How to Avoid Backsliding
For an individual, specifically, a Christian, to backslide means they must have been a passionate lover of Christ and the gospel but have now fallen away. Christians who backslide are those who have once known the truth and confessed Jesus as their Lord and Saviour. But subconsciously, the flesh started taking over. Precisely, to backslide means to relapse. Backsliding begins when you start giving in to old habits and self-interests. Considering how saturated our environments are with toxic activities and events, it takes cognizance and spiritual effort to recognize the signs that show you are backsliding. Every Christian who has full faith assurance takes heed lest he falls. There is no degree of grace that cannot be surmounted. There are several signs to watch for when a believer is backsliding.
Here are some of the signs that show you are backsliding.
Lack of Hunger For The Word of God
When a Christian starts to lose interest in studying the bible and still feels nothing is wrong with it. Then it is safe to say something is wrong because, at this point, they are backsliding. Luke 4:4 clarifies that man shall not live by bread alone but by the word of God. A hungry believer who thirsts for God’s words will search the scriptures with due diligence and will treasure the word in his heart.
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Spiritual arrogance begins when a Christian no longer pays attention to God’s work on the cross but prefers to be self-righteous. What we do or who we are is not the basis of our acceptance by God. The Christian race is only possible with Christ. Pride brings nothing but destruction Proverbs 16:18. For instance, Peter began to backslide at the point where he started boasting that he was ready to go to prison with Jesus and to death, Luke 22:33. It’s funny how Peter could only follow Him at a distance and not closely. The saving grace Peter had was that Jesus has prayed for him right before the temptation. He was later restored and became a fearless witness for Christ. Avoid spiritual pride!
Lack of Sense of Guilt; Justifying Sin
Sin is sin. But when a believer begins to excuse sin, probably even justifying it just to feel good, it’s a sign that shows backsliding. Such a person gradually departs from the faith, and his conscience dies. Finally, he is wallowing in sin without remorse or guilt. We are already in the end-times where many people are beginning to depart from the faith, 1 Timothy 4:1-2.
Giving in to the Flesh
The desire for things of the flesh such as; heresies, envy, adultery, idolatry, jealousy, e.t.c, can make a Christian relapse. Such a
believer will begin to manifest the works of the flesh instead of the fruit of the Spirit. Galatians 5:19-21
How to Avoid Backsliding
- Cultivate a daily fellowship with God both in deeds and prayers.
- Embrace living a life that is holy, not self-righteous.
- Perform a regular self-examination.
- Never neglect the gathering of fellow believers.
- Persevere in whatever challenging situation and resist the need to compromise.
- Be open to learning and receiving constructive criticism.
There is restoration in Christ when we take a step towards repentance. Acknowledging and confessing our deeds shows that we’ve identified the signs and are willing to turn around for a positive change. Paying attention to the word of God and asking for grace will help us all overcome temptation and refrain from backsliding.