Monday, November 17, 2008

The Progression of Sin: Part 1

Each month - the staff at Grace has been going through some personal discipleship stuff together. We just finished our third such training at our meeting last week. We discussed the danger of sin and temptation as a leader, and the power of confession to counteract the advances of sin. In the first part of our study we walked through the progression of sin as outlined in Genesis 3. Today I'll list those that lead up to the act of sin itself - and will conclude the list tomorrow.

1. Deception (3:1) - Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, "Did God really say, 'You must not eat from any tree in the garden'?"

  • There is a deceiver who knows our vulnerability. His strategy is to strike at the relationship between people and God. It is amazing to imagine how powerful the force of deception must have been to make unfallen people fall, and sinless people sin. It is a very powerful force. All sin begins by believing things that aren’t true - this is deception.

2. Doubt (3:4-5) - "You will not surely die," the serpent said to the woman. "For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."

  • Doubt takes on two forms. First we begin to doubt sins consequences, “I can get away with it – in fact, I’ll be better off if I do it." And second, we begin to doubt the goodness of God. We begin to believe that all the good things God has given us are not quite good enough.

3. Desire/Enticement for that which I don’t have (3:6a) - When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom…

  • Desire by itself is a good thing, but not when it’s paired with deception and doubt. When the heart is deceived, the head begins to doubt, and the eyes become an accomplice to sin. The forbidden thing began to look good and desire took hold of Eve. This is lust - giving in to that which is "pleasing to the eye." We can lust for things like power, greed, success, fame, thrills, stuff, people, etc.

1 comment:

Lora said...

I love to tell people that the original sin was blame shifting. Seriously, your points are good. You should also consider teaching this from your pulpit. We all need a reminder occassionally.