October 21, 2019
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My friend was used to handling heavy equipment, but he wasn't used to what happened that particular day. He had his trailer hitched to his dump truck. Now, you've got to kind of picture this: He was driving his backhoe onto the trailer. One little problem - guess it might be a physics problem. As the weight of my friend and his backhoe pressed on the back of the trailer, the rear wheels of the dump truck were suddenly lifted up into the air, which means there were no brakes on a downhill slope yet! So try to picture this: this man riding on a backhoe which is riding on a trailer, which is hitched to a truck that is heading straight downhill out-of-control. I said, "Man, what did you say?" His answer was pretty simple, "Oh no! Oh no!!" I guess he had absolutely no control. So how did he live to tell about it? Well, he threw that backhoe in reverse and he backed off as fast as he could. Balance was restored and the truck and the trailer - well, they jackknifed. And honestly I am not making any of this up!
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Out Of Control, Heading Downhill."
That had to be one scary feeling, man, no brakes, racing downhill, you're out-of-control. Well it's a feeling too many of us know all too well when we're faced with one of those temptations that pull at us so hard. In fact, there might be someone listening today who is shall we say, losing your brakes, spiritually, morally. You're losing control and you're headed for a crash.
You might be in the greatest danger if you're slipping and you can't even see it. Satan seldom destroys us through explosion, he does it through erosion...just slowly getting you to compromise a little bit more, to lower your guard, to get a little closer to the flame. It's getting harder and harder, maybe, to resist what you know is wrong. Your brakes are slipping. And you can be sure the Biblical equation will prove tragically correct in your life as it does in every life. James 1:15 - "After desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death."
If you're starting to lose control, if your downhill slide is accelerating, you've got to do what my friend did to save himself - back out fast! Our word for today from the Word of God provides a powerful example of the action that is going to save you a lot of scars and a lot of shame. Joseph has been taken as a slave to Egypt where he earns the top position in the household of a powerful official. But one day he's faced with the mega-temptation of a beautiful woman just offering herself to him. It was his master's wife!
In Genesis 39, beginning with verse 7, the Bible says, "After a while, his master's wife took notice of Joseph and said, 'Come to bed with me!' But he refused." That was hard enough, but I mean this lady was there every day! And God tells us the very practical secret for putting on the brakes. Listen, "And though she spoke to Joseph day after day" - this is a relentless temptation - "he refused to go to bed with her or even be with her." Joseph, you see, remained pure by totally backing away from the source of his temptation. "He refused even to be with her" it says.
That's what it's going to take for you, too. Think about what it is or who it is that's pulling you away from God's best - that's weakening your resistance to sin. You've got to back out fast - out of that relationship, out of that group of people, out of that music, out of those websites, out of the things you've been reading or watching, out of those fantasies.
You've got to start fleeing the evil that you've been flirting with, avoiding the temptation that you've been reaching for a little bit, because it's all downhill from here. A crash is where this goes unless you back out now.