"It is the great moment in my
life, when I decide that just as Jesus Christ died for
the sin of the world, so sin must die out in me, not to
be curbed or suppressed or counteracted, but crucified."
~ Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His
Dallas Willard calls it "sin
management." We want just enough Jesus to be saved but
not enough to overturn our lives. We'd like to curb some
unholy desires and suppress (or hide) some destructive
habits, but for as little cost as
Addictions belong to other
people -- real strugglers. We have tendencies, slips, mistakes,
or small excesses. Our gambling, drinking, drug-taking,
raging, lusting, envying, or hating reflect a
momentary loss of control. We don't like it but we're not
willing to aggressively strike at it.
"Let me curb it,
but don't ask me to crucify it!"
We find a hundred excuses for our ungodly thoughts
and actions -- loneliness, weariness, hormones, and humanness.
We compare ourselves with worse offenders
and draw false comfort. We blame our parents,
our partners, our children, or our circumstances. Few
generations have taken as little personal responsibility
as ours. We adamantly deny any suggestion
that we are fatally flawed. Even when people
say, "You've grown so much in character" we receive
it with a measure of coolness because it implies
that we had small stature previously. We feel
Oswald Chambers puts it perfectly. It is
indeed "a great moment in my life" when I abandon my
efforts to manage sin and, instead, crucify it.
The dramatic, public, humiliating, and
deadly act of crucifixion contrasts with
our preference for private, face-saving efforts to
gently flog it. We only truly crucify sin when we name
it, expose it, and spit on it. Anything less lets it
breathe for another day.
Do you desire that "great
moment in your life"?
Then get serious and march sin to its death. No
excuses. No minimizing. No soft measures. And out of the
death of death shall emerge life -- the great paradox of
the Kingdom of God.
In HOPE --