January 8 I Saturday
“…for ‘people are slaves to whatever has mastered them.’” —2 Peter 2:19
In the opening verse of this devotion, Peter gives us wisdom as he points out when something masters us, we become its slave. To be a slave of men, a slave of the law or a slave of depravity are all different aspects of being slaves to sin. We become a slave to sin when we begin to submit ourselves to whatever it is that begins to dominate, rule and govern our life. Paul tells us that we continue in this slavery of sin as we “offer yourselves as slaves to impurity and to ever-increasing wickedness, so now offer yourselves as slaves to righteousness leading to holiness” (Romans 6:19). Paul makes the point that as we offer our bodies as slaves to sin, or impurity, there is an ever-increasing wickedness. This is something that we should be aware of: sin is not static. Its impact and effect grow over time.
One of the most important parts of us and one of the most fragile parts about us is our conscience. The conscience is the voice of God in the human soul. Romans 2:14-15 tells us that even for those who do not know the law, they have the revelation of what God requires because of their conscience.
When we wilfully sin, we violate that conscience. In Paul’s letter to Timothy, he writes of the results of those who violated their conscience: “…a good conscience, which some have rejected and so have suffered shipwreck with regard to the faith” (1 Timothy 1:19). When a person rejects their conscience, they have shipwrecked their faith. When we have damaged our conscience, we find it easier to sin than we used to.
May we take some time to reflect and ask ourselves: are there things in our life today that we would have been shocked about five years ago, or even ten years ago? Do we allow little things that we know are not right, but look attractive and seem as though they would be beneficial to us? God tells us, “Sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it” (Genesis 4:7).
Sometimes, when we could recognize sin and reject it, but we do not, we allow it to grow until it begins to control us. For a short while, sin can be fun, as long as we can get away with it, but Numbers 32:23 reveals, “…you may be sure that your sin will find you out.” The only gifts that sin has to give us are shame and death. May we not let sin rule in our lives, but submit to God.
Prayer: Sovereign God, thank You for giving me a conscience to guide my life. Help me to rule over sin, as I give my life to You.