Friday, February 10, 2012

my sin as God sees sin

But they do not consider that I remember all their evil. Now their deeds surround them; they are before my face.
Hosea 7:2

We tend to forget that sin is an affront to a holy God. We are bound to have too casual an approach to sin. God, however, never takes a casual approach to what comes between us. Judgment shows us this. The cross convinces us of this. His warning to Israel's leaders was meant to wake up a morally sleeping nation. He reminded them that what they casually dismissed was heaped around them and ever before His face. It would have to be dealt with.

One of the stupidest of human mistakes is the denial of sinfulness. It is graphically apparent. We might as well deny our humanity! We deny sin as real and we dismiss all concepts of God's holiness. It is horribly unaware of the offense that sin truly is. It is a form of whistling in the dark at the true results of our depraved human natures. Modern thinking derides the concept of personal sinfulness and instead ignorantly ascribes the blatant evil to a lack of education, inequities in wealth or social standing, lack of scientific progress, or a psychological instability. Meanwhile sin piles up and decays around us. The stench of it permeates the air until we grow accustomed to it... like urban commuters during a hot summer sanitation workers strike. We just live with the garbage so much that we look beyond it.

If we want to think serious and true thoughts of God, we must take our own sin seriously. That is the first way of responding to who we are and why we need His forgiveness in Christ. It is not that we have to offer some kind of extreme penance. But we must own up to our own sinfulness and see it as damaging to our ability to know God in His perfection. The prayer God hears first, as Jesus Himself taught, is "God, be merciful to me a sinner."

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