Vespers – Spurgeon’s Question 14

Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness.

  • 1 John 3:4

If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them.

  • James 4:17

for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,

  • 2 Corinthians 11:3

“Q. 14. What is sin?
“A. Sin is any want of conformity to, or transgression of the law of God (1 John 3:4)
.

  • Charles H. Spurgeon, Spurgeon’s Catechism

“Q. 14. What is sin?
“A. Sin is any want of conformity unto, or transgression of, the law of God
.

  • The Shorter Catechism (Westminster Assembly)

“Q. 24. What is sin?
“A. Sin is any want of conformity unto, or transgression of, any law of God, given as a rule to the reasonable creature.”

  • The Larger Catechism (Westminster Assembly)

All three catechisms are about the same on this question.

As I read in a Billy Graham book, he quoted the second half of Romans 14:23: “everything that does not come from faith is sin.”

While the subject was on various people, their eating habits, and the judgmental attitude toward what others ate, this short statement says it all.  If whatever we say, think, or do is not borne from a life-giving faith in our Savior, it could be considered sin.  This may be too simplistic, but it places everything that we do into perspective.  When we give our all to Christ, we give our all to Christ.  Anything short of that is not our all.

That last paragraph may have sentences that non-believers consider semantically null, but unless you have Jesus in your heart, all of this discussion seems foolish.

We need not get legalistic about a set of rules that we follow.  We need to have a relationship with Jesus so that the Holy Spirit will guide us each step of the way to avoid sin.

And now let us sing.

The following hymn, Just as I Am, without One Plea, was the hymn used in many Billy Graham crusades.  In this video, Cliff Barrows talks about how the media mocked the work of the Holy Spirit at the crusades, and what happened as a result.

Just as I am, without one plea,
But that Thy blood was shed for me,
And that Thou bid’st me come to Thee,
O Lamb of God, I come! I come!

Just as I am, and waiting not
To rid my soul of one dark blot;
To Thee whose blood can cleanse each spot,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come!

Just as I am, though tossed about
With many a conflict, many a doubt;
Fightings within, and fears without,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come!

Just as I am, poor, wretched, blind;
Sight, riches, healing of the mind;
Yes, all I need, in Thee to find,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come!

Just as I am, Thou wilt receive,
Wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve;
Because Thy promise I believe,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come!

Just as I am, Thy love unknown
Has broken every barrier down;
Now, to be Thine, yea, Thine alone,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come!

  • Charlotte Elliott, Just as I Am, Without One Plea

Closing Prayer

Dear Lord,
We have all sinned.  We have all gone our way, but Your Son came to earth and died to pay our sin penalty.  And Jesus rose from the grave to sit at You right hand.  And Jesus has promised to build a mansion for each of us who call upon His name as Lord in our lives.  Help us to live up to that responsibility.  Thank You for saving us.  And thank You for always keeping Your promises.
In thy Name we pray.
Amen

Soli Deo Gloria.  Only to God be the Glory.

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