The Object Lesson – Permanent Markers
Have you ever made the mistake of writing with the wrong marker? You pick up a marker and start writing on your white board only to realize you grabbed the permanent marker instead of the dry erase marker. You didn’t mean to make a mess of the white board, but you did. You might even worry that this mistake cannot be fixed; after all, the marker is supposed to be permanent.
The permanent marker won’t erase on its own, but there is a simple way to fix the problem. If you take a dry erase marker and completely color over the permanent marker, you can erase them both together. There is a solvent inside of the dry erase marker that breaks down the bonds in the permanent marker making it possible to remove your mistake.
For this demonstration, you will want to intentionally write on your white board with a permanent marker. You may write the word sin, mistake, or rebellion. You can also write down a list of common sins your group might struggle with. When you transition to talking about grace, use a dry-erase marker (preferably red) and begin to color over the words you wrote in permanent marker. When you are all done, erase both markers to leave the board “white as snow.”
The Bible Connection – Sin and Forgiveness
Sin is more than just a mistake; it is a rebellion against God’s plan for his creation. We do, however, often find ourselves living in sin even though we want to do better. Our pride slips out in the midst of an argument. Our greed causes us to miss opportunities to be generous. Lust calls us into sexual sin. Like the permanent marker, it can seem like there is no way to remove the stain of sin on our lives, but there is good news.
The Bible repeatedly tells us God has a plan to deal with our sin. Through his grace and the blood of Jesus, our sin can be removed. Guilt and shame can be taken away. Jesus became a man so that he could bear the weight of our sin and offer us righteousness in return. Through him, the marker really isn’t that permanent after all.
Scriptures to Study and Use
At the birth of the church, the Jews are convicted of their sin and ask what they need to do. They are told repentance and baptism will lead to a forgiveness of sins.
Jesus became sin for us so that we might be reconciled with God.
The sacrifice Jesus offered (himself) doesn’t just cleanse the outside, it cleanses our soul.
Quoting form Isaiah, Peter tells us we are healed through Jesus’ death.
John writes about the purity we can have through Christ.