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Satan wants your identity to be in your sin. He wants you to never be able to leave it or escape it. He wants you to have no hope for your future. He wants to shame you, he wants to remind you, he wants to condemn you, he wants to destroy you. He wants the worst day of life to be the defining aspect of every day of life.

Sometimes, if you’ve not done anything wrong, he’ll just want to give you general, vague, uncertain conviction. It’s really condemnation masquerading as conviction. Some of you will feel that God is far, and he’s angry against you, and he hates you, and he’s mad at you, and he’s just waiting to drop a hammer on your head, and you’re not sure what you’ve done so you become obsessed, and you start investigating your life. “Where are my idols?” and “Where is my sin?” and “What have I done wrong?” and “What are my motives?” and “I can’t find anything big. Maybe it’s something small.”

And you obsess, and you become worried, and you become anxious, and you become discouraged, and God seems far, and you seem hopeless. And for those of you with tender consciences, you know exactly what I’m talking about. You become like the Old Testament Jews who are trying to cleanse their house, and they’re looking under the rug, and they’re looking under the lamp, and they’re looking under the bed, and they’re dusting out the corners, and they’re trying to get it all clean. You’re like that with your life.

And it seems holy, it seems righteous because you’ll talk about your sin, and how awful you are, and how evil you are, and all the bad things you’ve done. And you’ll share your story, and you’ll talk about how terrible you feel, and others will applaud you and how brave and authentic you are, but it’s still all the attention to you, all of the focus to you, and everybody’s looking at you, nobody’s looking at him.

God is a Father. He’s a Father who comes up to his kid who’s in sin and says, “Okay, first, let me specifically name the sin, so you know exactly what I’m talking about. Just not going to yell at you in general and make you figure it out.” And he’d put an arm around you. “I love you. You’re my child. This, this is not acceptable. So here’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to help you. We’re going to stop this, okay? We’re going to do it together.” This is the dad who smiles at you, gives you a kiss on the head, and keeps his arm around you as he’s helping walk you away from the sin and temptation.

God’s a Father like that. When he points out sin, it’s conviction. Like, “Really, Dad? Thanks. I appreciate the help. You love me, so that doesn’t cause me to be kicked out of the family? Oh. And you’re not done with me? You love me, and you’re going to help me, and you’re here for me, and you see that who I am going to be is not who I’ve been, and you’re going to help me get there? Wow! What a Dad! What a Dad!” That’s your Father.

Mark Driscoll, I Am a Saint

Although I may not agree with everything that comes out of Driscoll’s mouth, I just want to thank him for this sermon. The Reformed crowd really needs to hear this.

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