June 25, 2007, Enterprise Dispatch
Pastor's Column

Sin separates, Jesus unites

Pastor Michael Newsom, Lamson Evangelical Free Church, Dassel

It is important that we define words correctly because words are the only means we have for passing thoughts from one person’s mind to another’s. If you and I don’t define our words in the same way, we are not really communicating.

The word “integrity” means uncorrupted virtue. To better understand this word we should know its origin and meet its family.

Integrity originally meant wholeness, perfect condition. Its family includes integrate and disintegrate.

Integrate means to make something whole. The prefix “dis” indicates to “do the opposite.” When we add “dis” to integrate, we have disintegrate, meaning to do the opposite of making things whole.

Sin results in disintegration. It tears apart that which was meant to be whole. Sin destroys the intended unity of all things.

By unity, I do not mean uniformity. All things were not meant to be one in the sense of all being the same.

God’s creation was meant to be a unit of various parts all functioning differently, but toward the same end. The goal of all things is to reveal how glorious God is.

The first thing that disintegrated was the relationship between God and man, then between members of mankind (Cain and Abel). Even nature, itself, is groaning to be put back into the right order of wholeness(Romans 8:22).

There is disintegration or disunity between husbands and wives, parents and children, neighbors and nations. This disintegration is the cause of all war, all disease, all poverty, all immorality, and all ecological problems.

Sin is tearing everything apart. The troubles that you have in life are the result of this disintegration caused by sin.

In John chapter 17, Jesus prayed what is called the High Priestly Prayer. In it, He prays for integration, i.e., unity.

Ephesians chapter 1, verses 3-10 says: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, for even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.

Sin separates, Jesus unites.

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