Sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin. Romans 5:12
In a communist country a spy was executed by a firing squad. The victim’s family not only lost a member but also – so it was reported – it received a bill for the ammunition used. This was a clear case of adding insult to injury.
Ever since sin came into the world, such things happen. Evil is interlinked with evil. Misdeeds draw penalties, and these are sometimes accompanied or followed by other aftereffects. Misery begets more misery. Sin demands payments. It wants not only the principal back but also interest – compounded interest.
The Bible tells us how sin and its penalties multiply. Saint James tells us about evil desires in a person that entice the individual. But that is not all. He goes on: “Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death” (James 1:15).
There is a way to prevent the chain reaction of sin and the price it demands. Better still, there is a way to turn the whole thing around so that there is faith instead of evil desire – faith which is the victory over sin and is followed by a succession of good things: the fruits of faith and love. Saint Paul points to this when he completes the couplet: “The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).
God’s grace is truly amazing. It provides for us the Peacemaker, God’s own Son, Jesus Christ, to be the sacrifice for our sins. With sins forgiven, the debt is paid; we are free to serve the living God. Declared just by faith, “we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 5:1).
God does not add insult to injury – punish the penitent, believing sinner and send him a bill for administering the punishment. Instead He blesses the Christian with grace and healing of the soul.
PRAYER: Lord God, for Jesus’ sake, forgive me and strengthen me for living a life of righteousness as a fruit of faith. Amen.
(Devotions from "With Jesus Every Day" copyright 1997, CPH. All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be printed, reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without prior written permission of Concordia Publishing House. Permission is granted for one-time emailing of this link to a friend. For information on other devotional material, please contact CPH at 800-325-3040 or visit CPH at www.cph.org.)