Tuesday, March 7, 2017

We Need to Call Sin What It Is


It all started a couple Sundays ago when Keith got a piece of candy for answering a Bible review question.  He was not happy with the candy he got and wanted to trade it for something different.  Neither his mom or I let him trade so he went and sat down, crying and pouting and threw the candy he did get on the floor.  After class I took him aside and was explaining to him that being discontented with what he was given was a sin and then he also sinned by sitting and throwing a fit because he didn't get his own way.  One of the older ladies heard me and came up and said, "Awww.... he is so cute.  You know he's only four, you can't tell a four year old he's sinning.  You should just let him have the candy he wants.  He is such a sweet little boy!" 

 Sadly this is the thought process of the world today. We cannot confront our children with sin because they are too young, because we don't want to hurt their feelings and they are just too cute.  If we don't start training them now to see sin in their lives, will they be able to recognize sin in their lives as they grow and become teens and adults? Have we ourselves, been so sheltered from the sin in our lives that we do not see and recognize it, let alone repent of it?  Is this why we see sin running rampant in the lives of people who proclaim they are Christians but are living like the world?


I recently was reading about Amy Carmichael and her work rescuing temple children and teaching them of the love of God and their need for a Savior.  One young girl who was living with and being taught by Amy, came up to her and started naming the sins she had committed that day on her fingers.  One - she had been cross with the other kids twice that morning, two - because she was cross she broke up the unity of the game the kids were playing,  three - she had not done her morning work well, and four - she chewed on her pencil lead that she had been told not to chew on. 
What struck me about this story was that as a child, this little girl who was only seven years old, was conscious of her sins and knew she needed to confess and repent.  Why was she so conscious of her sin at such a young age?  Because Amy Carmichael was not afraid to call sin what it is, sin.


Every week I teach the kids about sin and every week when I ask the kids to tell me a sin they yell out, hitting your brother, saying bad words, lying, disobeying your parents, killing.  These are the ones they know are a sin and they shouldn't do but what about the more common sins.  Do we teach our kids to acknowledge selfishness, pride, being mad or upset, discontentment, and other sins of the heart and mind in their lives daily?  Are we calling sin what it is in our children's lives or do we let a lot of things slide because they are so little, so cute, cause we don't want to hurt their growing personalities?  

If we are going to raise children who are strong in their faith, strong in their desire to live a godly life, following the one who loved them and died for their sins, then we have to call sin what it is, sin.  At the same time, we as parents need to make sure that we are also acknowledging the sin in our lives.  Pride, selfishness, greed, lustful, hateful thoughts, being angry, discontented, or dishonest are just a few of the sins of the heart and mind that affect each of us daily.  If our kids see us doing these things and not acknowledging them and not repenting, we are setting our kids up for a life of being trapped in these very same sins.  Every sin that we have in our lives and we do not acknowledge or repent of, gives room in our lives for even more sins.  Sadly today we see so many Christians involved in sexual immoarilty, drunkedness, witchcraft, brawling, and so many other wicked imaginations and I believe it all starts because we are not calling sin what it is, sin in our own lives, let alone in in the lives of our young children.

So if you come to our church and you see me hunkered down on eye level with my four year old grandson, explaining to him what he is doing wrong, how it is a sin and how God hates when we sin, please know, it is not because I'm trying to squash his personality or that I'm a mean grandma.  It's because I'm trying to help raise a young man who will live a life that pleases God, who serves God with all his heart and one who will be able to see sin in his life and stop it before it gets out of hand.   I love my grandchildren with all my heart and because I love them so much, when I see them sinning and doing wrong I must call sin what it is, sin.

1 John 1:9 - If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.




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