Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh shall from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit shall from the Spirit reap eternal life. Galatians 6:7-8
When I was in fifth grade, I went with my friend Mike to a game room in our small town in Los Altos, CA. The game rooms back in the early 70’s were not super advanced like today. Pinball machines ruled the roost.
Mike and I were looking at the different machines to see which game to play when an older kid asked us if we wanted to take over his pinball game. He said he had to go but had several games already paid up. If we wanted to take his offer, he would give us the games at a reduced rate. It sounded like a good deal, very much worth the two dollars price tag. The only problem: he was lying. I still remember innocently waiting for him to come back from the bathroom to give me the change that he owed me, but he never returned. Instead he slipped out the back door with my money—$2.00 was a lot back then, especially to a kid. I learned a lesson that day about liars, cheats, and deceivers.
Have you ever been deceived? Have you ever had someone promise you something good, only to find that the promise was a lie?
THE MASTER DECEIVER
When it comes to deception, no one is more cunning and crafty than the devil. He is such a clever deceiver. Like a master fisherman dangling deliciously-looking bait before the fish, so Satan dangles the forbidden fruit of sin before our eyes, promising something good and satisfying if we will only take a little bite. But, he never tells us about the barbed hook hidden beneath, does he? Of course not.
You know what I have found to be true? When the devil comes at us with some forbidden fruit that we KNOW is wrong and sinful, he always makes us feel like we can handle it … we can get away with it. The devil says, “God knows and understands that you are weak in this temptation. He doesn’t expect you to be perfect. And after all, you know you want to. And it will feel so good. Furthermore, you can handle it. The pleasure will always outweigh any consequences, if there are even any to be found.”
Does that sound familiar?
As you and I fixate on the forbidden, as Eve did with the fruit, it is only a matter of time before we bite and experience the passing pleasure. The thrills and chills of the forbidden fade quickly as the hook is set. Dr. Robert G. Lee used to say, “You can eat the devil’s corn if you want to, but he’ll choke you on the cob.”
How many people do you know who deceivingly thought: I won’t get caught … I won’t get pregnant … I won’t get an STD … I won’t get discovered … I won’t get hooked. Ah, but you will. Play with fire and you’ll eventually get burned. The same is true of sin.
God is not mocked. No one sins and gets away with it. Everyone reaps what he sows. You may not reap it today … or tomorrow, but the harvest is coming.
Are you sowing to the flesh? Are you thinking your sin will go unnoticed? Think again. God says, “Be sure your sin will find you out” (Numbers 32:32).
In the tragedy of the fall of Ted Haggard, it was reported by his homosexual lover that Ted told him as they were watching pornography in bed, “You see, you can still serve God and have a little fun on the side.” He was so deceived … and his world soon came crashing down as harvest time came and the hook was set.
My friend, I don’t know where you are today, but I want to encourage you to take a sober inventory of your life and actions. If you are dabbling in immorality, financial impropriety, online gambling, or drugs and alcohol, you are playing with fire and need to turn around before it is too late … before the hook is set.
Get your eyes off the sin and onto the Savior. His ways are ALWAYS right. He will bless you with joy and peace IF, IF, IF you will obey His voice and sow to the Spirit.
Jeff Schreve is Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church in Texarkana, Texas. He and his wife Debbie have been married for over 20 years and are blessed with three wonderful girls. Jeff began From His Heart Ministries, a radio and television ministry, in January of 2005. This ministry is completely listener/viewer supported. It continues only through the faithful and generous gifts of people like you. Pastor Jeff takes no salary from this ministry. All gifts go to further the broadcast.