17 December 2010

Jesus Is Serious About Sin

Matthew 18:6-9
Followers of Jesus follow Jesus.  Apprentices of Jesus do what Jesus does.  Disciples of Jesus obey everything that Jesus commanded.

In the 2010 Western World, sin is like Santa Claus or the Boogie Man.  The concept of sin is for superstitious types who use fanciful stories to manipulate others.  Enlightened people don't talk about sin and definitely do not talk about what is right and wrong in relation to a mythical god they do not know or want to know.

Please notice that I did not say that in our time people don't talk about right and wrong.  EVERYONE talks about right and wrong.  EVERYONE discriminates.  Environmentalists don't preach to the masses?  Smokers aren't preached to?  They aren't told where they can smoke and where they can't?  The current American president recently told Americans that taxes aren't about raising revenue, but about fairness.  People who want nothing to do with God preach sermons all the time about what we should eat, how we should regard certain behaviours and who should and should not be worthy of living.

Many philosophers will tell you that we are living in a culture that has abandoned the concept of right and wrong.  This is nonsense if one pays attention to our culture.  What our culture has done is abandon God's definition of right and wrong, as revealed through His Word and His Son.

Jesus certainly was not embarrassed by His Father.  Jesus certainly was serious about the rejection of His Father's ways and why the creation continues to reject their creator.  In this teaching, there is no misunderstanding, Jesus regards sin as a matter of life and death.  Sin is not a human problem.  Sin is THE human problem.

Many of us have rejected God's institution of the family.  As a consequence, many more children have had a stumbling block put in their path to life.  All of us know the devastating effects sexual and physical abuse has on children.  It changes their path profoundly.  It changes how they view sex.  It changes how they trust and love others.  It changes their view of God and the one he sent.  All of us know the devastating effects constantly fighting parents have on children.  It teaches them how to treat others.  It teaches them how the world they live in operates.  All of us know the devastating effects divorce has on children.  The instability and the different people their parents bring into their homes teaches them dispair in regards to any kind of lasting commitment.

If any of you put a stumbling block before one of these little ones who believe in me, it would be better for you if a great millstone were fastened around your neck and you were drowned in the depth of the sea.

Sin is serious.  Sin is cancerous.  Jesus teaches us that sin must be dealt with immediately and decisively.  Sin is the street a toddler plays on.  Sin is the mole that must be cut out.  Sin is the tumour that must be removed.  Sin is the matches in a child's hands.

I pray that all of us who follow Christ will follow Christ.  I pray that all of us who enjoy living in the Kingdom of God will not be embarrased by our King.

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