Old Testament Lesson
2 Kings 5:19-27
Someone much smarter than I once said that character is what you have when no one else is watching. I think that is one of the truest statements I've ever read. Today, this servant things that he can sneak off and take something that no one else will see. He did not count on Elisha seeing and knowing what he did. Much less God seeing and knowing.
Remember, we are most who we are when no one is watching. May we live lives of grace where our private self matches our public self and where we live with character in all that we do.
New Testament Lesson
1 Corinthians 5:1-8
We see here this famous passage of Paul's where he talks about excommunication; kicking someone out of the church because of their sin. But notice something about this text. Paul is not just upset with the one that has committed the sin, but with the church because they don't care that it is been committed and in fact revel in it. Paul's concern is with the health and wholeness of the church. He wants to make sure that the church is at peace and doing what it should be doing.
I think that his greater point here is that sin effects everyone. Just as in the Old Testament lesson, there is really no unseen sin. Everything that we effects everyone else. The sin in this church effected the church and all in it. Our sin not only effects us, but our families, our church and everyone.
So let us remember the power of sin to corrupt and destroy. But, let us also remember the power of God to rebuild and redeem all that come to His grace.
And completing our trifecta of sin, Jesus tells us that if we commit sin in our heart, it is just as good as actually doing it. Why? This doesn't make sense to us sometimes. The reason is because it is in the heart that most sin starts. We need to always been on guard against sin, within our heart, knowing that murder starts with hate. Infidelity starts with lust. Theft starts with greed. As we have been told before, it is the pride that goes before the fall.
Let us be aware of our hearts. And let us fill our hearts with joy and peace and grace. For in doing that we will find that true joy and peace and grace that comes only from God's grace. And in that, we will find that our hearts are full.