Undone

“And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done.

They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness,

evil,

covetousness,

malice.

They are full of envy,

murder,

strife,

deceit,

maliciousness.

They are gossips,

slanderers,

haters of God,

insolent,

haughty,

boastful,

inventors of evil,

disobedient to parents,

foolish,

faithless,

heartless,

ruthless.

Though they know God’s righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die,

they not only do them but

give approval to those who practice them.”

Romans 1:28-32

Look at that right in the midst of what most Christians consider to be the damning of homosexual sins in Romans 1, we find a long list of sins that pretty much cover the sins, we Christians commit, sometimes on a daily basis. I mean covetousness, which one of us if we let our thoughts go (and we all let our thoughts go! It’s why we are commanded to take our thoughts captive!) have not longingly wished for something someone else has and thought to ourselves, “why do they have that? I should have it if anyone gets to!” Or maybe you can qualify that as just wanting one of your own — envy. Yes envy it made the list!

You might think to yourself well I am not a murderer, but wait Jesus said in the sermon on the mount,

“”You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.’ But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire.”

Matthew 5:21-22

so being angry with someone is tantamount to murder. Not sure about you but GUILTY!

Let’s see strife and deceit definitely not going to point fingers here but for me not that I desire it to be so, but strife probably, and deceit—wanting to misrepresent a situation, not necessarily an out and out lie but not the complete truth—possibly.

Maliciousness, I pray not!

Gossip, am I human? Sadly as much as I try to not gossip, I sometimes fall into this one. I mean gossiping takes two people, the one talking and the one listening! And frankly Gossip is sharing information you have about a third party, with someone the third party had not shared the information. And sadly this can be done with the third party present or absent. But the difference in the presence or absence of the third party could possibly bring in maliciousness, haughtiness, foolishness, heartlessness, and ruthlessness among others, but you get the idea. It’s all about the heart.

Slanderers, please God let it not be so! Dictionary.com gives this definition for slander — “Oral communication of false and malicious statements that damage the reputation of another.” So to me it seems that slander is deceitful, heartless, ruthless, malicious, gossip intended to harm another person. Let’s just throw in the whole list here!

Haters of God, by knowing God’s laws and not obeying them, in knowing and ignoring that he requires holiness we act like haters of God. By not acknowledging and repenting of sin we display a hatred of God.

At this point I am dying! Please God forgive me! Guilty, guilty, guilty!

And next comes insolent!

Insolent. Greek hybristēs, one who behaves with humiliating and unconscionable arrogance to those who are not powerful enough to retaliate. (Tyndale New Testament Commentaries) Romans 1:30

Praise God, I have no power because I most assuredly would be insolent. God has spared me here. But he has also made me the recipient of the insolent behaviors of others. There are few things more despicable than a person with power squashing someone under their rule!

haughty — yes, hopefully less so today than in the past

boastful — unintentionally, yes

inventors of evil — I want to say NO, but at this point let my previous answers speak…

disobedient to parents— as an adult not so much but take the first 18 years of my life and average my acts of disobedience over my lifetime and I am still guilty!

foolish—yes

faithless—more than I want to admit but then is that deceitful?

heartless—Lord let it not be so

ruthless— …

And many other sins too numerous to mention here–guilty!

My only plea is JESUS!

He has only ever been my plea, absolutely the only way I can be forgiven these things is by running to Jesus, who lived the perfect, spotless, holy life I am required to live and died the death I deserve to die. In a beautiful, merciful exchange he paid the debt I owe for being a law breaker and gave me his perfect record.

And I am mortified by my sins.

And I am undone!

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Why I am Staying at this Church

Because I am a member

Because God has me here

Because I have done nothing wrong

Because my only sin was wanting to befriend you

Because You wanted none of my offers of friendship/fellowship

Because you want me gone, I need to stay

Because the teaching/preaching is second to none

Because other churches have issues too (I might as well be the issue here)

Because church membership should not be taken lightly

Because forgiveness should be a characteristic of a church family

Because acceptance should be a characteristic of a church family

Because the corporate pursuit of holiness is important

Because the individual pursuit of holiness is a corporate pursuit

Because iron sharpens iron

Because a church should not look like just one kind of Christian

Because we all have different abilities, talents, and spiritual gifts

Because of the synergistic effects of each member of the body of Christ we are better together

Because being gracious to each other is being Christ-like

Because we have been forgiven much we should forgive each other

Because I will not leave while I feel contention

Because I will not run

Because if I leave another person like me only more obnoxious will come (I know that is hard to believe)

Because if I stay you get to exercise your grace-offering abilities

Because I get to exercise my grace-offering abilities

Because I want to understand you

Because I want to get to know you

Because I want to be known

Because I need to belong and the safety that comes from belonging

Because we are united through Christ whether I leave or whether I stay

Because I want to love you

Because I am sorry if I hurt you

Because I want to make it right

Because I want to know what I did to offend you

Because I want to know Christ

Because I need you to help me know Christ

Because eternity is a very long time to avoid each other

Because we are commanded to go to a brother or sister who has offended us

Because we are commanded to go to someone who has something against us

Because God has not moved me elsewhere