What is it going to take? For the most part if people don’t suffer the consequences of their bad choices they will continue to make the same ones over and over. The Psalmist writes in Psalm 119:67 says, “Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I keep your word.” He then goes a little further and says in v.71 “It is good for me that I was afflicted, that I may learn your statutes.”
Reaping and sowing is a Law. No matter what; we will always reap what has been sown. Sometimes it takes a while to come up but according to God’s Word it will come up one day. Sometimes the results come and go and still no change in behavior. I know of a man right now that spent 4 or 5 years in the Penitentiary only to find himself back in jail approximately 1 yr later for the same behavior. We would all like to think “After I spent time in the Pen I would have learned my lesson.” Well I hope that’s true, but I have seen it time and time again where the lesson never seems to be learned and the cycle of visits to jail and prison continues.
Ecclesiastes Chapter 8:11 “Because the sentence against an evil deed is not executed quickly, therefore the hearts of the sons of men among them are given fully to do evil.” When it seems we are getting away with something it becomes more and more likely we will continue the behavior.
This type of thing happens with any kind of sinful behavior even if it isn’t necessarily against man’s law. For instance having sexual relationships with someone other than your spouse will cause untold pain and turmoil. If you don’t end up with a venereal disease at the very least it will cause heartache, stress and may even harden you to the opposite sex all together. There is a reason God tells us to do things his way and it isn’t because he’s a big wet blanket he just knows what real fun and joy is all about.
Obviously it isn’t just sex but drugs or maybe overeating. Both of these may not have immediate painful consequences but they are almost always going to show up. With drug use sometimes it does kill you on the spot and other times it may take years for the toll on your body to manifest in all sorts of ailments due to the abuse. Eating too much of course may eventually cause blood pressure problems, diabetes, heart problems etc. These too may not show up for years but by then it is very difficult to correct the lifestyle of bad eating habits.
Let me end with a good example of consequences. When I was young I hated going to bed early and I guess I fussed about it a little bit. My mom solved this problem very wisely. She told me “Okay, you don’t have to go to bed, in fact stay up all night if you want to, but at seven o’clock tomorrow morning you are getting on the bus for school.” Well, I may have stayed up too late once or twice, but once I realized how tired I was all day I decided to go to bed a little earlier from then on. So you see consequences are good if we learn from them. There are several people I know I am praying for and hoping the consequences will awaken them so they will see their need for a change. The painful effects of our overindulgence and misbehaving is yet another way God is trying to get us to come to Christ, the only solution he’s provided.
Written by Louie