Comedian Flip Wilson used to portray a female character named Geraldine. Geraldine was not the kind of woman you would bring home to meet your mother. When she would try to explain away her misconduct she would exclaim, “The devil made me do it!” That would be funny, however too many Christians use that excuse for living in sin. Last Sunday our Minister of Discipleship and Evangelism, Reverend Pete Belmain, cleared up any confusion about our sinfulness. We sin because we choose to sin.
If we try to make excuses for our sinfulness, we are in actuality condoning it. That may not be what we want to hear, but to blame our sins on our flesh or Satan, or anyone or anything else is to condone it. If we must give a reason for our sin, let us get back to the path of righteousness by at least admitting our culpability. We sin because we choose to sin, and when we do so we condone it. We must never condone sin in our lives or in others. The Apostle Paul warned against such behavior:
“Who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.” (Romans 1:32)
If we make excuses for our sins, then we are presuming to know more than God’s revealed word. When you look at King David’s life, he inevitably would find himself in trouble because of his presumptuous sins. He presumed to take a census when he knew God had not called for it. He presumed to not lead his troops into battle and committed adultery with Bathsheba and then had her husband Uriah murdered. Our presumptions can lead us into all types of sinful behavior. That is why David wrote:
“Who can understand his errors? Cleanse me from secret faults. Keep back Your servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me. Then I shall be blameless, and I shall be innocent of great transgression.” (Psalm 19:12-13)
So often many Christians, and I have been guilty of this, live tumultuous lives because of their choosing to sin. I understand righteousness, and yet I choose sinfulness. I understand the peace of God, and yet I choose the wrath of God. I want to live a peaceful life, and yet I live a sinful life. It’s like hitting constantly banging my head against the wall and then wondering why I have a headache. You will not live a peaceful life when you are choosing to sin. Through His psalmist God warns:
“Do not harden your hearts, as in the rebellion, as in the day of trial in the wilderness, when your fathers tested Me; they tried Me, though they saw My work. For forty years I was grieved with that generation, and said, ‘It is a people who go astray in their hearts, and they do not know My ways.’ So I swore in My wrath, ‘They shall not enter My rest.’” (Psalm 95:8-11)
I’ve often shared Isaiah 5:20 with you where the prophet warns against nations calling evil good and good evil. However two verses earlier Isaiah warns against the progression of such a nation as individuals presume upon sinfulness:
“Woe to those who draw iniquity with cords of vanity, and sin as if with a cart rope.” (Isaiah 5:18)
We presume we have plenty of time to get right with God after we enjoy our season of sin. Jesus’ brother James warned against such foolishness:
“Come now, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit’; whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.” (James 4:13-14)
If you are a Christian living a backslidden life, you need to stop making excuses that your spirit is willing but your flesh is weak. No, you’re backslidden because you want to be. You chose to be in a backslidden state. It’s time to face the truth about your sinfulness and repent of it. If you’ve been living a perpetual backslidden life for a while and have got used to it, then dear friend I doubt seriously that you are even saved. God chastens those that are His children, and if He has not chastened you there is a reason. You do not belong to Him.
If you are a Christian and have allowed yourself to slip into sinfulness, understand who you are in Christ. You cannot live your life as though you are some common lost person. The Apostle Peter reminds us:
“But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy.” (1 Peter 2:9-10)
Whether you are a Christian or have never surrendered your life to the Lord Jesus Christ, it is way past time to leave that life of darkness and start living in the marvelous light of righteousness.
Do not delay, do it now. Today you need to choose to no longer sin.
If you’re receiving these devotionals for the first time and would like to receive them on a regular basis, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and use “Please add to Devotional List” as the subject. You can purchase Dave’s four devotional books by visiting his Amazon author page.
Copyright © 2014 David Jeffers