Points to Ponder

Points to Ponder

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We suggest you take the time to write out your answers to these questions and compare them to the scriptures given. Please feel free to contact us with any comments or suggestions, including questions about the course or this lesson.

• How does the Bible define sin, and how widespread is it? (1 John 3:4 1 John 3:4Whoever commits sin transgresses also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.
American King James Version×
; Deuteronomy 10:4 Deuteronomy 10:4And he wrote on the tables, according to the first writing, the ten commandments, which the LORD spoke to you in the mount out of the middle of the fire in the day of the assembly: and the LORD gave them to me.
American King James Version×
; Matthew 22:37-40 Matthew 22:37-40 37 Jesus said to him, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like to it, You shall love your neighbor as yourself. 40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
American King James Version×
; Romans 3:10-23 Romans 3:10-23 10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: 11 There is none that understands, there is none that seeks after God. 12 They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that does good, no, not one. 13 Their throat is an open sepulcher; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: 14 Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: 15 Their feet are swift to shed blood: 16 Destruction and misery are in their ways: 17 And the way of peace have they not known: 18 There is no fear of God before their eyes. 19 Now we know that what things soever the law said, it said to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. 20 Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin. 21 But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; 22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ to all and on all them that believe: for there is no difference: 23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
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• Are some sins obvious while others are hidden within us? (Galatians 5:19-21 Galatians 5:19-21 19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, jealousies, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, 21 Contentions, murders, drunkenness, revelings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.
American King James Version×
; Mark 7:20-23 Mark 7:20-23 20 And he said, That which comes out of the man, that defiles the man. 21 For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, 22 Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: 23 All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.
American King James Version×
; 1 Timothy 5:24 1 Timothy 5:24Some men’s sins are open beforehand, going before to judgment; and some men they follow after.
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• What within us leads us to sin? What must we do to deal with and to overcome self-deception? (Romans 8:6-8 Romans 8:6-8 6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. 7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. 8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.
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; Jeremiah 17:9 Jeremiah 17:9The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?
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; Proverbs 14:12 Proverbs 14:12There is a way which seems right to a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.
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; 1 John 1:8-10 1 John 1:8-10 8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.
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• What influences outside ourselves can tempt us to sin? (Acts 5:3 Acts 5:3But Peter said, Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land?
American King James Version×
; Mark 4:15-19 Mark 4:15-19 15 And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; but when they have heard, Satan comes immediately, and takes away the word that was sown in their hearts. 16 And these are they likewise which are sown on stony ground; who, when they have heard the word, immediately receive it with gladness; 17 And have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time: afterward, when affliction or persecution rises for the word’s sake, immediately they are offended. 18 And these are they which are sown among thorns; such as hear the word, 19 And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.
American King James Version×
; Matthew 13:20-21 Matthew 13:20-21 20 But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that hears the word, and immediately with joy receives it; 21 Yet has he not root in himself, but endures for a while: for when tribulation or persecution rises because of the word, by and by he is offended.
American King James Version×
; Ephesians 2:1-3 Ephesians 2:1-3 1 And you has he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; 2 Wherein in time past you walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now works in the children of disobedience: 3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.
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• Is God’s help necessary to even start to repent of sin and turn to God? (John 6:44 John 6:44No man can come to me, except the Father which has sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.
American King James Version×
; Hebrews 4:15-16 Hebrews 4:15-16 15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. 16 Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
American King James Version×
; Romans 2:4 Romans 2:4Or despise you the riches of his goodness and forbearance and long-suffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?
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• Must everyone repent? (2 Peter 3:9 2 Peter 3:9The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is long-suffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
American King James Version×
; Acts 17:30 Acts 17:30And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commands all men every where to repent:
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; Luke 13:1-3 Luke 13:1-3 1 There were present at that season some that told him of the Galilaeans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. 2 And Jesus answering said to them, Suppose you that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans, because they suffered such things? 3 I tell you, No: but, except you repent, you shall all likewise perish.
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• What is repentance, and what are some of its fruits? (Psalms 51:1-10 Psalms 51:1-10 1 Have mercy on me, O God, according to your loving kindness: according to the multitude of your tender mercies blot out my transgressions. 2 Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. 3 For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me. 4 Against you, you only, have I sinned, and done this evil in your sight: that you might be justified when you speak, and be clear when you judge. 5 Behold, I was shaped in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me. 6 Behold, you desire truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part you shall make me to know wisdom. 7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. 8 Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which you have broken may rejoice. 9 Hide your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities. 10 Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.
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; Luke 18:13 Luke 18:13And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes to heaven, but smote on his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.
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; Luke 3:7-9 Luke 3:7-9 7 Then said he to the multitude that came forth to be baptized of him, O generation of vipers, who has warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 8 Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say to you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children to Abraham. 9 And now also the ax is laid to the root of the trees: every tree therefore which brings not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
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; James 1:23-25 James 1:23-25 23 For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like to a man beholding his natural face in a glass: 24 For he beholds himself, and goes his way, and straightway forgets what manner of man he was. 25 But whoever looks into the perfect law of liberty, and continues therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.
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• Why is baptism important? What does it represent, and what responsibility comes with it? (Mark 16:16 Mark 16:16He that believes and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believes not shall be damned.
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; Romans 6:4-18 Romans 6:4-18 4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. 5 For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: 6 Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that from now on we should not serve sin. 7 For he that is dead is freed from sin. 8 Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him: 9 Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dies no more; death has no more dominion over him. 10 For in that he died, he died to sin once: but in that he lives, he lives to God. 11 Likewise reckon you also yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God through Jesus Christ our Lord. 12 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in the lusts thereof. 13 Neither yield you your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin: but yield yourselves to God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. 14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for you are not under the law, but under grace. 15 What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid. 16 Know you not, that to whom you yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants you are to whom you obey; whether of sin to death, or of obedience to righteousness? 17 But God be thanked, that you were the servants of sin, but you have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. 18 Being then made free from sin, you became the servants of righteousness.
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• Without God’s great mercy and grace, is there any way to be made right with Him? (Isaiah 59:1-2 Isaiah 59:1-2 1 Behold, the LORD’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: 2 But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.
American King James Version×
; Romans 5:9-10 Romans 5:9-10 9 Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. 10 For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.
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; Ephesians 2:8-10 Ephesians 2:8-10 8 For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to good works, which God has before ordained that we should walk in them.
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• Does God’s Spirit make it possible for us to carry out our commitment to God? (Matthew 19:25-26 Matthew 19:25-26 25 When his disciples heard it, they were exceedingly amazed, saying, Who then can be saved? 26 But Jesus beheld them, and said to them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.
American King James Version×
; Acts 1:8 Acts 1:8But you shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come on you: and you shall be witnesses to me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and to the uttermost part of the earth.
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; Acts 2:38 Acts 2:38Then Peter said to them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
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; Philippians 2:13 Philippians 2:13For it is God which works in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.
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