2 Timothy 4:3 "For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. 4 They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. 5 But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry".

Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Wonderful Grace of Repentance: Brokenness is appropriate response to sin Voddie Baucham

In our culture today, we so often want to fix everything, especially when it comes to our personal mental health. You cannot watch television on your typical sitcom or sports programs without advertisements for pills that can cure your libido or your mental state. This is where Voddie Baucham launched. We are a generation of Christians who do not understand or desire the launching place of true repentance, the soil from which it grows, or, as Voddie described it, the off ramp that allows us to get off the road we are on to turn around to get to the narrow road that leads to salvation. Brokenness is the place where we can stop and observe what will happen if we stay on the road we are on. Brokeness is where God allows us to be crushed under the weight of our own sin so that we can be healed by Him. The problem in our culture is that we see discomfort of any kind as problematic. It is as though an warning light is on in our car, and we choose to break the light because it bothers us.

Voddie sees this entering into the church culture as well; he observed from Rob Bell’s The gods are not angry tour that the guilt and brokenness we feel over sin is part of the old system. There is no brokenness in grace, Bell teaches. In the Shack, Mac is told that god submits to us, just like they all submit to one another. There is no need for brokenness in that system. You tell God who you want Him to be and what you want him to do. In the modern church, there is an aversion to the true doctrines of grace, and the doctrine of God, which includes his sovereignty, His holiness, and our brokenness before Him.

The text for Voddies message, which was very powerful and life changing for me personally, was Psalm 51. (My devotions were on that Psalm today; and two preachers preached on it. Who says God is not sovereign and in control?) Psalm 51 teaches us many things, but the main thing is that Brokenness is the appropriate response to sin for several reasons:
Sin stains and scars our souls 51:1-2

Have mercy on me, O God,
according to your steadfast love;
according to your abundant mercy
blot out my transgressions.Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
and cleanse me from my sin!

blot out- same hebrew word used at the flood. David needs to be cleansed completely like God wiped out the earth with a flood.
wash me thoroughly- like a woman cleaning on a washboard cleanse- ceremonial cleansing, making ready for ceremonial or religious use.

Brokeness gives us the ability to recognize how damaging and rotten sin is. We really don’t understand the scar tissue it will leave when we are in the midst of it. We will suffer for it, be broken because of it. But it leads us to repentance. Who the Father loves He disciplines!
Romans 7:23 but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. 24 Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? A true godly convert has great sadness and grieving over his sin! But this grieving leads to Christ- Thanks be to God!

Sin creates memories that remain with us 51:3

For I know my transgressions,
and my sin is ever before me.
It is good to remember, for a number of reasons that Voddie gave. For one, if I could forget my sin, how could I testify to God’s goodness in removing it? If I could not remember my sin, how could I remember the negative consequences? And, how could I rejoice in God’s goodness in giving me victory, and how could I celebrate my growth? I mean, it really reminds of God’s grace and mercy and goodness towards me. I am not where I ought to be, but I am surely not where I used to be. The memories of sin give us a needed brokeness not to repeat, and the victory gives us a greater love for God and the cost of our salvation.
Because our sin is an affront to a holy God 51:4-6
Against you, you only, have I sinned
and done what is evil in your sight,
so that you may be justified in your words
and blameless in your judgment.
 5 Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity,
and in sin did my mother conceive me.
 6 Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being,
and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart.
If we have a wrong view of who God is, like the lovey dovey all forgiving Jesus with perfect hair carrying a lamb, this will not matter to you. In other words, if we serve a sissified Jesus, like the one presented in the Shack, the one presented in much of the modern emergent/emerging conversation books, then this will not impact you. Your brokeness is an appropriate response if you serve the one true God. Listen to how John describes Him in the book of Revelation 19:

11 Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. 12 His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself. 13 He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God. 14 And the armies of heaven, arrayed in fine linen, white and pure, were following him on white horses. 15 From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty. 16 On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords.

Many of us have a false view of God. Think about this: Why would God pour out his wrath for the sins of the world on Jesus Christ, and just let us slide? He won’t, and we must not mistake his longsuffering and kindness for a lack of action. If you have not the Son, you have not life. You are already condemned. How dare we take his mercy and grace lightly, by taking sin lightly! Our brokenness over sin shows we do not. But this must be granted us by God.
Sin is a hinderance to the worship of God 51:7-12

Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. 8 Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones that you have broken rejoice. 9 Hide your face from my sins,
and blot out all my iniquities. 10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and renew a right spirit within me.11 Cast me not away from your presence,
and take not your Holy Spirit from me. 12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
and uphold me with a willing spirit.

Apart from brokeness, you are not capable of genuine worship. God will not endure iniquity and worship together. To much of modern worship is man centered, man initiated, and man created and it is worthless before God. So many times we desire to please man rather than God with our worship.

Hear the word of the Lord, you rulers of Sodom!
Give ear to the teaching of our God, you people of Gomorrah!
11 “What to me is the multitude of your sacrifices? says the Lord;
I have had enough of burnt offerings of rams
and the fat of well-fed beasts; I do not delight in the blood of bulls, or of lambs, or of goats.
12 “When you come to appear before me,
who has required of you this trampling of my courts? 13 Bring no more vain offerings;
incense is an abomination to me. New moon and Sabbath and the calling of convocations—
I cannot endure iniquity and solemn assembly. 14 Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hates; they have become a burden to me; I am weary of bearing them.
15 When you spread out your hands,I will hide my eyes from you;
even though you make many prayers, I will not listen; your hands are full of blood.16 Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean;remove the evil of your deeds from before my eyes; cease to do evil, 17 learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless,
plead the widow's cause.18 “Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord:
though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow;
though they are red like crimson,they shall become like wool.19 If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land; 20 but if you refuse and rebel,
you shall be eaten by the sword;
for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”

God insulted the people of Israel here by calling them the people of Sodom and Gomorrah, for they did the outward things but their hearts were far from God. He would not receive their worship until they came to Him in a right manner, indeed until he cleansed them for their sin. Without brokeness that leads to repentance, all we have is the appeasement of the tyrannical old man. But the whole of the teaching is this, and David realized this, as we observe all the action words of Psalm 51, directed towards God: Only God can provide the brokeness that leads to repentance. Everything we need can only be found in God.


Rick Frueh said...

I have read of broken saints of the past, I have not met the first man or woman who I actually believed was broken before Christ in a way that distinctly set them apart from not only the world, but the church as well.

I have been part of services with brokeness and tears, but I remain unconvinced of a life changing longevity that proceeds from that service and alters someone's life so dramatically that they are consumed with worshiping Christ and serving others. Messages are great and moving, but where are the fruits that substantiate that the seeds of those messsages have indeed died, been buried, and have come forth as humble vessels which seems odly out of place amid all the culturally molded vessels in today's American church.

Brokeness is a good subject about which to speak, though.

Pastorboy said...

Brokeness, like repentance, is not one time issue. It is continuous, for sin grieves God, and it should grieve those who follow him. I myself have been broken, and I need to be broken, for sometimes the vileness of my sin becomes somehow tolerable to me.

I want brokeness and repentance to be a continual part of my life. Oh God, let it be so.

Rick Frueh said...

The journey leads to Him.


ElderChild said...

The "I" Must Die!

In as much as i can 'see',
That which is of the 'I' in me,

So it is i yearn, and to Our Father cry,
For deliverance from all that is of the 'I'.

The 'I', born of "imag"ination and selfish desire,
As lust, greed, and pride, stoked a consuming fire ;-(

A fire burning out of control, as 'I' leads the way,
It's smoke concealing the fleshly mind that leads one astray ;-(

Yet even in the smoke, searing heat, and blindness of 'sight',
Truth can pierce the blackness of darkness, revealing "The Light"!

And nothing can hide from "The Light", so "Light" reveals the "I",
Allowing one to "see" clearly, and clearly the "I" must die!

But to live, yet die, seems an impossible task,
And so we need of "Our Father", the impossible to ask.

Help me to "deny myself(die to self)(die to 'I')" Father!

And as HE Helps, HE reveals more and more of "The Selfless One", The One Who leads His Brethren on "The Way to The Truth of The Life". He Who was, and is The Messiah, The Son of The Only True GOD, Father(Creator) of ALL!

And as The Messiah desired above all else, so also will His Brethren desire above all else, "Father, not my will, But THY Will Be Done".......

The poem i have recorded above was begun in Creel, Chih, Mexico in '92, a time when i sought to live and experience a simple and spiritual life. Left Mexico in '93, yet returned in '04. Then on 1/26/05 the poem was completed, and 'completion' is near for each and every one of us. And for "the poor and needy", thankfully so.......

Translated, "corruptible to incorruptible" indeed and Truth.......

Home at last.......

Forever free from The "I".......

All Thanks, Praise and Glory Be Unto "Our Father".......

And while there is breath(spirit) there is hope many will "see",
"see" The "I" for what it is, and then desire to be set free!

And that Spirit that was in The Messiah shall "set you free, free indeed"!

So, There Is Hope!

For Miracles do happen!
Hope is there would be those who experience The Miracle that is receiving "a love of The Truth" for they will "see" The Light that is The Messiah, they will "see" that The Life is of The Spirit(not seen with the natural eye), and most certainly not of the flesh or fleshly mind("I").......

Peace, in spite of the dis-ease(darkness) that is of this world and it's systems of religion, for "the WHOLE world is under the control of the evil one"(1Jn5:19) indeed and Truth.......

Truth is never ending.......

(Returned to this place called the u.s. of a. in June of '05, yet to return to the simplicity that is rural Mexico would be welcomed, yet i realize that in all things it must be "Father(Creator) not my will, But THY Will Be Done.......)