Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one.  But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death. James 1: 13 – 15; ESV

“Cause darling I’m a nightmare dressed like a daydream”- Song lyrics from Blank Space by Taylor Swift

Does man ever think about what is sin? Does he ever ponder upon where sin comes from? And most importantly; does man believe he has the right to decide what sin is and what is not? I ask these questions because lately man’s views on sin and what determines a particular act to be sinful has been flawed by, well, sin. Sin never announces itself as sin; if it did, many of us would avoid it. Especially those who have a faith and belief in God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit would agree that we are to avoid sin because of the consequences of sin not atoned for by Jesus Christ.

In case you are wondering what exactly sin is, here is a description from Harper’s Bible Dictionary:

Sin

sin, that which is in opposition to God’s benevolent purposes for his creation. According to the biblical writers, sin is an ever-present reality that enslaves the human race and has corrupted God’s created order. The concept of sin is first and foremost a religious concept, because all sin is ultimately against God, God’s laws, God’s creation, God’s covenant, and God’s purposes. It is the basic corrupting agent in the entire universe. [1]

 

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This gives the believer a basis for understanding what sin is. Knowing this allows the believer to, first of all, desire to know what God (and not man) determines to be sin. Once this is known, man can follow God’s instructions as to avoid said sin. The problem is that today, man believes he can mandate what is NOT sin; which causes great conflict with God. Just because it might be socially acceptable doesn’t mean that it is moral and ethical. Just because people try to ignore that it is sinful doesn’t mean it is any less sinful. So, why then do people sin?

The reason for including the lyrics for Taylor Swift’s Blank Space in my article is because it points out a great truth which many fail to see until they are fully enslaved by the sinful nature which master’s man’s hearts and minds. Her lyrics share a great deception which, I personally believe, is the key to falling into sin. When she sings “I’m a nightmare dressed like a daydream”, she is saying that I am appealing, however, I am dangerous; I may be beautiful, but I can be deadly as well. Sin is just as crafty!

As I stated earlier, sin never announces itself. If we look at nature, the animal kingdom has predators which have camouflage which helps them to blend into their surroundings or a beauty about them that draws they prey into their grips. They are well hidden or very deceptive in order to bring their prey into death. Sin does that exact same thing to man’s soul; it lures its prey into it grips and sucks the life (spiritually and even physically/mentally/emotionally). Once it has its hold on us, it uses guilt as the death blow; “God would never love you after what you have done!”, “What makes you think you can be forgiven by God, your family,…” and my personal favorite, “You’ve already lost everything, so why not just keep on having fun while you can?” (I call it my favorite because I hear this so many times from others).

ONLY God has the right to determine what sin is. Man has not the authority nor the holiness to determine or dictate what is sin and what is not. If we take an honest and righteous look at ourselves, we would see just how flawed a people we are as we stand before a holy God. I don’t care if our government declares this to be a right or that to be acceptable while in the same breath saying that it is unlawful to pray, to share one’s faith and to promote another person’s faith over the Christian faith. Some might say that I am being narrow-minded, but when the Bible declares something as sin, man has no right to say it isn’t! Sin has disguised itself to deceive man to believe they can dictate what sin is and that is leading many into sinful lifestyles and spiritual deaths!

You can use the excuses, “I was born this way.”, “I was brought up in this environment and its second nature to me.” or “I don’t believe that it is wrong.”; that doesn’t matter because it is not up to you or I to determine what is right and what is not. If I speed down the highway and I am pulled over by the police and I’m cited for speeding, I can’t say, “I just don’t believe that law so put your ticket away.” You can guess what would happen to me. In the same manner, what makes us think that when we stand before God that we can say, “I simply don’t believe this or that is sin, therefore You can’t hold it against me!”

Do yourself a favor: study the passage provided for an entire week. See how it transforms your way of thinking and acting upon those thoughts. See if you respond differently to temptation to sin…

 

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[1] Achtemeier, P. J., Harper & Row and Society of Biblical Literature. (1985). In Harper’s Bible dictionary (1st ed., p. 955). San Francisco: Harper & Row.

John
Outreach Director at FreedomSystem.org
John is a pastor at a local church in Angola, and does prison ministry, as well as work with troubled and mentally unstable people!

"What type of legacy do you want to leave; one which dies with you or one that lives forever? It is not the wealth, power, or fame which makes the memory, it is the relationships we are a part of."