Thrive Over Sin (4 of 4): Do Not Be Lazy
The "So What?" of Sin (Taylor)
- The Nature of Sin
- When is a sin not a sin?
- Treating the extreme cases is perhaps easier than recognising the ambiguity of sin
- In life, we have a choice (Deut 30:19)
- Too often, we take the easy road and don't choose, which is itself a choice, preferring to react to life as it happens to us rather living life proactively and "making the most of the time, because the days are evil" (Eph 5:15-16).
For we are what he has made us, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand to be our way of life. —Eph 2:10.
Sloth/Laziness: Do Not Be Slothful
- What is sloth really? (Stalker, I, II, III)
- The final sin is actually a little known and little used term: accidie (pronounced "ˈak-sə-dē").
- Otherwise known as and leading to "apathy", "sloth", or "laziness"
Accidia was spiritual torpor—an aversion to religious exercises, which, on account of it, were discharged perhaps with mechanical regularity, but without zeal or joy. It might sink by degrees into bitterness of soul and hatred of existence, and, if not counteracted, it might at last issue in lunacy or suicide. —James Stalker, The Seven Deadly Sins, 127.
Religious exercises were never intended to absorb the whole of our time, but to supply strength for the discharge of duty in the family and in the market-place; and the attempt to override nature cannot but have its revenge [...] The sin, in such circumstances, is artificial; it is not so much due to the rebellious soul as to the tyranny of an evil system; and it is no wonder if human nature breaks down under a yoke it was never intended to carry. —Stalker, 129-130.
The inability to find any joy or satisfaction in the allotments of Providence is not, however, confined to those to whom the course of fortune has proved unkind; for the most utter weariness and disenchantment with existence will not infrequently be found in those who appear surrounded with every comfort or even luxury. —Stalker, 134.
- The remedy is joy (IV)
- God's dealing with our sin vs. our works salvation
- "... created in Christ Jesus for good works ..." (Eph 2:1-10) —which form of life do you prefer?
Now to him who is able to keep you from falling, and to make you stand without blemish in the presence of his glory with rejoicing, to the only God our Saviour, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, power, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen. —Jude 1:24-25.
- This verse identifies that God alone is able to help us withstand trial, temptation, and sin, so that we become perfect (an issue that we will discuss next week) and full of joy.
- Thus negates any claim to a works-salvation
- This will be to God's glory, not ours —a point which we will have to reconcile
- In our pursuit of selfish pleasure, let us discover and remain committed to a new way of being, as much as a new way of living