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Drowning In Sin

Drowning In Sin have sinned against the LORD; and be sure your sin will find you out. Numbers 32:23 (NKJV)

I remember rafting one year up on the Truckee River in Nevada.  We had made our way down the river and were coming up to lodge where our expedition would conclude - but not before a small section of white-water rapids.

I distinctly remember as if it were yesterday.  My vivid memory wasnt because the rapids we encountered were Grade 6 or even 5it is because of the circumstances I experienced this particular day on the river.  As we entered the rapids section, an older German lady seated at the front of the raft suddenly went overboard.  

I didn't hesitate and I jumped in after her.  Suddenly we are both in ice water and are floating down river.  Even with her life vest, she struggled to swim and her head was soon bobbing down below the water line.  As I swam close to her, she reached out and grabbed me as if I were some firmly planted rock there in the midst of the river for her to cling to safety.  Only problem is she was inhibiting me from swimming myself.  Immediately I realized this could be deadly for both of us.  Fortunately, I was able to break free and swim around behind her, grab her vest and assist her safely back to the boat.

I think about this every so often when dealing with people who are drowning.  No, I don't see people drowning in the water frequently, but I do see many people who are drowning in sin.  It might not look as imminently dangerous, but it is just as deadly.  

For the wages of sin is death... Romans 6:23 (NKJV)

What I notice is the similar characteristics of those who are drowning.  For instance, when the German lady began to fear drowning, she reached out and grabbed whoever she could - whoever was closest to her.  It is the same with sinner who is drowning in it.  They are in over their head, and what they may have felt they were able to handle, its now taking them down.
Their reaction is they will usually reach out and grab whoever is next to them as well.  They don't care at that particular point if someone else suffers - they are just trying to save themselves.

How much better it would be if only the drowning person would simply trust the person attempting to help them, it would go much better for all involved.  This is also true when we are attempting to help those deep in sinif they would only trust us as we attempt to guide them back to safety.  If they would only stop what they are doing (repent), confess their wrong ways, and abide in the instructions God has given us to share with them.  

Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. James 5:16 (NKJV)

Unfortunately, in many instances, instead of accepting responsibility for their actions, those in sin, will do more damage by either defending their actions, or even worse, attacking the very person who is willing to help.  They will blame-shift and often times bring accusation and slander against the very person who has cared enough to attempt to help them.  When this happens, it is very important to remember what Jesus spoke concerning this.

Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. "Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake.  Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you. Matthew 5:10-12 (NKJV)

We need to understand this truth - knowing we very well may not be received, or perhaps we may even be attacked when we attempt to help, encourage, or hold accountable others in love.  But this should never dissuade us in our love for others and our willingness to help those who are in trouble.  After all, wouldn't you want someone to help you if you were drowning?

STUDY QUESTION: What can we learn from the Scriptures contained within this devotional with regards to sin, and our helping others?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Are you willing to be persecuted for doing what is right by God?

APPLICATION: When you see someone walking in sin, be willing to stop and encourage them, pray for them, and even hold them accountable if they are not willing to repent.  God will honor your faithfulness, and you may gain a brother back.

Father, Thank You for Your longsuffering, and patience with me.  Thank You for helping me through the times where I chose to live independently from You.  Father, help me see those times where I can be of encouragement to others who are walking in sin.  Help me to confront others in mercy, grace, and in love.  In Jesus precious name...

Be blessed,  Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000