Summary: We have been taught that posture is important for physical health and for social acceptance. However our posture spiritually determines our position and either secures or puts our promise at risk.
The Posture of Sin
I can still hear the various voices in my head that would constantly deal with the issue of posture in my life. I can hear the "Sit up straight" from my mom. I can hear "Stand up straight" from dad when we would try on a shoes or slacks or when preparing to meet someone. Others would demand that shoulders be thrust up and back. I was taught that posture was important to maintain a healthy physique and public opinion. However, as I have grown older I catch myself slumping in my chair and leaning when I stand. I seldom ever think about straightening to full height and pulling back shoulders and sucking in stomach. Posture just hasn't been on my mind until I started thinking about this new year. I want to challenge you that as we launch into this brand new year that we need to reconsider and possibly examine our posture spiritually if we desire to make it through this year in an upright manner. I want to talk to you about The Posture of Sin.
Text: Psalm 1:1-2
Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night.
and for fun verse 1 out of the Message Bible.
How well God must like you—you don’t hang out at Sin Saloon, you don’t slink along Dead-End Road, you don’t go to Smart-Mouth College.
David, in a very precise manner, deals with posture and when you reflect on what he says in reverse he shows us how to avoid sin by making sure that we don't posture ourselves for sin!
In reverse he says don't sit in the company of mockers. Don't stand in the way of sinners. And then he ramps things up and says we are blessed when we don't walk in step with the wicked. He in fact, shows us the posture that leads to sin and the posture that leads to our promise!
David shows us that sin doesn't start on the day you sin! There are times it seems that someone just wakes up and decides to go off the deep end. Faithful one day and a freak the next. Committed one day and then compromised the next. A good spouse one day and then a dead beat the next. A good friend one day and a full-fledged enemy the following. However, David's posture lessons shows us that these actions start with sitting.
Sitting speaks to intimacy. You don't normally sit, spend extended time and close fellowship with those you don't know. This idea of sitting carries with it the idea of prolonged exposure. Daily interaction.
Gone is the idea of avoiding the very appearance of evil. This is the "I am stronger than the temptation" posture. I can handle the environment. I am beyond influence. So therefore I can sit down and without even realizing it I lay down my guard, I embrace tendencies, I grab onto the beliefs and ideals that once I would have been careful to avoid.
Too many of us are now seated with things and with people that we would have run from prior to this. And David says if you sit, then one day your walk will be impacted.
It is the truth of the frog in the kettle. It is the slowly increased heat that kills. It is the long term influence of what you sit in, around, and with that reaches forward and adjusts your walk.
So as we enter 2014, my question is "Where are you seated? Who are you intimate with? What has your attention? What has gained your trust so that you are now comfortable to invest time?" David implores us to be extremely careful with where and who we sit. He understood that the posture of sin starts with sitting.
Some of you need to check your posture and you need to stand up. You have been seated under the influence of a certain person, a certain addiction, a habit for way too long. It is time to start correcting the posture and stand up! Because standing up from the seated position will ultimately lead you to walking right!
David continues and says there is a second dangerous posture. It isn't as intimate as being seated with the wicked. It is standing. It is hanging on at the fringe level. It is the place where we show interest and we are unwilling to break the final ties. It is the "I will just hang out for a little while" stance. It is the "I am here but I am not really here" position. Close enough to be involved but distant enough to believe I can't get trapped. It is the alcoholic that is doing better but still wants to hang out in the bar. It is the person that has had their heart broken but still calls and texts occasionally. It is the porn addict who refuses to install filters or share passwords. It is Peter by the fire hoping to get warm while simultaneously growing colder.