Does the very phrase “gray sin” make you uncomfortable? Each generation seems to be getting more and more fuzzy about what sin means and how we handle it. But if we’re going to live and love in God’s kingdom, we need a give-and-take discussion about sin. And frankly, people, we all have room to grow in how we respond.
Check out my video to find out one Christian phrase I’ve come to hate- then stick around to check out this week’s on-your-own experiment and study questions. (To follow along with the book, download or purchase here: Gray Faith on Amazon. )
(PART 1) Find a comfortable place to kneel down. Read through Bible passages that declare God’s holiness and power (Revelation 4:8-11, Job 38, 1Timothy 6:15-16) Or listen to songs like “Revelation Song” by Kari Jobe, or “The Stand” by Hillsong, “Your Great Name” by Natalie Grant. (These are suggestions- feel free to play songs you most resonate with.) The posture of kneeling or bowing sometimes helps us to physically acknowledge who God is. Verbally acknowledge His holiness and that you accept His Lordship in your life. Consider your smallness and brokenness in relation to who He is.
(Part 2) Instead of dwelling on your smallness and brokenness to the point of guilt and despair, now consider the amazing love of the Father who made a way for you to approach His throne with confidence (Hebrews 4:16). Relish the fact that you’re covered by Jesus’ holiness, that God has removed your sins “as far as the east is from the west” (Psalm 103:12). Take a moment to just dwell on how great His love for us is, that covers over our worst sins. Write any thoughts that come to you during this time.
Chapter 4 Study Questions:
- What did you grow up believing were the “big sins”? Has your understanding of or reaction to these sins changed over time?
- Can you live in the tension that someone else who loves God may not follow God the same way you do? Explain.
- What is the difference between standing up for what we believe in and arguing with someone over belief?
- What does it look like to confront sin in love?
- We’re all broken- prone to fail and fall short of God’s glory. How have honest relationships in your life have helped to break down your judgment towards others?
- The “discomfort of grace” means that God covers our sins, even those we aren’t aware we commit, and he covers others as well. We’re partly right, partly wrong. Discuss what implications this has for our moral disagreements and how we interact with others.
- How does the magnitude of God’s holiness affect the way you view sin?
Bible passages for further reading:
Romans 14 (Don’t judge, Disputable issues are between us and God); Matthew 18:15-17 (sin in the Church); 1 Corinthians 13:9-12 (we know in part); Philippian 1:4-11 (God continues a good work in us); Luke 7:36-47 (Those who are forgiven much, love much); Luke 17:1-4 (Causing to sin); John 8:1-11 (A Woman Caught in Adultery); Acts 2:38 (Repent from Sin and be forgiven);Luke 18:9-14 (Humility before God); Revelation 1:9-18 (A Vision of holy Jesus
Tough conversation, but if you care to join, please comment below with your thoughts on anything from your own experience with Christianity and sin, to answers to the study questions. Thanks for joining the online study!