Friday, December 07, 2007

Sin and Temptation Chapter 4

I started this chapter several times before I began to get understanding of it. I was only able to complete my reading this morning after putting all my real-life distractions to rest.

As one who maintains a large garden, I appreciated Owen's gardening analogy and have used that in the past though not as richly as Owen. I think of this year in particular when I was called to my mom's home to assist her after a fall which left her with a severely broken arm. After 4 weeks away from home, I returned to a garden in which I literally could not find half of the food-bearing plants! Though my husband was applying water he was unable to attend to the unwanted plants, thus only half the job was done. Weeds grow faster than fruiting plants and move in quickly for the kill. How like the sin in our lives; it is much harder work to kill the sin than to fill ourselves on the richness of God's word to make ourselves feel spiritual. And how quickly sin will choke out true spiritual fruit.

I chose this quote as a highlight of the week's reading: "Men that are sick and wounded under the power of lust make many applications for help; they cry to God when the perplexity of their thoughts overwhelms them, even to God do they cry, but are not delivered; in vain do they use many remedies--" How often do we hear of believers crying out to God for relief of sin's consequences without doing any work to destroy the sin in themselves? They attend church and Bible studies. They read self-help books, they seek counseling, they join support groups and may even take medication; joy and peace still elude them. In Psalm 66 the writer speaks of praising God for His great deeds; in verse 18 we read, "If I had cherished iniquity in my heart, the Lord would not have listened."

This week's concept seems to come back to the simple statement "Be killing sin or it will be killing you."

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