We all love our guilty pleasures, however, when the guilty pleasures start to fill the hole intended for God to fill, this IS sin.
We have all seen many changes. Attitudes have changed. Language has changed. The meaning of language has changed. One that particularly hit me is the meaning of the word sin.
Once upon a time the word ‘sin’ meant something. Proverbs depicts sin as very serious. If it were a movie it would be rated R. Having knowledge of sin opened the 'doorway to the gospel.' In today's world, sin has been downgraded to PG-13. Now, it’s just an extra piece of chocolate cake.
The question is: Did Jesus die on the cross for just an extra piece of cake? If this is how the world sees things, then why do we need a crucified savior?
PROVERBS 26:11 A dog returns to his own vomit, so a fool returns to his folly.
Although the world we live in doesn’t take sin seriously, God still does. The vile image of a dog returning to its own vomit is how God sees it. And it’s exactly how we need to see it too.
So not only does the image reveal something of how God sees our sin, but it also reveals something of the nature of sin.
Why do we sin?
First, a dog doesn’t have a problem eating its own vomit...they’re used to vomiting. Maybe the food is too spicy or the flavor is different. Vomiting could be an everyday occurrence for the dog. In comparison, humans have cast iron stomachs...it takes a lot to make us sick.
But dogs are different. After they eat and they fall ill, they just see it as just the way it is. So, dogs have no problem woofing it down again. It’s that failure to recognize it that makes it so easy for the dog to carry on. People sometimes don't recognize their own sin, so they just carry on with it.
We don’t see it as God sees it; we don’t recognize it for what it is. Failing to see sin far too often in our actions may cause us to have no problem woofing it down again. We eat it because like the dog we don’t have a problem with it.
Second, we eat it because we’re used to it. It’s hard for us to change our sinful nature. Sin has become an unnatural part of who we are. For some, it’s so deep that we can’t even see it. We’re like the dog and his ‘eat anything’ habit. We’ve gotten used to sin.
Third, we do it because we think we need it. Dogs re-ingest their vomit because they think they need it. When a person has something missing in their diet, they take vitamins. For a dog, the richest source of vitamins is probably what they ate last night.
A reason why we sin is because we think sin offers us something we need. We spend so much time and energy chasing stuff that makes us happy. Is that sin? Yeah you better believe it. God is supposed to fill that space, that's why he made it. It’s sin to try and fill our needs with anything else.
I guess we don’t really see sin in the same way God does, but when you see it as vomit, and your stomach starts to churn a little, then you can start to realize how bad it really is. It should repulse us, but often that’s not enough. We actually need to reboot and figure out the behavior that got us in our current state.
The first thing is obvious...you need to name it for what it is – Sin. Then, you need to keep away from it. If something causes you to trip, avoid it. Try and recognize that it’s bad for you...it’s not what you need. Recognize that it’s an issue. Don’t brush it under the rug because vomit stinks...deal with it.
Give it to God. He hates it but he can deal with it. His Holy Spirit is there to help you overcome your sickness. Someone said to me a few months back that this whole thing doesn’t fit. How can we say God loves us, when He sees us for what we are? A vomit eating fool.
I guess we need to realize that God’s love is bigger than our eating habits. He loves us even if there’s a string of vomit hanging from our chins.
Maybe you feel as though you have done something so disgusting that you feel God could never want you back.
Are you a fool?
Mistakes are inevitable; we’re all going to make them. Every now and then, you’re going to “vomit”. But when you do, learn why it happened and resolve to never do it again. The fool is not the one who makes a mistake and sins, but the one who continually makes the same mistake without learning from it.
The good news is that there is a way back to God. As you give the contents of your sick bag to God...there is a way to forgiveness.