What is the Direction of Your Life?

“And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him” (1 John 2:3-4).

“People who profess to be saved but who live as though they weren’t are self-deceived. It is not that a saved person cannot fall, and have a need to be restored to fellowship. It is a question, really, of the flow of a person’s life. For instance, the river Nile flows north from the great lakes of Central Africa to the shores of the Mediterranean Sea. Between the fifth cataract and the fourth cataract the great river turns west and then south. Between the fourth cataract and the third cataract it turns again and heads northwest. At Derr, the river changes direction yet another time and flows south and east. Then it turns north again and heads straight for the delta. If someone at a point just beyond Derr were to be asked, ‘Which way does this river flow?’ he would say ‘south,’ but he would be wrong. The river flows north. Its various twists and turns are not the normal and general direction of the flow but only temporary aberrations. The same thing is true of the genuine believer. The great question is, in what direction does his life flow? Is it toward holiness? We see David commit adultery, we see Jonah run away from God’s call, we hear Peter deny his Lord with oaths and curses, we see Elijah run away from Jezebel, and we hear Abraham deny Sarah in Egypt and again in Gerar. The stream seems to be bent. But look! There is David on his face weeping and writing his tear-drenched penitential psalms; there is Jonah heading for Nineveh after all; there is Peter preaching boldly to the multitudes; there goes Elijah confronting Ahab again; and there is Abraham heading for Mount Moriah. The real flow of life has simply reasserted itself. Things have straightened out. The life still flows toward holiness. The main direction of the life has again become clear. It is not that saved people cannot fall into the kinds of sins which characterized them in their unregenerate days. However, they do not continue in those sins. They bitterly repent of their fall and seek cleansing and a fresh filling of the Holy Spirit. They continue on their way toward heaven. The unregenerate have no such current toward holiness in their lives. They habitually sin and excuse themselves for it” .

(John Phillips)