Students wanted to talk about the “ongoing presence of sin” in their lives.
– Asked them, “How do you think God views you in the midst of your sin? All gave the same answer: God is supremely disappointed.
– Every student had grown up in Christian homes; half were missionary kids; Bible majors; all were Wheaton College students (Evangelical upbringing)
– Not one said the right answer– that God still loves them in the midst of the sin.
A lot of my energy in my preaching had been going toward convincing people to change their circumstances. I wanted:
– more people to stop doing more things they liked to do
– so they would do more things God wanted them to do—or that I wanted them to do
What I was doing was judging and measuring based on their circumstances. Those who could give more time and energy doing things for God were better or more mature or more valuable to the church than those who were doing things I thought were less important for God.
I Cor. 7 Paul said they should remain in the condition in which God called them, but stay there with God. Main focus: Not what are you doing for God, but are you living with God?
I had been teaching/Wheaton College students had absorbed – their value was rooted in what they were doing for Christ.
The primary reason for rooting out sin: sin prevents me from doing all I should for Christ. Hebrews 12 Fix eyes on Jesus. Throw out sin. Reason to get rid of sin: so we can experience more of Him in our life. Calling should be helping people get vision of life with God right where they are.
1. How do you really think God views you in light of your sin?
2. What have you done with God lately?a