Although Jesus condemned all sin and sinfulness, it was the sins of the heart—not of the flesh—that He spoke the harshest against. Why? Ultimately, the seat of all evil is the centre of our inmost motives and intentions. Pride, envy, self-centredness, lack of love, and hypocrisy are the real monsters.
It is the “lie in the soul” that must be attacked more than anything else. The source of the infection must be removed to prevent the spreading of the disease and death. If you want to remove a tree because it is damaging the foundation of your house, you attack and remove the roots…not the fruit or the leaves.
This is where many Christians tend to compromise the most, excusing and tolerating sin and divisiveness within the church fellowship. Sins like racial discrimination, jealousy, envy, lust of power, sexual immorality, and lack of holiness do not seem to be recognised as a real danger to the church today.
Jesus was clear when He condemned these sins, but it seems we do not consider them serious enough to require repentance, a change of our ways and holiness. It is sad to hear Christians excuse this condition and justify it as natural and inevitable, claiming this is how we were made. This is not, however, the mind that was in Jesus Christ, and it is His mind we need to have.
“For who has known the mind of the Lord that He may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.” (1 Corinthians 2:16) “Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus…” (Philippians 2:5) “Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” (Colossians 3:2)
It should be our desire and the desire of the Church to live consistently in a spirit of holiness. Each of us must discipline himself or herself, remembering that sin begins in the heart.
Are you willing to have your heart examined by the Holy Spirit? If there are things that must go, are you willing to let the Holy Spirit purify your heart?
Pastor Joseph Hovsepian