Sunday, October 30, 2016

Sin - Foundation Series

What's the worst thing that has ever assaulted your sense of smell? Rotting fish? A dirty diaper?
Well whatever it is, it's the worst thing that you have ever smelt. 

Now let me ask you another question. 

What does sin smell like to God?

1. What is Sin? 

Sin means "To miss the mark, to err."
1 John 3:4
Everyone who makes a practice of sinning also practices lawlessness; sin is lawlessness.
Sin means failing to do and to be all that the perfect nature of God requires. Sin is failing to acknowledge the perfections of God and live according to those perfections.

"God necessarily and eternally hates sin. It is in essence the contradiction of the excellence of His moral character. It contradicts His holiness and He must hate it."  Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology

2. Who Sins?

James 3:2
For we all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle his whole body.
1 John 1:8
If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.
Romans 3:10
as it is written: "None is righteous, no, not one;

Everyone sins - why is that?

Psalm 51:5
Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.
Romans 5:12, 18
Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned—
Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men.

3. Sins's Fruits

Our sin may have some appearance of desirability, but it will smell nonetheless, and the smell is the smell of death.
Genesis 2:17
but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die."

Sin brings death, and death may come in a variety of ways.

Revelations 20:14
Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire.

Our own dullness may prevent us from feeling the full weight of death attached to our sin but we experience elements of death any time we sin.

4. Jesus and our Sin
As believers we may say, "Yes, but... my sins are all forgiven." But still, what do we make of our sins and our times of moral pollution?

The truth of the Gospel speaks as much to saints as it does to sinners when it comes to our view of personal sin.

Do my responses to temptation reflect the fact that my sin is what Jesus bore on the cross?

5. Confessing and Forsaking
Genesis 3:12-13
The man said, "The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate." Then the Lord God said to the woman, "What is this that you have done?" The woman said, "The serpent deceived me, and I ate."

It's confessing our sin, first to God, and then to others as may be needed, that allows us to get free of sin's guilt and shame and retain a clear, functional conscience.

Our conscience is like our sense of pain and it is meant to tell us when something is wrong.

Romans 2:15
They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them

Sin is a radical betrayal:
James 4:4-10
You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you suppose it is to no purpose that the Scripture says, "He yearns jealously over the spirit that he has made to dwell in us"? But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, "God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble."Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Be wretched and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.

Friendship with the world is enmity with God.

God is emotional about sin - are we? God hates sin, it's a repugnant stench, it elicits His wrath and anger, he calls is moral adultery. The next time you are tempted to enjoy the pleasures of sin, tell yourself you're committing adultery. 

Conclusion: To become more aware of sin in our lives, don't look within, look at Christ.
Job 42:5-6
I had heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees you; therefore I despise myself, and repent in dust and ashes.
Luke 5:8
But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus' knees, saying, "Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord."

-Have I acknowledged my sinfulness before God and embraced the cleansing and forgiveness offered me in Jesus Christ?
-Am I growing as a child of God in the Scriptures, prayer and the fellowship of other believers so that my knowledge of God and His perfections is growing?
-Am I confessing my my sins to God when I am aware of them?
-Am I acknowledging my sin against others when appropriate and doing what I can to restore any broken fellowship?
-Do I have at least one or two others I can share my temptations and sins with so that I'm not alone in the dark?
-Is sin losing its savor? Am I gaining a holy revulsion for those things that used to delight me?
-Is my love and appreciation for Christ growing?

The more we know of Christ, the less appreciation we have for sin.

Tomorrow I will expound a little more on this topic...

Enjoy the last days of October! See you next month! ;)

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