But as for you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 1 Timothy 6:11-12
High on the list of my simple, non-sinful pleasures of life has to be peanut butter on a piece of rye bread toast.
Unfortunately, some children will never know that joy-at least not in this world.
That is because many children have a deadly allergy to peanuts.
This is why I was saddened last week to hear how a student in Kentucky has been charged with a felony for having endangered the life of a classmate by putting peanut butter cookie crumbs into his lunch box.
It was an action that could have been fatal.
Now authorities are trying to sort things out and decide whether this was an ignorant prank motivated by a desire to see what would happen, or if it was a vicious act of dietary sabotage. They need to know if there was some dark desire to commit murder in the heart of the prankster.
Either way, it's bad.
Some children need to stay far away from peanuts. Far away.
When St. Paul wrote to Timothy, and to us, he said that God's people should deal with sin as if they had a severe food-allergy to all wrongdoing. "As for you, O man of God," St. Paul said, "flee these things."
St. Paul knew God's people would do well to stay away from Satan's snacks no matter how good or tasty they might look to their eyes.
Instead, the Lord's apostle suggested, we should stick with the staples of our faith. That is why he encouraged those who had been redeemed by the Savior, to "pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness" (I Timothy 6:11b).
It's not only the right thing to do, it was also the spiritually healthy thing for God's adopted children to do.
THE PRAYER: Dear heavenly Father, many things in this world appear innocent but, in reality, are dangerous pitfalls Satan sets before us. Send Your Holy Spirit so we might be given a Spirit of discernment and always follow Your will rather than Satan's suggestions. Because of Jesus, help us always live as Your people. In Your Name. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries