Title: The Deceitfulness of Sin

Focus: Sin took the law captive and used it to deceive us by making us think that doing good will reconcile us to God and obligate him to us. In this way, sin used the law to make us its unwilling servants even though we many not have been aware that we were. The only way to be free is for a power stronger than sin to free us

Function: To remind Christians that salvation is first a work of God so that they will be motivated to serve him wholeheartedly, and to motivate the lost to stop being deceived by sin by coming to Christ

Text: Rom 7:7-25

1.  Minister invited to a member’s home who was bad housekeeper
	a.  Filthy dishes - He asked, “were these dishes ever washed?”
	b.  Answer - “As clean as soap and water could get them”
	c.  So he offered thanks and ate.
	d.  After dinner, took dishes outside and yelled, “here soap! here water!”
2.  That the way it is with us and sin - Can’t get self clean
3.  Jesus has to do the initial cleaning
4.   This morning’s message - Since power sin holds us captive to the point we
cannot clean ourselves, we need to turn to Christ.  Why?  Reasons

I.  (v.7-10) Sin uses the Law to Produce Evil Desire
	A.  Sometimes not think of doing bad until told not to
		1.  Parents often afraid to talk frankly about sin to children
		2.  Afraid may give them ideas
		3.  But only way to warn them of dangers is to talk about them
		4.  Sometimes it does give them ideas
	B.  That is what Paul said happened to him
		1.  Paul would not have known sin if it not for the law
		2.  Sin USED the commandment
			a.  To produce evil desire
			b.  To kill - separate from God
			c.  To “come alive” as a power
	C.  Sin comes alive, using the commandment  (Heb) Mitzvah
		1.  Jewish Tradition - “Bar Mitzvah”
			a.  Rite of Passage
			b.  Considered a legal adult
			c.  Have rights, responsiblities and priviledges as a son of 
			     the commandment
		2.  What really happened to Paul when bar-mitzvah’d
			a.  Wasn’t beginning of a next stage of life - but of death
			b.  Didn’t bring life, but death
		3.  Paul became a captive to power of sin
		4.  Same thing happened to each one of us
	D.  That is why Jesus preached Kingdom/Reign of God
		1.  Before the Reign of God, there was the Reign of Sin
		2.  Jesus destroyed the Reign of Sin
			a.  He died and came back to life
			b.  Defeated Satan, Sin, and Death
		3.  Only way to be free from captivity to sin?
			a.  Captivity to God
			b.  God will reverse both the power and effect of sin
		4.  He can silence sinful desire in you
			- Trans:  But evil desire not only thing sin uses law for ...

II.  Sin Uses the Law to Deceive (v.11-13)
	A.  There is more power in deception than pure brute force
		1.  Look at what serpent did in Garden through deception
		2.  Can understand sin is deceptive, but how it use law to deceive?
	B.  Verses 14-24 demonstrate the deceptive power of sin
		1.  Many find comfort in these verses
			a.  Paul seems to have struggled vailantly
			b.  He despaired from keeping law, so chose Christ
			c.  This way Luther and many reformers understood this
		2.  Problem:  This not talking about Christian struggle
			a.  v.14 - Says “I in bondage to sin”  
				- 6:7, 14 - But we freed from sin if Christian
			b.  Paul never indicates his former life a struggle with sin
				- Acts 23:1 - Lived with perfectly good conscience
				- Phil 3:5-6 - Paul blameless  in the law
				- Sounds like law could be kept
				- Law even made provisions for sin
			c.  So the law could be kept
		3.  This is one of the ways sin uses law to deceive
			a.  Produces a false confidence in law and self
			b.  Phil. 3 - Paul counts it all as loss and as rubbish
			c.  Why?  To attain righteousness from God through faith
		4.  In other words, only way to be free from sin is let God free you
	C.  We went and launched rockets with parents and boys
		1.  Several saftey switches
		2.  Whenever working with gunpowder/fireworks, etc.  rules!!
		3.  Heard of boys who had bottlerocket fights - one was blinded
			a.  If he decided to follow rules now, it bring sight back?
			b.  No amount of rule keeping can undo what happened
			c.  He stuck in bondage to darkness
		4.  Will take someone that can work wonders to GIVE him sight
	D.  If you not a Christian
		1.  Tell it like it is - You are in bondage to sin
		2.  You cannot free self, must turn to God
		3.  Must give yourself to be God’s servant, no sins
		4.  May be thinking 
			- I am no one’s slave!!!  I am a good person!!  I not enslaved 
			to sin at all!!

III.  Sin’s deception through law can be so strong, you don’t even see it
	A.  Part of Sin’s deceit is causing you to think good intentions and acting
	      on those good intentions have merit
	B.  Paul always had good intentions
		1.  Text says - He not understand what he was doing???
			a.  Agreed with law in his mind
			b.  Good intentions - Wished to to good
			c.  But he not capable to do good due to sin’s deceit
		2.  How?  Paul used the law to oppose Christ
			a.  He persecuted Christians
			b.  He intended to do right - and acted on his intentions
			c.  He was most zealous in his desire to do right
		3.  Harder he tried to do right, the more he did wrong
		4.  He wasn’t even aware that he was opposing God
			- Not only was he an unwilling slave to sin
			   he also an unwitting slave to sin
	C.  Had friends who were not Christians - Like Mark
		1.  Mark not understand how he could be lost
			a.  He never killed anyone, broke any laws
			b.  He did good deeds, was a good guy
			c.  Thought about God once in awhile
		2.  Mark usually had good intentions, gave to charities, etc.
			a.  Mark saw self as a good person
			b.  Did not see himself as a sinner
		3.  When he had children, eventually became a Christian
		4.  Now Mark understands - Good intentions and even acting on 
		     them were not enough
	D.  As sin deceived Paul, it for a time deceived Mark
		1.  If you not a Christian, it may be deceiving you
			a.  May think, “I’m not a sinner”
			b. Obey a few commands, a few good deeds. be good, 
		2.  That is sin’s deceit
		3.  Only way to be free from its deceit and slavery is to be enslaved
		      to God

1.  Message here if you have not been converted - Stop letting sin deceive you
2.  Message for Christian
	a.  Paul clearly warned in 1 Cor 6 can go back into bondage to sin
	b.  Like alcoholic free from drink - a drink can cause you to slide back
3.  Only answer - Come to God today