We Are All Addicts #2
Our days are evil days. Materialism, immorality, dishonesty, raping, robbing, murdering and molesting all run rampant in our society. John wrote correctly, “We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one.” (1 John 5:19) The whole world around us is under the power of the evil one. The troubles of our world are because we are addicted to sin. It is easy for us to talk about the drug addict, the liquor addict or the person addicted to nicotine. But, we all have one or more addictions. All of us need to be in God’s recovery program. Christianity is a lifelong process of being changed from our addictions into the image of the Lord Jesus Christ. (2 Corinthians 3:18) Christians are in a lifelong battle against the addiction of sin. The problem with addiction is that we can see everybody else’s additions but only with great difficulty do we see our own.
SOME ARE ADDICTED TO PHYSICAL THINGS. These people have a strong love and desire for possessions. The desire for riches leads to all kinds of evil. (1 Timothy 6:9-10) Today’s world still needs the warning of Luke 12:15. “Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses.” The love of money and material things will condemn many souls. Are you addicted to material things?
SOME ARE ADDICTED TO PLEASURE. Many today love pleasure, entertainment or those things that excite. Moses chose God rather than the momentary pleasure of sin. (Hebrews 11:25-26) God is choked out of many lives because of the love of pleasure. (Luke 8:14) The pleasure might be the latest places to visit, games, sports of all kind, television, computers or video games. Are you addicted to pleasure?
SOME ARE ADDICTED TO LYING OR DISHONESTY. One who chooses to be a liar brings misery to himself and heartache to those hurt by his lies. “What is desired in a man is kindness, and a poor man is better than a liar.” (Proverbs 19:22) One who lies can expect a troubled life because Satan is the father of lies. “You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.” (John 8:44) Dishonesty likewise brings trouble to a person’s life. God will not allow one to prosper for long through dishonest gain. “Behold, therefore, I beat My fists at the dishonest profit which you have made, and at the bloodshed which has been in your midst.” (Ezekiel 22:13) Terrible things are done for dishonest gain. “Her princes in her midst are like wolves tearing the prey, to shed blood, to destroy people, and to get dishonest gain.” (Ezekiel 22:27) Many lives are filled with misery because of lies and dishonest gain. Are you an addict to lying and dishonesty?
SOME ARE ADDICTED PRAISE AND PREEMINENCE. Those who love the praise of men will never love God as they should. (John 12:42-43) Those who seek to please men will never please God. (Galatians 1:10) Listen to Jesus, “Woe to you when all men speak well of you, For so did their fathers to the false prophets.” (Luke 6:26) There are also those that love preeminence. The spirit of Diotrephes still lives. “I wrote to the church, but Diotrephes, who loves to have the preeminence among them, does not receive us...” (3 John 9-10) There are still those who love to have the preeminence. Jesus still says, “For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.” (Galatians 6:3) The love of preeminence destroys the spirit of servanthood and makes them an addict. Are you addicted to power?
SOME ARE ADDICTED TO BEING A BUSYBODY AND TO BACKBITING. Paul spoke of some saying, “And withal they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house; and not only idle, but tattlers also and busybodies, speaking things which they ought not.” (1 Timothy 5:13) What is a busybody? A busybody is a person who delights in other people’s business. Instead of being focused on their own home, their own duties, their own family, the busybody is interested in everyone else’s business. A busybody is “busy” gathering and passing on information. “But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men’s matters. Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf.” (1 Peter 4:15-16) Some people are too involved in “other people’s matters. They ask questions that are really not their business? They pass on information about other people’s business? They delight in being the first to know and the first to tell? They are addicts!
THERE IS, HOWEVER, AN ADDICTION THAT WE ALL SHOULD PURSUE. We should do our best to become addicted to the Lord Jesus and to His work. “I beseech you, brethren, (ye know the house of Stephanas, that it is the firstfruits of Achaia, and that they have addicted themselves to the ministry of the saints.” (1 Corinthians 16:15) This family is held up as example because they the both accepted and fulfilled their responsibility to God and to others. They addicted themselves. The church stands very much in need of those that will addict themselves to the service of the Lord. Isaiah was an addict. He said, “Here am I; send me.” (Isaiah 6:8) We must really be converted to Christ. Let us be so addicted that we have a sense of personal responsibility. We must come to see Christ and His work as our reason for existence. You must be so devoted that you become a slave or an addict to Jesus. Are you an addict for God?