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Pray to See Sin Through God’s Eyes

See sin as unpleasant, unappealing, and disgusting

Doug Britton, MFT

Page Summary
Summary: Break free from the power of sin by praying to see it clearly—as evil, unpleasant, disgusting and unappealing. This Bible study guides us through a series of prayers to help us see sin as God sees it. As we get angry at sin and see it as rebellion against God, we will begin to break free from its control.

See sin as God sees sin

It’s no secret that you and I are tempted to sin. Everyone is. On many occasions, I have struggled and failed. Yet I’ve learned there are things we can do to overcome temptation.

This Bible study, adapted from the book Defeating Temptation: Biblical Secrets to Self-Control, illustrates one weapon in our struggle against sin — to see sin as God sees sin.

God hates sin.

We need to see sin as he sees it and catch a vision of how serious it is when we sin.

Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. (Romans 12:9)

Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. (James 4:8-9)

God is grieved when you sin.

God is not a passive observer, watching you go through life as if watching a movie. He loves you passionately and wants the best for you. When we sin, it grieves God’s Holy Spirit (Ephesians 4:29-31).

The deceitfulness of sin

One of the biggest obstacles we face in the battle against temptation is that sin sometimes seems fun at first. Even if we don’t engage in a particular sin, we fantasize about it, imagining how pleasurable it would be.

We forget that although sin may look good at first, once we are hooked, it traps us (Proverbs 5:22-23) and drags us down (Ephesians 4:19). Study Proverbs 2, a chapter that encourages us to seek wisdom as an antidote to sin.

Related: Consider the consequences of sin

Ask God to help you overcome sin

As you read this Bible study, you will come across many prayer projects. I encourage you to pause at each one, consider it, then pray sincerely, for it is only with God’s help that we can see clearly, and it is only with God’s help that we can be transformed.

Recognize the evilness of sin

Pray to see sin as evil.

Sample prayer: “Father, I have been casual about sin and rebellious to your commands. Please forgive me, and help me grasp the evilness of sin, in Jesus’ name.”

Check here after praying: ___

Pray to see sin as your enemy.

Whatever tempts you is your enemy, not your friend. Ask God to help you understand this truth.

Sample prayer: “Lord, I have treated [names of sins] more like friends than enemies. I confess that I have strayed far from you in this area of my life, and ask you to help me know in a deep way that sin is my enemy, in Jesus’ name.”

Check here after praying: ___

Pray to hate evil.

Sample prayer: “God, please replace my interest in anything evil with a hatred for evil, in Jesus’ name.”

Check here after praying: ___

As you pray these prayers, you will begin to find yourself avoiding sin because you know God hates it, not because you are afraid someone will catch you.

See sin as rebellion against God

Many people, even Christians, are casual about sin. This is a big mistake. Sin is serious to God, and we should not take it lightly. When we sin, we rebel against—or reject—him.

Psalm 51:4 brings this home to me. David had sex with another man’s wife, arranged to have the man killed and then married the woman (2 Samuel 11:2-27). Later, the prophet Nathan confronted David, and God punished him (2 Samuel 12:1-19).

When David wrote about this incident, he knew he had sinned against the man and his wife, yet he realized that his major sin was against God. He wrote, “Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight” (Psalm 51:4).

Even when we sin against others, it is primarily God we are sinning against, for he is the one who commands us to live holy lives. Paul emphasized this point in his first letter to the Thessalonians. After telling them to avoid sexual immorality, he added:

Therefore, anyone who rejects this instruction does not reject a human being but God, the very God who gives you his Holy Spirit. (1 Thessalonians 4:8)

Related: Bible studies on growing closer to God

See sin as unpleasant, disgusting, and unappealing

When you see clearly, you realize that the things that tempt you are disgusting and ugly. Ask God to take away the blinders and help you see the truth.

Pray to lose interest in what tempts you.

Sample prayer: “Please take away my desire, Lord, to [names of sins]. I want to be like Jesus. I ask this in his name.”

Check here after praying: ___

Pray to be disgusted and revolted by what tempts you.

Sample prayer: “Lord, I am embarrassed to admit that sometimes I find [name of sin] tempting. I know it is detestable in your sight, and ask that you make it seem disgusting and unappealing to me. Please take away all pleasure I have found in this. Help me think and feel about this sin exactly as you do, in Jesus’ name.”

Check here after praying: ___

Pray to see a gross picture when tempted.

Let’s go one step further. Think of something that tempts you. Now think of something that is absolutely disgusting to you, such as eating a slug. Ask God to plant the image of eating the slug in your mind whenever you are tempted to commit that sin.

Check here after praying: ___

Replace pleasant memories of past sins with sorrow

When counseling with a man who had served prison time for murder, I noticed that he smirked a little as he talked about his past. It became obvious that although he regretted his actions, he felt some pride for being a tough guy. A key to his spiritual growth was to identify his actions as sin and leave it at that.

Pray for unpleasant memories of past sins.

Check here after praying: ___

Get angry at sin

The Bible says, “Sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it” (Genesis 4:7). In this verse, God identifies sin as your enemy. Since sin is your enemy, don’t be passive. Get mad at it and at the devil—the one who introduced sin into the world.

Pray for anger at sin.

Check here after praying: ___

Pray for anger at the devil.

Check here after praying: ___

Pray to love what is good

Pray for a pure heart.

Sample prayer: “Teach me your way, LORD, and I will walk in your truth; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name. Create in me a pure heart, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.” (This prayer is adapted from Psalms 86:11 and 51:10.)

Check here after praying: ___

Pray to love doing what is good.

Check here after praying: ___

Personal application

Look over all the prayers in this Bible study and choose the one that is most helpful to you. Now write a prayer that has the same message, but use your own words. Go into detail about how you would like God’s help.

Next: Choose wholesome entertainment

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About Doug Britton, MFT

Doug Britton, Bible-based Marriage and Family Therapist, has helped hundreds of thousands of people as a therapist, clinical director of a treatment center, seminar speaker, radio cohost, and author of over twenty books that show how to apply God's truths in your daily life. (Visit www.dougbrittonbooks.com.)

Copyright © 2020 Doug Britton. Permission granted to print for personal use. (Scripture verses are from the New International Version, copyright © 1984.) See reprint policy.

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