14 We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. 15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature.[a] For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.
21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. 24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? 25 Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature[b] a slave to the law of sin.
Does any one remember the old milk commercials where the little boy or girl would be drinking a class of milk looking in the mirror and seeing themselves all grown up in the future? They would be talking to themselves and saying something like, “I am not going to be this size forever, as a matter of fact I am drinking milk, and I am growing stronger everyday. I even remember the commercial that simply stated milk does a body good, pass it on. Well in 1993 they shrunk a 30-60 second commercial into two words, “Got Milk” you would see it on billboards, in magazines and news papers, and on television. Some superstar like Michael Jordan or Madonna would have a great big white milk mustache and the headline or caption would read, “Got Milk” to stress the importance of drinking milk. The campaign re-emerged in 2014 with newer faces like Serena Williams and Dwight Howard. I have even seen Pittsburgh Steelers fans with T-shirts that said, “Got Rings” referring to the number of super bowl rings they have compared to other teams in the NFL. Which many Steeler fans believe will soon be seven and counting. And it may happen soon the way they are playing this year. I have even seen Christians with bumper stickers and t-shirts that say, “Got Jesus” as to imply if you do not have Jesus, let me introduce Him to you. And, this week as I pondered over what God would have me speak about this morning it came to me. “Got Sin?”
And its funny because although we all have been saved from sin.
Although we all struggle with sin.
Although we all have our issues with sin.
Although we all have are hang-ups about sin.
Although we try to act as if we don’t have sin.
And we look down on people, who are living in sin,
outwardly committing sin.
Forgetting that we are all members of the X family and I am not talking about Malcolm X. I am talking about the family of…
X drug addicts!
X benders of the truth, or tellers of little white lies, or let’s just call it like it is, X liars!
X player players!
X woman beaters!
X child abusers!
X gang bangers!
And some of us are not an X anything because we are still doing the same old things, only we do them behind closed doors when no one is watching. News Flash, God sees and knows everything.
Although we are saved sanctified and filled with the Holy Ghost we still struggle with sin, and at the same time we never talk about sin. Well today we are going to talk about sin. The first step to fixing a problem is admitting that you have a problem. Isn’t that what they tell drug addicts and alcoholics that are trying to kick the habit of using drugs and alcohol? So let’s keep it real today. And I will start it off myself… “My name is Pastor Brian Kelly Holland and I struggle with sin!” Repeat after me, “I struggle with sin!” Well sin begins in the mind. It takes root in the mind. First you get an image of a sin in your mind. Then you start to think about that sin over and over and over and over again, and the next thing you know you are committing that sin. That is why we have to guard our minds from sin. You cannot let anything and everything into your mind. For example, if you are constantly listening to music about a certain thing. If you are consistently watching movies and television shows about a certain thing. If you are in the habit of reading books and magazines about that certain thing. You are going to start thinking about that thing, fantasizing about that thing, and wanting to do that thing. The next thing you know you will be doing that thing. You will wake up the next morning wonder how in the world did this happen again? Then you’ll be at the alter next Sunday again, saying to yourself, why do I keep making the same mistakes over and over again. Its because you have not been guarding your mind. You have to guard your mind! I say this all the time, but as a child of God you cannot watch what everyone else is watching, and listen to what everyone else is listening to. You have to guard your mind! But, we are not alone, even Paul the great Christian persecutor turned mighty Apostle had issues with sin.
Shall we look at the text? In the 7th chapter of Romans, or the letter that Paul wrote to the church in Rome, Paul is explaining his personal experience with sin to the church. As preachers, teachers, leaders, and witnesses it is extremely important that we make ourselves transparent to the people we are ministering to. We cannot act all high and mighty. We can’t be so heavenly bound that we’re no earthly good. People need to see that we have issues too. We mess up too. We make mistakes too. We are human too. There is no red cape under our robe or suit, and we do not have a big “SC” on our chest for super Christian.
But back to the text, without getting all deep and philosophical, (which would be easy to do with this scripture) Paul was simply telling the church in Rome, I struggle with sin too. I do the things I don’t want to do. And I do not do the things that I should do. I know what is right, but for some reason I keep doing what’s wrong. Does this sound familiar to anybody?
Paul goes on to say that this happens not because of him, but because of the sin living within him. Listen, this is not an excuse for Paul’s behavior, but a statement of the great control sin can have over a Christian’s life. Notice that I said can, can means that it is only a possibility. Not that it is a definite.
I can get sick and die, but that is only one option. The other option is that I can be healed from my sickness and go on to live a prosperous life.
I can cheat on the test. Or, I can study using the ability that God has given me and pass it on my own.
I can continue to live with my sin, or I can make a decision to live a better life.
My bible tells me that no weapon formed against me shall prosper, and I am more than a conqueror through Christ Jesus. God will not put more on you than you are able to bear, and when temptation comes he will always provide a way out for me.
When Donnie McClurkin came out with the song we fall down, but we get up. A number of people thought Donnie was saying it was all right to sin, but I don’t believe that is what he was trying to say at all. Even in the scripture text, someone could easily bend and twist the scripture to say that sin is OKAY, but that was not Paul’s intention. Instead of acting like sin does not exist or that it is not an issue because you are saved. Like many of us do. We try to keep the sin behind closed doors, to sweep it under the rug. To keep the skeletons in the closet. Paul warns us that if we are not careful sin can and will control and destroy our lives again. Yes, Donnie said we fall down, but we get up, but I believe he was trying to tell us that once we get up we rely on God through prayer and the power of the Holy Ghost not to fall down again. It is like a parent warning a child of the dangers of playing with fire or touching a hot stove. They do not want their children hurt so they warn them. Paul is warning us of the danger of sin, and if we don’t talk about it we are more likely to become overtaken by it. Sometimes I think we believe that if we do not talk about something, that it really doesn’t exist. If we just ignore the issues, problems, and situations they will go away.
We don’t talk to our kids about the dangers of drugs because we don’t think that our children will ever try drugs. Then we ‘re so disappointed and heart broken when we find out they’re experimenting or even worse, addicted to drugs. We don’t talk to our children about not having sex before they’re married, because we assume that they will not have sex. Not my baby! But when they come home with a sexually transmitted disease or a positive pregnancy test we want to scream and yell.
We don’t think our Christian brothers and sisters will back slide so we do not talk about our weaknesses and concerns with sin, and when they fall we want to get judgmental, act like we are better than them, and tell all of their business. Did you hear about brother or sister Jones…? But if we would just talk about the issue of sin we wouldn’t have to deal with so many of these situations.
Got Sin? Yes, we got sin. So what do we do about it Pastor Brian? I am so glad that you asked. Here are three things that you can do with your sin…
- Stop: I know it seems simple, but I am a simple kind of preacher. As I’ve told you many times before. Whatever it is that you are doing you need to stop doing it. Lying, cheating, fornicating, disobediance, defiance, cutting up at school, being disrespectful, whatever the sin is just STOP!
- Repent, meaning to turn away from the sin and ask God to forgive you. I once told a coworker that you cannot better yourself if you continue to hang in the environment you’re trying to get away from. For example if you are trying to quit smoking you have to quit hanging around smokers. If you are trying to quit drinking you have to stop hanging around people who drink. So you don’t just repent in your mind, you must physically turn away from the sin as well.
- Return to your proper relationship with God, you have to return to your first love. Because when you’re sinning you know your relationship with God is not what it should be. You cannot go to God the way you want to go to God because sin is standing in your way.
- Replace it! They always tell addicts that they need to replace the old habit with something new. For example, if you were an over eater they tell you to exercise. If you’re a drinker they will encourage you to drink coffee or water. So whatever you’re struggling with you need to stop doing it and replace it with something else. You could easily replace the sin with the word, with your worship, and with your witness.
- Drop: You need to drop it. You see sometimes we will stop doing something, but we will continue to hold on to it. Now don’t look at me like I’m crazy you know exactly what I am talking about. You stopped sinning, but you are still holding on to the memories. The good old days. Now in the words of the great theologians Boys II Men, I know it hard to say goodbye to yesterday but you need to Drop it like its hot! The sin that is. I think the biggest part of getting over the wrongs that we’ve done is forgiving ourselves and letting things go. You messed up! Get over it and move on.
- Let go of the pain
- Let go of the guilt
- Let go, and let GOD!!! (I’m not where I want to be, but I am not what I used to be. Please be patient with me, God is not through with me yet!)
3. Roll: Now that you have stopped the sin, and now that you have dropped the sin it is time to roll from the sin. It is time to move on. God has great things in store for you and you cannot get all that God has for you if you stay in the same place. You have to roll. That’s why in Philippians 3:13-14 Paul states, Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. We need to roll.
- Roll on by preparing- you must be prepared for the next level in Christ, you must be prepared for the next thing the devil throws your way. The minute you climb one mountain, there is another one to climb. So roll on in preparation.
- Roll on by praying- if any Christian is truly going to be triumphant over sin he or she must do so on their knees. You need to be committed to stating in constant and consistent communication with God!
- Roll on by praising-I don’t think there is any better way to overcome sin than to praise God! So praise him in the good times. Praise him in the bad times. Praise him on the mountain and praise him in the valley. Praise him in the morning, praise him in the noon time praise him when the sun goes down!
Yes, you were not hearing things, I used fire safety rules to describe what you must do if you’ve Got Sin, which is so appropriate because the bottom line Saints is that the wages of sin is death, and I don’t know about you, but I do not want to spend eternity burning in hell in the fiery pit. I told you last week I can’t do hell twice! I have gone through enough hell on earth already. So if you are not afraid to admit that you have sin. And you are tired of the sin trying to control your life, and you are ready to walk in your calling to achieve all that God has in store for you.
If you are ready for your break through.
If you are ready for the next level in your Christian walk, just stop, drop, and roll.
If you are tired of…
Doing the same old things.
Getting high and drunk.
Stirring up trouble.
Not being obedient.
Not following leadership.
Not following the will of God.
Living in sin just stop, drop, and roll
I would rather stop, drop, and roll than end up in hell. So with that being said it should be easy to stop, drop, and roll if you know that you’ve got…
Got a savior.
Got the alpha.
Got the omega.
Got the comforter.
Got the lily of the valley.
Got peace that passes all understanding.
Got a doctor in the hospital.
Got a lawyer in the court room.
Got God on your side.
Got the healer.
Got the provider.
Got the prince of peace.
Got the beginning.
Got the end.
Got the creator.
Got the mind regulator.
Got the original promise keeper.
Got the almighty.
Got the maker of heaven and earth.
Got the father.
Got the son.
Got the Holy Ghost.
Got God’s faithfulness.
I can never repay you Lord…
We can stop, drop, and role because we have God’s faithfulness.
Look at you neighbor and say Stop, Drop, and Roll. That is another thing that the church is lacking. Accountability. We need to hold one another accountable. If you see your brother or sister struggling with sin, you are supposed to help them, not talk about them. You need a prayer partner. Someone you can trust, who will not tell your business. That’s why that song by Hezikiah Walker was so powerful. You pray for me.
I’ll pray for you.
I love you.
I need you to survive.
I won’t harm you with words from my mouth.
I love you.
I need you to survive.
It is His will that every need will be supplied.
You are important to me.
I need you to survive.
Look at your neighbor one last time.
Tell them to stop the sin.
Tell them drop the sin.
Tell them to roll from the sin.