I used to think this verse, “And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the Kingdom of God with one eye, rather than having two eyes, to be cast into hell fire” sounded so harsh (Mark 9:47). However, after years of observing the devastation of sin in people’s lives: destroyed marriages, relationships, families,health and all that sin leaves in its wake, I now feel that I can see the heart of Jesus in this verse. It seems to say, “sin is NOT WORTH IT; do whatever it takes to get it out of your life, nothing is too extreme in your pursuit of freedom from sin”. In His great love for us He wants to protect us from the destruction and devastation that sin brings. “For the wages of sin is death BUT the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23). Choose His gift of life. Abundant life is available for us as we choose Him and His way each day for He is the Way, the Truth and the Life (John 14:6). Let’s say YES to walking with Jesus and determine to partner with Him in eradicating sin from our lives so that we can walk in His fullness. He gives perfect peace, joy unspeakable and full of glory, a sound mind and so much more as we learn to renew our minds to line up with His truth, His way and His life. Don’t settle for what sin is offering you because it is only temporal and in the end can only bring death and separation from God. Have faith in the One who gave His life for you, that He can also empower and enable you to live and walk in victory over sin.
Scripture references: Matthew 5:29-30; Mark 9:43-48; Philippians 4:7; John 10:10, 14:27, 15:11, 17:13; 1 Peter 1:8; Romans 12:2, 15:13
Fear- What a strong emotion. At times fear can appear to be a protector. It protects us from breaking the law, doing harmful things and taking unnecessary risk. If we take a deeper look at these fears however, we may find that they are all actually based in a fear of man. The fear of manmade consequences to our action, fear of man’s retaliation, or disappointing, hurting or failing someone. On the flip side fear can be the very thing that keeps us from doing the thing that we should do or want to do. If we look deeper into these fears we may find as well, that they are steeped in a fear of man. Fear of failing, disappointing, angering or hurting someone as well as a fear of doing any of these things to ourselves. Many times the main fear is that we will look or appear stupid. Fear can appear to help us at times but it can also be a strong inhibitor in our lives. So, in light of these facts, what do we do with fear? How about we exchange our fear for trusting and following God. If we focus on following His precepts and doing as He leads and directs us we no longer have a need for fear. He now becomes our protector and deliverer. We can trust that He will only lead us to do things that are in our best interest and for that matter, things that line up with our laws along with the laws of nature that He created. He has placed so many gifts, callings, and abilities in each one of us that I would hate for any of us to miss out on due to fear. Next time you feel a fear rise up in you, I would encourage you to stop and get God’s perspective on the situation. As we learn to walk out this journey with Him, I trust we will find that there truly is no need for fear.
Let us come out of agreement with fear and place our hope and trust in a God who will never leave us of forsake us. For He is perfect love and perfect love cast out fear. 1 John 4:18
“For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you, ”So we may boldly say:
“The Lord is my helper;
I will not fear.
What can man do to me?”