It's a sparkling little pond down a short little pathway just off the road. Who wouldn't want to enjoy that sun-sparkling water up close? There is one little problem though. It's a sewage pond.
It looks so inviting, but it is so dirty - and potentially so damaging. It is just like so many of the temptations that beckon us, almost daily, it seems. That's why so many have ended up in the middle of something that looked good but has left them polluted, scarred, and ashamed.
After all, sin isn't ugly. Satan's smarter than that. Inside it's a killer that destroys reputations, marriages, trust, love, self-worth, your conscience, and even a relationship with Almighty God. It actually was the experience of the very first man and woman, and it's still our experience today. Genesis 2 and 3 gives us a vivid picture not only of the first venture into sin's tantalizing sewage, but of our own as well.
The Bible says, "The Lord commanded the man, 'You are free to eat from any tree in the garden, but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.'" Chapter 3 records that the devil assured Eve, "You will not surely die." That's the lie we humans have continued to fall for - that you can have the pleasure without the penalty, the goodies without the grief, the tasting without the dying. "The woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom." She and Adam then ate what God had forbidden. They tried to hide from the Lord and "the Lord God banished them from the Garden of Eden to work the ground..."
They gained nothing good and lost most of what matters - just like us when we believe sin's outward appeal and we touch what we should never have touched. Right now there's something that's out of bounds, according to God, but it looks good. It may be a person or a relationship that's out of bounds, a business deal, or some step up that requires compromise. Maybe it's a lie that could bail you out or get you ahead or something that looks better than who or what you've already committed yourself to. Maybe it's material you should never be looking at.
It's all sewage, no matter how inviting it looks. Sin has this way of fascinating us first, and then assassinating us. The sin-way promises, but it doesn't deliver; it promises pleasure and ultimately delivers pain. It promises freedom and ultimately delivers bondage. Sin tells you you'll get something good when you end up losing the things that really matter. Sin promises heaven and gives you hell. Don't fall for that tantalizing sewage. There's nothing good there.