By: Melanie (January 2011)
Jesus described the path of sin as “wide” and appealing to many who enter it (Matthew 7:13). Have you ever wondered how a drug addict came to make the choice to become one? Have you ever questioned why a Christian brother or sister would begin an extramarital affair? Why do so many Christians become entrapped in the snares of sin, even though they know these things are wrong?
I would argue that a drug addict’s path to destruction did not begin with the first time they chose to use an illegal drug. A man or woman who is cheating on their spouse did not suddenly decide to look outside their marriage for fulfillment. Each of these, and so many other sins, begins with one small compromise after another. It is a very slow, dangerous process that we must constantly be on guard against.
Satan is the master deceiver. He is the “father of lies” (John 8:44). His schemes are far less obvious than we often think. The traps he sets for believers may take time, but he is patient in his plans.
As Christians, we often risk becoming desensitized to sin. We are constantly bombarded with worldly and sinful ideas, agendas, and images. Over time, we become callous to them. They start to become familiar to us. Gradually, our conviction over the sinful things we see and hear around us turns into acceptance. We may even be encouraged by others to lower our standards. We may worry that we could be labeled “extreme” or “out of touch” with society if we continue to hold the high standards that are outlined in the Bible.
God does not change. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8). God does not compromise his beliefs. He does not change the Ten Commandments or the plan of salvation in order to be “tolerant”.
Satan would love nothing more than to desensitize us to sin to the point that we are no longer observers, but instead are participants. The man who first looks at pornography does not do so without a compromised heart. A man who is studying God’s Word and seeking God in prayer does not suddenly fall to Satan’s temptations without hesitation. However, a man who has seen many movies with partial nudity may become desensitized. He may even glance through inappropriate magazines, each one causing his heart to harden against the conviction of the Holy Spirit. He may drift away from his time in prayer and Bible study, and then become weakened to Satan’s temptations because his heart has grown calloused.
Likewise, a lady who is involved in an extramarital affair does not get out of bed one morning and decide to cheat on her husband. Satan plants a seed of discontent and discouragement in her heart. She may gradually begin to enjoy the attention of other men. She slowly compromises her beliefs to the point that she believes Satan’s lies when he tells her that she deserves better. At this point, her heart is prepared to compromise and fall to Satan’s temptations.
How do we resist becoming desensitized to sin? James 4:7-10 says:
“So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world. Let there be tears for what you have done. Let there be sorrow and deep grief. Let there be sadness instead of laughter, and gloom instead of joy. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and He will lift you up in honor.”
We must humble ourselves and confess our sins to our Father. He is gracious to forgive. No matter what you or I have done, God promises in His Word that when we confess our sins, He is faithful to forgive us and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). We must flee from Satan and cling to God. We must not allow our loyalty to be divided between God and the world. What does the world have to offer us? What can Satan possibly promise us that can outweigh the eternal life that God has graciously given to all who believe on Him?
Above all, we must guard our hearts. It is crucial in the times that we are living in to guard our hearts. Proverbs 4:23-27 tells us to guard our hearts above all else because the heart determines the course of our lives. We must keep our eyes precisely focused on Jesus Christ and not become sidetracked by other distractions around us.
God will give us the victory through our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ! We must continue to focus our eyes on Him and stand firm in our faith (1 Corinthians 15:57-58).
Article from: www.weusedtobeyou.com