Summary: Why do Godly people sin? And can God possibly use you even when you’re testimony is blown?
Let me tell you a story about a Christian just like you and I. Let’s call him George for no good reason. George woke up Monday morning after a remarkable Weekend. Family time was well spent and The church services were excellent. He’d had testimonies of answered prayer in his own life and the Preacher’s message had moved him and several other people to kneel at the altar and pray that morning!
George was running just a little bit late and as a result pulled into the parking lot a bit to fast. As he found his space he also turned the wheel too sharply and managed to scrape a neat line down the length of His boss’s car. Jumping out in dismay, George noticed that wonder of wonder’s his own car was unharmed. It took only a second to get back in the car and find a new spot several rows over. Nobody saw the accident and nobody need know - His boss after all was a wealthy man compared to George’s salary, and if he could afford a brand new BMW, he could also afford to have it painted George reasoned.
As the Day wore on, George even began to consider the depth of God’s blessing in the whole event. After all, there wasn’t so much as a smudge on George’s car! Surely the incident was intended to be a curse to his Boss for his greed and a blessing to Him for his goodness!
That afternoon on the way out to the parking lot - George witnessed an argument between his boss and another employee who had taken the empty spot beside the Beemer. Instantly George recognized the unfortunate man as one he had been witnessing to earlier in the day.
And now you see the dilemma. To remain silent would be to let an innocent man suffer. To confess would mean his earlier witness was "blown" by his dishonesty. What would you do? Or perhaps more important yet are the questions at the heart of the matter. Why do Godly people sin? And can God possibly use you even when you’re testimony is blown?
I want you to turn with me to Genesis Chapter 20 where we visit Abraham’s Lie and God’s Intervention. < read Genesis 20 > .
Just like Genesis Chapter 12, Abraham goes right back to Living by fear. Take a look at verse 11 and you can see Abraham’s motive. FEAR. Nothing more and nothing less. Abraham said he told the lie because there was no fear of God, in reality he displayed a greater fear of men than of God!
This guy was scared to death for his own life and was willing to sacrifice his wife for it! ... therein lies the problem:
1) _Fear stops obedience._
But before we get to hard on Abraham, or even on George, what about you? What motivates you to sin? Frankly - let’s be honest - often we don’t even have the glory of claiming fear. We just plain act before we think! In fact, I think more than anything else that’s what motivates my own failures. Do you know what the shows? It shows the depths of wickedness in our hearts - that’s what it shows!
You’re no different from Abraham, and neither am I. And again, let’s recount where Abraham has been in this story. Abraham had received the Abrahamic Covenant nearly 25 years earlier. He’s been walking with God - building altars and worshipping for 25 years! Multiple times - God himself had spoken audibly and even in person with Abraham! None of us can claim such splendor as having seen our Great master and Lord.
God had led him to being victorious in war over four kings at once. He had increased Abraham’s finances from zip to zillions. And only just recently God had come down and actually had dinner in Abraham’s presence. He had promised a son by Abraham through Sarah at the end of the next 12 months!
Abraham had gotten early news of God’s plan to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah - and in righteous fervent prayer had prayed for the entire cities preservation if only 10 men could be found there. 10 couldn’t be found, but one could - and Lot and his two daughters were spared the great destruction because of Abraham’s prayers.
Past experience with God is no guarantor of future success in our lives. More than anything else perhaps I’d love to tell you that once we reach a high level "God-experience" that you’ll never have to sin again. But Paul knew that wasn’t true. He bemoaned his own habit of falling into sin all over again in Romans 7, and in 1 Corinthians 10 he warned the People of Corinth, "...if you think that you stand firm, watch out that you do not fall..."!