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Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"When A Sin's Not A Sin"

February 29, 2012

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Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! Isaiah 5:20

The topic for today's Daily Devotion was called to my attention by Reverend Kurt Klaus of Messiah Lutheran Church in Mounds View, Minnesota.

Most of you don't own a copy of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM).

If you have never seen or heard of the DSM, let me explain. The DSM is put out by the American Psychiatric Association. Between its covers the DSM has descriptions, symptoms and criteria for diagnosing mental disorders.

One news source said the DSM is the "bible" for mental health medicine.

Having given that explanation, I thought you might want to know there is a new edition of the DSM in the works and when it is published next year, it will be making some major changes.

For example, have you lost and are mourning a loved one? In previous versions of the DSM that was normal and understandable. The new DSM ignores the cause of your loss and says only that you have a "depressive illness."

Or do you have a child who doesn't do as you ask? It used to be your child was just being defiant, but now he has a mental condition. He has "oppositional defiant disorder."

It gets worse. The DSM will be saying serial rapists and sex abusers have a "paraphilic coercive disorder." So what's the big deal, you ask? Simply this: these sex offenders could escape punishment, if they can point to a disorder and say, "It's not my fault. I've got a condition."

Now I'm certainly not going to disparage the excellent work done by counselors, especially Christian counselors. On the other hand, there is a great danger when evil becomes good and good becomes evil. It will be a tragedy for individuals and for society if people no longer feel responsible for their actions or the wrong they have done ... if there is such a thing as "wrong."

In contrast to the direction the DSM seems to be going, stands the Savior. Not only does the Lord recognize sin and guilt, He has done something about it.

So that we might be rescued from the condemnation that results from the evil we have done, the Lord Jesus came into this world. By taking our place under the Law, He has made it possible for all who believe on Him as Savior, to be forgiven and adopted into the Lord's family of faith.

And you should know, dear devotioner, that being forgiven of our wrongdoing by God is a far better thing than to pretend there is no such thing as wrongdoing at all.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, there is no question that my sins have earned Your condemnation and wrath. That You have elected to offer Your Son as my ransom is an unexpected gift of grace. May I, and all the world, cling fast to the Life-Preserver, Jesus. This I ask in His Name. Amen.

PS - More than 11,000 health professionals have already signed a petition calling for the development of the fifth edition of the DSM to be stopped and reevaluated.

In Christ I remain His servant and yours,


Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries

Change Their World. Change Yours. This changes everything.

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