Sin and My Heart Part 3, CONCLUSION

November 3, 2009

There is this story in Joshua, about a guy named Achan.

Basically the Israelites were told to utterly destroy a town called Ai.  And not take anything from it.  So about three thousand guys go up to Ai and get whooped. God told them to only send 3000, because there are only a few people of Ai.  God was saying this was going to be an easy fight. The Bible even says the town of Ai was only a few. But Ai whoops up on Israel.

Joshua doesn’t know what happened.  He asks God what happened here.  God told Joshua that someone took from that which was devoted to Him.  They had a word in Hebrew for that.

This word comes up in these couple chapters of Joshua(6,7).  That word is kherem.  The word means to set apart or devote as an offering to the Lord.  I don’t know why this is necessary, but it was.  It basically meant that every thing had to be destroyed.  Everything.  No matter what.  Or everything had to be put in the tabernacle for the Lord.  So either this stuff had to be completely separated from God’s people or be completely destroyed.

It is more commonly translated as “things devoted for destruction”.  So I am pretty sure these items were on the way to being destroyed.

Now our boy Achan, ends up seeing a cloak, 200 shekels of silver, and a bar of gold.  Achan knew about this kherem word.  He knew that he wasn’t supposed to take those things.  He convinced himself it was okay though.  He knew he was intentionally sinning and he did it anyways.  He sees the wealth, and decides it would be better for him to have it, then to obey God.

That’s what I think the third problem with my heart and sin is.  Because of the allure, the pleasure, or fame that I think the sin can bring I will do it anyways.  I imagine Achan had some time to sit there and think about taking those things. He convinced himself that it was okay anyways.

Don’t we do that?  Sometimes we just don’t care what the consequences are, we just want to sin, because of whatever we think that sin will bring us.

But even if that sin brings us a multitude of pleasure, it’s not worth taking one step away from God.

Isn’t that what sin does?  Even as Christians, I think every time we sin, we are moving away from God, and maybe that’s not the case, but we can agree that sin hurts our relationship with God.  God doesn’t think less of us.  Sin just makes it harder to be in relationship with Him.

So what are you doing in your life right now?  What is that cloak in your life that you take, even though you know you shouldn’t?  What are you convincing yourself that it’s okay for you to keep doing?  Don’t make the mistake Achan did, don’t convince yourself that it’s okay.  Or that the wealth, or pleasure, or whatever that sin will bring will be worth it.  No sin is worth hurting our relationship with God. None.  You might think it’s worth it.  You might convince yourself it’s worth it.  Or even convince yourself doing that sin necessary.  But it is not.

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4 Responses to “Sin and My Heart Part 3, CONCLUSION”

  1. Sharon Parks said

    You do a teacher’s heart good! I am so proud of you! You not only remembered a very important point from the Book of Joshua, you were able to apply it to your heart! You’re awesome! Perhaps one of the reasons for Kherem could be related to the New Testament theme of putting to death the deeds of the flesh.

  2. anthonygee said

    For real. It’s a really good story to apply to our New Testament life. You’re a great teacher. That’s why I remembered it so well.

  3. Kelly said

    Ant, you are a man of God, good lesson!

  4. Brian said

    Anthony,

    Thank your for sharing this little story – a story that teaches a big lesson. The way you applied this story to your own life – your own heart – gives it a convicting character. “Heart speaks to heart”.

    It reminds me of two things:

    1) That disordered desire to sin has a name; it is called concupiscence. Concupiscence is a result of original sin, of our fallen nature. Our fallen nature, due to sin, has been affected “to the depths”. Not only are we capable of sin – but our very desires themselves have been affected at their core, for we often desire to sin as well. It shows just how deep the graces of redemption must go. Those graces must go to our hearts, they must affect our soul, and transform it, “to the depths”.

    2) This also reminds me of the battle we are in, as souls who journey “this side of Heaven”. There are, indeed, many evil forces that come against us. They tempt us with sins, and seem to never tire. C.S. Lewis once commented that many good Christians make the mistake of seeing their entrance into the Christian life, through their conversion, as entering a “place of joy”, filled with sweet sights and smells, etc. Nothing could be further from the truth. When we become Christians, we are born into a battle, a war outright; that is what Lewis observed. We are in a war against the forces of evil, that seek to take our souls away from the Lord.

    -Brian

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