Sunday School: Respectable Sins


From January through April, I taught Young Adult Sunday School at our church. I chose to teach through a book called: Respectable Sins: Confronting the Sins We Tolerate by Jerry Bridges.

I read the book and created a one-page handout for the class, which we read through together each week. This way, neither the church nor the individuals had to purchase the book yet we all still benefited from the material.

The book goes through many "acceptable" sins that American Christians tend to be blinded to, especially in ourselves and in the church setting. We were not able to get through all of the book, but we did spend a week on each of these topics: ungodliness, anxiety and frustration, un-thankfulness, selfishness and pride, impatience and irritability, and sins of the tongue.

For each topic, we would read through related scriptures and try to get to a level of openness, sharing personal struggles in these areas, discussing ways we see this sin in ourselves, our church and our culture. The chapter on ungodliness was very eye-opening, as the author defined ungodliness differently than the way I always thought of it, thus exposing ungodliness in my life that I had never seen before!

I pointed out each week of this class that although the book focused on sin and was trying to help point out those hidden sins that we tend to tolerate, the author tried very hard at the beginning of the book to lay a groundwork for the Gospel of Jesus Christ truly being Good News. He was not trying to make us feel guilty or bad by pointing out sin issues. He was trying to remind us that God desires holiness and He also empowers us through His Holy Spirit to live victorious lives, conquering the sin that so easily entangles us. That is GOOD NEWS! We aren't just stuck in these sins for the rest of our lives. Change can happen. And it isn't just us working hard at it. The Holy Spirit is an active part of the process. How thankful I am that He is! :-)

So this is a book that I would recommend and it worked well in a classroom setting, though I also enjoyed it for personal reading. I was challenged and I am changed because of this book!


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