Sin and Our Testimony

I spoke about this in our teen Sunday School class today, and wanted to post something here as well.

We humans are strange creatures. If there is something wrong with us, we usually want to go to the doctor to find out what it is so that we can get it taken care of. When it comes to spiritual problems, however, we tend to ignore them. Whether we just hope they will go away or we like to think that it doesn’t affect us, either way we don’t want to do anything about it.

Imagine I’ve written up a report to send to my manager at work. In the title of that report, I’ve obviously misspelled a word: “Copmuter Utilization Report”. I submit the report to my supervisor to review before I send it on. He sends it back, noting the misspelled word, and I pretend it isn’t there. He sends it back again, so I argue that it’s spelled right. It comes back to me again, so I discover that it’s actually spelled wrong, but I insist that’s the way I want to spell it. He sends it back yet again, so I just lighten it up a little bit (Make it light gray instead of black) so it doesn’t stand out. For the last time, he sends it back. I ask, “What do you want me to do with it?!” He responds simply to erase it and spell it right!

This is the same way we deal with sin in our lives a lot of times:

  • We first pretend we don’t see it
  • Next we argue that it’s right
  • Third, we decide we don’t care what the rules say; that’s how we want it
  • Last, we agree that it’s wrong, but just try to cover it up

The thing about sin, however, that doesn’t quite line up with the example I gave above is that we can’t erase it on our own. I John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” This is how we get rid of it – confess it to Christ, repent of it, and accept His forgiveness.

We have to see sin as wrong, first of all. That’s a simple thought, I know, but we like to hang on to it. To make it right in our own lives, we have to repent of it – turn away from it. Then we have to ask God to forgive us. He is willing to forgive, and even desires us to ask forgiveness. He wants us to live a life that is pleasing and honoring to Him.

Switching gears a little bit, our testimony is something that is very important for us to protect. There are some things that happen in our lives that we can’t help. Those things by themselves won’t mar our testimony, but how we handle and respond to those things will.

Every single day, our actions affect our testimonies. The things we do, the places we go, the people we keep company with, the things we say… Having unconfessed sin in our lives is one thing, and it injures our testimony. Being proud of and broadcasting that sin to everybody we know throws our testimony in the dirt and begs everyone to stampede all over it.

I’ve written about music before, and talked about it several times. Country, rock, pop, hip hop, rap…these are just a few of the genres that not only neglect to glorify God, but they oppose Him directly. The music is worldly and ungodly! It promotes:

  • Fornication
  • Self
  • Worldly philosophies (Which go directly against God’s Word)
  • Drunkenness
  • Lustfulness

…just to name a few.

The performers live wicked lives in defiance of God. Some of them talk good sometimes if they win an award for their wicked music – they give thanks to God. That’s like me giving thanks to God for the ability to walk into a bar and get myself wasted.

Miley Cyrus, Britney Spears, Elton John, Garth Brooks, Kenny Chesney, Brad Paisley, Reba McEntire, Taylor Swift, Adam Lambert. I could go on for hours, but can anyone name just one that lives a life for God? Are these the kind of people whose ‘artistry’ we should be subjecting ourselves to as Christians? I realize there’s the matter of finding the good in people and not focusing on the bad…in some circumstances. The problem with that is we overuse that idea so much that when we’re faced with┬áblatant, obvious and even defiant sin, we still turn a deaf ear or a blind eye, as the case may be.

Don’t get me wrong, now. All of these people have souls, and they will die and go to hell one day if they don’t get right with God. I’m not making light of that at all. This is their legacy, however.

Some of you profess to be Christians, and you’re telling the world that you enjoy this type of music. I ask, “What kind of testimony is that for someone to have?” Let that sink in…

In Sunday School we’ve been talking about temptation and sin. Last week we talked about how sin has consequences. We may not see the consequences of our sin right away, but I guarantee there will be some. One that I can think of right away is that when someone sees a professing Christian’s choice in wicked music, any Spiritual insight they may have, any wisdom that professing Christian may have to offer (Whether real or not!) will be discarded because they can see that person is not real. They can see the testimony and make a quick (and accurate) determination about that life based on that choice.

I’m focusing on music here, but this applies to any sin. It especially applies to open sin that other people can easily see in our lives. Do you talk like a saint in front of other Christians, then cuss once in a while when you’re elsewhere?

Protect your testimony! Get rid of unconfessed sin! Repent of it!

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