Monday, June 01, 2009

The Good News About Sin

*Textual Tuesdays will study an excerpt of the Bible or a biblical topic.

The following is an outline of a sermon I presented on Sunday. I hope it's uplifting and encouraging and convicting for you.
The format was actually a lot of fun. I asked our teens a question on Facebook: "What questions do you have about sin?" And they really came through! So the points of my lesson were based on their questions...

"If you sin, but fail to ask forgiveness, does God hold that against you?"

You've probably heard this question before. If I sin while dying (like curse while I wreck into a tree) will I be forgiven?
Heb. 7:26-27 tells us that Christ offered himself as a sacrifice ONCE FOR ALL.
This phrase is used five times in the book of Hebrews! We need to start believing that Christ died, and his death (once we accept it) took care of our sins! We cannot drive ourselves crazy keeping a checklist of the sins we fail to repent of.
Heb. 10:19-23 tells us that we can have "full assurance" and our hearts should be "cleansed of a guilty conscience."
You were not meant to live in guilt if you have given your life to following God.

"Does God punish other people for my sin?"

I used to wonder about this question. There are verses that talk about God punishing the sins of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generation. I believe this is talking more of natural consequences than punishment. Here's why:
"Fathers shall not be put to death for their children, nor children put to death for their fathers; each is to die for his own sin." (Deut. 24:16)
Others may suffer the CONSEQUENCES of your sin (e.g. drinking and driving) but YOU are responsible to God for your own sin. PLEASE don't think that God punished someone else because of YOU!

"Is there a sin so bad that God cannot forgive it?"

Jesus says in Matt. 12:31 that "blasphemy of the Holy Spirit" is the only unforgivable sin. But even this is open for interpretation.
Does that mean you cannot get angry at God or yell at Him? (What about the Psalms?)
Does it mean that you cannot run away from God? (What about Jonah?)
Does it mean that you can't ever be against God? (What about Saul/Paul?)
I think it means a lifelong, turning your back on God, not taking any responsibility for your actions or your spirit that lives inside of you.

"Is sin treated all the same?"

At first glance, some sins seem worse than others. After all, they DO carry different consequences.
However, James 2:10 tells us that if you stumble at keeping ONE law, you have broken them all. This is because ANYTHING wrong breaks God's heart! (Lying to murder.) So, unfortunately, we have ALL been lawbreakers (and heartbreakers) at one point.
But the good news? Christ's sacrifice covers ALL sins!

"What will it take to make up for my sin?"

Unfortunately, we have this idea that WE can make our sins better. But let me try to expose a flaw...
If you lie, what can you do to make it better?
If you have premarital sex, what can you do?
In both these cases, we think we have an answer! But if we "make ourselves OK" by fixing it, then answer these questions...
If you get someone pregnant, how do you make it better?
If you murder someone, how do you fix it?
When answering these questions, there is really no way to "undo" what you have done! Does this mean these sins are beyond redemption?
Please read this carefully:

So, what should you do to get your sins forgiven? Read Acts 2:38. Once you accept God's forgiveness, you will know the good news that God forgives and forgets!


preacherman said...

I want to thank you for the good news about sin. I thank God everyday for the redeption I have by grace through faith. God is so loving and faithful. It is wonderful that Christ went to the cross for every sin even the sins we forget about or havent maybe come up with yet. I have over the years learned to cherish the grace that I have recieved by studying Romans.
I enjoy your blog.
Keep up the great work brother and hope you have a great week in the Lord.

Todd Brumley said...

The questions you raised are interesting because many times we ask those questions to make sure we are not "crossing the line". In my Bible class last night, we talked about how the man in Matthew 13:44 found the treasure in the field and hid it. He then went and sold everything he had and bought the land with the treasure in it. He found the one thing that was more important than anything else and be bought it.

Franklin, you are right. We have got to have more faith in God's grace, mercy, and love. If we truely loved God, would we have these doubts? If we really studied the Word, would we have any need to ask these questions?

I am reading a book called "Crazy Love" by Francis Chan. He has challenged me more than ever about my dedication and love for God. He suggests that if we really loved and trusted God we would not have the doubts and fears that we do. Interesting? I think so.

We do, however, need to be careful not to assume that God is going to forgive us just because he said his grace is enough. Matthew 7:21 clearly says that "Not everyone who says to me, "Lord, Lord," will enter the kingdom of heaven..." As christians, we have a huge responsibility to maintain; dedication to God. I would hate to think that once I was saved, I am always saved. That doesnt seem to glorify God very much.

Franklin, sorry if what I said had nothing to do about your sermon. The point is, it got me thinking. Thank you. I have missed our conversations and look forward to the many more in the futur. Love ya bro!