The deadly sin of gluttony.
That's had quite a reaction from many of you. That's our topic as we continue the study in the seven deadly sins. I've never heard anyone preach on gluttony. I'm not sure if that is because many preachers are gluttons or whether there are so many gluttons in the average church that the subject is avoided in case we get fired.
I'm not sure. But we've dealt with the deadly sins of pride, of anger, of envy. Last week we thought of sloth. Next week, Lord willing, we'll think of greed.
And then a couple of weeks after that, we'll think of the sin of lust. But today's message is on gluttony. I'm sure you'll agree that one of the great delights of life, one of the great joys of life is to sit down and enjoy a delicious meal with our friends, with families, perhaps with people we've never met. And it's a great joy.
All of us enjoy that. And Paul tells us in 1 Timothy that God gives us richly all things to enjoy. That this life, our Father's world, is to be enjoyed and surely having a wonderful meal with friends is one of the great joys. The Lord gave us what we call the Lord's Supper where we eat and drink. During our Lord's life, He was criticized by the Pharisees. They criticized John because he was so austere in his diet, just eating locusts and wild honey.
Who wants to live on that? Whereas our Lord went into the homes of the tax collectors, of the sinners and ate and drank with them. And the Pharisees saw that, saw the Lord in the home eating and drinking with these wretched sinners, and who's accused by them, in Matthew 11, of being a friend of gluttons and drunkards. So the Scripture is sadly not saying that eating and drinking are wrong. But it is sinful as we're going to see. It is sinful to eat and drink to excess, to be fixated on food. And I think it's a society that is a great temptation for us.
So I think this message on gluttony is timely, that overeating, gluttony, drunkenness are condemned in Scripture. In our culture, those who are a bit overweight or off are sometimes looked down on. Being thin, particularly if you're a woman, is applauded. Many people, men and women, seem to be obsessed with their physical fitness, with how they look. I don't know how often they spend their time admiring their bodies in the mirror.
Personally, when I come out of the shower, I try not to look in the mirror. But there are some who become very narcissistic, and they want to explain to any of us who will listen, how little they eat and how much they drink. Have you noticed this? People are boasting how little they eat, telling us their latest diet, as if we were interested, and also how much they, how much water they consume each day, as if again, that was of interest to anyone. But this is our society.
I told you at the beginning of the series, I was going to offend everyone. So there you are. There you are. Before we came to Charlotte, we lived in Michigan, in Kalamazoo. And I remember, there in Kalamazoo, not exactly the center of the universe, but a wonderful place to live, and we lived there very happily for 10 years or so. But they opened a Krispy Kreme in Grand Rapids, which is about 50 miles away. And there's a number of people, do you remember this Tim? There's a number of people who wanted to tell us they had driven 50 miles in order to eat some Krispy Kreme donuts, as if this was a great adventure of gourmet delight.
Absolutely incredible. You live in a society where you can do this, and where people can enjoy all-you-can-eat buffets. You've been there, haven't you? Super-sizing fast food, I confess that.
I have done that. I love a McDonald French fries, and when we're traveling, to me that's a delight. I hope it's not a sign of my gluttony, but one of these big boxes, not boxes, cartons, of French fries and a milkshake.
I mean, that is absolutely incredible. And we chomp on that as if it were our last meal, don't we? At the other extreme, you've got people obsessing with eating as little as they can. So you get people telling us how much they eat, and how we should drive 50 miles to have this special donut. On the other hand, we've got a group of people who tell us how little they eat, and they seem to spend a small fortune buying health foods and vitamins, and again telling us of their latest diet. In a society of abundance, we also have this phenomenon of eating disorders, such as bulimia. Binge eating, we're told, are very frequent, particularly among young women on a college campus. Someone said it's about 11 percent. I'm not sure, but it seems an incredible proportion of young women who are very much obsessed with how they look, and they've got a certain picture, often a false picture, of what they think is a perfect body.
Anorexia is a pathological fear of weight gain, leading often to extreme weight loss. And again, this is not uncommon in our society. C.S. Lewis, many of you have read, and I commend it to you, the Screwtape letters.
Remember the Screwtape letters, where the more experienced demon is giving advice to the younger demon as how to tempt believers into all kinds of sins. And C.S. Lewis writes about the gluttony of excess, and also the gluttony of delicacy. So you've got two extremes, C.S.
Lewis is saying, and he's telling his demons. You've got those who may eat too much, gluttons of excess, too many french fries, too many milkshakes. On the other hand, you've got the excess of delicacy. You say, what's the excess of delicacy? Listen to C.S. Lewis.
He does this very brilliantly, I think. Here is a woman who suffers from the gluttony of delicacy. Oh, please, please, all I want is a cup of tea, weak but not too weak, and the tiniest, weaniest, real crisp toast. Lewis says, because what she wants is smaller and less costly than what has been said before her, she never recognizes her gluttony, her determination to get what she wants, however troublesome it may be to others. At the very moment of indulging her appetite, she believes she's practicing temperance. In a crowded restaurant, she gives a little scream at the plate, which some overworked waitress has said before her and said, oh, that's far, far too much.
Take it away and bring me about a quarter of it. If challenged, she would say, she's doing this to avoid waste. In reality, she does it because the particular shade of delicacy to which we have enslaved her is offended by the sight of more food than she wants to happen.
So C.S. Lewis is saying, here is these demons trying to tempt us as believers to a particular sin, the sin of eating too much and the sin of focusing so much on food that in effect it's controlling us, whether we eat too much or too little. Isn't that the case then that so many of us have very unhealthy views of food? Food is a gift from God, but it's very easy for food to become an idol.
Fewer and fewer families sit down together for a family meal. When I was raised in our culture, everyone did that. You basically ate three meals a day. You had breakfast. You went to school. You ate the terrible school dinners.
Can you believe what they were in Scotland in my day? We had them. Then we went home, and we sat down and had a meal together that helped us to eat in moderation.
It also helped us how to converse at the table, but that has become in our society less and less. So families are very busy. They drive around, and as they drive around, they're much more likely to eat fast food, to snack during the day. Each person in the house, now in some houses I wasn't raised like this, but you decide what you want to eat, when you want to eat.
The fridge is always there. There's always plenty of food, and so each person in a sense is deciding their own food, and with the result that we become obsessed with food. Eating too much, or too little? And if we're not careful, and I ask you, whoever you are, is food controlling you? Are you fixated on food? Are you thinking too much about it?
Talking too much about it? No analyzers foodies. I'm not against foodies.
I love food. But it's a question, isn't it, of what is controlling us? Let's look at the biblical teaching on gluttony and drunkenness, because we're also going to deal with drunkenness. Turn in your Bibles first to Proverbs, Proverbs 23 verses 1, 2, and 3. First of all, the deadly sin of gluttony.
Yes, it is a sin. Proverbs 23 verse 1. About the middle of your Bible. Psalms, Proverbs. When you sit down to eat with a ruler, observe carefully what is before you, and put a knife to your throat if you're given to appetite. That's a graphic way of saying don't be a glutton. Do not desire his delicacies, for they are deceptive food.
Here is a warning. When faced with delicacies, don't be deceived. Don't be given to overindulgence. Just because there is food there is the point. Just because it's served to you, your ruler has plenty of money and plenty of food, and there's this whole stack of food in front of you.
Just because it's there doesn't mean that you have to eat it. We would say don't make a pig of yourself. Pigs eat whatever you give them, don't they? They just keep chomp, chomp, chomp, chomp, chomp. But we're not pigs.
We're human beings made in the image of God. Think of the way dogs eat. Now I know your dog is different.
He's a wonderful little creature, your best friend. But other people's dogs, they just wolf down what you give them. They're a dog. I read this week, dogs by the way are gluttons, but they don't know any better. I read this week in San Francisco, there's a restaurant called Dog, D-O-G-U-E, and it is the first apparently to offer, wait for it, a tasty menu just for dogs. They have a three-course meal. It's made, you'd expect this in California, wouldn't you?
The three-course meal is made with locally sourced and organic ingredients. The dogs really appreciate that. And the owner of the dog actually appreciates it much more because he charges you $75. So you take, you know, your little dog, your big dog, and pay $75 and somebody serves up stuff.
Incredible, isn't it? But the restaurant is called Dog, so when you're visiting San Francisco and you've got a dog, you can go there. Turn in your Bibles to Philippines, chapter 3, where we see in the New Testament what Paul has to say about gluttony. In Philippines, chapter 3, Paul is giving a strong rebuke to those who are enemies of the cross of Christ.
And here he describes them. Let me read from verse 17, Philippines, New Testament. Philippines 3, verse 17, brothers, join in imitating me and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us. For many of whom I've often told you, and now tell you, even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ.
Their end is destruction. Their God is their belly. And they glory in their shame with mindset on earthly things.
That's the point. Not just the food now, food. Food's a gift from God. But here are people that are described as enemies of the cross. They glory in their shame. Don't we have that in our society? It's not just a matter of sinning now.
You've got to pray about it and tell everyone. People glory in their shame. We've lost our ability to blush. We glory in our shame. And says well, their God is their belly. First commandment, you'll have no other gods before me. They've put their food, their belly, their self-indulgence, their focus on earthly things that they're going to accumulate more and more of earthly things. Notice the contrast, verse 20. Our citizenship is in heaven. Enemies of the cross focus on themselves, self-indulgent, glorying in their shame.
Their God is their belly. But we who are followers of Jesus Christ, we want to look up to heaven. From it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like His glorious body.
Isn't that wonderful? Particularly with our aches and pains as we get older. That this body, some translations say the body of humiliation. That however well you take care of yourself and however much you exercise, your body is getting older and older. But we don't worry about that as followers of Jesus Christ.
Why? Because we look up. We look up to Christ. Our focus is not on the things of this world. It's not to live a self-indulgent, selfish, self-serving life. But it's rather to serve Christ, to look up to that glorious day when our Savior will come and is going to transform our lowly body to be, says Paul, like His glorious body by the power that enables Him even to subject all things to Himself.
What a difference. Food, which is a gift from God, has become an idol to them. Instead of worshiping God, they're worshiping themselves. They're worshiping earthly things.
It's very easy to get like that, isn't it? Particularly in this country, this wonderful country nation of the United States where there is so much and it is so easy, isn't it, to be self-indulgent, to be gluttonous, to pursue the things of the earth. Turn over to Titus, Paul's letter to Titus, 1 and 2 Timothy, Titus. Paul describes the people at Crete where there's going to be these churches. Titus 1 verse 12, he says, one of the Cretans, a prophet of their own, said, Cretans are always liars.
So can you believe what they're saying here? They're always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons. We thought last week of sloth, the sin of sloth is often compounded by the sin of gluttony. Lazy people are often gluttons. Laziness and gluttony often go together. So it's clear from Scripture that gluttony is sinful. If you are a glutton, stop eating so much. Do you really need that third or fourth donut? Really?
Why not just focus on the center of it, that non-fattening center of the donut? What about drunkenness? You say, well, at every church we don't need to worry about that.
You don't know the church very well, do you? Some of you struggle with this sin of drunkenness, of drugs, of a life, again, which is enslaved not by the power of God, but by the power of alcohol, the power of drugs. Let's turn back to Proverbs.
We'll read some Scriptures there. First of all, Proverbs chapter 20. See, gluttony, drunkenness, it's a sin of excess, isn't it? The sins of self-indulgence.
And not one of us can say we're not immune from that. Proverbs 20 verse 1, wine is a mocker, strong drink, a brawler, whoever is led astray by it is not wise. You're drinking to excess, you're involved in drugs, that is foolishness, the Bible says. It is not wise.
Stop it. Chapter 23, Proverbs 23 verse 19, hear my son and be wise and direct your heart in the way. Proverbs often is the father giving advice to the son. You want to be wise, you want to please God?
Listen. Verse 20, be not among drunkards or among gluttonous eaters of meat, for the drunkard and the glutton will come to poverty and slumber will clothe them with rags. Strong statement against drunkards and against gluttonous. Don't keep company with such people.
Be careful. Don't drink to excess. Don't spend time with people who are getting drunk. It's true, the Psalmist says that wine gladdens the heart of man, Psalm 104 verse 15, but there are those again who drink too much, who get drunk. Look down to verse 29 of Proverbs 23, who has woe, who has sorrow, who has strife, who has complaining, who has wounds without cause, who has redness of eyes. Pretty good description of a hangover, isn't it? Those who tarry long over wine, those who go to try mixed wine.
Do not look at wine when it's red, when it sparkles in the cup and goes down smoothly. In the end, it bites like a serpent and stings like an adder. Your eyes will see strange things, and your heart utter perverse things. You will be like one who lies down in the midst of the sea, like one who lies on the top of a mask. They struck me, you will say, but I was not hurt.
They beat me, but I did not feel it. When shall I awake, I must have another drink. But that describes the alcoholic, doesn't it?
Person, they wake up, they feel absolutely lousy. They can't remember where they've been sometimes, but let me have another drink. Can I say particularly to our students, you've heard this before, but here's your pastor telling you, don't get drunk. You're going off to college, do not take that drug. Do not take that alcohol.
I was given that advice when I went off to Edna University. We go in and there's a party by the faculty, and what are they handing out? They're handing out booze.
In Scotland you can't have a good time unless you're half drunk, apparently. So you have a decision to make. You can go to the pub along with the other ones, have a great time, or you can abstain. I'm glad in the grace of God I said no. My older brother was there to make sure I said no. I'm not going to go down that road.
It's very easy to begin. It's very, very difficult to stop. Paul describes the party scene in Romans 13 verse 13. What happens in the party scene?
Whether it's your college, whether it's with your colleagues at work, what happens when people drink too much? Oh then it starts with drink, then there's some drug pass around, then there's immorality. Listen to Paul writing. The Romans knew about it. The first century Christians knew about this.
Some of them before they came to Christ were involved in it. We had a brother quote from 2 Corinthians 5, 17, of anyone being Christ, he's a new creation. The old is gone, the new has come. Here's the old.
Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness. He's writing to Christians in the first century. Don't get involved in that kind of party. Leave it. Don't go to it if you're invited. If you find yourself in it, leave it as quickly as you can, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality, not in quarreling and jealousy. Good advice, isn't it?
Not just to students, but to all of us. You end up, you can say, well I'm different, I won't get involved in this, I won't take this, I won't do that. And before you know it, you're absorbed in that culture, and it's going to take you further and further away from the Lord.
You know that. Some of you have been on that path, and God in His grace has arrested you and stopped you, and you're now a new creature in Christ. One of the works of the flesh Paul describes in Galatians 5 verse 21 is drunkenness. Don't get drunk. God never, ever, ever wants anyone drunk. Do not get drunk.
You hear people boasting of it. In the UK, I think possibly here as well, we have a culture where people deliberately set out on a Friday night and they're going to get blasted. I'm going to get drunk. This is the idea of having a good time, drowning your sorrows, living in this escape world, and then waking up with a terrible headache and wondering what on earth have I done when I was under the influence of drink.
Do not get drunk. Condemnation against gluttony and drunkenness. There are two biblical principles, very quickly, which I want to leave with you, which will help you. Two principles to live by, particularly in dealing with the sin of excess. Now, we're going to think next week of greed. We're thinking particularly of greed for food and drink, but obviously there are other sins, these earthly things of indulgence which can come into our lives. First of all, eat and drink to the glory of God.
That's a great principle. I invite you to turn in your Bibles to 1 Corinthians 10. 1 Corinthians 10. Aren't you glad the Bible has got all the answers? In fact, the Bible has got answers to questions we've not yet asked.
That's how up to date it is. And the Corinthians knew about sin. They knew about parties and eating and drinking. 1 Corinthians 10 verse 23, all things are lawful, but not all things are helpful. All things are lawful, but not all things build up.
My teenage years trying to argue with my father about various things, whether they're right or wrong, he used to refer, but is it going to be edifying? It may be lawful. It may not be sinful to go to that kind of party, but is it going to be helpful to your life as a Christian?
Good question. Verse 24, let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor. Your actions impact others. Eat whatever is sold in the meat market without raising any question on the grounds of conscience, for the earth is the Lord's and the fullness thereof. It's a gift of God. If one of the unbelievers invites you to dinner and you're disposed to go, eat whatever is set before you without raising any question on the ground of conscience. But if someone says to you this has been offered in sacrifice, then don't eat it for the sake of the one who informed you and for the sake of conscience. I do not mean your conscience, but his. For why should my liberty be determined by someone else's conscience?
If I partake with thankfulness, why am I denounced because of that for which I give thanks? So here's the principle, verse 31. I have it underlined in my new Bible.
I underlined it just last night. So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. Isn't that a great principle? Now the context here is whether believers should eat meat which was offered to idols.
That's not our question. But food and drink are gifts of God. And the point is that as we eat and as we drink, we're to consider how our actions impact others. Will someone be offended?
Will someone be built up? I need to understand that Christians look on some of these matters differently. We have different consciences. But the principle in verse 31 will guide you. Even in the trivial things of life, you might say, like eating or drinking, can you do this to the glory of God? Everything I do now that I'm a follower of Christ, I'm to do not to satisfy my selfish desires, not to implement the agenda of John Monroe, but I'm to do this to the glory of God.
That's a high standard, isn't it? My goal then in life is not self-indulgence, to glorify God. When you're tempted to eat too much, ask, can I do this to the glory of God? Will anyone be offended by my actions?
Is this building up others? We are made in the image of God. We're creations of God. And if you're a follower of Jesus Christ, I realize as many of us claim here this morning, if you're a follower of Jesus Christ, not only have you been created by God, you have been redeemed by the precious blood of Jesus Christ. That is, I have been bought. Once I was a slave to my selfish desires, whatever they were, but my Lord Jesus Christ has come. He's delivered me from my slavery, from the slave market of sin.
He has bought me, and think of the price, His precious blood. I am now not my own to live my own life, which I really want to do, my own agenda, my own ambitions. No, I am now the property of Jesus Christ.
I have that stamp on me, you belong to me. I am a slave of Christ. Not wonderful to know that I belong to Jesus Christ. And now, go over to 1 Corinthians 6, and now, because of that, I am to glorify God with my body.
Do you do that? Do you glorify God with your body? 1 Corinthians 6, verse 19, do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit?
Within you, whom you have from God, you're not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body. I am to take care of my body. That means no self-indulgence, no gluttony, no drunkenness.
I'm to take care of my body. It is the temple of the Holy Spirit. We sang, Christ living in us. Christ lives in me.
When you're saved by the grace of God, miracles happen. One of them is that you're indwelt by the Holy Spirit. And now that you're indwelt by the Holy Spirit, you're not to abuse your body by being a glutton or a drunkard. Glorify God in your body. You say, well, I do that. I really take care of my body.
But there can be an excess even in that. Look at 1 Timothy 4. 1 Timothy 4, verse 8, you say, well, yes, I'm going to take care of my body. That's really my speciality in life.
No, that is not to be your number one thing you do in life. 1 Timothy 4, verse 7, have nothing to do with irreverent silly myths, but rather train yourself for godliness. For while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come. You work out, you take care of your body, you admire your muscles in the mirror. That's good.
Good to take care of you. Good to exercise. But says Paul, understand this, that's only of little value. There's something much more important than physical exercise and that is spiritual. Train yourself for godliness. I'm in training. The Scriptures tell us how to train ourselves for godliness. Paul's going to tell us in 2 Timothy about the Word of God so that I know Scripture so that I am ready for every good work, so that I am strong in the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Yes, great thing to do to exercise. Nothing wrong with it. In fact, it's commendable. But remember this, it's only for a little while. In training myself for godliness, this is for my life now and says Paul, for the life to come.
It's very interesting, isn't it? The excuses we give not to read our Bible, not to come to church, not to lead our family in devotions. You know the most common reason? We don't have time. Come on, man. You spend all that time in the gym and you don't, you can't spend ten minutes in this book.
You spend all that time working out and you say you don't have time in your family in an evening or wherever it is to get the family around, open the Scriptures, read a few verses and pray. Wrong priority, isn't it? Did you hear the children? First things first. What's the first thing? Is it your physical exercise?
No. That's not to be the first thing. First thing is God's business. Part of that, yes, is taking care of yourself, but of much more value is the eternal.
Here's the first principle then. Do all to the glory of God. Secondly, be filled, be controlled by the Spirit. Our time is gone, but let me read you the important verse. Ephesians 5, verse 18. Verse 17, don't be foolish, understand what the will of the Lord is. Here's the will of the Lord. Don't live a foolish life, an empty life, a life of self-indulgence. Verse 18, do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery. You hear me?
Those of you that are getting drunk, those of you on drugs, you hear me? Don't. Don't do that. That's debauchery.
That's against the teaching of Scripture. Stop it. You say, well, you know, it's kind of got me in its control.
That's the problem, isn't it? You're being controlled by a drug. You're being controlled by the booze. You're being controlled by your fleshly appetite.
Don't do that. Here it is, but be filled with the Spirit. Every single believer, true believer, is indwelt by the Spirit.
It's a gift. That's God's stamp on me. I'm a follower of Christ. I'm indwelt with the Spirit, but every Christian is not filled with the Spirit. To be filled with the Spirit is to be controlled by the Spirit. You invite me to your home. I'm in your home.
I'm not in control of your home. The Holy Spirit indwells me, but the Holy Spirit is to control me. Every aspect of my life, even in the seeming trivial things like what I eat and what I drink, is under the control of the Spirit.
To be controlled by the Spirit. What's the problem? Brothers and sisters, the problem is we're allowing our fleshly lusts, our own desires to control us. We're allowing the dictates of our culture to set our priorities.
Don't do that. Listen to the children. First things first. Your enjoyment in life, your comfort in life, your eating, your drinking, your accumulation of things, that can never be the first priority.
Your first priority is the kingdom of God. You say, but I feel so weak. Yes, in ourselves you're totally weak.
Satan, with all of his strategies, can easily get the victory over you, but no. Every day as I get up, I'm to submit to the Spirit. Guide me. Fill me. Give me your strength. Give me your wisdom.
What's the result of it? Addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart. Paul says similarly in caution street, let the word of Christ dwell richly in you, giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
In principle of doing all to the glory of God. Can you thank God for this situation? Problem is we're very unthankful, aren't we?
We take, take, take. When we complain when life doesn't go the way we want, to be filled with the Spirit is to be full of joy, is to be full of thankfulness. Verse 21, submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ, the Spirit produces gentleness and humility in us. Someone getting baptized and they quoted Galatians 22, Galatians 5, 22 and 23 was part of the fruit of the Spirit.
Gentleness, self-control, that's it. That's what the Spirit does as the Spirit flows in you and through you. And to be thankful. In terms of food and drinks, you give thanks. You sit down.
Don't do that just as a formality. You sit down with your family, just pause and say, let's pray. You say, well, we'll say grace.
Yes, you're asking for God's grace. Isn't this wonderful? Good night. Yesterday we sat down at a beautiful meal in Asheville. I was officiating a wedding and we sat down and it was a beautiful meal.
Some of the people at the table we knew, there were new people there. It was a wonderful experience. I don't feel bad about that. It wasn't self-indulgence. It was the enjoyment of life. Good food, good fellowship, meeting new people, a time of joy, a time of celebration, a time of giving thanks. But the focus is not on satisfying my selfish lusts.
The focus is on glorifying God. Have you made food your idol? Eating too much or too little? Always having that third or fourth helping at the meal? Or trying to live on a carrot and a lettuce leaf? Don't be like that.
Don't allow food to define who you are. Live life to the full. Live life to joy.
Think of the beauty of the weather here, the foliage. To be alive, to experience the goodness of God, to be with family and friends, to be in the house of the Lord, we thank God, we praise God, we glorify God and thank God that in His grace He so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. That our magnificent Lord Jesus Christ comes and takes on the cross our sins, yes, sins of gluttony and of drunkenness and self-indulgence and excess. And as we come to Him, He wraps His arms around us and cleanses us through His precious blood, fills us with His Spirit and now says, now you go and live a life not of self-indulgence, not of excess, but live life to the glory of God.
A life of joy, a life of freedom, a life of praise where we thank God for all of the good things of life in His precious name. Father, this is a huge subject and I feel I've just rushed through it, so take Your Word, Your precious Word, and apply it to our hearts. And now each of us are faced with a response. We thank You that Your Spirit not only convicts us, it shines on the loveliness of our Lord Jesus. And that however great our sin, His mercy and His grace are more. So may we respond with hearts of humility, with hearts desiring to please You in all that we do. In Christ's name, amen.
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