Bradley helped by giving me this simple picture of sin:
As sinner, you can compare yourself to a pig and sin is the mud. And as we know, pigs like rolling around in the mud. That is the condition of the sinful nature.
When we’re saved, however, we get a new nature and that is the nature of a sheep. We follow Jesus. But in any sheep’s life it does happen that he may slip and fall. Then some of the mud will cling to the sheep. But a sheep doesn’t keep lying in the mud like a pig. No, he gets up and shakes off the mud and walks on.
Therefore, it doesn’t make sense for a child of God to beat himself up for sinning or making a mistake. No, he must get up, because the mud doesn’t make him a pig. His nature and relationship remain the same.
Although we belong to God and although we have chosen not to sin, chances are good that we will slip and fall somewhere along the way. We must admit that, because if we know there’s the possibility that we may slip, we can guard against it. We can make plans to prevent us from slipping. We have to plan, otherwise we’ll keep lying rather than getting up.
11But you, Timothy, man of God: Run for your life from all this.
Keep away from sin. You see, even though we belong to God, we’re like magnets attracting sin to us. Before we know it, we step into the mud.
No, I’m never going to look at anything like that again, but soon I find myself getting up from my screen with muddy feet and burdened with guilt. No, I’m never going to put my fingers in the cash register again, but here I am stuffing my pockets again. No, I’m not going to lose my temper again. I’m not going to swear again. I’m not going to … But before I know it, I’m covered in mud.
We must consciously try hard not to sin. We must set up our own guards. If we know that we struggle to remain upright in a specific area of our lives, we must ask others to wait there for us to help us not to slip. Often it simply helps to tell someone about the hole in your armour and that keeps you from slipping.
Insert your name here: ……………, you belong to God. Stay away from all these bad things.
Eradicate sin. Let’s make sure it doesn’t even germinate by staying away from it completely.
This reminds me of our days on the farm. Weeds are always a big problem, because they steal the vines’ food and water. Because of high labour costs, it’s no longer possible to weed by hand. So, farmers use pre-emergent herbicides. Just after winter the herbicide is sprayed on the soil in the rows among the vines. The last rains wash it into the soil.
If weeds germinate, they are killed by the pre-emergent herbicide before they even show above ground. And the row is clear of weeds for the most part of the year.
Let’s take precautions by using herbicides to ensure that we keep away from sin, keeping away from mud!
Scripture: 1 Timothy 6:11-12
What does the sin in your life look like?
Where do you have to stop?
Who do you have to ask for help?
Father, I know there are lots of weeds in my life. I know I have to kill them. I know I have to be on guard so that they don’t even germinate. I’m struggling. Amen.