Sin is crouching at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it." Genesis 4:7b (NAS)
Georgino's Hunting and Fishing Store wasn't very big but it was popular. Many times, Harold had gone in to the store to buy fishing bait so he could go fishing with Barney but this time he wasn't after fishing bait. As Harold slipped through the door a little bell rang and he heard a voice call out from the back of the store “I'll be with you in a minute.”
After what seemed like ages, Georgino, the man that had called out, sneaked up behind Harold and dropped a fishing net over his head. “I caught you, Harold.” he said “Now what kind of bait can I sell you this time.” “I'm not here for bait this time, Georgino” Harold said as he threw the net off his head, “But You may be able to help me.”
“Helping customers is what I do best.” Georgino said as he put the net aside, “How may I help you today?” “I need to catch an animal.” Harold told him. “Well, than” Georgino replied, “You’ve come to the right place. I can help you catch just about any kind of animal you can think of. So, what kind of animal do you want to catch?
“A black cat.” Harold told Georgino, “The kind that has a white stripe running down its back.” “Ooooh,” Georgino responded, “One of those kind of critters. Well, Harold, I think I can help you but you need to know that skunks are not cats.” “I know.” Harold laughed, “But I still want to catch the one that's been getting into our garbage.”
“Well, them, come this way.”Georgino said as he led Harold to aisle 3. In aisle 3 Harold saw lots of funny looking contraptions and as he stood there wondering what they were, Georgino started telling Harold what he thought would be the best trap to use. “Since you live in town,” Georgino told Harold, “You're not going to want a leg-hold trap as you would have to shoot it afterwards and you might get sprayed.” When he heard that, Harold let out a gasp.
“I don't want to shoot it!” Harold declared. “I wouldn't think so.” Georgino said as he picked up what looked like.. “Uhm.” Harold puzzled, “What is that?” “It's a conibear.” Georgino said, “It's the perfect trap for that skunk you want to get.” and then Georgino proceeded to show Harold how it would put a death grip on his skunk and Harold proceeded to faint.
When Harold finally came to he thanked Georgino for his time and said he wanted his pet alive and than he took off as fast as he could. As he wandered the back alleys home, Harold thought about his desire for a skunk and wondered if he should choose something else. About a block from his house, he caught some movement out of the corner of his eye and in a flash a black cat came barrelling towards him chasing a rather large rat. “Rats.” Harold said and then he started to grin, “I know I saw them at the pet store.”
How many of you have ever wanted to catch a skunk – alive – for a pet? I'm not sure I know of anyone out side of Harold who would want to catch a skunk alive. I think most people who would want to catch a skunk would want to catch it like Georgino – to kill it. To do that a trap can work wonders, especially the conibear – it would grab on and not let go killing its victim. Sin is no different. Like a trap it grabs on to it's victim and doesn't let go, killing it's victim, usually much slower than the conibear, more like the leg-hold trap.
In Genesis we read about some men that came to Lot and told them to flee but the sins of the city apparently had to much of a hold on them. Told to run for their lives they wouldn't leave. Told not to look back one couldn't resist.
Then the men said to Lot, "Have you anyone else here? Sons-in-law, sons, daughters, or anyone you have in the city, bring them out of the place. For we are about to destroy this place, because the outcry against its people has become great before the LORD, and the LORD has sent us to destroy it." So Lot went out and said to his sons-in-law, who were to marry his daughters, "Up! Get out of this place, for the LORD is about to destroy the city." But he seemed to his sons-in-law to be jesting. As morning dawned, the angels urged Lot, saying, "Up! Take your wife and your two daughters who are here, lest you be swept away in the punishment of the city." But he lingered. So the men seized him and his wife and his two daughters by the hand, the LORD being merciful to him, and they brought him out and set him outside the city. And as they brought them out, one said, "Escape for your life. Do not look back or stop anywhere in the valley. Escape to the hills, lest you be swept away." And Lot said to them, "Oh, no, my lords. Behold, your servant has found favor in your sight, and you have shown me great kindness in saving my life. But I cannot escape to the hills, lest the disaster overtake me and I die. Behold, this city is near enough to flee to, and it is a little one. Let me escape there—is it not a little one?—and my life will be saved!" He said to him, "Behold, I grant you this favor also, that I will not overthrow the city of which you have spoken. Escape there quickly, for I can do nothing till you arrive there." Therefore the name of the city was called Zoar. The sun had risen on the earth when Lot came to Zoar. Then the LORD rained on Sodom and Gomorrah sulfur and fire from the LORD out of heaven. And he overthrew those cities, and all the valley, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and what grew on the ground. But Lot's wife, behind him, looked back, and she became a pillar of salt.
Genesis 19:12-26 (ESV)
Such was the grip that Lot and his family had to be drug away, such was the grip that Lot's wife turned back and turned to a pillar of salt. Such is the grip of sin on any of us if we hold on to it for sin wants us.
- Sin desires us - Genesis 4:7 - "If you do well, will not your countenance be lifted up? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it." (NAS)
- Sin Entangles us - Hebrews 12:1Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, (NAS)
- Sin kills us - Romans 7:11 for sin, taking an opportunity through the commandment, deceived me and through it killed me. (NAS)
In Romans we read these words of advice Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its lusts, and do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. Romans 6:12-13 (NAS)
Here's Something To Ponder
- Like a trap, How is sin holding on to you?
- In what ways are you holding on to sin?