Knowing and Doing Are Two Different Things

There are different definitions of “sin” throughout Scripture, but James weighs in on this one:

17 It is a sin when someone knows the right thing to do and doesn’t do it. (James 4:17, CEB)

We can know all day long what the right thing to do is… and just not do it.

We can see shades of racism in a conversation and not confront it.

We can see needs of people and not make a move to help.

We can know to pray… and just go on with our day.

James doesn’t leave us much space to wiggle. We know the good, we know the “right thing to do,” and we fail to step up and do that thing. That is sin.

It kind of takes the wind out of the sails that says, “Well, at least I didn’t kill anyone.”

The Kingdom doesn’t leave us comfortable. Growth doesn’t happen in comfort. It happens in times of opposition, times of stretching, times of resistance. Character doesn’t happen sitting on the living room couch in front of the TV. It happens in the cauldron of every day life where we are tested in the small things to act… or not act…

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