Poison Ivy

by Mike Barres

For years, my wife had been able to handle poison ivy with no effects. It never bothered her in the least. One summer, she got in a really good mood and decided to do some yard work in the back yard. She decided she would get rid of some of that pesky poison ivy. She cut and slashed and then grabbed a great big bundle of it to throw it into the pile of brush. You can guess what happened the next day. She was covered with a burning rash on her arms and face. Sin is a lot like that. We think we can handle it, and that it isn't hurting us, but eventually we will feel the pain.

But the thing is, you may pay later on, rather than right away. That is part of the deception of the devil. Just like in the garden of Eden he is saying, "go ahead, it won't hurt you." Sometimes we do "go ahead," and sure enough it doesn't hurt us ... not immediately anyway. Jesus, however, reminds us of the truth about Satan.

"... When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it." John 8:44 NKJV)

"The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy." (John 10:10)

We must remember, sin does hurt us.

If a child is told to keep his hands off of the stove because it will burn him if he touches it, he may just try it to see when mom or dad aren't looking. He may do it and not get burned several times, but eventually he will get burned. That is the way it is with sin. Satan sometimes allows us to escape consequences until it is most harmful to us and those we love.

We must remember. Sin does hurt us. It always hurts. It hurts us even when we don't see the consequences:

God is our loving heavenly Father, and He doesn't want to see us hurt ourselves. One of the reasons He tells us not to do things is that He knows that they will cause us problems.

Sin will have a price tag that we will have to pay, sooner or later. These consequences are often very painful and long lasting.

Sin hurts our relationship with God. If He is our father and we love him, then we shouldn't be rebellious and do things He says not to do. Not only does the sin hurt us, our rebellion is a lot like slapping Him in the face.

The old saying is right, "Sin will take you further than you want to go, cost you more than you want to pay, and keep you longer than you want to stay."

"See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called 'Today,' so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original conviction firmly to the very end"  Hebrews 3:12-14