Sunday, September 2, 2007

Holiness; Sin

I am currently reading "Faithfulness and Holiness" by J. I. Packer which offers the first edition of Bishop J. C. Ryle's "Holiness". I am reading it as a book study as a part of an online group, check it out and join in or follow along here.

We are currently reading chapter one, "Sin".

I thought I would throw this teaser your way and see if it intices you to "tolle lege" as I am finding this to be an excellent read and easy to follow and provides incite which can affect change.

In Ryle's first edition of Holiness, he writes in the first chapter on the topic of 'Sin'. And fitting it is as if those who are regenerated by the Holy Spirit are to be holy as He is holy then we are in need of ridding ourselves of sin.
Ryle writes, "the first thing, therefore, that God does when He makes anyone a new creature in Christ, is to send light into his heart, and show him that he is a guilty sinner. He provides 5 sub-topics or thoughts about sin:
1) The Definition of Sin - sin, in short, is that vast moral disease which affects the whole himan race, of every rank, and class, and name, and nation, and people, and tongue; a disease from which there never was but one born of woman that was free. More particularly, "a sin" consists in doing, saying, thinking, or imagining, anything that is not in perfect conformity with the mind and law of God.
2) Origin and Source of Sin - the sinfulness of man begins from within; it is a family disease, which we all inherit from our first parents, Adam and Eve, and with which we are born. (He then closes this sub-topic speaking of babies and provides some great insight and admonishment.)
3) The Extent of Sin - "Every imagination of the thoughts of his heart" is by nature "evil, and that continually." -- "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked" (Gen. 6:5; Jer. 17:9); sin is a disease which pervades and runs through every part of our moral constitution and every faculty of our minds. (He spends a good portion of writing here.)
4) The Guilt, Vileness, and Offensiveness of Sin - heavy must that weight if human sin be which made Jesus groan and sweat drops of blood in agony at Gethsemane, and cry at Golgatha, "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?" (Mt. 27:46).
5) Sin's Deceitfulness - you may see this deceitfulness in the wonderful proneness of men to regard sin as less sinful and dangerous than it is in the sight of God; I fear we do not sufficiently realize the extreme subtlety if our soul's disease.

Here are some sermons by John Piper on God's Sovereignty over Sin; Desiring God


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