Summary: Part 2 in a series on temptation. This focuses on 4 of the seven deadly sins.


Part 2-Feeding the Beast

Genesis 4:7, “Sin is crouching at your door.”

October 14, 2007

Pastor Brian Matherlee


I heard the report of two brothers. They came from about the most perfect home you could come from. They were involved in a group doing volunteer work for a prominent leader and it required them to give of their own time, talent and resources.

In the course of their work they each presented a finished project but one brother’s was approved and the other’s was not. The older boy had held back some. It wasn’t his best and when his little brother received praise for the effort he had put forth and the sacrifice he made he couldn’t stand it. Everything within him turned on his brother and when cautioned by the leader he disregarded his advice. In the course of time he couldn’t stand the praise of another and he murdered his brother.

Of course, this is the true story of Cain and Abel, sons of Adam and Eve. (Read Genesis 4:1-8)

Have you ever heard of the 7 deadly sins? Of the 7 there are 4 that feed the beast of full-blown sin. They can be sin in and of themselves but I see the 4 we will talk about today as the first chapters in the devil’s playbook. Just like God told Cain, God tells us that these things are crouching at our doors.

1. Anger

a. A young girl who was writing a paper for school came to her father and asked, "Dad, what is the difference between anger and exasperation?" The father replied, "It is mostly a matter of degree. Let me show you what I mean."

With that the father went to the telephone and dialed a number at random. To the man who answered the phone, he said, "Hello, is Melvin there?" The man answered, "There is no one living here named Melvin. Why don’t you learn to look up numbers before you dial"

"See," said the father to his daughter. "That man was not a bit happy with our call. He was probably very busy with something and we annoyed him. Now watch...." The father dialed the number again. "Hello is Melvin there?" asked the father. "Now look here!" was the heated reply. "You just called this number and I told you that there is no Melvin here! You’ve got lot of guts calling again!" The receiver slammed down hard. The father turned to his daughter and said, "You see, that was anger. Now I’ll show you what exasperation means. “He dialed the same number, and when a violent voice roared, "Hello!" The father calmly said, "Hello, this is Melvin. Have there been any calls for me?"

b. Ephesians 4:26, 27 “In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold.

c. Not all anger is sin. It is the motivation and expression of anger that makes the difference.

i. Jesus became angry with the disciples on occasion and expressed it. He became angry at the money changers in the temple taking advantage of the people and he took action. But these were not sinful motives or actions.

ii. God’s anger came upon the rebellious people of Israel and Judah in 2 Chronicles 24.

d. If my anger is motivated by my hurt pride, my greed, my envy it is sin. If my anger is motivated by revulsion to sin or injustice, for example, then it is not sin unless expressed improperly.

e. Anger is involved with most of the other sins we will talk about today.

f. It’s important to understand your anger. If you want to uncover the source of your anger use AHEN.

i. When you see Anger (the “A”) it is usually covering a

ii. Hurt (the “H”) If you peek under that Hurt, you’ll see you had an

iii. expectation (the “E”)And if you look under that expectation, you’ll find a

iv. need – the “N”

2. Pride

a. A woman came to confess her sin of pride at the altar. As the pastor listened she explained how she couldn’t help but coming into church every week feeling she was the prettiest woman in church. The pastor reassured her that she didn’t need to repent of sin since in her case it was only a horrible mistake.

b. What is pride? Inordinate self-esteem; self-absorption; unwillingness to submit (rebellion); unable to be taught; desire for supremacy.

c. Isaiah 14:13, 14, “You said in your heart, “I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.”

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