What does it take for actions that are “evil in the sight of the Lord” to become a “light thing”?
How does sin become common place?
There are some who think that the Church harps far too much on sin. “Fire and brimstone” is from a bygone age. Christians who point out the sins of other people are often ridiculed for being up-tight or backwards. They are way too concerned about other people’s private lives. They don’t understand the modern world. Those types of Christians are regressing to the dark ages by focusing so much on sin.
The world that we live in does all that it can to normalize what is evil in the sight of the Lord and to make it a light thing. Sin is not a light thing.
It is sin in the life a person that earns them God’s condemnation. That is a big thing.
The result of living in the flesh (sin) is death. No one who is in the flesh can please God. That is a big thing.
It was for sin that God sent His own Son, in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, to condemn sin in the flesh. Jesus, the Son of God, came to this earth for the purpose of condemning sin. That is a really big thing.
Sin is a very big deal. It was for your sin and my sin that Christ died on the cross. What could be bigger than that?
I don’t like the fact that I can see some of my own attitude toward sin in a man like Ahab. Ahab considered sin a light thing. I have a tendency to down-play the magnitude of sin in my own life and the lives of other. I think that it is a common attitude in the Church. In comparing the Church to the rest of our society, I don’t see much difference. I am disturbed by our comfort level with that which our Lord calls evil.
Ahab’s attitude toward sin did not originate with him. Ahab came from a culture where sin had been normalized:
King Jeroboam – “but you have done evil above all who were before you and have gone and made for yourself other gods and metal images, provoking me to anger, and have cast me behind your back,…” (1 Kings 14:9)
King Nadab – “He did what was evil in the sight of the Lord and walked in the way of his father, and his sin which he made Israel to sin.” (1 Kings 15:26)
King Baasha – “He did what was evil in the sight of the Lord and walked in the way of Jeroboam and his sin which he made Israel to sin.” (1 Kings 15:34)
King Zimri – “because of his sins that he committed, doing evil in the sight of the Lord, walking in the way of Jeroboam,..” (1 Kings 16:19)
King Omri – “Omri did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, and did more than all who were before him.” (1 Kings 16:25)
Israel had a culture led by one king after another that treated sin lightly. They disregarded what was evil in the sight of the Lord.
We live in a culture that is working very hard to normalize what is evil in the sight of the Lord. I see so many professing Christians who are daily feeding on a buffet of content and entertainment that is seasoned throughout with what our Lord calls evil. We willingly consume it without a second thought. We are fools to think that a steady diet of evil does not affect what we consider to be normal. Just consider the allowable topics in many Sunday sermons. It is a sad reality that many actions, which the Bible clearly calls sin, cannot be taught in many pulpits and youth ministries because it is no longer considered that bad. We don’t want to offend people with the magnitude of the evil in their lives. That is the result of years of evil being normalized into our lives.
Sin is a big deal. When I down-play the magnitude of sin in my own life, I am equally down-playing the magnitude of the gospel. I am undervaluing the supreme worth of the sacrifice of my Savior. I am treating the greatest gift ever given as a stocking stuffer.
It is when we remember that sin is a really big deal that our passion for the lost is revived. It is the greatest of tragedies to make a person comfortable in their own condemnation. It is when we treat sin as a light matter that we can become indifferent to the eternal destination of those who are not in Christ Jesus.
I look at my own life and know that I take sin a lot lighter than I should. I hate that.
I look at the lives of other professing Christians and see them taking sin a lot lighter than they should. I hate that.
I hate that we flirt along the edges of what is evil in God’s eye and don’t think it is that it is a big deal. I hate that we are numbed to the flagrant proliferation of evil in our society and we just take another bite.
Sin is a big deal.
The good news is that the Gospel is a bigger deal. We have been saved. Christ has condemned sin in our flesh. Let’s take a big bite of that. Let’s set our minds on the things of the Spirit. Let’s reject all of those things of the flesh; all those things that the Lord calls evil, don’t allow your mind to be settle on all that this world is telling you is normal and natural.
All of that is not normal for a child of God. Those who set their minds on what God calls sin will die. Those who live according to the Spirit will set their minds on the things of the Spirit. They will have peace and life!
What will you set your mind on today?