INTRO: I dont remember just when I first heard the expression the seven deadly sins. I am not sure, either, that I realized the expression referred to the passage which is the text for these thoughts. I would like to make this observation at the beginning. All sins are deadly if a person persists in them and if they are not forgiven in Gods appointed way. However, here is a collection of seven things which are an abomination unto him. The word abomination is translated from a Hebrew word which properly means disgusting. It is often used of idolatry. So, the seven things here are as disgusting to God as idolatry is! Because inspiration has grouped them together, I want us to look at all seven briefly this evening.
1. A proud look
a. we all know, or should, Gods view of human pride
b. Rom 1:28-32 - did you notice that the proud are included here?
c. Mk 7:20-23 - Jesus tells us pride defiles the man
d. the forbidden pride causes one to think he is better than others - it skews the way he sees himself - it brings him, ultimately, to think he can do no wrong
e. notice here it is the proud look - we might say, He looks down his nose..
f. the demeanor of a person full of himself quickly identifies him as proud
2. A lying tongue
a. few things are more distasteful to my than lying
b. few things destroy trust and credibility more quickly than lying
c. lying too easily becomes a habit - children must be taught early the virtues of truth telling and the consequences of lying!
d. yes, there are times when telling the truth may have negative results
e. even then the truth must be our habit, our custom
f. Eph 4:25 - lying may be the worlds way ... it cannot be ours! (this verse points directly to the effect of lying in relationships!)
3. Hands that shed innocent blood
a. note 2 Ki 24:3,4 - this gives us some impression of how God views this
b. recall Ex 29:13 - murder began early in human experience (Jno 8:44)
c. Im sure that all of us could say amen to this particular prohibition
d. but I wonder if we realize that the Lord goes further than the actual taking of another persons life?
e. Mt 5:21,22 - we can assassinate with our words!
f. then, I Jno 3:15 - the Lords definition of murder is much broader than ours
4. A heart that deviseth wicked imaginations
a. recall, again, Mk 7:21-23 - where does evil begin? in a corrupt heart
b. or, Mt 5:27,28 - what is going on in the imaginations of our hearts may well be condemning us!
c. imagination is a wonderful thing ... with our imaginations we see so much
d. imagination in children is delightful ... vast are the accomplishments of it
e. but our thoughts, imaginations must be carefully disciplined ... because what is etched in the mind is so difficult to expell
f. so, Phil 4:8 - we need to spend our thinking time positively, properly
5. Feet that be swift in running to mischief
a. some people seem always poised to go with the crowd to do some foolish or evil thing
b. this particular thing may well have connection to the former one!
c. Prov 1:16 - early in Proverbs is this fact noted
d. Ex 23:2 - Thou shalt not follow a multitude to do evil
e. our feet should be swift in running to do that which is good!
f. where are your feet taking you?
6. A false witness that speaketh lies
a. this is different from the lying tongue mentioned earlier
b. this specifically has to do with what we say about others - either in a court of law or not!
c. Ex 20:16 - another of those great prohibitions
d. do you ever talk about other people? do you ever talk disparagingly of other people? is what you say about them always true? is it ever colored to convey a message you want conveyed? is it necessary?
e. Ps 15:1-3 - notice especially v. 3
f. do we wound and damage others by our talking about them?
7. He that soweth discord among brethren
a. to what extent does this connect to #6"?
b. contrast? Ps 133:1 - unity in friendship, unity in marriage, unity in the church
c. anyone who behaves in a way to disrupt that unity brings himself under the hatred of the Lord!
CLOSE: These seven things may seem to be so distant from us. These are things bad people do. Ah, but each of them can be seen as the behavior of people who may think of themselves as good. Each of these things calls for searching our hearts.
Cecil A. Hutson
31 October 2004
You Must Hear the Gospel
You must hear the gospel and then understand and recognize that you are lost without Jesus Christ no matter who you are and no matter what your background is. The Bible tells us that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) Before you can be saved, you must understand that you are lost and that the only way to be saved is by obedience to the gospel of Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:8) Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12) "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." (Romans 10:17)
You Must Believe
You must believe and have faith in God because “without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6) But neither belief alone nor faith alone is sufficient to save. (James 2:19; James 2:24; Matthew 7:21)
You Must Repent
You must repent of your sins. (Acts 3:19) But repentance alone is not enough. The so-called “Sinner’s Prayer” that you hear so much about today from denominational preachers does not appear anywhere in the Bible. Indeed, nowhere in the Bible was anyone ever told to pray the “Sinner’s Prayer” to be saved. By contrast, there are numerous examples showing that prayer alone does not save. Saul, for example, prayed following his meeting with Jesus on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:11), but Saul was still in his sins when Ananias met him three days later (Acts 22:16). Cornelius prayed to God always, and yet there was something else he needed to do to be saved (Acts 10:2, 6, 33, 48). If prayer alone did not save Saul or Cornelius, prayer alone will not save you. You must obey the gospel. (2 Thess. 1:8)
You Must Confess
You must confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. (Romans 10:9-10) Note that you do NOT need to make Jesus “Lord of your life.” Why? Because Jesus is already Lord of your life whether or not you have obeyed his gospel. Indeed, we obey him, not to make him Lord, but because he already is Lord. (Acts 2:36) Also, no one in the Bible was ever told to just “accept Jesus as your personal savior.” We must confess that Jesus is the Son of God, but, as with faith and repentance, confession alone does not save. (Matthew 7:21)
You Must Be Baptized
Having believed, repented, and confessed that Jesus is the Son of God, you must be baptized for the remission of your sins. (Acts 2:38) It is at this point (and not before) that your sins are forgiven. (Acts 22:16) It is impossible to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ without teaching the absolute necessity of baptism for salvation. (Acts 8:35-36; Romans 6:3-4; 1 Peter 3:21) Anyone who responds to the question in Acts 2:37 with an answer that contradicts Acts 2:38 is NOT proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ!
You Must Be Faithful Unto Death
Once you are saved, God adds you to his church and writes your name in the Book of Life. (Acts 2:47; Philippians 4:3) To continue in God’s grace, you must continue to serve God faithfully until death. Unless they remain faithful, those who are in God’s grace will fall from grace, and those whose names are in the Book of Life will have their names blotted out of that book. (Revelation 2:10; Revelation 3:5; Galatians 5:4)