March 8, 2011

Randering Through Proverbs : Sweet, Sweet Sin (Day 7)

I am reading through Proverbs this month... one chapter a day (read about it here.) If you haven't started already, please join me. And be sure to comment back - let's learn from one another!


Sin is sneaky and ugly.  It separates us from God.  It can suck the joy out of our relationships.  And it can ruin our lives.

But sin is also beautiful and attractive.  It can help us make new friends. It can entertain us and bring us pleasure. It can bring more to our lives than we ever imagined.

For a time.

If we are willing to pay the price.

"I saw among the simple, ...a youth who lacked judgment. He was going down the street near her corner, walking along in the direction of her house at twilight, as the day was fading, as the dark of night set in. Then out came a woman to meet him... She took hold of him and kissed him and with a brazen face she said:
  ...I looked for you and have found you! I have covered my bed with colored linens from Egypt. I have perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes and cinnamon. Come, let’s drink deep of love till morning; let’s enjoy ourselves with love!

...With persuasive words she led him astray; she seduced him with her smooth talk . All at once he followed her like an ox going to the slaughter, like a deer stepping into a noose till an arrow pierces his liver, like a bird darting into a snare, little knowing it will cost him his life." (Prov 7:7-23)

Did you notice that verse 13 says the youth "lacked judgement" and that he was seen "going down her the direction of her the dark of night set in."

This young man was not avoiding the adulterous woman...he knew that where he was headed was not safe...or smart.  That is why he was sneaking around after dark, trying to hide his stupidity.  He knew he was going where he shouldn't go.  He knew it was dangerous territory.  And to top it off, he also went by himself.   He didn't even have the sense to take someone with him for back up.  Someone who could shield him from attack ...or drag him down the street in the other direction! 

Temptation is almost everywhere we go - we don't need to go looking for it.  But he did.

He knew he shouldn't be doing what he was doing.  But he did it anyway and he forgot one very important thing.

He forgot to count the cost.

He forgot to check the price tag on his little stroll down temptation lane.  And the price was high - for he paid with his life.

What was he thinking?

What are we thinking?

When we think we can flirt with temptation
          and not get burned...
When we think we can drink from the cup of compromise
          and still be able to think clearly in the morning...
When we think we can dance at night with the devil
          and it will never affect our relationships...
When we think we can hang on to those old friends and old habits
          and not end up right back where we started...
When we think we are so tough in our own strength that we can swallow that poison pill
         and not taste death...

...and leave those we care about wailing into the night in sorrow and anguish.

What are you thinking now?

Yeah, sin can be sweet.

But are you willing to be the price?

"Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour." (1 Peter 5:8)
"When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. 15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death...Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers. 17 Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.  Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says." (James 1:13-17, 22) 



If this post hit home with you, I pray that you will respond to what God is speaking to you.

If there is an area in your life that you are struggling with, please, get help.
First from God, our ultimate helper and our healer...and our forgiver.  Turn to him and then turn it over to him. (For more on this, please read this.)
Second, from someone you can trust.  We were not created to walk this road alone and we cannot do it alone.  Find a Christian friend who you can talk to and who will encourage you and pray for you - and when necessary hold you accountable (because that's what true friends do.) Sometimes, good friends are hard to find but don't stop looking (and don't forget to pray about it.)
Third, from yourself: don't give up - sometimes it may seem like it's impossible - but it's not.  For nothing is impossible with God...

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