March 31, 2009 • By Ed Wrather
For the ways of man are before the eyes of the Lord, and He ponders all his paths. His own iniquities entrap the wicked man, and he is caught in the cords of his sin. - Proverbs 3:21-22 NKJV.
Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass (caught in a sin - NIV), you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted. - Galatians 6:1 NKJV.
Victor Harris stopped at a 7-Eleven convenience store, so he could put some fuel additive into his vehicle. As he was pouring the additive into the tank, a paper lid fell off, and into the tank. Victor tried to use his index finger to reach the lid; at least he tried until his finger became stuck. His finger was caught, and he could not get it out. This happened at about 5:00 a.m. and by seven or eight o’clock Victor said his hand began to get numb, and he started to become a little nervous about the situation. The Fire Department was finally called, and after about four hours they were able to cut out a section of the fuel pipe. Victor was taken to a nearby hospital where they were able to remove his finger, and he received a couple of stitches. It was even a little more embarrassing for Victor, because he is an employee at the hospital.
It is unlikely that Victor Harris will ever experience a similar incident in his life again. Why? Because, he learned a lesson about sticking his hand and finger into a place like that. It would be great if we could learn all of life’s lessons so well that we would never repeat our mistakes. Sin, however, is a mistake that all too often we keep repeating over and over. Why? Because we are caught by sin just as surely as Victor’s finger was caught in the fuel pipe.
Sin is a hunter which catches its prey. Sin catches us. We become “caught in the cords” of sin. Our “iniquities entrap” us, and although we may think of a sin as a single event; once we have sinned, we are caught, entrapped. As a result, we sin again and again. Those who have battled an addiction understand this, because even when they want to stop it is very difficult to do so. However, it is the same for other sins. You tell a lie, and the next lie is easier, and sometimes because of the lie you first told you have to tell additional lies to cover up that first lie. You steal, and then you steal some more. You become caught by your sin.
The very best thing that we can do is to avoid being caught by sin in the first place. However, after sin has caught you - what do you do? How do you escape the trap of sin? You cannot escape on your own. It is a spiritual trap, and requires a supernatural solution. Jesus is the solution. The apostle Paul says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (Philippians 4:13).” Jesus has what you need to escape from the trap of sin. First, you need forgiveness, and Jesus is the One who can give you the forgiveness that you need (1 John 1:9). Then, you need the resources, the empowerment to keep you free, and Jesus has those resources. Put on the armor of God (Ephesians 6:10-11), read and study the Word of God (Matthew 4:4; 2 Timothy 3:16-17), and be faithful in attending church (Hebrews 10:24-25).
Jesus has what you need to avoid the trap of sin, and if you are caught in sin; Jesus has what you need to escape and remain free from sin.