The Monster of the Old Nature

Do not yield your members to sin as instruments of unrighteousness, but yield yourselves to God, as those who are alive from the dead, and your bodies to God as instruments of righteousness.

— Romans 6:13

There is a little couplet that I like so much, but it contains a good word—forgotten by many today—the word “mien” (pronounced “mean”). It means “countenance” or appearance. Listen to the couplet:

Vice is a monster of such horrible mien, that to be hated it needs but to be seen.

But too oft, grown familiar with its face, first we endure, then we embrace. Familiarity with the face of the monster of vice is the very essence of just about every talk show on television I have seen or know anything about (except the news or Christian-oriented ones). Christians, however, do not seek such familiarity. Instead, we should turn away from our old vices, our old habits, our old sinful nature.

The diminishing of our old nature is called mortification. The growing of our new nature is called vivification. Put the two together (mortification and vivification) and you get sanctification—one of the great glorious doctrines of the Christian faith.

Sanctification is a process that goes on and on throughout this life. It is never ever perfected in this life. It is not until we cross that river that there, in a final act of glorification, the final vestiges of sin are removed and we are declared to be perfect.

Question to ponder:
Is there any vice that you could possibly have grown too familiar with?