Never doubt the power of sin
New York’s governor resigned this week amid a prostitution scandal.
Gov. Eliot Spitzer’s shocking downfall clearly underscores sin’s devastating power. Proverbs 5:22-23 warns, "An evil man is held captive by his own sins; they are ropes that catch and hold him. He will die for lack of self-control; he will be lost because of his great foolishness."
This prominent, successful politician was a man held captive by his sins.
He was dragged into a pit of destruction by the ropes of his own appetites.
But we should not respond with self-righteousness, satisfaction or mockery.
It would be hypocritical for anyone to make light of another person’s difficulty. Proverbs 24:17 says, "Don’t [even] rejoice when your enemies fall. Don’t be happy when they stumble."
God says He takes no pleasure in the destruction of any who perish, however foolish their actions. Any of us can stumble or be held captive by appetites and desires. Anyone can be like the man in another Proverb who "followed her… like an ox to a slaughter."
If you have ever had any form of compulsion in your life, you know that it seems bigger than a monkey on your back. It feels more like a gorilla. I weep over what has happened. I am not only moved with compassion for the terrible humiliation that has come to the governor, but for the tremendous and, apart from inner grace, unbearable pain that his wife and three teenage daughters bear. I find myself lifting them up before our mighty God in continual intercessory prayer that they may find strength and the ability to forgive their father and not allow bitterness from disappointment to prevail. Hopefully, he will be broken and repentant, so that family relationships can be restored and he can gain new wisdom to make more sensible choices in the future.
We should also pray for Ashley Dupre, the call girl to whom the world will offer vast riches for her to continue her compromising ways. We must pray that individuals with true interest in her well being will get through to her and help her find the life she set out to pursue when the world offered her "easy money." She can either seek healing from her dysfunctional childhood and declare the importance of a whole, stable family in the life of a young girl or she can continue down the path of an immoral woman, as described in Proverbs 5: The lips of an immoral woman are as sweet as honey, and her mouth is smoother than oil. But the result is as bitter as poison, sharp as a double-edged sword. Her feet go down to death; her steps lead straight to the grave.
For she does not care about the path to life. She staggers down a crooked trail and doesn’t even realize where it leads. So now, my sons, listen to me. Never stray from what I am about to say: Run from her! Don’t go near the door of her house! If you do, you will lose your honor and hand over to merciless people everything you have achieved in life. Strangers will obtain your wealth, and someone else will enjoy the fruit of your labor. … Oh, why didn’t I listen to my teachers? Why didn’t I pay attention to those who gave me instruction? I have come to the brink of utter ruin, and now I must face public disgrace." Drink water from your own well share your love only with your wife. Why spill the water of your springs in public, having sex with just anyone?
Should we be surprised that anyone in our country, whether in or out of the spotlight, should engage in damaging sexual behavior when our society seems to celebrate such activity? The mass media machine either makes light of morality or actively promotes wanton behavior through almost every form of entertainment, from daytime dramas to prime time sitcoms like Desperate Housewives. Fashion outlets like Abercrombie and Fitch parade teenagers in seductive forms of dress (and in some cases, without clothes at all), which not only feeds the desires of pedophiles, but indoctrinates young children in the ways of immorality. Oddly, most people reject such low standards for themselves, but seem to accept and allow it for everyone else. Somehow, the expectations we should have in our own lives must once again become the norm for society as a whole. Otherwise, the public and private failures will continue. I don’t believe in "casting the first stone," but I will seek to uphold standards that encourage meaningful, lasting relationships with God and other people. Please join Betty and me in prayer for all families that have been devastated by moral failure, as well as those participating in such depraved and damaging practices. May God heal our hearts and our land.
James Robison is the founder and president of LIFE Outreach International, a Christian media ministry and mission relief organization. He and his wife, Betty, host of the television program Life Today; He has authored numerous books, including The Absolutes: Freedom’s Only Hope and True Prosperity.