Tim Keller’s message is going to be what it takes to change yourself inwardly, enduringly, and deeply.
You won’t be able to change the world if you don’t know how to change yourself.
How to change deeply?
You need to know 4 things and do 4 things to change yourself. What are those 4 things you need to know?
1. Know the magnitude of your sin problem
Romans chapter 7 has Paul making a statement. Paul states that he knows what is right to do but he can’t do it.
That’s an odd paradigm, don’t you think? Paul, a great man of God, knew what he needed to do yet he couldn’t do it. We’re often in this position, aren’t we? We know what we need to do but we struggle with carrying out what we know we need to do.
Our sins will present themselves to us as much smaller than they truly are. They’ll hide and crouch to keep their true size from us.
Our sins are also coiled to spring. Sins are ready to attack us quickly and take us out
Keller mentions John Owen’s book On The Mortification Of Sin. He says it’s a book all leaders must read.
2. Know how your sin can’t be overcome
We can’t overcome by doubling down in our attempt to obey the law. This isn’t to say we shouldn’t follow the law but that we can’t overcome sin by our own will.
The force of the law doesn’t take out the impulse to become our own lord and savior Rather, it can make it crouch and hide waiting to pounce
Our sins are often much deeper than we think. People may think they’re using sex for enjoyment but it they may be using sex for other reasons. Keller shared a story of a young man who was constantly bedding women only to become a Christian and swore to become chaste.
A problem began to arise when during small groups this young man began to exert control and power over the meetings.
Sex wasn’t the real issue. It was a desire for control and power.
Our sin typically has an underlying reason for being there.
3. Know why your sin can’t be overcome
Our reasons to do things are often selfish rather than to serve God. We serve the poor for our sake. We serve people for our sake. We help others for our sake.
We want to feel like we’re worthwhile and we’re doing something good.
Sadly, our motivation isn’t where it needs to be.
How to tell if your motivations are wrong? You can’t admit who you are. Whenever you do fail, you’re so vulnerable to anxiety, guilt, and shame. You will look down at other people who don’t meet your standards.
What will help with our sin? How can we overcome our sin?
The structure of the identity of your heart must change. Prayer…
4 Things about Prayer
1. Do it!
2. Do it until it engages the affections
3. Look at your besetting sins in prayer
4. Be expectant