Pastor Martin Ssempa, Makerere Community Church: As Church we are aware of immorality, but afraid to address. It is not a subject we discuss because some of our partners in ministry do not welcome it.
There is a tendency to dismiss the sinful nature of man, claiming that once a Christian, you are free from sin. This is entirely untrue and you notice there is demolition of the truth.
People are misled, that “Mukama akebera mitima”, that God looks only at the heart, and that what you do in the body does not matter. Christ knew our nature and calls us to repentance. In fact it was part of His inaugural exhortation. Sadly, there is nullification of confession in Churches.
People do not want to hear about repentance. They would rather contend with “blissful ignorance” In the olden revived times, they welcomed the measure of confession of sin and dealing with each other’s sin as a fellowship.
But there hope for those who cry out to God for the spirit of repentance. It has to be a personal yearning to the Lord for having sinned against Him.
A wise man was once asked, “Do you believe in infant baptism”? He replied, “Believe in it? I have even seen it.” So, do I think there is immorality in the Church? My answer is: “Believe in it I have even seen it”.
Martin Luther summed up the Bible’s teaching about Christians using the Latin phrase “simul justus et pecatur,” meaning, “simultaneously justified and a sinner.”
Our position is that we are justified and clothed in the righteousness of Christ. Our condition, on the other hand, is a progressive journey of sanctification so that ultimately, our condition will be the same as our position.
In Christ, we have been freed from the power and sting of the original sin nature. But we must also now choose to seize the grace of God to hate sin, love holiness, and become more like Christ.
Church is the hospital for sinners where they get treatment for their different sicknesses.
Therefore, immorality is one of those possible diseases. We serve a Holy God and this calls us to dress decently not just in the Church, but also in our daily life. Dressing well is part of worship.
Additionally, the early Church were pious followers of Jesus Christ who treated the Bible as the yardstick in everything.
However in our time, there are so many compromises of the scripture both from within and without the Church. This makes our generation more rebellious and repugnant to the power of the working and doing of God.
Our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. He who commits immorality pollutes the dwelling of the Holy Spirit. But revival is very possible because God is at work. He is the almighty God who is on a constant mission to redeem, restore, reconcile and renew all His creations.
The Bible has a lot to say about sin/immorality. It first of all says that sin came in the world by one man’s disobedience (Romans 5:19). It also says that sin separates us from God (Ephesians 4:18) and it is manifested through the unfruitful works of darkness (Ephesians 5:11) and the works of the flesh in Galatians 5:19-21.
The solution out of sin is the message of the Gospel. We must understand that being in or participating in Church activities does not take away the possibility of falling into sin/immorality.
We must personally appropriate the Gospel message, the death of Christ on the Cross for our sins, His resurrection for our justification (Romans 4:25).
What that looks like Tim Keller said, “Lord, I worry because I forget your wisdom. I resent because I forget your mercy. I covet because I forget your beauty. I sin because I forget your holiness. I fear because I forget your sovereignty. You always remember me. Help me to remember you.” This is what applying the Gospel to our lives looks like to remember Him.