Gambling With Your Soul
By: Brian A. Yeager
How important is the salvation of your soul to you? Jesus asked his disciples a rather thoughtful question. He asked: “…what shall a man give in exchange for his soul” (Matthew 16:26)? Do you have an answer to that question? What is your price? Would a fun night on the town be worth it? Would a nice vacation be worth it? What about a relationship? Is your family worth it? Is there something you’d take in exchange for your soul?
I know that many, if not most, would say they’d take nothing in exchange for his or her soul. That’s one of the biggest lies a lot of people tell themselves. The truth is, I have seen people who profess to be Christians put their souls on the line for all types of petty things. From entertainment, to a girlfriend or boyfriend, to a marriage choice, to clothing choices, to hairstyles, to vacations that exclude faithfully worshipping God, and the list could go on and on.
Do you realize that it takes very little for you to be lost? You don’t have to commit murder, steal something, commit fornication, or any other thing people consider “big sins”. All sins are equal in that they cause you to lose your soul (Romans 6:23 and James 2:10; cf. Revelation 21:8). A sin is a transgression of God’s law (I John 3:4). A sin is even knowing to do something that is right and not doing it (James 4:17). You don’t have to go out and do a bunch of wrong things to be lost. Just slip up, that’s it!
Do you realize how hard it is to get to the end of this life and have the reward of eternal life awaiting you? The word of God says this: “Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf. For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God? And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear? Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator” (I Peter 4:16-19). Do the verses you just read cause you to at least pause and think? Consider, if it is so hard to be saved that such a truth means it is very easy to be lost.
It Doesn’t Take Much To Be Damned
Do you think that your faith and fear of God makes you faithful? The truth is, that just puts you where the devils are (James 2:19). Do you think that your partial obedience to God makes you faithful? Again, that just puts you where the devils are (Matthew 8:28-33). There are many people doing good things that falsely think they are saved (Matthew 7:21-23). Are you one of those people? If you answered no, are you sure? How do you know? It is not that you cannot know that you are saved. You can know and be sure (I John 5:19-20). My question to you is, how do YOU know you would be in Heaven if the Lord came today? Are you sure of your answer?
Consider this command: “Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak” (Matthew 26:41). Are you obeying the Lord if you knowingly put yourself in the way of temptation? Consider what that means for all types of subject matters. If you lose control over anger (Proverbs 14:17; 29) and you knowingly put yourself in places that will make you angry – you’ve sinned. If you are given to lust (Matthew 5:28-30) and you knowingly put yourself in a position to lust – you have sinned. If you are a person tempted by covetousness, dishonesty, idolatry, alcohol, etc.; you have to avoid those situations wherein you will knowingly be faced with those temptations. The word of God instructs us to avoid that which causes us to err (Proverbs 4:14-15). Sin doesn’t occur only if we err, it also occurs when we put ourselves in position to do so.
The word of God teaches us to walk in wisdom towards those outside of Christ (Colossians 4:5). The word of God teaches us that sinners can corrupt us (Proverbs 13:20). Now, it is impossible not to be around people of the world and I am not suggesting that such is the Law of God in what I am about to write (I Corinthians 5:9-10). Having said that, how wise is it to immerse yourself in friendships with the world (James 4:4)? Do you think you can be around sin all of the time and remain faithful? It is not wise to be around those outside of Christ and not be on guard. In fact, to be around sinful individuals and not be on guard is sinful in itself (Proverbs 9:6 and I Corinthians 15:33).
We talk about worshipping in spirit and in truth regularly. That is certainly a good matter to be focused upon (John 4:23-24). Consider something along this subject matter. How hard is it to worship in a sinful manner? Do you realize that just your mind can offset your worship (Proverbs 21:27)? Do you realize that singing, without understanding the words you’re saying, is a transgression of God’s commands (Psalms 47:7 and I Corinthians 14:15)? Even doubts can make your worship sinful (I Timothy 2:8).
It is so easy to be damned that all you have to do is something right without having full faith that it is right (Romans 14:23). It is so easy to be damned all you have to do is be double minded (James 4:8). Do any of these things give you pause? Have I written something that has caused you to be concerned about your soul? If so, what does that say to you?
Don’t Roll The Dice
God cared enough about your soul to send His only begotten Son into the world to die for the salvation of your soul (John 3:16-18, Romans 5:6-10, and I John 4:9-10). That is the value He put on your soul. What value do you put on your soul? When you err, in any way, God considers that trampling His Son under your feet and His response to that is not comforting (Hebrews 10:26-31). Why would you take ANY risk of committing a sin knowing that? Taking a chance, wherein you might err, is rolling the dice with Hell to pay!
Gamblers most often lose. It is a “risky business”. It’s not hard to err (James 1:13-16). If we do err, all of our good is erased with that one error (Ezekiel 18:24). Don’t play games with your soul. Losing comes with an eternal price (Matthew 25:46). Thus, “Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward” (II John 1:8).
Volume 15 – Issue 7 - November 2nd, 2014