Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Take responsibility for your behaviour

An Illustration of James 1:15

Q. Could you please give me an illustration for this verse, James 1:15 - "Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death." I mean how do you explain this verse. I find it not easy though it seems easy.

A. James was talking about taking responsibility for our sins. He said we can’t accuse God of tempting us because He is neither tempted by evil nor does He tempt anyone else. (James 1:13) In verse 14 he said we are enticed to sin because of our own evil desires, which cause lustful thoughts. When these thoughts are given consideration they become sin, which under the Law is punishable by death. (James 1:15)

To illustrate, say I’m walking down the street when I see a beautiful woman coming toward me. This woman is not my wife but I find her desirable to look at just the same. If I entertain even a momentary thought on what it might be like to become sexually involved with her, I’ve committed the sin of adultery which is punishable by death.

Can I blame God for making the woman so attractive, or for causing her to cross my path, or for making me a healthy man with human desires? No. I can only blame myself for entertaining such a thought about a woman I’m not married to.

This is one of the illustrations Jesus used in Matt. 5-6 to show us the need for a Savior, because it’s impossible for us always avoid doing thing like this. And the same is true of an angry thought, or an envious one, or an untruthful one.

James was making the point that we can’t blame God when we succumb to the temptations of this world. From other passages we know that Jesus died for all our sins so we won’t have to. (Col. 2:13-15) And even after we’re saved, when we take responsibility for our sins and confess them as such, God is just and faithful to forgive us and will purify us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9) so we won’t become estranged from Him.

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