Posts Tagged ‘Sin’

Spiritual Training 22 May 2015

Posted: May 22, 2015 in sin, trickory
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Under Gods Command

Sin has a way of coming back to haunt us

Part 1

Genesis 27:5 –10: Now Rebekah was listening as Isaac spoke to his son Esau. When Esau left for the open country to hunt game and bring it back, Rebekah said to her son Jacob, Look, I overheard your father say to your brother Esau, Bring me some game and prepare me some tasty Food to eat, so that I may give you my blessing in the presence of the Lord before I die. Now M son, listen carefully and do what I tell you. Go out to the flock and bring me two choice young goats, so I can prepare some tasty food for your father, just the way he likes it. Then take it to your father to eat, so that he may give you his blessing before he dies.  

When Rebekah learned that Isaac was preparing to bless Esau, she quickly devised a plan to trick him into blessing Jacob instead. Although God had already told her that Jacob would become the family leader, Rebekah took matters into her own hands. She resorted to doing something wrong to try to bring about what God had already said would happen (25:23-26). For Rebekah, the end justified the means. No matter how good we think our goals are, we should not attempt to achieve them by doing what is wrong. Would God approve of the methods you are using to accomplish your goals?

Sin has a way of coming back to haunt us

Part 2

Genesis 27:11-12: Jacob said to Rebekah his mother, “But my brother Esau is a hairy man, and I’m a man with smooth skin. What if my father touches me? I would appear to be tricking him and would bring down a curse on myself rather than a blessing.”

How we react to a moral dilemma often exposes our real motives. Frequently we are more worried about getting caught than about doing what is right. Jacob did not seem concerned about the deceitfulness of his mother’s plan; instead he was afraid of getting in trouble while carrying it out. If you are worried about getting caught, you are probably in a position that is less than honest. Let your fear of getting caught be a warning to do right. Jacob paid a huge price for carrying out this dishonest plan. 

Sin has a way of coming back to haunt us

Part 3

Genesis 27:13 His mother said to him, “My son, let the curse fall on me. Just do what I say, go and get them for me.

Jacob hesitated when he heard Rebekah’s deceitful plan, although he questioned it for the wrong reason (fear of getting caught), he protested and thus gave her one last chance to reconsider. But Rebekah had become so wrapped up in her plan that she no longer saw clearly what she was doing. Sin had trapped her and was degrading her character. Correcting yourself in the middle of doing wrong may bring hurt and disappointment, but it also will bring freedom from sin’s control.

Sin has a way of coming back to haunt us

Part 4 Conclusion

Genesis 30:22-25: So Laban brought together all the people of the place and gave a feast. But when evening came, he took his daughter Leah and gave her to Jacob and Jacob lay with her, and Laban gave his servant girl Zilpah to his daughter as her maidservant. When morning came, there was Leah! So Jacob said to Laban, “What is this you have done to me? I served you for Rachel, didn’t I? Why have you deceived me?

Jacob was enraged when he learned that Laban had tricked him. The deceiver of Esau was now deceived himself. How natural it is for us to become upset at an injustice done to us while closing our eyes to the injustices we do to others. Sin has a way of coming back to haunt us.

Under Gods Command (Book of Leviticus)

Instructions for the people

Clean and Unclean Food

 11:1-8   1The LORD said to Moses and Aaron, 2“Say to the Israelites: ‘Of all the animals that live on land, these are the ones you may eat: 3You may eat any animal that has a divided hoof and that chews the cud.

    4“ ‘There are some that only chew the cud or only have a divided hoof, but you must not eat them. The camel, though it chews the cud, does not have a divided hoof; it is ceremonially unclean for you. 5The hyrax, though it chews the cud, does not have a divided hoof; it is unclean for you. 6The rabbit, though it chews the cud, does not have a divided hoof; it is unclean for you. 7And the pig, though it has a divided hoof, does not chew the cud; it is unclean for you. 8You must not eat their meat or touch their carcasses; they are unclean for you. 

God had strictly forbidden eating the meat of certain “unclean” animals; to make sure, he forbade even touching them. He wanted the people to be totally separated from those things he had forbidden.

Lets Bring this Home: So often we flirt with temptation, rationalizing that at least we are technically keeping the commandment not to commit the sin. But God wants us to separate ourselves completely from all sin and tempting situations. Perhaps this passage has made you aware of areas of your life where you have “technical” innocence but in which you have actually been involved in sin. It’s time to cross back over the line and stay there.

Under Gods Command (Book of Leviticus)

Disobedience can Kill

10:1-2 Aaron’s sons Nadab and Abihua took their censers, put fire in them and added incense; and they offered unauthorized fire before the LORD, contrary to his command. 2So fire came out from the presence of the LORD and consumed them, and they died before the LORD.

What was the “unauthorized fire” that Nadab and Abihu offered before the Lord? The nature of Nadab and Abihu’s wrongdoing is debated, but it clearly involved the burning of incense. The “unauthorized fire” could mean “foreign” (as in Psalm 44:20; 81:9), and thus “unauthorized” (see Exodus 30:9) or even “pagan.” Apparently, Nadab and Abihu used fire from a source not approved by God (Numbers 3:4; 26:61), possibly even a pagan source. It has also been suggested that the two priests gave an offering at an unprescribed time. Whatever explanation is correct, the point is that Nadab and Abihu abused their office as priests in a flagrant act of disrespect to God, who had just reviewed with them precisely how they were to conduct worship. As leaders, they had special responsibility to obey God. In their position, they could easily lead many people astray.

Aaron’s sons were careless about following the laws for sacrifices. In response, God destroyed them with a blast of fire. Performing the sacrifices was an act of obedience. Doing them correctly showed respect for God. It is easy for us to grow careless about obeying God, to live our way instead of God’s. But if one way were just as good as another, God would not have commanded us to live his way. He always has good reasons for his commands, and we always place ourselves in danger when we consciously or carelessly disobey them.

Lets Bring it Home: If God has commissioned you to lead or teach others, never take that role for granted or abuse it. Stay faithful to God and follow his instructions.

Under Gods Command

John the Baptist had prepared the way for Jesus by preaching repentance. The apostle’s message of salvation also included the call to repentance-acknowledging personal sin and turning away from it. Many people want the benefits of being identified with Christ without admitting their own disobedience and turning from sin. The key to forgiveness is confessing your sin and turning from it.

When we repent, God promises not only to wipe out our sins, but also to bring spiritual refreshment. Repentance may at first seem painful because it is hard to give up certain sins. But God will give you a better way. As Hosea promised, “Let us acknowledge the Lord; let us press on to acknowledge him. As surely as the sun rises, he will appear; he will come to us like the winter rains, like the spring rains that water the earth” (Hosea 6:3) Do you feel a need to be refreshed?

The time when God will “restore everything” refers to the second coming, the Last Judgment, and the removal of sin from the world.

Acts: 3:19-21 Repent, then and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, and that he may send the Christ, who has been appointed for you-even Jesus. He must remain in heaven until the time comes for God to restore everything, as he promised long ago through his holy prophets.

Please remember that these emails are going to over 100 people.  I used BCC to keep your email address private.  I just want to share my own personal walk with you, and yes, please hold me accountable for my actions.   I love you all with the love of Jesus and there is nothing that you can do about it. 

Under Gods Command

Proverbs 17:11 An evil man is bent only on rebellion; a merciless official will be sent against him.

Rebellion is a terrible sin. It shows how arrogant, contrary, malicious, and willful man can be. God compares it to witchcraft (1 Sam 15:53). When you see it, you have found an evil man. These fools cannot submit to correction or government, so they must rebel. But the great God, the originator of all authority and rule, will have the last laugh. He will send just retribution against such rebels of present punishment and then eternal misery.

Reader, have you felt your soul bristle when others correct you? Do you find it necessary to question most things you are told to do? Which is more important to you – your rights or your duties? It is part of your foolish nature that does not want to be governed. Though you arrived utterly helpless and ignorant in this world, in just a few months you expect to be able to do as you wish without regard for the authority or wisdom of others.

Rebellion brought sin into the universe. The devil rebelled against his role in heaven – he wanted more (Jude 1:6). Adam condemned humanity to death – physical and eternal – by rebelling against God’s word in Eden. God burned up Sodom for rebelling against God and nature’s laws for man-woman sex. And he opened up the earth to swallow Korah for complaining against Moses (Num 16:1-34).

Rebellion is promoted from the top and bottom. At the top – a false concept of God as a begging weakling allows men to think they can reject Him and the Bible. At the bottom – permissive parents and flattering schools program children to rebel against any threat to their freedom. And in between, rulers legislate privilege and protection for rebellion and sedition – like labor unions and free speech – that keep the evil in motion.

This evil conspiracy creates widespread dysfunction. Women revolt against submission to husbands, wrecking marriages. Students defy teachers, causing classroom disorder. So-called patriots despise civil laws, promoting anarchy. Deacons overrule pastors, neutering their leadership. Women have short hair, men have long hair, rap is called music, Picasso is called an artist, piercing tongues is accepted, and adultery is called having an affair.

The Lord, the great God, will punish rebellion against His word or His authorities. He kept Moses from Canaan for rebelling against His command (Num 20:24) He describes civil rebels as comparable to diseased dogs needing to be put down (II Peter 2:10-12). Beware!

Reader, it is wisdom to learn obedience and submission today! The Bible clearly states your duties to God and men. Learn them, do them, and teach them to your children.

Under Gods Command

Proverbs 10:19 When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise.

A simple rule of wisdom is to cut your words in half. Many words and much speaking greatly raise the chance of sinning with your lips. Because of this dangerous risk, wisdom teaches you to reduce your number of words and maintain silence longer than usual.

A wise man reflects soberly after speaking a great deal, for he remembers the grave warning of the first half of this proverb. If he spoke quite a few words, he has probably sinned in his speech and appears a fool (Eccl 5:3). In this context, silence is very golden.

The God of wisdom tells you to be faster to hear and slower to speak (Jas 1:19). If you emphasized listening and being skilful at that, you would have little time for talking. If you were slow and reluctant to speak, you would have an excellent spirit (Pr 17:27).

Wisely consider your words before you speak, rather than regret them after they are out. Even if you are not very bright, if you can reduce your words, those around you will assume you are wise – this is a rule from Solomon to boost your reputation (Pr 17:28).

Ah, dear reader, have you not wasted many painful hours reviewing words you spoke? Have you often said, “I wish I’d never said that,” or, “Why did I say that?” Such misery could be reduced, if you would simply refrain your lips from idle or foolish speech. If you would hold your tongue, you would not have to worry about words that escaped.

Wisdom is easy – cut your words in half. Talk less. The tongue is a fire, so douse its sparks by swallowing words (Jas 3:1-12). The tongue is deadly; use it slowly (Pr 18:21).

Words and sin are not an arithmetic, but a geometric, relationship. The words you add beyond necessary speech contain most of your verbal sins; those sins increase rapidly the more and longer you talk (Eccl 10:13). If you swallow those extra words that are unnecessary, easily half your words, you will stop many sins. Cutting your words by 50% will reduce your sins of speech by 90%! Wisdom is easy! Bridle your mouth (Ps 39:1)!

If children cut their words in half, there would be less foolishness, teasing of siblings, and dishonoring of parents. If wives did it, they would be less odious, contentious, and overbearing. If employees did it, managers would find their jobs much easier and production and unity would improve. If angry, bitter, and cruel people did it, there would be much less bleeding of wounded souls. If fools did it, they would be esteemed wise.

Of course, there are people who hardly ever speak, and this proverb does not apply to them. They need to use more words to be gracious and a tree of life to others. If they do not learn to speak, their lives will have little value for anyone, and they are a regular source of disappointment and frustration to others. True wisdom feeds many (Pr 10:21).

Under Gods Command


Proverbs 20:17 Food gained by fraud tastes sweet to ta man, but he ends up with a mouth full of gravel

Lying is fun – but not for long. Then the results of your folly come crashing down on your head. You may think your lie helped in some way, but it only made things worse. When will you learn the painful truth, Be sure your sin will find you out (Num 32:23)?

Proverbs are dark sayings, and here a metaphor about bread and gravel is used for the lie of lying! The bread of deceit is the choice to lie. Lying may be sweet in the beginning, like a sweet roll or cinnamon bun, but it will not be later. A mouth full of gravel is the later result of lying. Far from sweet, it is painful, impossible to enjoy, and usually fatal.

Solomon used a similar metaphor about a whore seducing a man and the lying appeal of adultery, “Stolen waters are sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant” (Pr 9:17). To show her danger to his son, Solomon wrote about her victim, “But he knoweth not that the dead are there; and that her guests are in the depths of hell” (Pr 9:18). Gravel indeed!

Ponzi schemes illustrate sweet now – gravel later. Promising above-market returns, they pay interest from the cash of later investors. The early suckers that get an interest check promote their free lunch, and it mushrooms with cash inflows. But then the scam artist skips town with the money he has not paid out, and the lie is exposed. What started out sweet for early investors is afterwards gravel in the mouths of all the investor-suckers.

Sin lies! Even about lying! Sin never works in the long run, even with a little pleasure or success in it for a short while (Heb 11:25). But sin will never tell you this up front; you will only learn it later when it is too late. The devil and the world never tell you sin does not pay. They work together in perfect harmony to deceive you that your sins are sweet.

It is a lie to think that lying will help you. This is the nature of sin. It is deceitful itself, and when it deceives you to deceive others, you lie because you believed a lie! Sin is so deceitful that it can turn a believer against God, if he gives it room in his life (Heb 3:12-13). For this reason you need godly friends to help exhort you daily, like by this proverb.

Sin is perverse! It greatly exaggerates the pleasure of sin, and it never warns of the dire consequences. Eve thought the fruit looked good, would taste good, and could make her like God. She was shocked by guilt and shame when she ate it, and then she had to face God asking why she was hiding in the Garden, and then she had to suffer through a life of sorrow and submission, and then she had to die. Her sweet bread indeed became gravel!

Sin is perverse! It greatly exaggerates the pleasure of sin, and it never warns of the dire consequences. Amnon craved sex with his half sister Tamar. This fantasy consumed his thoughts and health. When he finally had to force her, its pleasure was for one second, and then he hated her, and then Absalom killed him. His sweet bread became gravel!

But this proverb is not about fruit in the Garden of Eden or sex with your half sister. It is about lying. Where do you lie? On your resume? In your marriage? To your parents? In your Christian profession? To the IRS? To your pastor? On your expense reports? About your age, health, or ability? To your children? About your co-worker? To your boss?

Your lie may seem sweet right now, but it will soon be gravel. Your trouble will soon be similar to that of Eve and Amnon. You cannot stop the results. Sin will lie to you again that another lie will cover or enhance the first lie, but that makes four lies! Before you know it, you are a liar, and the God of heaven fans hellfire to receive you (Rev 21:8,27).

How bad is gravel in your mouth? Achan, his family, and all that he owned were stoned and burned for his deceit about stolen goods (Josh 7:1,20-26). Gehazi got Namaan’s leprosy for lying to his master Elisha about a little silver and some clothes (II Kgs 5:20-27). But the gravel in the mouths of these two is nothing compared to eternal torment.

Dishonesty and lying will ruin you – in this life and the next. Believe it. Make honesty and integrity permanent traits of your character. Solomon warned over and over about the importance of truth for your success (Pr 10:18; 12:19,22; 13:5; 14:5; 17:7; 19:9; 21:6; 26:24-26,28). Believe him! Reject any thoughts or worldly ideas that lying is acceptable.

You do not lie? It may be true. But what of hypocrisy? Do you live differently in private than in public? Different at home than at church? Different in your heart than with your mouth? This is also the bread of deceit. How long will your hypocrisy be sweet? Short! And only for a moment! The Bible says you will perish like your own dung (Job 20:4-9)!

Repent of any deception in your life. Repent for allowing sin to deceive you into thinking you can get away with lying. Repent for ever deceiving anyone else in any way. Repent for ever minimizing the folly and perversity of sin in the sight of God. Reject any thought that justifies deception or lying or any sin. Run to the God of truth and beg His forgiveness. He can and will forgive any that sincerely repent and become lovers of truth.