co-authored with Andrea Garzon
Hebrews 10:2 makes it abundantly clear that the believer shall have no more conscience of sin. His inner world is supposed to be a sin-free environment since it is washed clean in Christ. On this background Hebrews 12:1 is a most curious verse:
“Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us.”
Why does the author speak about the sin that so easily besets us in the context of faith and faith people? And why does this verse follow Hebrews 10:2? What says faith? It tells us to look beyond appearances to the core. When we do we do not see sins just like the faith heroes who have walked this path before us. The sin that entangles us ensnares us in our consciousnesses (we have a conscience of sin) and when we allow it to stay it begins to fester and therefore it steals away our boldness and joy, and it slows us down in the race set before us. That is our problem.
The Spirit is evidently in 12:1 articulating that we far too easily ascribe sins to ourselves when there are none. We do so on account of traditions and wrong thinking, that is, in accordance with the wrong three and the elementary principles of this world. By and by we learn that we live by inner consciousness and inner perception. Thus Paul states: Everything that is not of faith is sin. In other words, faith does not see or acknowledge sin. Unbelief sees sins almost everywhere, and it therefore becomes sin to the beholder. Jesus has washed our consciousnesses once and for all so that they are not to see sins. Let us not allow anything or anyone to infuse lies into our minds.
When we come before God this is His testimony: You are my beloved son who is one with me. You are never separate from me. There is no sin in my son. He abides in you and you abide in Him. You are a partaker of divine life and you contribute in the heavenly conversations. There is no sin in heaven, nor in the triune fellowship. How can there be any sin in you and how can you commit sins in heaven? Have you forgotten that heaven is in you?
In essence the sin that so easily besets us is falling back into separated thinking. Let us lay “separation” behind us, the Spirit urges. Come back to a unified mind! Rise to faith! But, we need to be patient with ourselves, because it takes a ‘season’ to retrain our minds and thought processes.
Every day we face the same temptation Jesus did: performance— nurture ourselves from this delusion of separateness instead of partaking from Him, the true Bread from heaven. He was tempted to prove his sonship by means of performance and to “eat” from this illusion of self-reliance, typified by the stones (law written in stone tablets, which represents our former stony hearts). He decisively refused to turn the stones into bread and declared: “It is written: Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.” And God’s Word is Oneness!