For 5 years I was the pastor of Trinity International Church in Strasbourg, France. I created this blog with those people in mind. In mid-November 2018 I will become the Senior Pastor of Word of Life Church in Coon Rapids, Minnesota. The focus of this blog will therefore shift, but I pray that people from the blogosphere will continue to find it helpful wherever they might be found.
The churches' websites includes recorded sermons for those who are interested. Click the links below to access them.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

A Sobering Thought

Driving schools teach about the dangers of driving while under the influence of alcohol. Billboards, Facebook posts, and our mothers warn us not to drink and drive.

Question: So why do so many people drive drunk?

Answer: They think they can handle it. 

They think that the alcohol isn't affecting their reactions or their judgment. They think, "It may affect other people, but I am fine. No problem. I've got this. I've only had a little to drink." If someone tries to take away their keys they become defensive and insist on driving, sometimes with tragic results.

But this post isn't about alcohol or driving under the influence.

Paul writes, "Wake up from your drunken stupor, as is right, and do not go on sinning" (1 Cor 15:34). 

Sin works like alcohol in our lives. Sin clouds our judgement. Sin muddies our perception. Sin changes our reactions. Sin causes us to become defensive when confronted. Sin damages our relationship with God. Sin damages our relationship with others. 

Let's take the example of the person who refuses to forgive and their unforgiveness has soured into bitterness. You probably know someone like that. Bitterness distorts their whole view of life. They are under its influence, but they will not admit it. They are sin-drunk.

We became Christians by repentance and faith in Jesus Christ. We experienced the forgiveness and cleansing that is available from Him. We've been taught and warned about the consequences of sin.

Question: So why do so many Christians live "sin-drunk" lives?
Answer: They think they can handle it.

They think, "Sin won't affect me. It isn't much sin. I can handle it." 
"My anger? No big deal." 
"My 'little' lies? Not a problem."
"My jealousy? I only want what is rightfully mine."
"My porn? I can handle it."
"My greed? It's only natural."
They think it does't affect them, but it does. Like the drunk driver, they are under the influence and are barely conscious of it. Their friends probably sense it. God certainly sees it. But they themselves are sin-drunk and barely notice anything is wrong.

Hebrews 3:13-14 warns that we may be "hardened by the deceitfulness of sin" with devastating results. 

Dear Christian, are you living with sin in your life? It isn't a little thing. You are under its influence. It is affecting your reactions, your judgement, your opinions, your speech, and your decisions. It isn't improving them. It is making them worse. 

You are sin-drunk.

You know better. 

Sober up. Do what is right. Repent. Put away your sin and receive forgiveness from Jesus. Live in the true freedom and true joy that comes from Him.

Ephesians 4:17-24
2 Corinthians 11:3
Hebrews 12:1-2
1 John 1:5-10

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