Tuesday, October 23, 2007

A Matter Of Choice

If the following post seems unsympathetic, it was not intended to be. If some will come away after reading this post with the question of 'where's the love?' I assure you, it is love that compels me to commit these thoughts to actual words on a screen. Too often men retreat to justifying certain sins in their lives, when confronted with them, by saying the person that pointed them out did so in an unloving fashion, and so they cannot receive the rebuke. I could, at this time throw out the tired cliche of 'love hurts', but in my defense, I have not resorted to calling anyone 'the offspring of a viper!', so I'm still ahead in the loving rebuke category.
For the past few weeks I have been counseling a young man who's had some trouble dealing with sin in his life, and as the Word admonishes us to do, I have pointed him to the Bible, to the words of Christ, and the apostles in the hope that he would resist the temptation laid before him, and pursue righteousness with zeal and commitment. Every couple days, I get a heartbreaking e-mail that, he has relapsed into his old life, and when I press him as to why he would do such a thing, his answer is always, in one variation or another 'the devil made me do it.'
So today I would like to dispel this myth, that the devil really does make us do it, and bring the focus back on yes, you guessed it, us, ourselves, and the individual accountability and responsibility we have before God of resisting temptation, of standing firm and resolute in the face of the enemy's snares.
Evil, or sin, as relates to man, is the result of a wrong choice while under the influence of temptation. Satan's offer, becomes sin for us, only when we choose it, and accept it as an alternative to walking with Christ in purity and righteousness. Temptation was invented by the enemy, and looking at all the victims it has left in its wake, at least from his point of view, temptation was a genius means of distracting the children of God from their primary goal. Once men give in to temptation, they open the door to deception, and the progression leads, if ever so slowly, down into the abyss, further and further away from light and truth.
Sin is always a matter of personal choice,the outcome of giving in to some external temptation, we knew all along we should avoid and resist. Lucifer chose to rebel against God, blinded by his pride and desire to be the greatest in the kingdom.
By continually choosing to give in to the temptations that the devil lays at our feet, given enough time we become his slaves. Man is a being with the freedom to choose, he can decide and perceive the difference between good and evil.
Animals have no conscience, they are not aware that they are committing evil, even when they cause pain or suffering. I saw the perfect example of this, when my father in law's dog, a dog he had had for over ten years, bit him on the hand for trying to take away a bone.
Progressively, man becomes a sure victim of the temptation to which he succumbs repeatedly. Temptation is by its very definition tempting, it beguiles us, and if we allow it to overcome us, it births sin in our hearts. Once sin is committed, once man has given in to temptation, or desire, absent of repentance, and yes I use repentance in its strictest definition (turning away from), he becomes ensnared.
The conscience of every man has been stamped with the knowledge of good and evil, and like a permanent watermark it remains there in spite of the ethical relativism, (the means by which men corrupt the definitions of morality), that is being promoted in the world today.
Evil multiplies quite easily and rapidly in the hearts of those who are open to it, all it needs is the right environment, and the right environment for evil is any soul which it was able to drag away from the light of truth, into the darkness of sin. Evil is the primary virus, which has infested the human race, and as any virus it continually changes its identity, morphing into new strains, to escape detection, but its essence always remains the same. Evil travels the same paths, knocks on the same doors, offers the same temptations, incognito as it were, and men continually allow themselves to be beguiled by its appearance, and choose it over the simplicity of a life in Christ.
Hidden under a variety of masks, evil always promises something that seems to good to be true, never there when the time comes to keep its end of the bargain, but always there to collect its pound of flesh in the form of the painful consequences that follow men's fall into temptation.
All the enemy offers, all he is able to offer, are poisonous, spoiled, bitter fruit, which he is able to make seem good, ripe and nourishing. It is only an illusion, and once the first bite is taken, many a tear is wept, for those who have fallen into the snare, those who have taken a bite of the devil's fruit realize that they have sold eternity, for a mouthful of wormy apple.
Sin is the centrifugal force that brings man further and further away from God, until finally man is no longer within God's gravitational field, lost and irredeemable, unable to return to the source of joy and peace. A man who continually chooses to give in to sin, is forever lost in the alternative universe, complicit in his own demise, all the while beguiled by the whispers, 'this is freedom, this is freedom.'
Good, is the ethical expression of truth, while evil being the alternative to good, is the moral expression of deception. When Lucifer realized the enormity of his misstep, he immediately attempted to hide it behind false affirmations, and attempted justifications, something all those who choose evil are want to do. The plain truth is this, the final consequence of choosing sin, of choosing evil, of betraying both the cross and the sacrifice Christ made, is death, a death that comes at the end of a lifetime of struggle, hate, suffering and frustration, then comes eternity.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.


Anonymous said...

It's beautiful to see the wisdom of the Lord and how He dealt with everyone who came to Him in a unique manner.
Most limp believer's today would judge Him as unloving and quite rude and nasty.
He knows how serious we are about giving up those sins which keep us seperated from Him and the peace, real life,power to overcome,love,freedom,living water He wants to give us.
If we are not as serious as this woman, this mother was we will not recieve anything.
She made sure no obstacles were in her way,not even her pride.
We don't want to give up our self made sin obstacles is the problem.
Jesus has all the power to set us fre IF,IF,IF we really want.
There is really no excuse like you said Michael.
The devil didn't make him do it.
Thats a cop out ,a lie.
he wants to do it.
Get serious ,stop playing games and Jesus will set you free.
I know from experience.
I don't think God has time for any who want to play religious games.
The fruit of sin never remains stagnant,it is always growing to an eventual harvest.
God said ,'My spirit will not always strive with man.'
I knew in my heart when the Lord said this to me, it was time to turn away NOW or that was it ,the end.
We see evil exploding ,God has given many over to their lusts and as it was in the days of Noah the harvest of judgment comes upon the earth.

Then Jesus went out from there and departed to the region of Tyre and Sidon. 22 And behold, a woman of Canaan came from that region and cried out to Him, saying, "Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David! My daughter is severely demon-possessed."
But He answered her not a word.
And His disciples came and urged Him, saying, "Send her away, for she cries out after us."
But He answered and said, "I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel."
Then she came and worshiped Him, saying, "Lord, help me!"
But He answered and said, "It is not good to take the children's bread and throw it to the little dogs."
And she said, "Yes, Lord, yet even the little dogs eat the crumbs which fall from their masters' table."
Then Jesus answered and said to her, "O woman, great is your faith! Let it be to you as you desire." And her daughter was healed from that very hour.

And this is what He had to say about the offended religious folk.
I know He is saying the same to them today.

Then His disciples came and said to Him, "Do You know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this saying?"
But He answered and said, "Every plant which My heavenly Father has not planted will be uprooted. 14 Let them alone. They are blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind leads the blind, both will fall into a ditch."

Matt 15

Anonymous said...



Many people are stuggling with things they don't know how to just bring the will power to stop..

lets not forget ROMANS THE 7TH chapter....

love you bro.

Elm Street Chapel said...

It is true that sin is a choice, just as salvation is a choice, and receiving the baptism of the Holy Spirit is choice.

The enemy entices us, but cannot make us sin. And the truth is we are to rejoice that we are worthy to be tempted. However, we should not give in to this temptation, because when lust is conceived, it brings forth sin and the end of sin is death.

James 1:14-16
But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.Then when lust hath conceived,it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death. Do not err, my beloved brethren.

In Him,

Elm Street Chapel said...

I believe that you can only be caught away by your own lusts. God can give you a right heart and a right attitude to draw to Him. God does not allow those who love Him to be tempted beyond their strength to resist or escape. Temptation can actually cause you to be stronger. The trick is that you must do your part and God will do His. That said, if you don't want to quite sin you won't and cannot. Another thing that we as modern day Christians don't do is turn people over to Satan so they will repent. When deliverence doesn't do, the heart is wrong, and continually lusts. Decisions to serve God must be absolute.

James 1:14
14But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.

Psalm 51:10
10Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.

1 Corinthians 10:13
13There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.

James 1
2My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;
3Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.
4But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.
5If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.
6But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.
7For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord.
8A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.
9Let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted:

Matthew 6:24
24No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

Anonymous said...

This is so true, Michael and I expect many of us can relate to knowing the fruit of a sin-filled life. How thankful I am, that He has saved me from what I could have become, and the error that I even embraced for a time! Praise His wonderful Name. Enjoyed your comments also, Marcel - yes, we have to want Him with everything in us, and it means resisting and striving against sin even unto the shedding of blood if necessary (Hebrews 12:4). That is what a holy God thinks of sin, it is no mere trifle.
I wonder whether any kind brothers and sisters reading my comments could please pray for my oldest son (Tom) who is a 'goth' by terminology but dangerously following Satan to a very dark place in his sin and rebellion.
Thank you.

Anonymous said...

I will pay for Tom,that the power of God will break the stronghold of Satan over your son.

I found this today and wanted to pass it on to others.
I heard Pastor Vincent say it was spoken in Nov. 06 from Maryland.

A Time For Holy Fire