Wednesday, May 18, 2011


In the movies you often see an evil villain who has henchmen out to murder his enemies. The would-be victims in the movie fight their way through a long list of terrors and obstacles to reach safety and justice. The evil villain winds up dead or in jail. Occasionally the villain escapes to torment again another day. That usually happens in serials of some sort. An example would be Sherlock Holmes and Moriarty. The struggle between those two is probably still going on somewhere. Of course all that is in the realm of fiction. You just have to deal with it for the length of the book or movie. However………

Truth really is stranger than fiction. The truth is there is an evil being in the galaxy.

He has minions of evil henchmen at his disposal.

He hates your very existence.

He hates your life in the land of the living.

He wants your life utterly destroyed.

And then he wants you dead.
He is your eternal enemy and his name is Satan.

And, unlike in the movies, the evil leader never rests. He never gives up. As long as you have breath in your body Satan will be your nemesis just as Moriarty is to Sherlock Homes. Well, not exactly. Satan makes Moriarty look like a simply prankster.
I know that all sounds a bit melodramatic; however, it is entirely true.

The devil is real.

He hates you.

He is out to get you.

Of course the devil, the old dragon, the serpent, cannot take the soul of a child of God. He knows that. He also knows that while he cannot take your soul for eternity, he may be able to ruin the life you know live. He does it by tempting you to sin. He does it by planting little seeds of sin.

By the way, in your Christian life you are facing three perils:
Your sin nature
The world system
The devil.

You are fighting a war on three fronts. The devil is only one part, but he is very real and very powerful. He really is a hit-man out to get you personally. So, be wary of the devil and his plans for your life. He will tempt you to sin. He will plant little seeds of sin that can grow into a tree! Watch out. Take care. Be vigilant.

Sin pulls you in by:
You want it
Then you need it
Then you deserve it
You have a right to it
Then you take it – however you can get it – morality and legality are forgotten

Sin – whatever it may be – entices you to do something you shouldn’t do, whether it is eat that second piece of pie or steal something small or big, or kill someone literally or figuratively

Then sin becomes your boss. You can’t seem to stop yourself from doing whatever it is that you are doing.

Then sin ‘kills’ you, or kills the life you were living – as in destroys your reputation, your family, your Christian testimony, Or in some cases, it can kill you literally through disease caused by actions, or foolish actions, or even bring you to suicide.

Sin is ever present. You only master sin through the power of the Holy Spirit. I once knew a smoker who had quit for over 30 years. He said he still woke up every morning wanting a cigarette. I am not putting cigarettes in a ‘high crime’ category. It isn’t good for you though. It is expensive. I don’t see it as any worse than overeating. In fact, they seem to be the same. Smokers and over eaters are both doing something that gives disease an early opportunity to get to work destroying the body. The point is – with either smoking or over eating, you never reach the point that you don’t have to worry about it anymore. It is never fully conquered. The same goes with drinking alcohol or doing drugs. It is also the same, or worse, with gossip, lying, manipulating, coveting, jealousy, stealing, idol worship, putting God in second, third, or fortieth place in your life’s priorities. (I have heard of instances where the Holy Spirit did remove the desire for a particular vise such as excessive drinking. That can happen, but it isn’t what normally happens.)

Well, that’s a bummer of course. Where sin is concerned, you can never say, ‘Been there, done that, bought the T-shirt.’ (That is an American phrase meaning you already did something and are not planning on doing it again)

If Christians develop a conscience that is tender according to the words of the Lord, then sin is more obvious to them. It is easier to identify weak areas and lean on the Lord for victory over specific sins in our lives. The world will try to excuse your sin, encourage you to run away, blame it on someone else, tell you that it isn’t really sin, or even tell you that you are helpless to stop that particular sin.

All people are born with a sin nature. Examples all over the world prove that goodness is not something that comes from a wealthy or poor upbringing. Neither does it come from any particular ethnic group, culture, social level, beauty or lack of beauty, or anything else. You find ‘good’ and ‘bad’ in every area and in every place on earth. Sin permeates every aspect of the human, animal, and material world. There is no escaping it.

Christians who are seeking a greater fellowship and reliance on the Lord must come to understand how evil sin is. It is always evil. There are no real ways a person committed to the Lord can excuse even little sins.

Sin is murderer.
Sin is a liar.
Sin is a deceiver.
Sin is costly.
Sin is harmful in all areas of life.
And a little tiny sin is just the seed of great big sin. Sin is like the rotten apple that spoils the whole barrel of apples.

Christian, do you take sin seriously?
Even the little sin of a known Christian is an excuse for worldly people to make fun of Christians, to call them hypocrites, to call our God ineffective and irrelevant, and to generally give Christians a bad name. Of course that is not right, but that is the way it really is. Even if Christians do not take sin seriously, other people do. They don’t take sin in their own lives seriously. They take sin in YOUR life seriously. It is true that we cannot be perfectly sinless, but we can do better. But, doing better means we have to first take our own sins seriously.

Many of our sins begin in anger.
From where does anger come?
Hurt feelings

Perhaps Cain’s anger at his brother began with hurt feelings that the Lord didn’t accept his offering. Perhaps he was frustrated that his brother’s offering was accepted and his was not. Anyway you look at it; Cain struck his brother in anger. Better to have been honest with himself in the first place.

Sometimes we are afraid to trust the Lord to care for us. We fear the future. Perhaps Abraham and Sarah were afraid the Lord wouldn’t fulfill His promise to them. Maybe they became angry at the delay. They took matter into their own hand and look what the world has to deal with today because of their sin.

Maybe they just doubted that the Lord really meant what he said. Doubt lead to worse sins. I am sure there was a bit of frustration in there somewhere. Doubt is a seed of anger incubating.

Whatever the beginning of anger, sin and sorrow will be the end result.

The repentant sinner will be forgiven. But, the consequences of sin will not be removed. Almost all Christians know of the sin of King David and Uriah’s wife Bathsheba. They repented, but they still suffered. Bathsheba’s husband was still dead. Their first baby died. People held grudges against the king. What a mess. David’s sin figuratively killed the life he had led previously. I suppose that other than the Lord’s forgiveness, David received forgiveness from many other people. However, does anyone think David ever regained the respect that he once held from the people?

I am positive David’s big sin didn’t just happen suddenly. There had to be little sins he excused as normal and ok. David effectively ‘murdered’ his own life. He also murdered Bathsheba’s husband!

To avoid sin requires that we take sin seriously, most especially the seeds of sin. A gardener who works at weed prevention and eradication is going to be much more successful when he attacks the offending vegetation when it is small. It is much more difficult to eradicate weeds if the farmer lets the weeds fully mature before he begins a weeding program. That is the way sin works in our lives. Taking out little sins is much more easily done than taking out full grown sins.

1 Peter 5:8 says, ‘Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour’.

The devil really is your adversary.
You really must take him seriously before you will be able to thwart his evil intentions toward you, and everyone and everything you love.

Romans 12:1 says, ‘I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.’

When a Christian is following the instructions in that passage, it is much easier to spot the seeds of sin and take care that they never are allowed to sprout.


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