And although I believe that the main premise is true... I want to say that in making an absolute statement I may have neglected a bit of the nuanced aspects when talking about sin, and sanctification and faith in Jesus. I get that.
However, I believe that the main point was still accurate... that we always act according to our true values/beliefs or... put another way, our actions affirm or betray our stated values.
Part of this is recognizing what Paul says in Romans 7 (A friend brought up this passage in reference to my last post) "I do what I don't want to do and what I want to do I don't do." (I'm paraphrasing... the NJV... New Jake Version)
That really makes the point for me. Even though Paul is saved and the work needed to atone for all his sin is complete. AND he is being sanctified as he is growing in maturity in Christ... he still recognizes that his sinful heart chooses sin and it baffles him.
In some instances even Paul values sin MORE than he values Christ. Now, He can still value Christ and strive to live a humble, obedient, and moral life... and he should... as we all should, but he recognizes the death-grip that the flesh has on him and so he, once-again, throws himself at the mercy of God in Christ to continue to kill the flesh that seeks to destroy him.
As we must do.
The whole point about Tiger was this... the issue isn't a mistake or a lapse in judgement... it was a choice. And the choice I am speaking of is not one of many acts of indiscretion... the choice was something OTHER that God's way... sin. It is a deep core issue long before it moves us to some kind of action in our behavior...
I am thankful for the mercy of God in the Gospel that rescued me and rescues me every day.
That is why I pray for Tiger Woods and others who are trapped in sin... there are great strides to take to get life "back on track" but the first (and MOST IMPORTANT) step to take is the one turn around called repentance where mercy is found at the foot of the Cross... where we trade the ashes of this life in for beauty and wear forgiveness like a crown on our heads... and where we find new life that frees us from the curse of sin while we wage war against it by repentance.
Sometimes the old dead guys are the most challenging to read (partially because of their language and mostly because of the content. There is a short book called "The Mortification of Sin" by John Owen. It hits the nail on the head pretty good. You can find an online copy of it HERE.
When you are looking at the manger this Christmas know that forgiveness comes through those once small hands of a child in a feed-box, who grew as a man, tempted as you and I and yet was without sin. Walked the road to Calvary and took the punishment of God's wrath that you and I deserve for our sin on himself that he might be our propitiation... then rise again to new life that we might share in that inheritance as adopted sons and daughters.
Soli Deo Gloria,