I know on this blog I talk alot about how God forgives mistakes as Christians and how He always will be working on us so we will still need improvement everyday. But's what is the difference between a Christian making mistakes or being a Christian who has completely backslidden?
I believe back sliding is when you make a conscience effort to do the opposite of God's will and when you realize it you don't ask for forgiveness. You are someone who has given up on trying to live for God and has completely turned away. Some people who has backslidden may go to church but they don't feel guilty or ask God to help them stop doing a particular sin.
For an example, a Christian who smokes. Ofcourse, there are many out there. But there are those who are praying and trying to quit and if they slip up they are asking God to help them and God is working in them. These people should not feel condemned but to continue walking in the spirit so they won't fufill the desires of the flesh (Galatians 5:16)
But the backslider will go to church but continue to smoke or drink and not feel bad about it or feel convicted.
When you know someone who is a backslider the most you can do and should do is pray. You may mention it to them but do not argue or get angry with them because this would only make things worse. Love will turn these people around to come back to God and live the way He desires. You are to live as a testimony to them and love and be kind and patiently pray. Humble yourself always don't think that you are better then them because without God where would you be?
If you are someone who has realized that you are backsliding and you feel it's too hard to give up certain things. Immediately pray and talk to God. Ask Him for forgiveness. Tell Him how you are feeling and think about all that Jesus sacrificed for you and all He has given you. You don't have to make the leap over night take it day by day in prayer, reading the Bible and meditation in His Word. Make sure you do this immediately because the longer you stay out of His will the more you are open for the attacks of the devil. (1Peter 5:8)
Galatians 5:16-26 (new living translation)
16 So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves. 17 The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions. 18 But when you are directed by the Spirit, you are not under obligation to the law of Moses.
19 When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, 21 envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.
22 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!
24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there. 25 Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives. 26 Let us not become conceited, or provoke one another, or be jealous of one another.