Waterboarding, they say, induces uncontrollable panic. I was curious and put a wet wash cloth on my face while standing under the shower. Even knowing I was in control, it was not fun. What do you suppose it feels like to drown? A quick Google search reveals that drowning is absolutely horrible, much worse than waterboarding. Those who have experienced it, talk of frantically gulping in a last breath and then being pulled down, down… Fighting, thrashing… Pressure… Giving up and inhaling water… Panic… Blackness…
Are you enjoying the blog this time? What could be worse than drowning? Jesus says this is:
““And whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me. But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.” (Matthew 18:5-6)
When anyone receives Jesus with childlike trust (See: Hand in Hand), from that time forward, Jesus takes whatever happens to him or her personally. You welcome that believer, no matter who he or she may be, Jesus treats your hospitality as though you were doing it for Him. And the converse: If you entice a believer to sin, Jesus takes that personally and seriously, too. His words refer, not to a momentary lapse, but to a consistent pattern of life. They foretell the horrors of eternal judgment, a fate worse than drowning.
We are awash with such enticements. Many popular forms of entertainment, from movies to rap music, openly entice and encourage people to watch or do things that they previously considered wrong. If that sentence sounded uptight or prudish to you, it is likely that your attitude has been shaped by this assault of our culture. Jesus made it very clear: you don’t want to be a party to causing people to sin.
““Woe to the world because of the things that cause people to sin! Such things must come, but woe to the man through whom they come!” (Matthew 18:7)
Don’t be that guy! For Jesus, it’s personal.
Quotes: The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984 (electronic ed.). Grand Rapids: Zondervan.