By: Lou Yeboah
Talking ‘bout you sorry, and you ain’t going to do it no more! Just be honest. You like getting high. You like drinking. You like fornicating; committing adultery. You like the way Sin makes you feel. Going around singing, “Ooh, baby, baby… The way you make me feel, you really turn me on. You knock me off of my feet. I’m in ecstasy. I bet you are! But I got news for you Mr. Feel Good. “Thus saith the Lord, ye have sold yourself for nought” [Isaiah 52:3]. You have traded your soul for nothing! You have come up empty! “Oh, I say and I say it again, Ya been had! Ya been took! Ya been hoodwink! Bamboozled! Led astray! Run amok!” [Malcolm X 1992]
You know when Lysimachus, king of Thrace, was very thirsty he offered his kingdom to the Getae for a drink of water. After he had drunk he said, “Ah! Wretched me, who for such a momentary gratification, have lost so great a kingdom.” Esau who traded his soul for fleeting pleasure, sold his birthright, which included not only material benefits and family privileges, but spiritual blessings as well, for a bowl of soup. It says that “he ate and drank, and rose and went on his way” [Genesis 25: 29-34; Hebrew 12: 16-17]. He didn’t have a second thought about what he had done. He did it, it felt good, and only much later did he come to regret it.
How applicable this is to him who, for some earthly pleasure, loses conviction of sin, conversion, and the Kingdom of Heaven! Selling your soul for very little, for mere trifles, for nothing of value! For one bowl of pottage, a momentary gratification, a few moments of pleasure. The truth of the Bible is that sin may bring short-term pleasure, but it always brings long-term misery and pain. What great consequences are sometimes connected with little actions. For one morsel of meat, for one sin, under certain circumstances, Heaven is given away, and the soul is forever lost in the bargain.
Listen, every day you’re trading your life, your soul, for something. The question is, For what? When it’s all over and you’ve cashed in all the time and abilities which have been allotted to you, what will you have to show for it? If you trade it in for fleeting pleasure, to gratify your immediate needs, you’ll come up empty. But if you trade your life for God’s kingdom and righteousness, to fulfill His purpose, you’ll be satisfied with that which no one can take from you.
Paul reminds us that the stories God includes in the Old Testament are there to help us avoid making the same mistakes (I Corinthians 10:11-12). No matter how temporarily enjoyable and satisfying any sin is in that moment, it cannot begin to measure up to the eternal rewards of God’s birthright promises. Sin is pleasurable but only for a time and that time is passing. What then? “The wages of sin is death.” [Romans 6:23]
Trading your soul for what? Don’t do it!
“ For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, truce breakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, high minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.” [2 Timothy 3:2-7]