Lessons From Paul’s Six Sin Lists

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Six times in the New Testament, the apostle Paul penned what I would call “sin lists.” Now since they are “sin lists” that obviously means they are bad things. But there are some important lessons to be learned from examining and comparing the six lists.

First, the items on the lists are a very big deal, ETERNALLY BIG. Why? Here is why. The verdict on those who practice those sins: they are deserving death, they will not inherit the Kingdom of God, Christians don’t associate with them, they will not inherit the Kingdom of God, the Law condemns them & Christians are to have nothing to do with them. So how serious is that? ETERNALLY SERIOUS and CHURCH FAMILY SERIOUS.

Second, the sin mentioned the most often on the lists is SEXUAL IMMORALITY; that includes fornication, adultery and homosexuality. Fornication is having sex with someone to whom you are not married, pre-marital sex. Adultery is also having sex with someone to whom you are not married, but while you are married to another person. Homosexuality is having sex with someone of the same sex; makes no difference whether you are married to them or not. Sexual immorality is mentioned 9 times on those 6 lists. ETERNALLY SERIOUS and CHURCH FAMILY SERIOUS!

Third, second place on the lists is SLANDER/GOSSIP, mentioned 5 times. In the New Testament slander and gossip both refer to talking badly about someone to another person. Gossip is whispering the poison, slander is loudly spreading the poison. Unlike our English word slander which refers to defamation in writing, the Greek words both point to verbal. ETERNALLY SERIOUS and CHURCH FAMILY SERIOUS!

Fourth, DRUNKENNESS claims third place with 4. One of those 4 is the word “orgies” which refer to loud, public partying while intoxicated. ETERNALLY SERIOUS and CHURCH FAMILY SERIOUS!

Fifth, there is a 2-way tie for fourth place: GREED and IDOLATRY with 3. ETERNALLY SERIOUS and CHURCH FAMILY SERIOUS!

Nitpicky? No way! These sins not only top the “sin lists”, but the verdict on them has eternal consequences, as well as serious penalties within the body of Christ.

Please take the time to read all six lists carefully: Romans 1:26-32; 1 Corinthians 5:11; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11; Galatians 5:19-21; 1 Timothy 1:9-10; 2 Timothy 3:2-4. Then ask yourself if you need to find repentance in your own life. After that personal matter is settled, then ask yourself if you have a family member or close friend who needs to find repentance. If your answer is YES, then love them enough to go talk with them. It is very unlikely that those you love will find repentance on their own. More than likely, unless someone talks to them about their sin, they will never find repentance. Please, don’t let that happen. Take your Bible with you and go talk to them. God bless.

Mike Sublett is a pastor at Hi-Land Christian Church, 1615 N. Banks St., Pampa, Texas 79065. Email him at pawdad@nts-online.net.

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