Keep back Your servant also from presumptuous sins; Let them not have dominion over me. Then I shall be blameless, And I shall be innocent of great transgression. – Psalm 19: 13 (NKJV) I know, sin is not the subject we all want to hear about. We want our ears tickled with fanciful notions that the grace of God means we will be healthy and wealthy and rich beyond the dreams of avarice. But a healthy Christian is a balanced Christian. A balanced Christian knows that any doctrine that seeks to be “alone” is a partial doctrine. Rob Bell and his “love alone” theology ignores the wrath of God and his followers will discover when they stand before Christ that they were missing a crucial part of the story. Joseph Prince and his “grace alone” theology ignores sin and espouses a cleverly disguised version of the word faith movement. Realize today beloved that when we stand before Christ we will stand alone. We will not be able to say that we followed the wrong pastor or believed the wrong doctrine. It is our responsibility for what we believe, who we follow, and as a result – what our Christianity is about. I was speaking to a good friend the other day who attends a church that has some serious issues. Her response was that it didn’t matter to her because she was serving the Lord. I am sorry but it simply doesn’t work that way. Of what fellowship does light have with darkness? NONE. Our Christianity must transcend ourselves beloved. And it starts with being a balanced Christian in our theology. The grace of God is fantastic. It is so vast that I do not think we truly comprehend what God has done for us through His Son Jesus Christ. Too many allow condemnation to strip them of the power they were meant to walk under and need to grasp a hold of the grace of God. That said however, it is so dangerous to be taught grace alone because of the three constant factors working against us. We live in a fallen world that espouses the opposite of God. We walk in a flesh nature that is in constant rebellion to God and we have an enemy who seeks to devour who he may. The grace argument is in relation to our eternal question. The work of Christ on the cross solved our eternal problem. Jesus died for all of my sins even the ones I have not committed yet. But those are eternal considerations that ignore our temporal reality. You see the adultery you commit tomorrow will not cost you your salvation but you will still pay a temporal price. There is still the principle of sowing and reaping. You still could lose your wife and kids. You still could lose half of everything you worked your whole life for. You still are going to heaven but you will pay a price in this world. The danger of grace alone is it sets you up for the devil to have a field day with you. We ignore sin at our own peril! The Psalmist here is David and look at his prayer in the key verses. He seems very concerned about what he refers to here as “presumptuous sins.” He prays earnestly to not have these sins take dominion over him and that if he can avoid them that he will have avoided a great transgression. Clearly this is a big deal and warrants our further attention. So what are presumptuous sins? The vast majority of commentary and even other Biblical translations reveal it to be purposeful or willful sin. There are some sins that are more reactionary while others are pre-meditated. It is those that are pre-meditated that David is praying against here. These are obviously of great concern because the more we willfully sin the less we feel the conviction of the Holy Spirit. The more we make excuses for the sin in our lives that end up damaging our walk, damaging our witness for Christ and stripping away from us the power we are supposed to walk under as His followers. But I want to go even deeper than this today. When I first read these verses the term presumptuous spoke more to me than mere willful disobedience. The dictionary defines presumptuous as “readiness to presume in conduct or thought.” When I first read these verses I thought how easy it is for us to presume the thinking of God into our sin. Let me explain. I can easily speak to errors in doctrine because I have the Word of God as my reference point. What becomes murkier however is to apply intent. I do not presume to know the heart of a Rob Bell or a Joseph Prince. So for arguments sake let us assume their intent is pure. They believe deeply in what it is that they preach. How does someone get to the point of preaching so radically opposed to the true Word of God yet believe they are justified by God for doing so? Presumptuous sin is how. We see it all the time in modern Christendom. Churches routinely put forth visions that are not from God but are from man. How do so many mainstream denominations fall for the ecumenical movement lure? How does something as obviously abhorrent as “Chrislam” become invented by alleged Christian leaders? How do denominations decide it is acceptable to God to have openly homosexual bishops and pastors despite the obvious admonition of Scripture? The answer to all of these questions is presumptuous sin. The sin of presuming that you know better than the Word of God. The sin of presuming what God must want despite Scripture to the contrary. How does something so clearly unbiblical such as the Circle Maker become a top five Christian book seller? Presumptuous sin. The damage wrought extends into our own personal lives and walks. We see the pattern of the church and we start to presume within our own walk as well. Have you ever tried to talk to someone about a path they were on or a doctrine they were following and their answer was that God was on their side? Or that the vision they received was from God? Or that they had received confirmation from God? I remember once someone told me that God had showed them someone who they were “meant to be with.” The problem was they were both married at the time to other people. News flash! God did not give you that vision! If we are unfaithful,he remains faithful,for he cannot deny who he is. – 2Timothy 2: 13 (NLT) God cannot deny who He is. He cannot deny His Word. If you find yourself with a vision that is contradictory to the Word of God – it is not God who gave you that vision! It is the presumption of adding God’s approval to our own desires that is the exact presumption David is praying about here in the key verses and what we need to be careful and mindful for in our own lives. I remember being in a relationship and I presumed that God had orchestrated the entire thing. When it ended, God made it abundantly clear that He never had a finger in it at all. That is how dangerous our flesh is. We want what we want and if we can convince ourselves or those around us that what we want is what God wants – look out! So keep us today Lord from the sin the Psalmist here prays against. Notice that David indicates that sins such as this can have total dominion over someone. This is how people get to stand before Christ and say – “Lord Lord, didn’t we do…in Your name?” The response from Christ is one of the most chilling for believers today – “depart from me, I do not know you.” We need to remember this sobering exchange and realize that we cannot do anything in the name of Jesus without knowing Him! Without knowing His Word. Not through manipulation of Scripture and presumptuous sin. As the key verse warns us – this is a great transgression we are dealing with here. Let us avoid it at all costs and stay true to the God we serve. Rev. Anthony.