Consider the statement made by the Lord God in Jeremiah 2:20, “For of old time I have broken the yoke, and I have burst thy bands. And, you have said, I will not transgress.”
We all know that the sins we commit have pointed consequences. In this Scripture, the consequences are described by God through Jeremiah as “yokes” and “bands.” In a more updated way of saying it, these may be described as hindrances, burdens, or heartaches we go through. Nonetheless, whenever we experience any of the facsimiles thereof, we typically call out on God for deliverance with the attached promise, “I will not transgress.” Or, in other words, “I will not do it anymore. I will not commit this wrong anymore.” Because of His grace, the Lord in His time and in His way “breaks the yoke off us” and “bursts the bands that bind us.”
The only problem is that we all too often break our promise time and again not to repeat the wrong from that which the Lord has graciously helped us. Beware that this is a dangerous spiritual game we play.
Nonetheless, there are three things about the repeating of sins we need to take into consideration.
First, we should not delude ourselves into thinking that God is not paying attention. As with Israel, God noted the cycles of rebellion and repentance that they repeated. On each regression, He rebuked them for it, and He called them into account.
The reason this is a dangerous spiritual game is because sins which are truly not repented have continuing repercussions.
Second, we should change our mindset about the sins we repeat. Repeated sins often involve moments of moments of carnal pleasure. With these we actually prove ourselves to be spiritually immature. To have the proper spiritual mature perspective of sin, we should have “a holy hatred” for it.
Has it occurred to you that God hates sin because He has “a holy hatred” for it?
Consider that a repeated sin is one often liked, and it will open ourselves to other sins to be liked. This only sharpens the downward spiral of spiritual life. Sorry to say, “been there, done that.” So, if we truly want to stop sinful cycles, we need to pray for a holy hatred for sin.
A third consideration turns out to be equally disturbing. It is revealed the nineteenth verse of Jeremiah 2. God says it, “…my fear is not in you, says the Lord God of hosts.” If we repeat sins after we ask for God’s deliverance, it merely proves that we do not have much respect for God.
If we are God’s people, we need to understand that He has the authority to exact respect from us, and He will do so in due course. If we do not fear Him, He will enforce the lesson in one way or another. It is an absolute that if we were truly in awe of God and if we truly respected Him, we would not be repeat transgressors as we often are.
God forgive us of our vileness.
A little kid was once known for liking to play in mud. It drove his mother nuts. The continuing cleaning was exacerbating. But, despite her constant remonstrations, if he could find some mud, he was going to play in it in spite of what she said.
One day, however, he quit playing in the mud. When it finally occurred to his mother, she asked him why. He replied, “I decided to taste some, and it did not taste good.” It was as simple as that.
It makes for a significant consideration, for, if we could truly taste the bitterness of sin as Christ did on our behalf while on the Cross, it would truly make a difference.
Pastor Ron Branch lives in Mason County and is pastor of Hope Baptist Church, Middleport, Ohio. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author.