SIN. These controversial 3 letters so capable of exposing hearts and motives, and the very thoughts that drive the actions that follow. It’s like a cancer; aiming to control even the deepest parts of us to the point of destruction. So natural and familiar, yet so crippling and evil. “Now the doings (practices) of the flesh are clear (obvious): they are immorality, impurity, indecency, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, anger (ill temper), selfishness, divisions (dissensions), party spirit (factions, sects with peculiar opinions, heresies), envy, drunkenness, carousing, and the like. I warn you beforehand, just as I did previously, that those who do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God” (Galatians 5:19-21). In other words, whatever is not from faith (of God) is sin (or goes against God).
If you believe anything about the Bible, and consider yourself a follower of Christ, I’m sure you have noticed by now that sin as defined by the Bible has infested this world.
And although recognizing that sin is very evident and seems to be the culprit for the demise of this world, there is a much deeper root. In order to cultivate transformation, God’s very own Spirit who does only the will of the Father doesn’t deal with us just at the point of our disobedience, but rather deals with the deeper matter of our identity. Who we are.
Proverbs 4:23 encourages us to guard our hearts. The very core of our beliefs. The deepest parts of us. The most intimate. Why? Every action begins as a thought, but where do thoughts come from? In our experience as humans, we are exposed to many things: culture, values, mental awareness, our environment, emotions, spirituality, social. At the point of exposure, we consciously and subconsciously choose how we are influenced and persuaded, based on what we believe, or accept as true. So, our thoughts are directly connected to what we believe, which in return, defines who we really are.
Sin doesn’t just happen. Living faithlessly is a result of being awakened to a consciousness of your deepest, most intimate part of yourself and who you believe you are. Sin is a choice on all levels. This is why merely dealing with fellow believers and unbelievers at the level of their actions and not on the basis of their identity is not productive.
Before you read further, this post in no way excuses sin. Some will read and think this is a pardon for sin, but if you understand grace, you’ll understand that it transforms man at the root so that man will begin to desire the things of God. (James 1:13-16) Desire. It grows from a deeper root. Telling this man who lusts after his own desires to stop desiring his own will does not change that man unless you convince him that he was made to be a reflection of someone so much greater than he can ever fathom in his human state. That’s dealing with him beyond the surface level.
When you want to remove weeds, you don’t just merely clip the plant above ground. Otherwise, it will continue to grow and soon become visible again. A true gardener goes after the root of the plant so that there is no source for growth any longer. Identity. The story of man according to the Bible doesn’t start with sin. When we recognize sin in our brother and sister and even in ourselves, our traditions and spiritual habits don’t make us perfect in the sight of God because they are bred in our identity. We go after what a man believes about himself
When a man knows who he and she has been made to be in Christ, and he/she believes it, they will begin to live according to the will of God.