Randall Caselman

Bella Vista Church of Christ

11/25/2018 A.M.

 

Good News Of Great Joy

The Need For His Coming – Our Sin

Genesis 6.5-7  Romans 1.18  Isaiah 59.2 Romans 3.10 & 23  Romans 6.23  1 John 1.8

 

There’s no doubt… The greatest event in human history was the incarnation… When God put on humanity to deliver His message to lost mankind.

 

But he did more than deliver the message… He is the message.

He did more proclaim truth… He is the truth…

He did more than say… Let there be light… He is the light…

He did more than show us the way… He is the way.

He did more than come to make grace possible… Grace is a person… Grace is a gift of God to a lost world?... Jesus is grace!

 

So… For the next few weeks…We’re going to consider the coming of Jesus into the world under the title of... Good News of Great Joy.

 

This morning… The Need for His coming.

 

What was the need for His coming?... Why was the incarnation necessary?

 

Indeed… It’s our sin guilt!

 

The narrative of God in a manger is actually rooted in the grief of God…

 

Genesis six sets the stage… The Lord saw how great man’s wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time. The Lord was grieved that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain. So the Lord said, “I will wipe mankind, whom I have created, from the face of the earth--men and animals, and creatures that move along the ground, and birds of the air--for I am grieved that I have made them.

 

Paul tells us in Romans… The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men.

 

The Prophet Isaiah gives us the result of our sin… Your sins wickedness has separated you from God… Resulting in God’s grief… Your iniquities have separated you from your God… Your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear.

 

You see… God created us to have a… Walking…Talking… Handholding… Fellowship with Him… But our sin guilt has separated us.

 

We’re all guilty!!… There is none righteous… No not one… For all have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory… And the wages of sin is death… Eternal separation from God.

 

If we say we have no sin... We deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.

 

In fact... We find Paul admitting his own sin failures… In my mind… I am a slave to God’s law… But in my sinful flesh nature… I’m a slave to the law of sin… O wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death?... Thanks be to God-... My delivery comes through Jesus Christ!

 

Ephesians 2.1-4 tells us without doubt that… We who were dead in our sins and transgressions… Are made alive with Christ… saved by grace.

 

Listen… If our sin guilt separates us from God…

If sin keeps us from having a… Walking… Talking… Handholding…

Relationship… If the wages of sin is death…

What is sin?... We need to know… We need a Biblical definition…

Come… Let’s see what we can learn.

 

John says… Sin is a transgression of God’s law…

Everyone who sins breaks the law… Sin is A transgress of God’s law… Sin is a rebellion against God… The NIV says… Sin is lawlessness.

 

These transgressions… This lawlessness can occur in an area of omission or commission.

 

Sometimes we leave undone what God commands us to do… Sins of omission.

 

We disobey commands like…

• Repent and be baptized for the remission of your sins.

• Love your neighbor as yourself…

• Bear one another’s burdens…

• Forsake not the assembly of yourselves together as the manner of some has become.

 

Sins of commission are listed in Galatians five... They include things like… Do NOT…

Murder... Hate... Lie... Steal... Drunkenness… Idolatry... Adultery... Witchcraft... Envy... Jealousy... Sowing discord... Selfish ambitions.

 

Now… We must know this morning that sin does not have to be acts or behavior… Sin can be... in the mind.... in the heart.

 

• In the Sermon on the Mount…Jesus says… thoughts of adultery and hate are sin…

 

• He condemned anger and lust as vehemently as He did murder and adultery.

 

In the Old Testament… One of the original Ten Commandments was the admonishment… Do not covet… a sin of the mind.

 

We must never think we have to commit an act of lawlessness for sin to have occurred…

• Thelust…

• The thinking…

• The rehearsing and fondling…

Of our evil desires is a sin.

 

James tells us that it’s… our own lust... Our own evil desires...That plunge us into sin.

 

Indeed!!... Sin is a transgression of God’s law… A rebellious behavior against God... Either in thought or behavior.

 

Secondly… Sin is… that which is not of faith.

In Romans chapter fourteen…Paul addresses the right and wrong of eating meats offered to idols… He reasons…

What is an idol… It’s nothing…

What is meat offered to an idol… Again… It’s nothing…

So... His conclusion is that there should be nothing wrong in eating such.

 

But… But… He goes on to say…If it violates your conscience… Don’t do it.. Because a violation of conscience is a sin.

 

Here it is… We must live out our convictions.

• Religion… Being right with God… Is living by faith!!

• Religion… Being right with God… Is not just doing right things… It’s doing right things for the right reason…With the right Motive.

 

In the Sermon on the Mount…Jesus condemned doing things for the wrong motive… To please others… To bring about the praise of men… Etc.

 

Here it is… If you’re not CONVINCED and convicted that something is right for you… Then don’t do it… Because… If you do… for you it’s a sin.

 

And… It remains a sin until and unless we are convinced and convicted from the Word that it is right for us to do… This is living by faith.

 

Thirdly… Sin is missing the mark.

Paul’s classic verse on this behavior is Romans 3.23… all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.

 

In the New Testament… The most frequent Greek word for sin is HamartiaHam-R-Tan-0 here in Romans chapter three.

• It means missing the mark…

It means falling short of what God expects of us…

In either thought or behavior.

 

I am convinced that… The glory of God here is nothing more or less than Jesus His Son.

• Sin… Is our not... Living…Thinking… Behaving… Like Jesus.

• Sin is our falling short of being like Him.

 

In Second Corinthians 3.18…Paul speaks of our being transformed into His likeness... His image… With ever-increasing glory… Which comes from the Lord.

 

Church… Ours is to be like Him... And… we sin… We sin… when we fail to work at having His mind and behavior.

 

No wonder Paul admonishes us in Philippians two… To have... The heart... The mind… The attitude… The disposition… The temperament… Of Jesus.

 

The way we are transformed into His likeness is for us to think and behave as He did and would... Amen?

 

Number four... Sin is knowing to do right... And not doing it.

James writes... Anyone who knows the good he ought to do and doesn’t do it... sins.

 

Listen church… If I understand James here… He is saying… When we’re prompted by the Holy Spirit… To do right… To do a good deed… and we don’t… We sin.

 

Or when we know not to dosomething and we go ahead and do it… We sin.

 

Both these speak of those things we either do or think.

• In the parable of the Good Samaritan... What did the priest and Levite do that was wrong? Did they do additional harm to the beaten man?... Did they rob him? 

 

• The one talented man didn’t seem to do anything so horribly wrong... Simply hid his ability. 

 

• What about the nine lepers?... They knew they should have thanked Jesus... But didn’t!

 

• In the sheep and goat judgment scene... Jesus condemned some because they saw good that needed to be done... Was given an open door to do the good... But refused.

 

Knowing to do right... And failing to do it is a sin.  

 

Another Greek word for sin is paraptoma… a-Rop-Ta-Ma.

It means... to stray off the path… to stray from truth.

It speaks of sheep that nibble here and there until they lose the fold and the shepherd.

 

When applied to ethical issues...

• It means to deviate from the right way…

• To wander from truth and uprightness.

 

In our New Testament... The Greek is translated…

• Trespass 9 times…

• Offense 7 times…

• Sin 3…

• Fall 2…

• Fault 2.

 

In Ephesians 2.5… Paul writes… God who is rich in mercy makes us alive with Christ when we were dead in our TRANSGRESSIONS…A-Rap-ta-ma… For it is by grace you have been saved.

 

Then in James 5.16… Confess your sins… A-rap-ta-ma (Your wandering from the truth)… To each other... Pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.

 

Now... With these thoughts in mind let’s examine the ugliness of sin

and what it can do to us if we fall under its power...

 

First... Sin destroys innocence.

In Genesis chapter three... When Adam & Eve sinned... Scripture says their eyes were opened and they knew they were naked... They saw their sin and this loss of innocence caused them to try to hide from God as He came seeking their presence.

 

Sin tarnishes our mind... So that we don’t see life in quite the same way anymore.

 

David expressed how this tarnishing affected him in Psalm 40.12... My sin… My iniquities… Have overtaken me... So that I am not able to look up.

 

David is saying…Because of my sin… I can no longer sense God’s presence in my life.

 

In Psalm 51... He expresses it this way...

I know my transgressions… My sin is always before me.

Hide your face from my sins… Blot out all my iniquity.

Create in me a pure heart… Renew a steadfast spirit within me.

Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me.

Restore to me the joy of your salvation… Grant me a willing spirit.

Cleanse me with hyssop… Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

Save me from bloodguilt… Save me… And my tongue will sing of your righteousness.

 

We’re hearing David plead for God to restore his innocence through divine forgiveness... Innocence lost in his sin with Bathsheba and the killing of her husband Uriah.

 

Make no mistake about it... Sin will destroy our innocence!

 

Sin destroys ideals.

Mark chapter ten contains the narrative of the Rich Young Ruler who came to Jesus wanting to know what he must do to have eternal life... Jesus tells him to keep the commandments... “O’ I have done that all of my life.”

So... Jesus says...“Then go sell all you have and come follow Me.”

The text tells us the Young Man went away sorrowful because he had great possessions.

 

The sin of… Materialism...Trusting in riches... Destroyed this Young Man’s ideals and caused him to settle for less in this world and the loss of his soul.

 

We must not allow sin to rob us of what we know is the good life here and eternal life.

 

The decEitfulness of Sin destroys our will.

God empowers us with the ability to say no to sin... But when we give in to Satan... We’ll find it is easier for us to give in the next time.

 

With each temptation... Giving in to sin becomes easier and easier and easier.

Sin’s progression goes like this...

• I would never do that...

• Well... Perhaps one time will not hurt...

• I did it... Committed the sin and nothing bad happened... Sin must not be as bad as I thought.

Know this… Sin has taken over our life... When we can commit the thought or act and feel…no remorse... No guilt!

It’s then that sin has destroyed our will to do right... To say NO to temptation.

 

The Hebrews’Writer admonishes... See to it, brothers, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. But encourage one another daily... So that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. We must hold firmly till the end with the confidence we had at first.

 

Sin enslaves us.

You see... We rarely stop at just one sin...

It’s not long before we add another and another and another...

• Sow a thought and reap an act...

• Sow an act and reap a habit...

• Sow a habit and reap a character...

• Sow a character and reap a destiny.

 

It was Jesus who was heard saying... He who commits sin is a slave to sin.

 

James gives us the steps leading to sin... Each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death. Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.

 

Don’t allow sin to enslave!!... Instead... Claim God’s promise from First Corinthians 10.13... God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.

 

Listen to me church… Know this…

• Sin will always take us further than we want to go…

• Keep us longer than we want to stay…

• It will always cost us more than we want to pay.

 

Paul says… The wages of sin is death.

He is not speaking of physical death… But spiritual death… An eternal separation from God… From His people… From His creation…  And all that He represents.

 

Our final point is this…

God has the answer to sin… God has the remedy to sin.

• Come now…Let us reason together… Though your sins be as scarlet… They shall be as white as snow… Though they be as crimson… They shall be as wool.

In this verse…God is saying that there is no sin so ugly that He cannot and will not forgive… From scarlet to white… From crimson to wool.

 

• John saw Jesus coming toward him and he said… Behold… the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world… Indeed... Jesus is the answer to our sin problem!

 

• The wages of sin is death… But the gift of God is eternal life… Good news!!… Good news indeed!

 

• If we confess… Acknowledge… Our sins… He is faithful and just to forgive us and purify us from all unrighteousness.

 

What shall we say to all this… Shall we go on sinning so that grace may abound more and more?... No!... God forbid. We who died to sin… How can he live in it any longer…Don’t you know as many as have been baptized into Christ… Have been baptized into His death. We were therefore buried with Him through baptism into death in order that… Just as Christ was raised from death through the glory of the Father…We tOo may live a new life.

 

Well… Jesus came because We’re all guilty of sin…

Sin that separates us from God

 

So… This morning… We’re all subject to God’s invitation.

Some of us need to accept Jesus’ offer of forgiveness by becoming a child of God by... faith… Repentance… Confession of Jesus... and New Testament Baptism.

 

As children of God… We are expected to... Confess... Acknowledge... Our sin and enjoy God’s promise of forgiveness.

 

Where do you and your preacher stand this morning?...

 

What must we do… to know... To Know…

• That we are right with God...

• Right with one another...

• Right within self?

 

God’s invitation is for each of us to... save our soul... clear our conscience... As we stand and sing.