Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Mandy's Testimony in Christ (from Facebook "About Me.") Mr. Allen asked me to re-post it here.

The Birth of Snow White ~ by Mandy Franklin Allen

I’m a simple woman. I enjoy serving my husband and children and most especially the Lord Jesus, and the most important thing “about me” is really all about him. He is my magnificent obsession.

In fifth grade I went down for an altar call to receive Jesus as my Lord and Savior by praying “The Sinner’s Prayer.” Only, that particular prayer had me invite him into my heart to clean it up, and to get forgiveness. The human heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked and can’t really be cleaned up. The Apostle Paul laments his former unredeemed condition in Romans chapter 7. Oh sure, we may be able to (by an act of our will) do this or that for good, but our efforts can’t deal with our sin nature. Besides, those efforts are as filthy menstrual rags. Our sin nature must be replaced with a new, holy nature; one that is dead to sin, sins, and sinning- one that is born of God.

Consequently, that “sinner’s prayer” served to deceive me into thinking Jesus came to just forgive my sins, rather than take them away so that I didn’t have to sin them anymore. For many years I labored under the burden of trying to keep myself from sinning, while I still had a nature that was sold under sin.

And then, after years of church-going and Bible reading and struggling with secret sins (with some success but not complete success), the Lord opened my eyes to I John chapter 3, verse 9 in particular: “Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.” Immediately, a host of other verses that had been hidden from my understanding were revealed to me, and with a domino effect I understood that this is what it means to be “born again!” And since that moment, over a decade ago, I have not served sin. He made me, Mandy Franklin Allen, a new creation, holy and blameless…. someone that never existed before! He forgave me for all my sins that are past and delivered me from all my future sinning. He keeps me! I’m a kept woman!

And so, I get to spend all eternity praising him and worshipping him and bragging on what he did for the once O-wretched-Man-dy-stained-dark-as-crimson…. now made into fresh and fluffy Snow White! It is his work, it is marvelous, and it is finished!

Isa 64:6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

Eze 36:26 A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.

Isa 1:18 Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.


Adam said...

Hi. How are you?If you are saying that when we are saved we no longer sin, let me warn you that that is not Biblical. The difference between the Christian and the unsaved is that while the unsaved lives a life dominated by sin, the Christian is forgiven for his past, present, and future sins and lives a life with a new attitude toward sin. He’s given a new heart, one that hates sin and one that causes him to strive not to sin out of gratitude for being forgiven. He isn’t perfect, but sin is not an ongoing thing in his life. That’s what 1 John 3 is referring to. Being saved does not make us perfect. We still screw up. Please read Romans 7, where Paul talks about the mind and about the sinful nature. There’s also 1 John 1:8, which says “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.”
There are also countless examples of believers who have messed up, who have disobeyed God. The prodigal son represents that person. There’s Peter, one of Christ’s own apostles, who denied Christ three times. There’s Jonah, who after being forgiven by God, whined and complained again when God forgave other sinners. Did God toss these people into Hell? No. He was very patient with them and his grace was upon them.
If you don’t agree with me, go through the Ten Commandments with yourself. Since the time that you say your were reborn, have you…
…always loved the Lord with all of your heart, soul, strength, and mind? Have you always loved your neighbor as you would yourself?
…ever formed a graven image of God in your mind to make yourself more comfortable? Have you ever misused scripture to make God out to be someone that he isn’t? Have you ever placed more importance on anything other than God? Have you ever put yourself, or your husband, or your kids, or a friend, or a hobby, or a problem, in a place of higher importance in your life than God? (continued)

Adam said...

…ever used God’s holy name irreverently? Ever used his name to curse something? Have you ever used his name to express anger or frustration? Have you ever said “OMG!” Or “GD!” Or “JC!” Have you ever used his Holy name in a passive way?
…always set aside a day of the week for the Lord? Do you have a day of the week that’s devoted solely to God? Have you ever done anything that has taken the focus off of God for that day? Have you ever caught up with chores on that day instead of dealing with them later?
…always honored your mother and father? Have you always treated them with respect? Have you ever talked down to them, insulted them, made fun of them, laughed at them?
…ever murdered anyone? I’m sure you haven’t killed anyone, but keep in mind that God looks at the heart. Have you ever hated anyone? Have you ever merely wanted someone dead? Have you ever imagined killing someone? Have you ever hit someone out of anger? Have you ever called someone a bad name? Have you ever mocked someone? Have you ever done something out of animosity towards another human being? God believes all those things are the same as the physical act of murder.
…ever committed adultery? Have you always been faithful to your husband? Have your thoughts always been pure whenever you see a cute guy? Have you always refrained from looking at impure images in magazines and on television? Have you ever watched a Victoria’s Secret ad? (That’s porno). Keep in mind that adultery can also be committed in the heart.
…ever taken anything that doesn’t belong to you, regardless of value. Have you ever taken even something like a paper clip from someone without asking him for permission? Have you ever borrowed something from someone and then refused to return it? Have you ever refused to pay a loan? Have you ever been in debt, having spent money that you don’t have?
…ever told a lie? Have you always been honest with everyone in your life? Have you always told the truth to your family, friends, neighbors, coworkers, boss, etc. Are there things in your life that you’re in denial over? Have you always been completely honest with yourself?
…ever coveted anything? Have you ever desired a nice car, a nicer house, more money, a new product, in order to feel more fulfilled? Have you ever been jealous of someone? Have you ever envied someone?

I really hope you think about this, because the end of the book of Revelation clearly warns what will happen to those who add or take away from God’s Word. Please consider what I’ve written. Thank you and God bless.

The Allen Family said...

Dear "Adam,"

It is interesting that you started off your post by lying about your name. You are right, you are clearly still a sinner.

I'm very well aware of what the sinning churches teach as I was a part of that for many years before the Lord opened my eyes to what he meant when he said “if you love me, you will obey me.” And when I finally wanted him enough to embrace that, I quit defending sin, as you are, and let him set me free from it. He promises to cleanse us from ALL unrighteousness.

In the first place, the Bible does not teach that Christians are forgiven of sins past, present, and future. It says that we are forgiven of "sins that are past" and then given a way of escape for future sins. Consider these verses:

Romans 3:25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;

I Corinthians 10:13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.
I John 3:9 Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.

Matthew 5:48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

I John 2:6 He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.

In Romans 7 Paul is describing his unredeemed state using the literary technique of present tense and then immediately he gives the solution to the sin nature in Romans 8:1&2 1There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. 2For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.

You must remember that the original scriptures don't have chapter breaks and that often makes a difference in how it is understood.

I John 1:8 is correcting those who claim that man is not born with a sin nature. I never claimed I had "no sin." I said I quit sinning. Keep reading to chapter 2 and you'll see he writes these things "that ye sin not."

(It's early AM but I'll try to answer as much as I can so please forgive the choppiness.)

The prodigal son was clearly not born again and Christ's apostles didn't receive the new birth until just before his ascension when he breathed on them. Remember that during his ministry he had not yet gone to the cross.

As far as the Ten Commandments go, you have misrepresented the meaning of some. For example, we are to honor our parents. It never says we must respect them. My father was a drug addict mixing overdoses of Oxycontin with Ambien in his later years. He became violent toward my mother and threatened to "slit her f-ing throat" and "break every bone in her body." It was to the point that they had to live apart the last four years of his life. Even in his will he did not provide for my mother to meet her bills though he had the means, and 1 Timothy 5:8 states: "But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel." He threatened to “make orphans out of those G**D*** eight kids” of mine. Even so, I loved him very much and I honored him by helping him financially when he fell on hard times and I always honored him with my daily prayers for him even though he told many, many, lies on my husband and me after we came to my mother’s aid. No, I did not respect him, but I loved him and honored him as my father and I taught my children to honor him by praying for reconciliation EVERY day after Bible time even though he would have nothing to do with them. Nope, you may not like my hairdo or my personality or any number of things about me, but you will not find any fault with my love.

The Allen Family said...

I hope you aren't disappointed that I went through your list of sins (although some listed aren’t actually sins) and I can still declare that I have not sinned against God in over 12 years! He set me free! He always provides a way of escape just like he promised! Are you saying he won't? That’s what the new birth is! “How can we, who are dead to sin, live any longer in it?”

I would warn you that if you are still sinning, then you aren’t really dead to it, are you? You are not a slave to righteousness. You have not crucified yourself if you are still obeying his enemy. I love him too much for that, and it was that kind of longing to obey him completely that brought me to the new birth.

I would love to discuss all this more as there are many, many, scriptures to share but this is not the forum for these kinds of discussions. If you are interested in understanding holiness, then I would be happy to show you what my eyes were opened to. But if you just want to be contentious and defend sinning, then I would say I’ve been there, done that. I was in denominational churches for many years and I was bound to sin like you say, so you have nothing to offer me in that respect.

You are welcome to email me or call at (803)407-0543. I’d happy to sit down and reason togethe

The Allen Family said...

oops! That would be "together" with an "r" on the end. lol.

My mind is so weary right now and I’m afraid I’ll look back and find a bunch of sentence fragments or something tomorrow. Ha!Ha! I hope you’ll want to contact me.

Our family has considered starting a forum for the Bible studies we have. I would be happy to give you the password if you'd like.

In any case, I pray the Lord will draw you into a deeper understanding the gospel.

Much love to you,