“Sin will take you farther than you want to go, keep you longer than you want to stay, and cost you more than what you are willing to pay.”
Sin is a sinister thing and it will always take from you more than it will ever offer you in return and that is what we would like to call an unequal trade. We go through life trying to get the best value in things that would benefit us and when we are ever presented with an unequal trade, we wouldn’t even dare approach it with a ten-foot pole. The funny thing however is that we get suckered into uneven trades everyday when we choose to sin!
Engaging in sin is by far the worst possible trade you and I can ever make in life and we are losing hard everyday when we choose to because the cost for momentary pleasure of sin is death. On the flipside, the cost for eternal pleasure is momentary suffering in this life as we follow in the footsteps of Christ yet because we can’t see the goal in sight, we get distracted by the temporary fixes along the way.
Paul is laying out in today’s passage that we are indeed committed beings but our commitment will be either to sin that leads to eternal death or obedience to God that leads to eternal life. There are two masters that are being presented here and we must make a genuine commitment to one and we must realize that one offers us terrible trades hidden by distracting shiny offers of joy while the other offers a messy, hard, but genuine relationship that leads to eternal life that is glorious in it’s own ways.
Make a choice today but as you are contemplating, here are some things to highlight when we commit to the choice of following Jesus.
Following God is not a one time thing but as the cliche goes, it’s a long journey
Paul uses the term of “slave” as an illustration and hyperbole. The point that Paul is making is that our choice of either sin or God being our master is that we are making a choice that is stating that we are in essence giving up our rights to get what they offer. Paul reminds us that sin’s offer is death in the end while the offer of Christ is life. This commitment to either master is going to require a long term commitment but let's say you made the wrong choice of following sin, does that mean it’s all over now? NO! If you received Christ, then you in essence died to your old self and are a new creation in Him, which means that you just went into the “witness protection program.” Your old identity and life is gone with all of the commitments you made to sin and now you can live as a new being in Christ where you can now forever commit to life and love in Christ forever as the price you pay for sin has been paid by Jesus Christ. What about the Christian that sins? Sin is tenacious in that it will go down swinging but let us know that sin is going down and it’s end is already determined! Yes we will get “punched” here and there but if we have chosen Jesus then we will know that no matter how many times we get “punched” if we keep on choosing Jesus we will find ourselves standing.
Following Jesus is both glamorous and messy
It is glamorous because you will see the glory of God in your life and experience the love and comfort of His presence. The messy part is that, when you are in His light, His light will expose the messiness of your life so that He can clean it up with you. When you become a Christian, you will realize that your eyes will be open to how broken you are but realize the hope of how whole you are and will be in Christ. Don’t be discouraged by the messiness of your life when it is exposed but realize that as now an opportunity for God to help you clean it up because now you are aware. You can’t clean up what you cannot see.
To follow Jesus is to follow through obedience in your heart
What does that mean? It means that the motivations of your obedience to the commands of God is not for the purpose of fleeing hell but being with God. Heaven is not filled with people escaping hell but filled with people that love God. If your motivations are off, you will know because your commitment will be shaken by circumstance and whether you are “getting” anything from him. Whether you get something or nothing, it doesn’t matter to you because the motivation of your heart is not to get blessing but be in a state of being blessed because you are with the blesser.
Like yesterday, choices are being presented to you everyday. Let us make the choice of wholly committing to God!