Page Three: “The Sins of the Flesh” 3/3/13
Folks, your sin and my sin is the most offensive thing in the universe. And God loved us so much that He applied the most offensive thing to His own Son and made Him to be sins for us. Then, in His death, Christ died so that you and I might have the body of the sins of the flesh put away from us. Hallelujah! But, in order to come to a genuine relationship with God, you must sense the conviction of your sins before Him.
Let me offer a definition. How do you define sin? Here’s the way the “Free Dictionary” defines it.
1. A transgression of a religious or moral law, especially when deliberate.
a. Deliberate disobedience to the known will of God.
b. A condition of estrangement from God resulting from such disobedience.
3. Something regarded as being shameful, deplorable, or utterly wrong.
The Bible, as you know, is the one book in the world that clearly spells out what sin is and what God has done with it.
I recently came across an interesting survey. What does the world see as sin? Wouldn’t it be great if we could identify just the top seven sins in America?
Well, here’s a list of those seven sins. Ellison Research, a marketing company located in Phoenix, AZ, did just that. They researched sin in America [can you imagine?]. Now, granted, the conclusions are four years old; going back to December 2008. But, for some of us, this is not an out-dated survey. And for clarification, here’s the definition for sin they used in the survey “something that is almost always considered wrong, particularly from a religious or moral perspective.”
What I was most interested in was this. What were the specific sins that Americans count as sins?
Here’s the list with the percentages of Americans who see these things as sin.
Sin # 1 Adultery – 87% of Americans see it as sin.
Sin # 2 Racism – 74% of Americans see it as sin.
Sin # 3 Using hard drugs – 56 %
Sin # 4 Not saying anything if a clerk gives you back too much change – 63% of Americans believe this is sin.
Sin # 5 Having an abortion – 63%
Sin # 6 Homosexual activity – 52%
Sin # 7 Not reporting income on your tax return – 52%
And the list goes on and on. But, folks, this is what the research tells us about what Americans see as sin in today’s world.
Now, in order to deal with the subject of sin, I’ve got to let you in on the specific passages of Scripture. And there are a lot of them. So, here’s my hope and prayer today – that you would let the Bible speak to your heart about the matter of sin.
The Bible is a powerful book. But if you stubbornly set your heart against hearing what it says, then you can simply turn a blind eye to it. Let the Bible speak to your heart; especially if it’s on a topic that personally speaks to your life.
Let me show you what God says about the topic of sin; first the OT and then the NT. Here are just a few passages from the OT.
Genesis 18 is the story of “The Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. This, the way, is the first time the Bible uses the phrase “sin is …”
Here’s Genesis 18:20 “And the LORD said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous;…”
There was never a doubt in the mind of those who lived near and around Sodom and Gomorrah as to why these cities were judged so severely. “Their sin is very grievous…”
Now look with me at what the Prophet Samuel said to Saul, the first king of Israel soon after Saul had made an offering to God from the spoils of the battle with the Amalekites.
I Samuel 15:22 “And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.
(23) For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubborn-ness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king.”