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Respectable Sins: Confronting the Sins We Tolerate

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 22, 2011

    Lifechanging

    This book hit home to me in several areas of sin that I have been allowing in my life. It confronted my behavior through sound Biblical teaching and challenged me to make important choices that drive me closer to our Lord and to strive to live a more holy life. Bridges encourages us to live according to the Word and not according to our feelings and the world.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 30, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Am I a sinner even though I don't kill, cheat, or steal?

    The answer is yes!!! This book points out that even though we aren't committing what people consider to be the "big" sins our sins are no less important in the eyes of God.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 10, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Hits, Misses, and a Load of Respect

    In Respectable Sins: Confronting the Sins We Tolerate, Jerry Bridges gently focuses our attention on widespread sins in the church. Not only are they common, but they also go unchecked. ~~*~~ 1) Bridges' confession: Before expanding on these sins, though, he makes a confession to his readers: He's not perfect, he has committed many of these sins over the years and he doesn't pretend to be any better or holier than the rest of us. ~*~ He makes this confession right at the start, helping readers to understand his humble attitude while writing this book, which ultimately helps us to accept what he has to say about these sins. ~~*~~ 2) Seasoned Christians still have room to grow: Next, Bridges walks us through those familiar Bible verses about sin, salvation and grace. He knows he's talking to people who've heard these things a million times, but he reframes them to help us see ourselves-that is, lifelong Christians who think we've got this faith thing all worked out-in the centre of God's plan of salvation. ~~*~~ Even now, as seasoned believers, with years of Sunday services under our belts, countless worship songs sung, who knows how many prayers said, devotions read and volunteer hours logged, we're still sinners in need of God's grace who have lots of room left to grow. ~~*~~ 3) Down to the nitty-gritty: Sins Christians tolerate: Bridges covers everything from anger, judgmentalism, anxiety and impatience to worldliness, pride, selfishness and lack of self-control. Sometimes we Christians purposely ignore these 'respectable' sins. Sometimes we just don't take them seriously. Gossip and materialism are a couple examples of this. ~~*~~ Other times these sins are winked at or they're the subject of jokes. I can think of a few, but I'm curious which sins you (reading this review) would file under this category? ~~*~~ 4) Bridges hits the mark: I've grown up in the church and consider myself to have been a believer most of my life, (You know, the 'asked Jesus into my heart at age 6' story), and I've seen each and every one of these sins in myself and in most 'mature' Christians around me. Some of them, like materialism and selfishness, are shied away from in sermons, Bible studies, devotionals and especially in conversation with one another. ~~*~~ We're so hardwired from birth to practically idolize individualism, privacy and a citizen's 'rights' to do whatever he wants with his money that we hardly distinguish them from the true sins of materialism and selfishness that God's Word tries to guide us away from. Other sins, like anger, are sometimes wrongly interpreted. I've been angered by serious sin in the church (e.g. putting personal comfort over helping a neighbor in need), and for that I have been accused of the 'sin' of anger. We Christians don't know the difference between good anger (e.g. at cruel injustice) and sinful anger. ~~*~~ 5) Bridges also missed a few biggies: Bridges really does justice to most sins that we Christians often let slide. He invites the reader, after reviewing each issue, to consider instances in our own lives where we have committed those sins and how we can return to a belief and a lifestyle more reflective of God's desire for us, His Bride. ~~*~~ There are a few sins, though, I wish he had mentioned. - Love your neighbor: We don't do it: ...read the rest at: farjourneys(dot)blogspot(dot)com

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  • Posted May 6, 2010

    Basic Rules for a Christian

    This book represents one of the most comprehensive lists of how to deal with the most common life characteristics.
    Chapter 11 on Pride and Chapter 20 on Worldiness are especially 'right-on'
    This book should be a 'must read' for any true christian and will always be up to date.

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  • Posted January 31, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    If You Want To Get Serious with God, Here's A Tough but Essential Read

    Jerry started off the book by drawing the attention of the readers to the spiritual condition of the Corinthians church during Paul's time. Despite the mess and sins in the church of Corinth at that time, Paul addressed them as saints (2 Cor 1:1 and 1 Cor 1:2). How could Paul address them as saints? Paul similarly used the word in other places like in Romans 1:7; 16:15; 1 Cor 1:2 and 2 Cor 1:1. Jerry then explained that the Greek word used for "sainthood" and "holy" is "Hagios", which refers, not to the character, but rather a state of being (being set apart, separated for God) (1 Cor 6:19-20). What are we separated for? Titus 2:14 says that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works (Titus 2:14, NKJV). In other words, we are set apart so that we will be zealous for good works. We don't become saints by our own effort. We are "made" saints by God Himself. Yet, as Jerry pointed out, if we are honest with ourselves, we know that nearly every waking hour, we sin in thoughts, words and deeds. Our best motives are often stained with impure or mixed thoughts and intentions. Unfortunately, it is not only that we are waging war against the lust or desires of the flesh, but we often soften our concept of sins. We categorise sins. We tend to evaluate our character and conduct based on the moral culture we live in. Often times, as we think of the blatant and obvious sins around us such as murder, rape, stealing, etc, we tend think of ourselves better than those committing such criminal offenses. We tolerate certain sins while condemning the obvious ones such as mentioned above. We let ourselves off the hook by saying that our sins of selfishness, critical spirit, impatience, anger, judgmentalism, etc are not as bad as the "sins of the world." And this book is exactly about - addressing those sins that we often think are "respectable" or "tolerable". Unfortunately, every sin is serious because every sin essentially breaks God's law. And sin essentially is about "missing the mark", falling short of God's holy standard. The first six chapters of this book are a general description, dealing with the problems of sins, and the direction we should take towards the problem of sins. From chapter seven onwards, Jerry dealt with specific "tolerable" sins, one in each chapter. These are: Ungodliness, Anxiety and Frustration, Discontentment, Unthankfulness, Pride, Selfishness, Lack of Self-control, Impatience and irritability, Anger, Judgmentalism, Envy, Jealousy and related sins, Sins of the tongue, Worldliness. In a way, I find this book "difficult" to read, it was not an easy read but it is a very vital read because as I read, the Holy Spirit, like a gentle surgeon, took the surgical blade and cut through the specific malignant areas of sins in my life.

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  • Posted November 17, 2009

    Challenge to Transformation

    I believe this book has an important message for all Christians today. I'm not certain what I expected the book to be, but it was not entirely what I expected. The main message of the book is that we in Christianity tolerate sins within ourselves and excuse them with little thought of the impact it has on the reputation of the one whom we represent on this earth and our own eternity.

    While reading the book, I often found myself wrestling with the subjects presented. I disagree with the author's premise that 'anger' is a sin, but after reading his section on anger I can understand his perspective. I would have appreciated more time spent on the subject of what constitutes 'righteous anger'.

    I believe the author has tried to present a balanced viewpoint with reliance on faith, prayer and the power of God for transformation. I also believe this is a difficult subject to present without irritating the audience to whom it is presented. The bottom line is that we in Christianity allow ourselves to be in the world and of the world often without thought of whose we are. Even if you find yourself in disagreement with some of the specifics the author has named, you will also be confronted with the need for transformation in every aspect of our lives.

    We are commanded to be transformed by the renewing of our minds.... With that goal in mind, this author has tried to challenge our worldly thinking.

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  • Posted November 12, 2009

    Convicting,Yet Encouraging Book

    I think that Jerry Bridges has quite possibly become one of my very favorite authors. His books are straightforward, coherant, and both thoughtful and thought-provoking. In Respectable Sins, he quotes scripture primarily from the ESV and secondarily from the NIV.

    The premise of Respectable Sins is to talk about 1) what sins we tolerate in the church and in our own lives and 2) how to tackle and address those sins in a practical way. His answers for #2 are not pat answers. They are to keep perspective of the gospel and God's grace, to repent, to pray, to go to the Word, and to seek accountability. He urges the reader to seek God in humility and lay our hearts before Him. For God knows what is in our hearts.

    Bridges addresses Anger, Pride, Impatience and Irritability, Worldliness and Idolatry, and Ungodliness among the respectable sins that he talks about. I appreciated his definitions of what each of these are. So often we use words and take for granted what they mean instead of really knowing what they mean and defining them. Here is an example:

    "Ungodliness may be defined as living one's everyday life with little or no thought of God, or of God's will, or of God's glory, of one's dependence on God."

    But, there were several other quotes that I especially enjoyed and this is one of them...

    "Our spiritual life may be compared to the motor of an electric appliance. The
    motor does the actual work, but it is constantly dependent upon the external power source of the electricity to enable it to work. Therefore, we should cultivate an attitude of continual dependence on the Holy Spirit."

    I love that picture of the motor and electricity. The motor doesn't run by itself, but it doesn't just wait for the electricity to make everything happen. It needs the electricity--it can't run without it.

    This book is very good and I would highly recommend it--it is convicting, yet encouraging at the very same time. Bridges is not condemning in what he says. He is gracious in his tone as he writes--and I think that is one of the thingsthat makes his books so easy for me to read--He speaks the truth in love.

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  • Posted October 30, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Respectable Sins by Jerry Bridges

    Respectable Sins by Jerry Bridges

    The first book I ever studied in a small group was 'Pursuit of Holiness' by Jerry Bridges - a gem of a book which I still have. Respectable Sins is an admirable companion.

    Immensely readable, the truths contained in it are both easy to grasp and difficult to implement. We are all guilty of sinning but, as Bridges says, we excuse ourselves. This book challenges that attitude: any sin, however, small, is anathema to God and we would do well to develop 'zero tolerance' towards the 'little' misdemeanours. Sins such as anger, pride, self-righteousness and sins of the tongue are all familiar to us and are sin even when present to a very minor degree. Add to the list ungodliness, anxiety, frustration, discontentment, unthankfulness, an independent spirit, selfishness, inconsiderateness, lack of self-control, judgmentalism, envy, jealousy and worldliness - there is no area of our lives where, if we are honest with ourselves, we can claim to be 'sin-free'.

    Such a long list might seem disheartening, but Jerry Bridges offers encouraging advice, practical help and real stories which give the reader confidence in defeating sin. An accompanying discussion guide, suitable for both personal and group study, is a useful tool for practical action.

    Read the book slowly, pausing to examine your life in the light of each chapter. Life-changing.

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  • Posted September 19, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    No more "pet" sins

    Jerry does an excellent job of presenting the actions of the "church" in the area of sin and grace. The overlooking of sin is a cancer which is growing in the church. This should be a must read for every christian as a part of their discipleship.

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