The Anatomy of Continual, Harbored Sin

February 17, 2017

I have watched many people, often professing believers, who have entered into serious sin—often moral sins that you would not think they would commit.

How does this happen? There is a pattern which we would be wise to study and understand. David shows us this pattern in Psalm 36.

Transgression (like an oracle) speaks to the wicked deep in his heart. There is no fear or dread of God before his eyes. For he flatters and deceives himself in his own eyes that his iniquity will not be found out and be hated. The words of his mouth are wrong and deceitful; he has ceased to be wise and to do good.  He plans wrongdoing on his bed; he sets himself in a way that is not good; he does not reject or despise evil. (Psalm 36:1-4, Amplified Bible)

THE PROGRESSION

  1. Temptation “speaks to us in our heart” and we chose a temptation and enter into a sin.
  2. Once in, we have two options: we can rationalize what we have done or see it for what it is and repent, thus stopping the slide into deeper sin.
  3. The sin (and our enemy) ""speaks"" to us, deep in our heart, calling us to go further.
  4. If we do not resist and repent, we begin to rationalize that we will not be found out, that it is good, not despicable and deadly, etc. We run from God so that we will not have to deal with Him and we lose the fear of the Lord.
  5. Such self-deceit and rationalizations make us more and more foolish and deceived.
  6. We now begin a ""path that is not good,"" not just a momentary sin. It begins to become habitual.
  7. We lose sight of the evil of our sin more and more. It becomes more and more rationalized and more and more acceptable. And we get to places we never, ever dreamed we could go, spiraling downward.

 

YOU'RE NOT IMMUNE

When you hear the report of a professing believer who has fallen into serious moral sin, for instance, you often say, ""How in the world could they have done that?"" If you talk with them, you will discover that, over time, they began to rationalize, and the sin became more and more reasonable to them. If they had not made these compromising rationalizations, they would blow up mentally (if they were determined to continue in their sin). And ... they become more foolish and continue deeper. It is a vicious cycle.

This is why it is SO CRITICAL that we see sin as God sees it at the FIRST TEMPTATION. No rationalizations, no excuses. And, why it's critical to resist and become accountable with others at the first blush of any temptation.

I don’t care who you are, you are not good enough to handle rationalized sin. You are capable of anything over time.




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