Category Archives: Sin

Sin – blood still forgives

For some years now medical authorities have worried that super-bugs would limit the effectiveness of anti-biotics.  That would produce a colossal reversal in the effectiveness of medicine.  No one’s health would profit.  Anti-biotics became necessary because folk medicine had limited effectiveness.

The long-dreaded return of a long-gone disease is upon us.  Even now the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notes that at least 2 million annually contract anti-biotic resistant infections.  At least 23,000 die.  San Diego U-T, 5/30/17

A new generation of medicines must be developed if the medical profession is to continue to improve the nation’s health.  Time will tell if our geniuses are equal to the challenge.

Preachers never worry that the message of Christ’s cross weakens before Satan’s increasing wickedness.  That Satan will produce a Super Sin that baffles, weakens or destroys Christ’s cleansing power over ALL SIN!  From the Garden of Eden to the day Jesus died, the shedding of blood delayed God’s punishment of sin—the legacy of the Jewish Day of Atonement.  On the day Jesus died, to this very day, the Master’s blood, shed to forgive all sin from Adam on to the end of history, has removed, not delayed God’s punishment of sin.

No Satanic wickedness can become too great for Christ’s blood to remove.  It takes only Christians being honest with unsaved people:  you’re lost in sin.  And telling them the good news:  Jesus died for you and he’ll forgive any sin you have committed or will before you die.

Both factors have to be at the center of Christian outreach.  We dare not overlook human sin in an effort to make our appeal more amenable.  That will only disgrace Christ’s sacrifice and remove his invincible Presence from our outreach.  Stressing human sin to the unsaved energizes the Gospel with an appeal to sinners.  What they need to hear, and long to hear, is hope for escape from sin.  And Jesus is that HOPE.  All repentant sinners have access to the power of GRACE in forgiveness by accepting Jesus as Savior and being baptized for the forgiveness of their sin.

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Sin – reducing penalty won’t make it less attractive

James Hawker poached the game preserves of wealthy landowners in Victorian England.  It angered him that the patricians fed their wild pheasants on “hard-boiled eggs” while working-class laborers went hungry.  He became the non-pariel poacher of forbidden game.  The means he used to poach included feeding pheasants raisins “soaked in rum or gin.”  They made easy prey once staggering from the effect.

Landowners employed every strategy possible to prevent his thefts, including hiring the best guards who targeted him.  Nothing worked.

While making himself a nuisance to the rich, he maintained a lively patter with them.  They knew he stole from them.  He knew they knew.  Regardless, when meeting on social occasions they remained speaking friends.  One man, who had earlier threatened him with arrest for being a poaching blackguard, later apologized.  While walking together the landowner volunteered that he wouldn’t prevent the poacher from taking his game.

While appreciative of the invitation, Hawker said he would never take any more of his game since “it won’t be half as much fun getting them.”  Other landowners also stole his fun of stealing by inviting him to freely poach.  A Victorian Poacher, Introduction xvii-xxi.

Some people think that God’s prohibitions keep the lure of sin alive.  If he would merely lift his prohibitions, sinners would find the allure of sinning less attractive.  If we weren’t warned against lust, the male or female form would lose its attraction.  If we could lie all we pleased, truth would be the basis of our relationships.  If God didn’t allow all misbehavior, mankind would behave.  And on and on.

In Romans 5:12-14 Paul debunked that nonsense.  Whether or not a law exists prohibiting certain illegal attitudes and behaviors, we still embrace them.  Law merely particularizes the sin we commit.  Death still reigned from Adam to Moses, though the Law of Moses didn’t exist in written form.  Since it did exist in God’s mind, and in the psyche of humanity, all mortals were punished for disobeying the conscience God quickened to know right from wrong.  A conscience that early man denied by prostituting it to human lust and depravity—Romans 1.

Today’s society also wants to deny labeling misbehavior as sin by the expedient of allowing the broadest tolerance possible for all behavior  Though even we have limits on what’s acceptable to an increasingly tolerant society.  However, we will more often be found embarrassed or offended by behavior that harms animals or the environment than what offends God’s word. 

Check out my E-books and website at:;

 Books at:  (Go to search, dropdown to store, Virg Hurley.) 

 New Apologetics book:  Their Own Best Defense, Volume 2, Part 1

 Books also at  (Virgil Hurley)

Sin – baleful effects last

Early 19th century Californians raised multiple herds of cattle and made great profits selling the hides.  Richard Henry Dana’s book Two Years Before the Mast records his experiences aboard a ship gathering cattle hides for shipment to Boston.

The business produced a malodorous stench.  Coyotes, eagles, vultures and assorted other scavengers couldn’t eat enough carrion to reduce the smell produced in the killing grounds.  It could be “sensed” miles before “seen.”  After the warehouses that stored the skins had been empty for years, no one could doubt what had been stored there.  Spanish West, True-Life, 176

Sin often has that effect on life, even after the Master’s cleansing blood purifies the sinner.  More than a few rescued from Satan’s darkness by the merciful Jesus still stare from ghost-like, hardened faces.  Yes, those worn and ruined by drug abuse, alcoholism or sexual immorality reveal a past forgiven but with still-evident results.  And yes, those in designer clothes and shoes, surfeited with their possessions and success, whose egotism protrude like spears from haughty eyes.

We can sometimes tell where a person has been by the condition of their body or spirit.  Christians have this hope, however.  We can thank God that, whatever we were, and still reveal in our body, WE aren’t that person now.  And, thank God, what we ARE gives no hint of what we’re YET to be when Jesus returns and clothes US in his likeness.

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New Apologetics book:  Their Own Best Defense, Volume 2, Part 1

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Sin – every unforgiven will be surfaced at Judgment

He had been convicted of robbery by force.  He had been sentenced to a 17 year prison term.  On August 22, 1968, he walked away from a work camp and vanished.  In May 2016 Marshals arrested him in a small Connecticut community.  San Diego U-T, 5/11/16

Cold-case crimes can be, and are regularly, revived and pursued.  Which should give pause to anyone convicted and sentenced to prison, but not showing up for jail (which happens) or escaping detention by walking away or breaking out.

But that’s nothing compared to the dread unforgiven sinners face at Judgment.  Any unforgiven sin is surfaced.  ALL unforgiven sins are recorded in permanent ink in unchanged books for unforgiven sinners.

The good news is that no sin, or multiples, will ever be recorded in the books if Jesus Christ has forgiven us.  Micah 7:19 promises, “You will again have compassion on us; you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl our iniquities into the depths of the sea.”

David in Psalm 103:11-12 promises, “For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.”

Jesus stands the difference between what we naturally are before God—sinners subject to wrath; and what we become under his blood—sinners cleansed and declared free from guilt because Jesus forgives.  Obviously unforgiven sinner:  accept Jesus Christ as your Savior!

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Sin – why it’s so deadly

A report from Reuters news said that only one of every 100 doctors creates 32% of all malpractice claims.  With well over a million medical doctors practicing, the number of incompetents isn’t small.  The study covered a period of 15 years.  Those doctors shouldn’t be allowed to continue practicing.  They are the ones who give “medical practice” its opprobrious curse.  San Diego U-T, 1/29/16

Consider the spiritual implication:  if 1% of doctors cause 32% of malpractice suits, what spiritual damages do 100% of all responsible mortals cause humanity?

Since “once a parent, always a parent” is a true maxim, ponder for a moment what offense 100% sinners cause God every single day.  To say nothing of the harm, pain, destruction and misery caused each other.  To say nothing of the discipleship that should give sinners reasons to obey Jesus, not excuses to remain afar.

Medical associations, like churches with incompetent ministers, often shrug them away to other cities.  That cannot be tolerated.  Thanks to Jesus Christ’s all-encompassing grace, every saved sinner has the privilege of forgiveness before his sin becomes unbearably onerous.  All unforgiven sinners can be rescued by the Master’s same grace.  For he is ABLE to save each one completely, to the uttermost, every stain removed, every perversion banished, every guilt eclipsed.

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Sin – breaking from is hard

The long-distance cattle drives from Texas to Missouri and Kansas railheads posed numerous and dangerous problems for the drovers.  The challenges began from the very first day on the trail.  The wild herd had to be carefully watched and guarded as it was “driven briskly” for enough days to break any desire to return home.  All hands in two shifts stood duty for the first nights on the trail.  They rode around the herd and its bed-ground from dusk to dawn.  Two drovers replaced the whole crew once the cattle became accustomed to the new habit.  Distant Horizon, p. 418.

Getting away from, leaving, abandoning, and otherwise departing from a sinful lifestyle once we accept Jesus as Savior AND Lord pose an ongoing problem for all disciples, but particularly for those new at the job.  The wise new Christian will be ruthless with, not forgiving of old bad habits from the first, knowing that however unwelcome to his new life they are, they are the comfortable behavior he has known.  More often than not, like wild cattle first on the trail, the new disciple will be tempted to break from the Savior’s discipline and return to Satan’s free-style life.

Here is where Christian leaders need to oversee, and be in touch with and aware of the new disciple’s challenges.  Leaving him unguarded exposes him to threats he has little or no skill in handling.  Keeping new members on a short life-leash, not at the end of a long one, helps them break with their past.  It helps them learn to say NO to temptation with an exclamation point, not a hyphen.  As they become accustomed to, and acquiescent in what Jesus demands of them, oversight can be reduced.  By that time, the new Christian can continue to strengthen his new life by helping another new Christian activate his.

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Sin – long-hidden eventually revealed

A disastrous fire broke out in the Las Vegas MGM Grand Hotel in November, 1980, claiming 85 lives.  It was the second worst hotel blaze in American history.

Fire investigators later determined that the fire had begun in an electrical wall conduit long before the flames appeared.  It had actually started six years before.  It had grown slowly…inexorably…smoldering to the flash-point, building up tremendous heat until it burst into a blinding sheet of flame travelling 485 feet in 19 seconds.

The sins that brought Israel’s fall in 722 BC and Judah’s in 586 BC had long been festering in the nation.  Before Babylonians incinerated the Temple, sin had burned out Israel’s vitals.  The capture of the city was just the visible expression of the disaster expanding within her over the years.

We often find that troubles seem to instantly appear.  When carefully investigated, however, it’s found that all the ingredients for a recipe of turmoil had existed long before.  They had combined in secret, slow growth that eventually burst into view as division:  in a church, divorce in a marriage, trouble with the kids, being fired from a job, or the fall of a nation.

2015 America began in 1950’s America.  1950’s America began in the war years of 1941-1945.  Not before in our history (a subject covered in the writer’s coming E-book Factors That Have Secularized American Life), had war been such a divisive factor.  Those of us who were young adults in the 1960’s, in graduate schools and preaching, sensed the ominous changes in the country’s values, music, and morals.  With better hindsight of the 1950’s, we could have anticipated the 1960’s.  At least now, with the hindsight of the 40 last years of the 20th century, we can understand the depraved nature in the 21st century.  It’s an ugly sight, but we can see why America is now a past-ripe fruit over-ready to be picked, awaiting only God’s timing to drop it into tribulation.

Of all people, Christians shouldn’t be surprised at the judgment coming to America.  But count on it; many of them will be among the most vocal critics of God’s wrath when he expresses it.