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Daily Scripture Reading James 4

Verse of the Day – Romans 14:23
But he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because he does not eat from faith; for whatever is not from faith is sin.

Devotional Thoughts

Sin comes from the enticement of our fallen flesh – that one part of us yet remaining and waiting to be finally redeemed at our glorification. Until then we fight and struggle with sin and the desires of the flesh. Those desires serve as the point of conception for sin, and when sin gives birth it is not life but death that results.

As we have defined sin, any transgression of the Word of God, we must also see that there are even more stringent definitions available to us from the Word of God itself. James 4:17 says to us, “to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin.” If we know to do good, if we know what is right, and we fail to do it then we have sinned. That means sin is not only an active transgression against God but it can also be failure to act at all when we should!

And if that were not enough to drive us to despair in our fight against sin, we also learn from Romans 14:23 that “whatever is not of faith is sin.” For “without faith it is impossible to please God.” Our every thought, word, and deed should be rooted in faith. For to think, talk, or act in any way from a lack of faith (unbelief) is to sin. We must be dependent upon Christ for everything, for without Him we can do nothing!

Since this is all true, then what must our attitude toward sin be? Should we love sin? Tolerate sin? Accept that we will sin even though we don’t want to sin? Or should we just not care?

The answer is that we should HATE our sin. It is our sin that separated us from God. It is our sin that demanded the death of Christ upon the cross. It is our sin that defames the holiness of God and drives us far from Him. It is our sin that hinders relationships and fellowship and growth. It is sin that causes sadness, sickness, suffering, and death. It is sin that is an affront to the glory and perfection of God. It is sin that defiles and deceives. It is sin that kills us!

Let us take a few moments then today to look at a few verses that will help give us a proper perspective on sin.

Matthew 18:8-9

If your hand or foot causes you to sin, cut it off and cast it from you. It is better for you to enter into life lame or maimed, rather than having two hands or two feet, to be cast into the everlasting fire. And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you. It is better for you to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes, to be cast into hell fire.

The consequences of sin are so serious that Jesus taught us that we should have an attitude that proves a willingess to mutilate our bodies before we allow our flesh to lead us into sin! Is it your hand that is being used to lead you into sin? Your eye? Our mental, emotional, and spiritual perspective should be such that we think and act as if we were willing to cut a hand off or poke out an eye before we would entertain the thought that we could be lead into sin. Remember – this is WAR!

Romans 6:12

Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts.

We are never in control! It is a myth of serious proportions that deceives us into thinking that when we sin we are actually in control. The analogy has been given that we knock Jesus off the throne of our hearts and we sit on that throne and we call the shots. But the truth is that Jesus is Lord and He cannot be dethroned. Further we know that if we are not submitting ourselves willingly to the rule of Christ then it is not we who are in charge. No. It is our sin! We are either serving as faithful slaves of Christ or we are slaves of sin! So the next time you think that sin will set you free and prove your independence, remember – if you are not bowing to Jesus you are bowing to your sin!

Psalm 32:3-4

When I kept silent, my bones grew old through my groaning all the day long. For day and night Your hand was heavy upon me; my vitality was turned into the drought of summer.

Sin has consequences beyond death. Oh yes, it is true. Sin will bring about all sorts of consequences as it slowly kills us! Conviction and discipline mean that we pay a price, mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and even physically. The weight of conviction wears down our bodies and our souls. Sin dries us up and starves us to death. And death is just the beginning, for hell is forever and has no exits.

Psalm 51:5

Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin my mother conceived me.

We are sinners from conception. We are born sinners and we will die sinners. The question is will we die sinners who have been forgiven or not? So hating sin is really understanding where we have come from and what great price was paid to redeem our life from death and hell. We should hate sin because sin is what keeps us from Christ!

We see then that sin is hideous. It is not nice, pleasant, or pretty. And if it deceives us and lies to us and makes itself look desirable we need to remember how serious a matter it is to sin against God. It is a violation of His Word and His love. It makes a mockery of the death of His Son. And it ultimately causes us a great deal of pain and suffering! Bluntly put, we need to have a right attitude about sin because sin is just not worth the price we pay.

Links for Further Study
(links to study each daily topic in more detail if you have the desire and the time)

Recovering a Right View of Sin by Phillip M. Way
The Treasury of David on Psalm 32 by Charles Spurgeon

Bible Reading For Further Study

Psalm 32; 51
1 John 2

Recommended Songs for Worship

Follow Me
Hark, How the Watchmen Cry

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Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright
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