Tuesday, June 7, 2011

It’s a Matter of Life and Death

            Have you ever been beckoned to go somewhere or do something because it was a matter of life and death?  Kids may try to get their parents’ attention by claiming their problem is a matter of life and death only for the parents to discover they are out of shampoo!  True life and death matters are much more serious than the absence of shampoo.  If “A” happens then you will live, but if “B” happens you will die.  So, how do Christians make sure that “A” happens so they can live?  Listen to the Father’s words.
The wisdom of the Proverbs has much to say about the dangers of adultery.  Adultery is no light matter in scripture, but it is a matter of life and death!  The wise man instructed his son, “…keep my commandments and live…” (Proverbs 7:2, ESV).  Then at the end of this lesson he said, Her house is the way to Sheol, going down to the chambers of death.” (Proverbs 7:27).  Sheol was thought by the ancients to be a pit beneath the earth that could only be reached through death.  One way to experience that death was to mess around in adultery.  Wisdom teaches us from millennia ago to stay away!
            Words are more powerful than we often give them credit for.  They have the power to build-up and to tear down.  It should be no surprise then that one of the most effective tools that an adulterer uses is words.  It is easy to justify playful flirting as just being nice or seductive jests as harmless jokes.  The truth is that these things are neither playful nor harmless.  The scriptures make it clear that the adulteress uses “smooth words” and to keep away from them (Proverbs 7:5).  With much seductive speech she persuades him; with her smooth talk she compels him. All at once he follows her, as an ox goes to the slaughter…he does not know that it will cost him his life.” (Proverbs 7:21–23).  Don’t be a dumb ox!  They go where they are guided with no thought of outcome.  As God’s precious children, let us have the foresight to keep from sin by realizing its consequences.  Let not your heart turn aside to her ways; do not stray into her paths” lest you find your way to Sheol on a path unintended (Proverbs 7:25).  Choose life.