WHAT SIN?


            In times past I have attended an Independent Baptist Church in the countryside nearby. The pastor is a somewhat famous (or infamous, depending on your point-of-view) man who migrated here from Virginia. He was once dubbed the “Virginia Fireball” by another well known Baptist preacher. I once went to him and asked, “Why don’t you ever tell your people they can have the victory. He, of course, responded that he did. I told him that all I ever heard was how much we Christians all sin.

            The occasion for this exchange was that I had attended a service at his church when two visiting young men both preached. This one young preacher, in the middle of his sermon said, “Tell me that you don’t sin everyday.” I thought of standing right then and there and telling him that I didn’t, but kept my seat. I took it up with the pastor later, as is related above. He, of course, preaches the same thing.

            I recently was in the southwest corner of the state (Indiana) doing some work. We daily took lunch at a restaurant in a nearby small town. On this particular day there was the owner of the company, his two young employees, a fellow named Tom, and myself, seated at our table. Tom had, in days past, walked by our table and got involved in our conversation. He was a rather interesting character that I had begun to call, “The Marriage Counselor.”

            “The Marriage Counselor” said he had been married and divorced three times. He said that when his first wife left him she called him a pervert; when his second wife left him she called him the Antichrist, and the third only called when the rent was due. He is a church goer and seemed to profess to be a Christian.

            On this day somebody turned the conversation to religion. The subject of sin reared its ugly head and I was once again confronted with this declaration of how we all sin everyday. I just listened. In time however, I decided that enough was enough and asked, “What sin do we have to commit?” That got their attention and I was asked for clarification. I again asked, “What sin do we have to commit.” I mean is it adultery, murder, theft? Do we have to lie, cheat, or steal? Is it arson, assault, or do we have to backbit, gossip, or just what? “What sin do we have to commit? After that the conversation kind of came to an end. Finally someone said, “That’s an interesting question.”

            Yes it is, and I am still waiting for an answer. “What sin do we have to commit?