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Home » Your Filthy, Rotten Sinfulness あなたの汚い、腐った、罪深さ

Your Filthy, Rotten Sinfulness あなたの汚い、腐った、罪深さ

Today I would like to give you a choice of four sermon topics. You choose the sermon!
​1​How to receive the full blessing of God 神の恵みを十分に受けるには
​2​A life of unspeakable joy 言い表せないほどの喜びの人生
​3​Your sinfulness あなたの罪深さ
​4​Prayer that works 効く祈り

Which would you like? Vote/Hands up.
Today’s sermon is on ‘Your sinfulness’. Your Filthy, Rotten Sinfulness. For those of you who voted for something else, stiff cheese. (I will speak on the winning topic next time:).)

Why am I speaking on ‘Your sinfulness’? Because no-one else will tell you about it. There are plenty of people both in the church and out, who will talk about blessing and joy and all sorts of good things. But not many people outside of church will tell you about your sinfulness. Have you ever heard the topic discussed on television? So I’m like one of your parents or your wife who will tell you that your body smells or that you’re dressed poorly, only I’m going to tell you that you’re sinful.

Let me start by telling you about a survey that was recently conducted by amongst 5,000 international travellers. The survey revealed the nationalities that were most likely (and least likely) to steal from hotels (not counting toiletries). I introduced this survey in classes with my adult students – a few dozen in total. When I asked which nationality was the most likely to steal (or even before I asked), every single one of my students said with absolute certainty, “It’s the Chinese! It’s the dirty, pilfering Chinese!”

It’s interesting what prejudices we all have, isn’t it?
When I told my students that the nationality that steals the most from hotels is not the Chinese, you could see the suspicious mind start to work.
Perhaps it’s those filthy, thieving Germans?
Or maybe it’s those dirty, light-fingered Filipinos?
Or how about those filthy, gluttonous, misappropriating Americans?
Or those dirty, self-righteous, stealing Canadians?
Or worst of all, those dirty, filthy, bludging, bogan, yobo Australians!?


Well, it’s none of them. Here are the top 5 nationalities to steal from a hotel:
5. Irish アイルランド人
4. Germans ドイツ人
3. Spanish スペイン人
2. Singaporeans シンガポール人
1. Argentinians アルゼンチン人

And just in case you were wondering which country is at the bottom of the list – the nationality least likely to steal from a hotel. It’s the Colombians! Yes, the filthy, drug-smuggling, kidnapping, money-laundering Colombians are actually the most honest! Does that surprise you? Our stereotypes and prejudices run deep, don’t they?

But today’s focus is the way my students responded to the fact that not only did the perfectly polite, honest and peace-loving Japanese came in at #9 on the list of most likely to steal, they came in on the list above the Chinese (who were not even in the top 10)! (Americans, don’t laugh. You were #10!)
Here’s how they responded:

Response #1: Denial 否定
“This can’t be true. There must be something wrong with the survey. I don’t believe it.”
Response #2: Justification 正当化
“Yeah, but we only take small things. Not very often. Only if we have a good reason.”
Response #3: Admission 認める
“Yes, I have to admit, I take things from hotels sometimes.”
Response #4: Correction 正す
“Yes, I have taken things from hotels but I realise it’s wrong and I won’t do it any more.”
I found it interesting that the responses my students gave are exactly the same responses we hear when we talk about sinfulness.

Response #1: Denial 否定
“This can’t be true. I’m not a bad person. There must be something wrong with your faith, your worldview, your God.”
All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. Romans 3:23
If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 1 John 1:8

Response #2: Justification 正当化
“Yeah, but my sins are not that bad. I’m not as bad as others. Sometimes I have a good reason for doing (or not doing) those things.”
You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things. Romans 2:1

All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags. Isaiah 64:6

Response #3: Admission/Confession 認める/告白する
“Yes, I have to admit I’m a sinner.”
When I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity…And you forgave the guilt of my sin. Psalm 32:3,5
わたしが自分の罪を言いあらわさなかった時は、ひねもす苦しみうめいたので、わたしの骨はふるび衰えた。 わたしは自分の罪をあなたに知らせ、自分の不義を隠さなかった。わたしは言った、「わたしのとがを主に告白しよう」と。その時あなたはわたしの犯した罪をゆるされた。

Response #4: Correction/Repentance  正す/悔い改める
“Yes, I admit I have sinned against other people and against God and I have made a decision to change my life and live a righteous life in Christ.
Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord. Acts 3:19


(The difference between confession and repentance is vital. Demonstration: standing on someone’s foot, apologising sincerely for it but not removing my foot.)

Today, I want to emphasise to you your sinfulness because I’m a heartless, negative-minded, mean-spirited, pig.
Is that right? It is right if the only thing I tell you is that you are sinful.
We don’t go to the doctor just to find out what’s wrong. (“Good news! I have hepatitis!”)
We go to the doctor to find out what’s wrong so that we can get treatment so that we can get better. What would you think of a doctor who knew you had hepatitis but didn’t tell you because he didn’t want to appear negative and ruin your day?

It’s the same with church. We don’t go to church to just find out what’s wrong with us. (“You’re a filthy sinner. Goodbye and have a nice day.”)
We go to church, we read the Bible, we open our hearts to God’s teaching and the conviction of the Holy Spirit regarding our sinfulness so that we can get treatment and get better. What would you think of God if He knew you had a fatal condition and He could fix it but He didn’t tell you about it because He didn’t want to appear negative and ruin your day?
The Bible has a lot to say about our sin. Have a look at this. Here are 10 words that are commonly used in the Bible:

believe, joy, heaven, hell, wrath, sin, repent, faith, hope, love

Which words appear the most and the least? Let me order them here from least used to most, and the number of times the word appears in the Bible:
hell – 14, repent – 75, hope – 174, wrath – 190, joy – 242, believe – 259, faith – 422, heaven – 606, love – 697, sin – 1415

God is trying to tell us something! We have a sin diagnosis. But that is not the only thing that God is trying to tell us.
There is good news. There is a cure. There is treatment that is 100% successful. And this is what the gospel is all about. The gospel is the good news of how God heals our spiritual sickness and makes us spiritually well again.


By the atoning death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
It’s what we can call ‘The Great Exchange’. This is the good news, and it’s so important that we know it.     
The Bible says, “God took the sinless Christ and poured into him our sins. Then, in exchange, he poured God’s goodness into us!” (2 Corinthians 5:21 LB)

Great! How do we effect this? How do we make this Great Exchange happen in our lives and how can we know it’s effective in our lives?
Peter explains: “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Acts 2:38

(John) If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9

(Paul) For if you tell others with your own mouth that Jesus Christ is your Lord and believe in your own heart that God has raised him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:9 (LB)

How can we be freed from our sinfulness and made righteous before God again?

Believe – in the risen Christ, 信じる-よみがえったキリストを
Confess – your sins, 告白する-自分の罪を
Repent – turn from unrighteous living and turn to righteous living,
Be baptised – make a public confession of your faith,
Receive – the Holy Spirit and the new life he gives

Today’s topic started as ‘Your sinfulness’. Let it finish as ‘Your righteousness’.
This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. Romans 3:22

Today if you have never exchanged your sin for the goodness of God, if you’ve never confessed your sins, and received the forgiveness of Christ and the gift of the Holy Spirit, or you’re simply not sure if you have or not, let today be the day that you start life anew.