Confronting Debilitating Patterns of Sin
Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, (Heb 12:1 KJV)
The sin that so “easily besets us”–the greek word is “euperistatos”– it means to “easily wrap around one standing”. The imagery is as a vine that slowly wraps around a healthy tree or plant, slowly taking its life away.
Just off the coast of Southern Australia was a research pen full of tuna, held captive for a study on feeding patterns. All was calm until a 13-foot, 1,500-pound great white shark decided to penetrate the pen and grab a bite to eat. The unwelcome guest is thought to have entered by either biting through the net or jumping the 7.5-foot electrified fence surrounding the pen.
The villain swam happily in his newly conquered territory and ate a few tuna, but the sponsors of the study soon discovered him. The sponsors found that the tuna had adapted to the situation. A spokesman for the South Australian Research Development Institute said, “When the shark swims to the surface, the tuna swim to the bottom of the net, and vice versa.”
What is the lesson of the tuna and the shark? When the enemy comes our way, we need to swim the opposite direction. When temptation is at the surface, dive for the bottom. When temptation is at the bottom, swim to the top.
1)What Does God Think About Your Sin?
Sin is abominable to God-He hates it (cf. Deuteronomy 12:31).
2)What Do You Think About Your Sin?
a) you seek to cover it up –That’s what King David tried to do when he sinned against Uriah.
b) you try to justify yourself- You also try to excuse your wrongdoing by saying it’s someone else’s fault. Or you argue that you have a valid reason for sin. You convince yourself that it’s OK to return evil for evil (cf. Proverbs 24:29; 1 Thessalonians 5:15; 1 Peter 3:9
c) most often, you are oblivious to your sin.
3)What Are You Going to Do About Your Sin?
Sin is a horrible malignancy for which there is no human cure. It is an incurable leprosy of the soul (Isaiah 1:4-6), and all humanity is sick with it from top to bottom, inside and out.
In 2 Chronicles 7:14—God calls His people to do 4 things for revival- when revival comes, we will experience spiritual maturity, relational relevance and missional wholeness. He tells us to:
1) humble themselves
3) seek my face
4) turn from their wicked ways
Lets deal with number four—“turn from your sin”
A)Sins of Omission—what is it that you know you ought to do that you are not willing to do? “To him who knoweth to do good and doeth it not, to him it is sin” (James 4:17).
B) Sins of Commission- the things you do that you shouldn’t do. “The evil which I would not, I do” (Romans 7:19).
Walk not at the Gentiles (Eph 4:17); Be angry and sin not (vs26); Steal no more (vs280: Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth (vs29); Grieve not the holy spirit (vs30).
C) Sins of Disposition- 2 Cor 7:1- Sins of carnality are sins of disposition– For I am afraid that when I come I won’t like what I find, and you won’t like my response. I am afraid that I will find quarreling, jealousy, anger, selfishness, slander, gossip, arrogance, and disorderly behavior. (2Co 12:20 NLT)
Is your heart right?
Until we deal with sin, we will not experience the outflow of the Holy Spirit.