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Sins We Don't Speak Of

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  • Sins We Don't Speak Of

    Dare we speak of these?

    Link

    -------

    Is the church really taking holiness seriously? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

    Yesterday when I was in Sunday School, I don’t know how it got started, but we started talking about secret sins. These are the sins that you never really hear anything about in church. Right now, our pastor is getting ready to go through the Ten Commandments with us so it’s my hope that we’ll be hearing more about these kinds of sins.

    The deal with these sins is that we don’t really like to talk about them because they hit so close to home. They are what we all struggle with. One that came to my mind immediately was gluttony. We all know of pastors who are quite rotund who are getting up telling us how to live our lives, but you can be sure too many of them are not talking about this sin.

    We just went through Gay Pride Month. Now many people think the church talks way too much about homosexuality, which is odd because I honestly hardly hear anything about it from the pulpit, but when was the last time you heard something about pride from the pulpit? This is considered the chief sin many times. This is supposed to be the sin that made the devil, the devil. Do you hear about it often?

    But speaking of homosexuality, our leader also gave us a statistic. I don’t know the source for it as I didn’t get to ask in class, but he said 15% of Christians in the church struggle with same-sex attraction. Even if that number is too high, some do. There is nothing said from the pulpit to help these Christians who could want to get rid of these attractions even.

    Along those lines, what about pornography? It’s been said that 1 in 3 men in the church struggle with this. A large number of pastors even struggle with pornography. It’s not just a man’s problem either. More and more women are struggling with pornography. When do you hear anything about it?

    It’s amazing really how many of our sins are sexual in nature. We need to talk about abortion and not just that it’s wrong, but that there is mercy and forgiveness for those who have gone this route. A number of women in the church have had abortions and some people will go to the church seeking solace after having one. We need to be able to say that abortion is wrong, but that yes, there is forgiveness available.

    The church has a stigma when it comes to divorce as well. This is even the case when divorce could be justified and the right thing to do, such as in cases of adultery and/or abuse. If someone is divorced, negative thoughts are assumed about them, which is our natural tendency. Imagine going through a parking lot and seeing a car with damage on from an accident. You might assume the person was a bad driver, which is my tendency. Maybe they came in contact with the bad driver. You don’t know until you ask. Again, we need grace and mercy here.

    Why don’t we talk about these sins? Are we afraid of offending people? Then we’re not really walking as Jesus did. However, if we don’t talk about them, we don’t get to have people come to the cross if it is something they have done wrong to receive mercy and forgiveness and grace, or we don’t get to give them healing from pain that has been afflicted to them in their lives.

    Too many of our sermons really feel good messages to help us feel better about ourselves. Sometimes we should feel miserable about ourselves. We should so that it will drive us to repentance, which will bring us an even greater joy. If we want to be like Jesus, we need that repentance as well. The church does not do anyone any favors by neglecting the topic of sin. It’s easy to talk about the sins everyone else is doing and how bad the world is. We need to remember to clean up our own house first.

    In Christ,
    Nick Peters
    (And I affirm the virgin birth)

  • #2
    Nick,

    Along this vein, what do you think of Amy Grant's recent proclamation?

    https://www.relevantmagazine.com/cul...es-not-matter/
    That's what
    - She

    Without a clear-cut definition of sin, morality becomes a mere argument over the best way to train animals
    - Manya the Holy Szin (The Quintara Marathon)

    I may not be as old as dirt, but me and dirt are starting to have an awful lot in common
    Stephen R. Donaldson

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Bill the Cat View Post
      Nick,

      Along this vein, what do you think of Amy Grant's recent proclamation?

      https://www.relevantmagazine.com/cul...es-not-matter/
      I heard some about it. If all she was meaning was anyone can come to Jesus and receive love and Jesus loves us all just as we are, I would have no problem, but I gather she's saying that she doesn't have a problem with homosexual practice.

      When I first heard, one thought came to mind.

      We have got to eliminate someday the Christian celebrity culture. Much like in the secular world, our celebrities are not often our best thinkers.

      Comment


      • #4
        1st Peter 4:17 comes to mind.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Apologiaphoenix View Post

          I heard some about it. If all she was meaning was anyone can come to Jesus and receive love and Jesus loves us all just as we are, I would have no problem, but I gather she's saying that she doesn't have a problem with homosexual practice.

          When I first heard, one thought came to mind.

          We have got to eliminate someday the Christian celebrity culture. Much like in the secular world, our celebrities are not often our best thinkers.
          The whole "Jesus loves us all just as we are" thing is a problem. Either Grant is right, or the "just as we are" is wrong: unless "just as we are" is repentant, that is.
          sigpic1 Cor 15:34 εκνηψατε δικαιως και μη αμαρτανετε αγνωσιαν γαρ θεου τινες εχουσιν προς εντροπην υμιν λεγω

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by tabibito View Post

            The whole "Jesus loves us all just as we are" thing is a problem. Either Grant is right, or the "just as we are" is wrong: unless "just as we are" is repentant, that is.
            I contend Jesus loves us as we are in that we don't have to change to receive His love and we can't increase or decrease His love for us, but He loves us so much that He doesn't want us to stay where we are either.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Apologiaphoenix View Post

              I contend Jesus loves us as we are in that we don't have to change to receive His love and we can't increase or decrease His love for us, but He loves us so much that He doesn't want us to stay where we are either.
              Neat, but the idea that God does not accept sinners is not restricted to specific types of sin - so, either Grant is right or ...

              I'm sure you could think of at least half a dozen NT passages off the top of your head that would at least undermine the "just as you are" premise, and even more so its recent offspring, "Jesus accepts you on your own terms." The latter is only a more explicit expression of the former.
              sigpic1 Cor 15:34 εκνηψατε δικαιως και μη αμαρτανετε αγνωσιαν γαρ θεου τινες εχουσιν προς εντροπην υμιν λεγω

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by tabibito View Post

                Neat, but the idea that God does not accept sinners is not restricted to specific types of sin - so, either Grant is right or ...

                I'm sure you could think of at least half a dozen NT passages off the top of your head that would at least undermine the "just as you are" premise, and even more so its recent offspring, "Jesus accepts you on your own terms." The latter is only a more explicit expression of the former.
                Whoa.

                I didn't say anything about acceptance or approval. I spoke about love. It's unconditional. I maintain Jesus will love the people in hell who are living in rebellion against Him still. You can't do something to make Him love you more. You can't do something to make Him love you less.

                However, if you live in sin and refuse to repent of it knowingly, He will not take you into His presence and you will not be in His kingdom. Repentance is not necessary to be loved by God, but all who want to enter His kingdom need to repent. (Putting aside the question of those who never heard and those who die with severe mental challenges or before the age of accountability.)

                I suspect we really agree and are talking about two different things.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Apologiaphoenix View Post

                  Whoa.

                  I didn't say anything about acceptance or approval. I spoke about love. It's unconditional. I maintain Jesus will love the people in hell who are living in rebellion against Him still. You can't do something to make Him love you more. You can't do something to make Him love you less.

                  However, if you live in sin and refuse to repent of it knowingly, He will not take you into His presence and you will not be in His kingdom. Repentance is not necessary to be loved by God, but all who want to enter His kingdom need to repent. (Putting aside the question of those who never heard and those who die with severe mental challenges or before the age of accountability.)

                  I suspect we really agree and are talking about two different things.
                  I suspect that you might be right, at least in part. However, even if "Jesus loves everyone" had no codicils whatever - the comment below singles out homosexual practice from other sins, where scriptural teaching makes no distinction between homosexual practice and for example, malicious gossip, or even avarice.
                  I heard some about it. If all she was meaning was anyone can come to Jesus and receive love and Jesus loves us all just as we are, I would have no problem, but I gather she's saying that she doesn't have a problem with homosexual practice.
                  sigpic1 Cor 15:34 εκνηψατε δικαιως και μη αμαρτανετε αγνωσιαν γαρ θεου τινες εχουσιν προς εντροπην υμιν λεγω

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by tabibito View Post

                    I suspect that you might be right, at least in part. However, even if "Jesus loves everyone" had no codicils whatever - the comment below singles out homosexual practice from other sins, where scriptural teaching makes no distinction between homosexual practice and for example, malicious gossip, or even avarice.
                    I fully agree that homosexuality is not like other sins. It's not the unforgivable sin, but Paul does warn us to not be deceived. My whole point had been if Grant was saying Jesus loves homosexuals no more or less than anyone else, I would have no problem. If there was an implication though, which I think there is, that therefore they do not need to repent and are accepted as they are, then that is a problem.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Apologiaphoenix View Post

                      I contend Jesus loves us as we are in that we don't have to change to receive His love and we can't increase or decrease His love for us, but He loves us so much that He doesn't want us to stay where we are either.
                      Hence, the "Just As I Am without one plea..."
                      "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        St. John Climacus on pride:
                        Source: Ladder of Divine Ascent, Step 23


                        1.Pride is denial of God, an invention of the devil, the despising of men, the mother of condemnation, the offspring of praise, a sign of sterility, flight from divine assistance, the precursor of madness, the herald of falls, a foothold for satanic possession, source of anger, door of hypocrisy, the support of demons, the guardian of sins, the patron of unsympathy, the rejection of compassion, a bitter inquisitor, an inhuman judge, an opponent of God, a root of blasphemy.
                        2.The beginning of pride is the consummation of vainglory; the middle is the humiliation of our neighbor, the shameless parade of our labors, complacency in the heart, hatred of exposure; and the end is denial of God’s help, the extolling of one’s own exertions, fiendish character.
                        3.Let all of us who wish to avoid this pit listen: this passion often finds food in gratitude, for at first it does not shamelessly advise us to deny God. I have seen people who thank God with their mouth but mentally magnify themselves. And this is confirmed by that Pharisee who said ironically: God, I thank Thee.
                        4.Where a fall has overtaken us, there pride has already pitched its tent; because a fall is an indication of pride.
                        5.A venerable man said to me: ‘Suppose that there are twelve shameful passions. If we deliberately love one of them (I mean, pride), it will fill the place of the remaining eleven.’
                        8.A proud person grasps at authority, because otherwise he cannot, or rather, does not want to be utterly lost.
                        9.God resists the proud. Who then can have mercy on them? Every proud-hearted man is unclean before God. Who then can cleanse such a person?
                        10.The proud are corrected by falling into sin. It is a devil which spurs them on. But apostasy is madness. In the first two cases people have often been healed by men, but the last is humanly incurable.
                        11.He who refuses reproof shows his passion (pride), but he who accepts it is free of this fetter.
                        12.An angel fell from heaven without any other passion except pride, and so we may ask whether it is possible to ascend to heaven by humility alone without any other of the virtues.
                        13.Pride is loss of wealth and sweat. They cried but there was none to save, no doubt because they cried with pride. They cried to the Lord and He heard them not, no doubt because they were not trying to cut out the faults against which they prayed.
                        14.A most learned old man spiritually admonished a proud brother, but he in his blindness said: ‘Excuse me, Father, I am not proud.’ The wise old man said to him: ‘What clearer proof of this passion could you have given us, son, than to say, “I am not proud”?’
                        15.Such people can make good use of submission, a more rigorous and humiliating life, and the reading of the supernatural feats of the Fathers. Perhaps even then, there will be little hope of salvation for those suffering from this malady.
                        16.It is shameful to be proud of the adornments of others, but utter madness to fancy one deserves God’s gifts. Be exalted only by such merits7as you had before your birth. But what you got after your birth, as also birth itself, God gave you. Only those virtues which you have obtained without the co-operation of the mind belong to you, because your mind was given you by God. Only such victories as you have won without the co-operation of the body have been accomplished by your efforts, because the body is not yours but a work of God.
                        17.Do not be self-confident until you hear the final sentence passed upon yourself, bearing in mind the guest who got as far as joining in the marriage feast and then was bound hand and foot and cast out into the outer darkness.
                        18.Do not lift up your neck, creature of earth! For many, though holy and spiritual, were cast from heaven.
                        19.When the demon of pride gets a foothold in his servants, he appears to them either in sleep or in a waking vision, as though in the form of a holy angel or some martyr, and gives them a revelation of mysteries, or a free bestowal of spiritual gifts, so that these unfortunates may be deceived and completely lose their wits.
                        29.
                        Pride is utter penury of soul, under the illusion of wealth, imagining light in its darkness. The foul passion not only blocks our advance, but even hurls us down from the heights.
                        30.The proud man is a pomegranate, rotten inside, while outwardly radiant with beauty.
                        31.A proud monk has no need of a devil; he has become a devil and enemy to himself.
                        32.Darkness is foreign to light; and a proud person is foreign to every virtue.
                        33.In the hearts of the proud, blasphemous words will find birth, but in the souls of the humble, heavenly contemplations.
                        34.A thief abominates the sun, as a proud man scorns the meek.
                        35.I do not know how it is, but the proud for the most part remain ignorant of their real selves, and they imagine that they are victorious over their passions, and they only realize their poverty when they depart from this life.
                        36.The man enmeshed in pride will need the help of God, for the salvation of men cannot avail him.
                        37.I once caught this mad2imposter as it was rising in my heart bearing on its shoulders its mother, vainglory. Roping them with the noose of obedience and thrashing them with the whip of humility, I demanded how they got access to me. At last, when flogged, they said: We have neither beginning nor birth, for we are the originators of all the passions. Contrition of heart that is born of obedience is our real enemy; we cannot bear to be subject to anyone; that is why we fell from heaven, though we had authority there.In brief, we are the parents of all that opposes humility; for everything which furthers humility, opposes us. Our power extends to all short of heaven, so where will you run from our presence? We often accompany patience under dishonor, and obedience, and freedom from anger, and lack of resentment, and service of one’s neighbor. Our offspring are the sins of spiritual people: anger, calumny, spite, irritability, shouting, blasphemy, hypocrisy, hatred, envy, disputing, self-will, disobedience. There is only one thing in which we have no power to meddle; and we shall tell you this, for we cannot bear your blows: If you keep up a sincere condemnation of yourself before the Lord you can count us as weak as a cobweb. For pride’s saddle-horse, as you see, is vainglory on which I am mounted. But holy humility and self-accusation laugh at both the horse and its rider, happily singing the song of victory: Let us sing to the Lord, for gloriously has He been glorified: horse and rider He has thrown into the sea1and into the abyss of humility. This is the twenty-third step. He who mounts it (if any can mount it) will be strong.

                        © Copyright Original Source

                        Enter the Church and wash away your sins. For here there is a hospital and not a court of law. Do not be ashamed to enter the Church; be ashamed when you sin, but not when you repent. – St. John Chrysostom

                        Veritas vos Liberabit<>< Learn Greek <>< Look here for an Orthodox Church in America<><Ancient Faith Radio
                        sigpic
                        I recommend you do not try too hard and ...research as little as possible. Such weighty things give me a headache. - Shunyadragon, Baha'i apologist

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Apologiaphoenix View Post

                          I fully agree that homosexuality is not like other sins. It's not the unforgivable sin, but Paul does warn us to not be deceived. My whole point had been if Grant was saying Jesus loves homosexuals no more or less than anyone else, I would have no problem. If there was an implication though, which I think there is, that therefore they do not need to repent and are accepted as they are, then that is a problem.
                          On that, we are agreed.Thus my comment, "Jesus loves us just as we are, if "as we are" is repentant."
                          But how does "homosexuality is not like other sins" fit into the equation?
                          sigpic1 Cor 15:34 εκνηψατε δικαιως και μη αμαρτανετε αγνωσιαν γαρ θεου τινες εχουσιν προς εντροπην υμιν λεγω

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I remember seeing Robert Gagnon make a case that homosexuality is either the worst sin or among the worst of sins but I can't for the life of me remember what his arguments were.

                            I remember not being convinced but he wouldn't be the first Christian to rank sins in seriousness. Chrysostom famously said that using birth control was more serious than homicide.
                            Last edited by KingsGambit; 07-20-2021, 09:11 PM.
                            "I am not angered that the Moral Majority boys campaign against abortion. I am angry when the same men who say, "Save OUR children" bellow "Build more and bigger bombers." That's right! Blast the children in other nations into eternity, or limbless misery as they lay crippled from "OUR" bombers! This does not jell." - Leonard Ravenhill

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by tabibito View Post

                              On that, we are agreed.Thus my comment, "Jesus loves us just as we are, if "as we are" is repentant."
                              But how does "homosexuality is not like other sins" fit into the equation?
                              Homosexuality if one is practicing it is a lifestyle sin included in 1 Cor. 6. There are many other lifestyle sins and we need to preach on those as well.

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