Thursday, May 23, 2024

May 23, 2024

Listen to the Word

When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.  (James 1:13-15)

James gives us what we might call a genealogy of temptation: Desire is the mother of sin, and sin is the mother of death. “Gives birth to death” might be the most ironic, disgusting, but accurate phrase in the Bible.

There is a short and sure progression. We desire the wrong things. That desire consistently leads to sinful actions. And the sinful action consistently leads to death. “Death” may seem like an exaggeration of the result of sin, but I’m sure you have seen it happen. Sin can kill relationships and careers, for starters. It slaughters your self-respect. And it leaves you spiritually lifeless, dead to the loving action of God in your life.

Your harmful desires may look appealing in the moment, but without fail, they lead to death.

Live the Word

Ask God to give you the wisdom to see the long-term disaster that can come from flirting with unhealthy desires. Tell him you want to go his way, which leads to life.