Summary: The spiritual struggle to be holy; what God does and what we do.
"Holiness: Heresy & Heritage"
"Jacob No More"
"Then he said, "Your name shall no more be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with God and with men, and have prevailed."" Genesis 32:28 (RSV)
Introduction: Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde by Robert Louise Stevenson
Dr. Henry Jekyll & Mr. Edward Hyde
We speak of evil’s influence in and over our lives
"The devil made me do it"
"It’s just the way I am"
"I try. Lord, knows I try"
I. Why Such A Struggle?
A. Humanity Was Created For Fellowship
"So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them." Genesis 1:27 (RSV)
"And he said to him, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it, You shall love your neighbor as yourself."" Matthew 22:37-39 (RSV)
My purpose is to worship the Father
B. Self-determination Gave Birth To Sin
"Each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin; and sin when it is full-grown brings forth death." James 1:14-15 (RSV)
Genesis 3 -To be like God and know what He knows
C. Sin Defined
To miss the mark
Not just the Commands (do’s & don’t’s)
But the "oughts" "Whoever knows what is right to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin." James 4:17 (RSV)
Presumptuousness "But who can discern his errors? Clear thou me from hidden faults. Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me! Then I shall be blameless, and innocent of great transgression." Psalm 19:12-13 (RSV)
Sin is separation from God
"Sin is that which separates us from God; whether it is an action, an attitude, a behavior, or a thought"
We who have been created for fellowship are now unable to fellowship
II. God’s Endeavor
"For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God sent the Son into the world, not to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him." John 3:16-17 (RSV)
"In Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation." II Corinthians 5:19 (RSV)
III. Crisis Of Decision
Rejection: "For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and wickedness of men who by their wickedness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. Ever since the creation of the world his invisible nature, namely, his eternal power and deity, has been clearly perceived in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse; for although they knew God they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking and their senseless minds were darkened...And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a base mind and to improper conduct." Romans 1:18-21,28 (RSV)
Acceptance: "For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God...it is the Spirit himself bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God." Romans 8:14,16 (RSV)
IV. Our Problem
We are still struggling with sin. Like Paul we cry out, "Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?" Romans 7:24 (RSV)
"I don’t understand myself at all, for I really want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do the very thing I hate. I know perfectly well that what I am doing is wrong, and my bad conscience shows that I agree that the law is good. But I can’t help myself, because it is sin inside me that makes me do these evil things. I know I am rotten through and through so far as my old sinful nature is concerned. No matter which way I turn, I can’t make myself do right. I want to, but I can’t. When I want to do good, I don’t. And when I try not to do wrong, I do it anyway. But if I am doing what I don’t want to do, I am not really the one doing it; the sin within me is doing it." Romans 7:15-20 (New Living Translation)
Like Henry Jekyll our Edward Hyde begs to be released, screams to be free until before we know it we go to sleep Henry Jekyll and awaken Edward Hyde. Our sin gets the best of us.