Volume: 912 June 26, 2023
Theme: The Cost of Sin
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Psalm 94 and many other Scriptures ask the same question. How long are the wicked going to get away with their sin? We see and hear so many in blatant disregard to God’s moral laws and His desired behaviors, and we wonder how some seemingly get away with the terrible things they are doing.
“LORD, how long shall the wicked, how long shall the wicked triumph?” Psalm 94:3
The answer is they will not get away with sin. The payday for iniquity will come someday. It may be today; it may be ten years from now. They may appear unscathed from their wrongdoing in this life, but there is God’s promise that in the next, they will stand before a judge that will issue a verdict they will fear and regret.
As I told many Sunday school classes, no one gets away with sinning against God. True to that biblical promise, I have seen sinners pay a price for their wrongdoing that they never thought they would pay. The wage for their offense against God came after the transgression, bringing grief and regret that lasted much of their lives.
When raising my daughter, I remember her observation of one in our church that regularly committed sins. One day she commented, “See, so-and-so is doing this and that, but nothing is happening to them.”
My reply was, “Be patient. They won’t get away with it.” Sure enough, a time did come, several years later, that they received the wage for the transgression they had sown, and it was devastating.
God is the judge, and nothing escapes His scrutiny. Vengeance is His, and He will receive it (Psalm 94:1-2). All wrongdoing will be dealt with (Psalm 94:4-6).
A sinner may think their iniquity escaped the eye of the Lord, but it did not (Psalm 94:7-10). He even knows our thoughts (Psalm 94:11), so there is no escaping sin’s consequences. With this in mind, it is prudent and wise to flee sin and get as far away from it as possible.
“And he shall bring upon them their own iniquity, and shall cut them off in their own wickedness; yea, the LORD our God shall cut them off.” Psalm 94:23
“Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” Galatians 6:7
“… there are only two places for your sins: either they are on Christ or you. If they are on Christ, the judgment is passed; if they are not, you have only judgment to look forward to in the future.” — J. Vernon McGee
I have heard of one who kept a tame leopard in his house. He had nursed it when it was a cub, and it wandered and played about the house like a cat. One day, while the master was asleep, it licked his hand. The man’s blood flowed as the cat licked a place where the skin was thin and broken.
All the wild instincts of the beast of the forest flashed in its fierce eyes. The man suddenly awoke and saw the situation. His end was near unless he should be quick and skillful enough to destroy the animal.
Do you think he paused or hesitated? No. A loaded pistol was within reach, so he stretched out his hand quietly, grasped it firmly, aimed it steadily, fired it instantly, and the creature lay dead at his feet. It had come to the time that either he must kill it, or it would kill him.
It may be so with you. Your sins began to draw blood from you already. Those stings of conscience, that empty purse, or those alcohol-induced red eyes, are telling what sin can do. Not yet do you know all its horror. Before the leopard springs upon you and speedily tears you into pieces, God can help you give it up!
“Lusts of the flesh are much like enemy soldiers encamped within us, foraging amongst us, and ready to enforce their military control against us.”
— Author Unknown
“Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.” Romans 6:6
Christian, what hast thou to do with sin? Hath it not cost thee enough already?
Burnt child, wilt thou play with the fire? When thou hast already been between the jaws of the lion, wilt thou step a second time into his den?
Hast thou not had enough of the old serpent? Did he not poison all thy veins once, and wilt thou play upon the hole of the asp and put thy hand upon the cockatrice’s den a second time? Oh, be not so mad nor so foolish!
Did sin ever yield thee real pleasure? Didst thou find substantial satisfaction in it? If so, return to thine old drudgery and wear the chain of bondage again if it delights thee. Inasmuch as sin did never give thee what it promised to bestow, but deluded thee with lies, be not a second time snared by the old fowler; be free.
Let the remembrance of thy ancient bondage forbid thee to enter the net again! It is contrary to the designs of eternal love, which all have an eye to thy purity and holiness. Run not counter to the purposes of thy Lord.
Another thought should restrain thee from sin. Christians can never sin cheaply. They pay a heavy price for iniquity. Transgression destroys the peace of mind, obscures fellowship with Jesus, hinders prayer, and brings darkness over the soul. Therefore, be not the serf and bondman of sin.
There is yet a higher argument. Each time you “serve sin,” you have “Crucified the Lord afresh and put Him to an open shame.” Can you bear that thought? Oh! If you have fallen into any sin during this day, it may be my Master has sent this admonition today to bring you back before you have backslidden very far.
Turn thee to Jesus anew. He has not forgotten His love for thee. His grace is still the same. With weeping and repentance, come to His footstool, and thou shalt be once more received into His heart.
“True repentance hates the sin, and not merely the penalty…” — Taylor
When working with young people, I often tried to get them to deal with the sin in their lives. Sin was usually the culprit behind most problems they had. After discussing the wrongdoing they were involved in, and what the Bible said about it, I sometimes heard the remark, “Oh, God just doesn’t want me to have any fun.”
The reason God wants all to keep away from sin has nothing to do with prohibiting us from any “fun.” He knows that sin always hurts someone, and that is why God hates sin so much. Getting involved in iniquity ruins marriages, robs people of joy, shortens lives, destroys and wastes futures, causes physical problems, shortcircuits proper thinking, and has thousands of other terrible side effects. No wonder God detests sin!
There is also another very important reason God abhors sin. God knows that there is a terrible price tag on all sin. Unless one’s sin is paid for by trusting only on the shed sacrifice of Jesus’ blood, there is an eternal price for our iniquities.
Just as one works all week and expects a wage for their labor, so will it be at the end of our lives. For the unsaved, the wage for their sins will be an eternity in the Lake of Fire. That is unfortunate news, but there can be good news. The good news is that there is a gift from God that will save all sinners that believe and request it. It is the gift of eternal life in Heaven by receiving Christ as Saviour.
“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 6:23.
“You can make choices freely, but you cannot determine the consequences of those choices.” — Barbara Brinkworth
A vessel sailing from Joppa carried a passenger, who, beneath his berth, cut a hole through the ship’s side. The men on the watch reprimanded the unthinking man.
“What doest thou, O miserable man?” they cried.
The offender calmly replied, “What matters it to you? The hole I have made lies under my berth.”
The passenger finally saw his folly as the whole ship began to sink. Sailor’s lives were endangered. Merchants lost their livelihoods as their onboard cargo was lost at sea. One man’s foolishness cost so many very much.
No man perishes alone in his iniquity. No man can guess the full consequences of his transgression, but usually others suffer from another’s sin.
The Burglar in the Heart
C. H. Spurgeon
I do not believe that a man becomes a villain all at once. He puts his soul to school. His thoughts are his teachers, or rather, they are the schoolbooks in which his soul reads. At last, he becomes capable of transacting the deeds of a scoundrel.
If you think long upon any sin, the chances are that as soon as the temptation to that sin comes, you will commit it. Beware then of all thoughts of sin.
If you show a thief all the locks and bolts and bars in your house and tell him how the cellar window could be opened or the back door be made to give way, do not be surprised if one night you should find all your goods stolen. If you introduce these evil thoughts into your habitation, you should not wonder about the consequences.