A man went bear hunting. Soon, a large, brown bear came lumbering across his path searching for berries. The hunter had the bear in his sights and began to squeeze the trigger.
What happened next was unexpected.
The bear turned and asked, “Excuse me. Isn’t it better to talk than shoot? Why don’t we try to negotiate this matter?”
The surprised hunter lowered his gun and said, “Okay….I guess I’m open to that.”
“What do you want exactly?” the bear inquired.
“I want a fur coat more than anything,” the hunter replied. “I’m very cold.”
The bear thought for a moment. “Okay, I think I understand – we are getting somewhere. How about if we reach some kind of compromise? Let me tell you what I am looking for – I want a full stomach.”
The hunter put down his gun while he and the bear walked into the woods to continue the negotiation.
A little while later, the bear emerged alone, negotiations successful – the hunter got his fur coat and the bear had a full stomach.
It’s a siren’s song.
A primrose path leading to destruction.
A lie that says I can have what I want and still please God.
The Bible is full of stories and warnings about people whose compromise lead to downfall and death.
You were running a good race. Who cut in on you to keep you from obeying the truth? That kind of persuasion does not come from the One who calls you. A little yeast works through the whole batch of dough.” Galatians 5:7-9
Satan, that lion-ous bear prowls around looking for someone to devour and destroy often comes as a lullaby.
“Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”
“That’s from the Old Testament….it’s not really meant for today.”
“God understands I’m human and humans sin.”
“God knows what I’ve been through – He knows I need this right now.”
“God is love – He loves me the way I am – He wired me this way – He doesn’t expect me to change.”
For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery. Galatians 5:1
Satan’s lure says it’s okay, it’s a small thing.
The Lord knows my heart.
The heart is deceitful above all things.
Lover of lies.
Devil in details.
I don’t want to hurt someone’s feelings so I lie.
Make up an excuse.
I get what I want without conflict or controversy.
I want an evening of fun and acceptance so I don’t mention Christ or the gospel.
Deny with Silence.
Ignore God’s Word.
Do what I want and decide it’s okay based on my own standard.
It’s only a few drinks, a couple of minor swear words.
I’m not hurting anyone.
Sorcery of self.
He did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, just as his father Amaziah had done. The high places, however were not removed; the people continued to offer sacrifices and burn incense there. The Lord afflicted the king with leprosy until the day he died and he lived in a separate house. Jotham, the king’s son had charge of the palace and governed the people of the land. 2 Kings 15:3-5
After a succession of kings who did evil in the eyes of the Lord, finally there was one who did what was right.
He did what was right – except for one thing.
A compromise with cost.
King Jeroboam lost his ability to be with people and live in the palace. He was unable to fulfill his role as king and ultimately lost his life to an incurable, terminal, flesh eating disease – leprosy.
It’s an agreement where both parties get what neither wanted.
Harmony wrapped in harm.
It seems like such a small thing.
I do the big stuff – tithe, attend church, share the gospel.
An unnoticeable white lie doesn’t matter.
You can’t be a little bit pregnant.
Anger is murder.
Lusty looks adultery.
My Heavenly Father remembers how one bite, one compromise changed everything.
Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain. 1 Corinthians 15:58
Stand for truth.
Stand for love.
Love that’s patient, kind.
Love that keeps no record of wrongs.
Love that’s willing to speak truth and say no.
Unconformed to the world.
Transformed and renewed.
Strong and courageous.
Fighting the good fight of faith.
Children of God anchored in the Word of God – not tossed to and fro by false doctrine and human cunning.
He arms me for battle.
Salvation helmet, belt of truth.
Shield of faith, breastplate of righteousness.
Spirit sword, gospel shoes of peace.
Temptation comes and I hold up my shield, slice with spirit, powered by prayer.
My head and heart protected.
The Lord my God walks with me, goes before me and is my rear guard.
No weapon formed against me can prosper.
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
Nothing is impossible with God.
Let me be a worker who speaks the Word of truth.
He who promised is faithful.
In this life, there is trouble and hardship, suffering and loss but I stand without fear.
Jesus Christ, the One who redeems and saves overcame the world.
The battle I fight has already been won.
Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving. Colossians 2:6-7
Father God, Lord Jesus, I don’t want to be mostly Yours, I want to be all Yours. Forgive me for the times I’ve shrunk back. Forgive me for choosing me – my comfort, will and way over You. I choose You Jesus – I give You my life and choose to follow You. Give up what I want for what You have. Grow me, transform me, help me stand strong in the face of adversity and persecution. Reveal any ways I am compromising. I love You Jesus. Help me live for You and obey Your commands. Thank you for loving me. Thank you for your unconditional, saving love. Thank you for all you endured to redeem me. You are worthy and worth anything I must lay down or pick up. Eternity with You is worth any price I must pay here on earth. Thank you that You never leave or forsake me. Help me to be Your light on a hill. Help me to speak truth in love and point people to You. In Your Precious, Holy, Matchless Name, Amen.