January 16, 2011
Life as a believer is a life of FAITH, looking forward to what God has for us.
Faith is believing in the God we cannot see but who has revealed Himself in what He has done (Ps. 19:1) and what He has said (Ps. 19:7)
Our Hope is in God. Hope is to desire with the expectation of fulfillment, waiting for God to bring it to pass in our lives.
As we exercise faith and as we hope in God we have to deal with SIN.
In Genesis 3, we read about the beginning of something that was not good – SIN. It is a small 3-letter word that had a big impact. James 4:17 says “He that knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin”
What is this thing called SIN. With God there are no big and little sins. There are no white lies and other lies. The dictionary says “sin is the act of breaking a religious or moral law.” The word of God says SIN is the act of breaking God’s law.
Genesis Chapter 3 describes the origin of SIN:
Adam and Eve lived in a garden God had made for them – Eden. A garden is a place where things grow, good things, things that nurture us. When God made this garden no weeds grew there. They had everything they needed including God’s presence. God came to fellowship with them every day. Imagine everyday the Lord God Almighty coming to your house, knocking on your door and sitting down for conversation with you. The Bible says God came at a specific time everyday. Then one day a stranger knocks on your door at a different time and mankind spoke with the stranger and let him in. It is ironic when one of the things we teach our children is to not speak with strangers or open the door to them. Now mind you, this stranger had not placed them in the garden, fellowshipped with them on a regular basis, or provided for them.
So when did sin take place? Sin did not take place with a conversation. During the conversation with the serpent, the seed of disobedience was planted in the garden of man’s heart. A little seed (just a little questioning of what God had said) – did God really say that? Who is God anyway? You can decide for yourself. This is still the challenge today. Why should I obey God’s Word? I know better than that! But it was when Adam and Eve chose to disobey God that sin took place. The choice to listen to the voice of a stranger instead of the voice of God is when sin took place. That choice led to the act of taking the fruit and eating it. Sin takes place with a choice.
Our actions reveal the choice we have made. The immediate consequence of this act of disobedience showed up when God came at the regular time to fellowship with Adam and Eve. God came to their home in the garden as a friend would come to our home. He knocked on the door but Adam and Eve would not answer. Then God called Adam’s name. Adam had a conversation with God through the door. The choice to disobey God erected a barrier to fellowship with God where we now have to go to God instead of God coming to us. Sin changed their relationship with God and with each other.
This act of disobedience has infected our lives. Romans 3:23 says ALL have sinned. Throughout the Bible we see how the infection of sin has affected mankind.
By the very next chapter, Genesis 4, we see the devastation of sin – one brother kills the other.
In Genesis 6:5 – mankind is wicked as a result of sin coming into the world. Now we have to think really hard to do good.
Genesis 8:21 – Sin has so infected us, even in our youth – from childhood.
When is the age of responsibility? No specific age – the point when you understand right from wrong. Why would a child of ten think of murder?
Jeremiah 17:9 – Sin captures your heart. A tick is a good example of sin. It is very small when it latches on to your pet but as it feeds it gets bigger and bigger and if you don’t get rid of it , it will eventually kill your pet.
Proverbs 23:7 – As a man thinks in his heart so is he – as sin captures your heart you will do sinful things.
Romans 6:23 – Sin comes with a price – the wages of sin is death.
Hebrews 9:27, 28 – God will judge; Have to give an account.
So what is the answer, since sin is always going to be with us?
Jesus is the answer (Romans 6:12- 14). Sin does not have to have dominion over us.
- Salvation from sin is in Jesus alone (Acts 4:12)
- When challenged by sin God has left a way of escape (1Corithians 10:13)
- When you sin, confess it to God (1John 1:9)
- We are challenged everyday to do the wrong thing
- You can’t get righteousness stew from putting sinful practices in the pot. Sinful practices get sinful results. And when we do sin, we have an advocate (1Timothy 5:2) – One mediator – Jesus
Sin will always be with us but it does not have to be in charge of us.
In the life of the Unbeliever, the soul is dead to God, the mind is governed by sin and the body practices sin. They have the law and their conscience that enables them to know right from wrong (Romans 2).
In the life of the Believer, the soul is redeemed – alive to God, the mind is transformed –governed by the Holy Spirit and we choose whether or not to practice righteousness or sin in our body. As a believer, in addition to our conscience, we have the Word of God and the Holy Spirit to show us right from wrong (James 1:12-18).