February 11th

Enslaved by Sexual Sin 

26I find more bitter than death the woman who is a snare, whose heart is a trap and whose hands are chains. The man who pleases God will escape her, but the sinner she will ensnare.  Ecclesiastes 7:26 NIV 

8 No man has power over the wind to contain it; so no one has power over the day of his death. As no one is discharged in time of war, so wickedness will not release those who practice it.  Ecclesiastes 8:8 NIV 

11In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus. 12Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. 13Do not offer the parts of your body to sin, as instruments of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer the parts of your body to him as instruments of righteousness. 14For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace. Romans 6:11-14 NIV 

King Solomon most likely wrote the above verses from Ecclesiastes in his later years.  Who better to write about the enslaving nature of sexual sin than the man who had hundreds of wives and concubines?  The scripture tells us that Solomon’s love for foreign women eventually led to his plunge into idolatry.  The women led his heart astray: “his wives turned his heart after other gods, and his heart was not fully devoted to the LORD his God” (1 Kings 11:4 NIV).    

In the first verse above, the woman can be used metaphorically as sexual sin in general.  As in the first few chapters of Proverbs, Solomon here also warns people to steer clear of sexual sin. Those who do not will be ensnared by it.  Regardless of gender, sexual sin can enslave people when they give it an opportunity to do so.  It is the type of slave master who does not release its victims once they are ensnared.  It seeks to consume every area of the slave’s life. 

God created us to have dominion over the earth and to subdue it (Genesis 1:28).  At the fall of Adam and Eve, the devil usurped man’s dominion and was given the power of death.  When Jesus died and rose from the dead, he took dominion away from the devil.  And now those who believe in Jesus rightfully inherit that dominion over the earth, the forces of evil and sin.  Paul explained in the above passage from Romans that we are not to allow sin to reign in our bodies.  We have dominion over sin and have the freedom to use our bodies to please God. 

It is possible that the reason so many people are still living under sin’s rule is that they either don’t believe that they have dominion over sin through Christ, or that they simply enjoy practicing sin such that they don’t want to give it up.  Solomon’s words still hold true – those who practice sin will not be released by it.  

If you have been living as a slave to sin, you can throw off the chains of slavery and live in freedom to please God.  This is done by reckoning yourself dead to sin and alive to God, and taking your rightful place as a co-heir to the dominion that Christ won back.  Instead of practicing sin, you are free to practice living for God. 

Questions for further thought:

Prayer:

“Lord Jesus, Thank you for dying in my place on the cross and rising from the dead. Thank you for winning back dominion for us over evil, sin and death.  I confess that I have sinned against you.  I repent from my sin and ask for your forgiveness.  I reckon myself by faith today with you.  I am dead to sin and no longer respond to its temptations.  I am a new creation, alive to God through you, Jesus!  I present my body, soul and spirit as instruments of righteousness.  Lord, please guide me and train me in how to practice righteousness each day and steer clear of all sin, especially sexual sin.  Thank you, Jesus!  In your name I pray, Amen.”