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“Sin Is Crouching at Your Door”
Genesis 4:3-7 READ
7 If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin lies at the door. And its desire is for you, but you should rule over it.
A better translation would be “Cain, sin is crouching at your door; its desire is to possess you, but you must master it”
Sin is pictured like a wild beast ready to attack and devour.
Yet, God told Cain, you must “master it”.
Look at the first part of verse 7 “If you do well, will you not be accepted”
I have been praying over this verse and what was revealed to me was that Cain had a trust/belief problem with God.
Abel brought his first fruits, his best in true obedient faith; but Cain wouldn’t even bring God his best because he lacked a sincerely obedient faith.
He believed in God, but he didn’t BELIEVE GOD. He wrestled with unbelief in the goodness and promises of God.
I want to talk about the sin of unbelief
2 Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; 13 but exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
14 For we have become partakers of Christ if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end, 15 while it is said:
“Today, if you will hear His voice,
Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.”[a]
16 For who, having heard, rebelled? Indeed, was it not all who came out of Egypt, led by Moses? 17 Now with whom was He angry forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose corpses fell in the wilderness? 18 And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest, but to those who did not obey? 19 So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.
The REAL possibility of us missing God’s promised rest is illustrated by the Israelites who failed to enter the promised land after Moses had led them out of Egypt.
We are told two things:
- The Israelites had experienced the redemptive power of God, seen God’s mighty works, they passed through the Red Sea, they were fed with manna and quails from heaven and yet were disobedient because they would not believe God’s promises or heed His warnings.
They BELIEVED IN God, but they did not BELIEVE GOD.
- The Israelites glorious initial experiences with God did not guarantee their safe arrival in Canaan. By failing to persevere in faith, they disobeyed God, forfeited their destiny and inheritance as the children of promise, and abandoned their only source of security.
Here me now, THEY BELIEVED IN GOD, but they DID NOT BELIEVE GOD.
THIS is the sin of unbelief.
Unbelief is the Greek word apeitheia– obstinate and rebellious; disobedient
This same word is used in Revelation 21:7-8
7 He who overcomes shall inherit all things,[a] and I will be his God and he shall be My son. 8 But the cowardly, unbelieving,[b] abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”
Unbelief- when a believer fails to take the truths, exhortations, warnings, promises and teachings of God’s Word with the utmost seriousness.
How do we overcome this sin of unbelief?
- Draw near to Jesus
18 For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted.
Let the dog poop BEFORE you go on the run.
SEEK HIM BEFORE you give in to sin. Go to Him while you are being tempted in order to get strength to resist.
It is the deceitfulness of sin, that leads to the hardening of the heart and then into unbelief.
Our responsibility–draw near to Him in time of trouble and temptation
His responsibility–give help in time of need
Therefore, since a promise remains of entering His rest, let us fear lest any of you seem to have come short of it.
11 Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience. 12 For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
“let us fear” is spoken in light of this terrible possibility and of the judgment of God.
These scriptures are urgent warnings about this grave possibility, designed both to alert us to the deadly danger of unbelief and to motivate us to persevere in faith and obedience.
Perseverance in faith requires that we CONTINUE to draw near to Christ with uttermost determination.
“diligent” Greek spoudazo, to be diligent, seriously earnest
To enter the present salvation rest requires diligence, not passivity; whole-hearted pursuit, not indifference; an active faith expressed in loving obedience, not the unbelief and disobedience of the Exodus generation of Israelites.
Diligence is not the same as “striving” however.
Rest in God is a place of peace that is free from anxieties and striving of self and from the insecurities that accompany unbelief and disobedience.
- Do not harden your heart.
Hebrews 3:7-13 Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says: “Today, if you will hear His voice,
8 Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, In the day of trial in the wilderness,
9 Where your fathers tested Me, tried Me, And saw My works forty years.
10 Therefore I was angry with that generation, And said, ‘They always go astray in their heart,
And they have not known My ways.’ So I swore in My wrath, ‘They shall not enter My rest.’”[a]
12 Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; 13 but exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
The heart becomes hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
I knew a lady, who said she was a Christian, that had an affair with a married man, off and on for 3 years.
8 “Behold, you trust in lying words that cannot profit. 9 Will you steal, murder, commit adultery, swear falsely, burn incense to Baal, and walk after other gods whom you do not know, 10 and then come and stand before Me in this house which is called by My name, and say, ‘We are delivered to do all these abominations’? 11 Has this house, which is called by My name, become a den of thieves in your eyes? Behold, I, even I, have seen it,” says the Lord.
The people were committing all kinds of sins and then coming and standing before the Lord on the Sabbath deluding themselves into thinking they were secure in God’s love.
HELLO? Does this sound familiar?
We cannot become tolerant of sin in our lives.
The HS speaks to us concerning sin, righteousness and judgment.
If we ignore His voice, our hearts will increasingly grow hard and unyielding until we are no longer sensitive to the God’s Word or His voice.
Commitment to truth and righteousness will no longer be a priority, but we will more and more seek pleasures in the ways of the world rather than the ways of God.
This is a slippery slope.
- Obey the Lord
Notice here that they failed to enter that promised rest because of disobedience.
Someone told me one time I believed in “Lordship salvation”
I’m not even sure what exactly that means and I don’t really care that some person came up with their own theology and titled it “Lordship Salvation” So I looked it up:
The doctrine of lordship salvation teaches that submitting to Christ as Lord goes hand-in-hand with trusting in Christ as Savior
“The gospel call to faith presupposes that sinners must repent of their sin and yield to Christ’s authority.” In other words, a sinner who refuses to repent is not saved, for he cannot cling to his sin and the Savior at the same time. And a sinner who rejects Christ’s authority in his life does not have saving faith, for true faith encompasses a surrender to God. Thus, the gospel requires more than making an intellectual decision or mouthing a prayer; the gospel message is a call to live unto a DIVINE NATURE, a new, born again, changed life in CHRIST. The sheep will follow their Shepherd in submissive obedience.
Matt always teases me and tells me, “I think I love you more than you love me”
I’m not demonstrative in saying “I love you” or even in hugging-
But my husband is spoiled rotten to the core by how I serve him and obey his authority.
- Where does the Bible say that you can be continually disobey God, sin against Him and His WORD and inherit eternal life?
- The NT proclaims Jesus as savior 16 times and as our LORD more than 450 times.
- We are ONLY considered a SON of GOD IF we are LED by the Holy Spirit. (Rom 8:14) And the HS job is to convict you of sin and lead and guide you into all truth.
- Jesus is King of Kings and Lord of Lords and Heaven is His kingdom where you will be MADE to bow before Him as King and Lord; so how is He not Lord? And if you don’t want to follow Him as Lord, then why do you even want to go to heaven?
- Submit to the Word.
Take a look at the word “FOR” beginning verse 12 in Heb 4 “For the Word of God”;
“for” is a conjunction connecting vs. 12 to vs. 11
We enter God’s rest by submitting to the surgery of God’s Word.
God’s Word is ANYTHING that God speaks.
It embodies the very character of God Himself.
It is living, active, piercing and discerning.
It is sharp and two-edged: on the one hand it brings healing and life to those who submit to it; on the other hand it pronounces judgment on those who disregard it.
The Word penetrates so precisely and thoroughly our inner being that it discerns and defines the dividing line between spirit and soul.
Spirit refers to our human spirit, that spiritual dimension of our being, our life in relation to God
Soul refers to our inner life in relation to ourselves, our emotions, thoughts and desires/choices.
God’s Word awakens and strengthens His life in our spirit; it exposes the areas of our soul that conflict with the life of God within us.
By willingly submitting to His Word, our hearts may be softened and changed so that we may truly enter God’s rest.
The alternative is to harden our hearts against God’s Word, be condemned by it and perish in unbelief as did the generation of Israelites in the wilderness.
How will you respond?
You believe in God (James 2:19- even the demons are not atheists, they not only believe in God, but they tremble at Him; yet they do not obey Him); but will you BELIEVE GOD?