Has someone ever told you not to do something and although it had never crossed your mind before, you now want to do it? Or, has there ever been something you promised yourself – promised God – you would never do again, and you find yourself doing it over and over and over again?
If so, you might have a lot more in common with Paul than you thought!
Ever since Adam and Eve took that bite of the fruit way back in Genesis 3, the temptation of sin has slithered around making its way into all parts of our lives. Then comes the law, and as the pastors at @coe22 say, “the law is both a map and a mirror.” The law shows us how we should live, but also shows us how horribly short we fall in living it.
Sin is something we don’t like to talk about or think about. Andy Stanley has an excellent sermon on sin versus mistakes (link here). He talks about how we all prefer to call our sin "mistakes"…an error, accident, poor judgment, carelessness, ignorance…we have no shortage explanations we have become adept at telling ourselves and others. But deep down, we know sin when we see it. We know when something is purposeful, willful, intentional. Sin is no mistake.
The problem is mistakes can be fixed by trying harder, being a bit more diligent and disciplined. But sin can’t be remedied by us. It requires a savior. Trying harder never cuts it. Paul comes to this realization and says, “For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing.” Do you ever feel like that? I can certainly relate. C.S. Lewis says, “No man knows how bad he is until he has tried to do good.” #truth
Paul says he delights in the law; in God’s Word – me too! He knows right from wrong – me too! He wants to do what is right – ME TOO! But he lacks the power in his own strength – me too! We can call it what we want, but the truth is, it is sin. We are all sinners. Stanley says, “Until you embrace the fact that you’re a sinner, you’re not open to embracing the fact that God sent you a savior… Mistakers are all about trusting in self to get it right. Sinners realize: ‘I can't. I don't need to do better. I don't need a motivational speaker or a cheerleader. I need a Savior.’”
Paul cries out, “Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?” Ever feel like that?
He answers his question, “Thanks be to God through JESUS CHRIST our Lord!” PRAISE GOD! You won’t want to miss Romans 8 tomorrow!
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