2001-09-24 - Secret Sins

2 Corinthians 7:1 Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilements of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

When sin is left unchecked and alone it grows. Often it grows until it is exposed and becomes a shame to the Lord and our profession of faith in Jesus Christ. Judas is identified as a thief of the disciples money box in John 12:6. The problem is not addressed. Judas then betrays Christ with a kiss for 30 pieces of silver, Matthew 26:14-16, 47-49. Thus the results of sin left unmortified. There are other examples given in Scripture of Gehazi (2 Kings 5:20-27), and Anaias and Sapphra (Acts 5:1-6) just to name two. Today I would like to try to help us identify our own secret sins.

  1. A secret sin is a sin that our friends and conscience bring to our attention. It is that practice or habit that we try to not have found out and when it is exposed we are embarrassed.
  2. A secret sin is a sin that we fear those who wish to damage our reputation will spread notice of when it is found out.
  3. A secret sin is a sin that we are most hesitant to leave. It is that which we often find tempting us and worse still yielding to the temptation. It is often that which we have the least power to resist. It is that which keeps us most from the Word of God and prayer.
  4. A secret sin is that sin which would cause us the greatest fear were we under the sentence of death. It is that sin which we would be most prone to wonder whether we repented sufficiently for as our conscience gnaws at our souls.
  5. A secret sin is that sin which we most seek to cover up. We justify it by making excuses, explain the extenuating circumstances, define distinctions in our favor, and evade the real problem. As Adam and Eve covered their nakedness with fig leaves, so we also would order truck loads of fig leaves to cover our secret sins with excuses.
  6. A secret sin is a sin that we fear the minister might address in his sermon. Is he talking to me? Does he know? Have I been found out? "I am full of anxiety because of my sin." Psalm 38:18

We all have sins we seek to cover from the plain view of those around us. If you feel you have no secret sins then you may start by identifying pride as the first secret sin on your list. Mortification is the act of putting to death the sin in our lives. Just as President Bush has promised to root out the cells of terrorism in the world, so also should we seek out, identify, and destroy the cells of sin in our lives. Sin hinders our usefulness in the kingdom of God and is unbecoming a follower of Jesus Christ.

Romans 6:6 reminds us that we are no longer slaves to sin and verse 7 goes further telling us that we are in fact free from sin. Let us live, not only as if this were true, but let us live knowing that this is true. Christ has died for our sins (1 Corinthians 15:3) and thus our sins shall no longer be our master. Walking in newness of life let us mortify our sins and seek to live unto Christ in godliness.

Soli Deo Gloria,

[email tim]