Open Rebellion Toward God

The fact that Washington Wizards center Jason Collins is the first active professional sports figure in American history to “come out” of the closet and declare he is gay is a major news story.  I guess.

But not nearly as major as ESPN analyst Chris Broussard (a good analyst, may I add) serving up a biblical commentary on the matter, ON LIVE TV!

ESPN knew that Broussard is Christian and set him up against an openly gay analyst to discuss the case… and Broussard did not disappoint.

Here is what he said:

“…you can’t live an openly homosexual lifestyle or open premarital sex between heterosexuals.”

“If you’re openly living that type of lifestyle, the Bible says you know them by their fruits, it says that that’s a sin.  If you’re openly living in unrepentant sin, whatever it may be, I believe that’s walking in open rebellion to God and Jesus Christ.”

“As a Christian, I don’t agree with homosexuality. I think it’s a sin,” said Broussard. “There are a lot of Christians in the NBA, and just because they don’t agree with that lifestyle, they don’t want to be called bigoted and intolerant.”

I am glad he did not delineate difference between sin.  Homosexual practice or premarital sex practice is sexual sin and unacceptable in the eyes of God.

I admire the fortitude that Chris Broussard had to stand up for biblical truth in this culture of acceptance of sin.  I expect a major backlash against his comments.  He will be called a bigot, a homophobe, a hater, and all kinds of negative words to describe the fact that he believes the Bible.

ESPN did this to increase their ratings at his expense, as he will now suffer because he stood up for his faith.

It remains to be seen if Chris Broussard will still have a job tomorrow.

The Bible is clear on the issue of living in sin.  Those who are children of God cannot persist in sin:

“No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God.” 1 John 3:9

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To Be or not to Be… Born of God

That is the question…

More than a question asked by Hamlet about the meaning of life, for the Christian this is a question about the status of the soul.

This is a test of faith.

In this case the test of faith rests on what apostle John writes when he fights Gnosticism and heresy in the early church.  One of the pearls of John’s first letter is found in 1 John 3:9

No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God.

A clear line can be drawn between those who live in sin continuously (make a practice of sinning), and those who do not persist in their sin but repent of it.   That line is a division between those who are born of God and those who are of the devil (1 John 3:8).

This is a radical concept.  Could it be that there is no in-between?  Is there no such thing as a lukewarm position of transition between these two polar opposites?

The answer is no.  One is either saved or unsaved.

Being born of God does not mean and we are completely free of sin in this life.  But we are not slaves to it.  We do not live in a pattern of continual sin.  The Holy Spirit convicts us and leads us to repentance when we do sin, and He points us to the cross where we find forgiveness.

The presence of this work of the Holy Spirit in our lives is what sets believers apart from non-believers.

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To Grieve the Holy Spirit

Isaiah 63:10 may be one the most shocking verse in the entire Bible.

“Yet they rebelled
and grieved his Holy Spirit.
So he turned and became their enemy
and he himself fought against them.”

Can a believer who has the Holy Spirit living inside of them fathom this truth!?

The people of Israel have made an enemy of God and His Holy Spirit by their idolatry. And the Holy Spirit Himself fought against them.

What a terrifying thought for a true believer.

This is why Paul gives us a stern warning in Ephesians 4:30

“And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption”

How can we grieve the Holy Spirit?

Under the NIV heading “Instructions for Christian Living” in Ephesians 4, Paul mentions the things that grieve the Holy Spirit: sensuality, impurity, greed, deceitful desires, falsehood, stealing, unwholesome talk, all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.

Should a believer ever fall in sin, he must not persist in that fall as John explains in 1 John 3:9

“No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God.”

Conviction of sin is the work of the Holy Spirit and repentance quickly follows for the believer. Should that repentance not immediately follow, the Holy Spirit will be grieved.

Other than blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, grieving the Holy Spirit may be the biggest spiritual disaster in one’s life.

To listen to the Holy Spirit is the work of the Holy Spirit in us… And we must always thank Him for His presence and guide in our lives.

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