“Deceived by Desire”

Evil is often disguised as something desirable and attractive. It isn’t until we feel the piercing of its arrow that we realize we have been deceived by deadly desire.

“…but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed.

Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.”

James 1:14-15

“Evil rarely looks evil until it accomplishes it’s goal; it gains entrance by appearing attractive, desirable, and perfectly legitimate. It is a baited and camouflaged trap.”

-Klyne Snodgrass in “Firmly Planted” by Robby Gallaty

This quote by Klyne Snodgrass makes me think of the way a whitetail deer walks into its demise. It is lured in by things that look, seem, taste, or smell attractive. Maybe it’s decoys, scents, bait, food plots, or soothing deer call sounds. They wander willingly into these scenarios because they seem like perfectly legitimate attractions. They seem like things they would like to take part in. It isn’t until they feel the piercing of the arrow that they realize they have walked into a trap, and ultimately their death. They get dragged away by desire, and then they end up being dragged away to the processor! (Proverbs 11:6)

“We have an active opponent with the ferocious hunting instincts of a lion who can only be defeated through the power of the cross and the ongoing work of the Holy Spirit.”

-Robby Gallaty in “Firmly Planted”

What is Trapping You?

Let us take this as a lesson for our spiritual walk. The things of this world will seem tempting, desirable, and enticing. The things that ensnare will be different for each individual. It could be the pursuit of popularity, status, money, wrong relationships, or any other earthly satisfaction. We may take part in these things and enjoy them for a season, thinking everything will be fine. However, eventually that impending moment comes, and the Devil is there waiting in the bushes. We never saw it coming. It isn’t until he sinks the final shot that we realize we have been duped. Now suddenly we are dealing with the consequences of our actions and our disregard for Godliness and holiness (James 1:14-15).

“Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.”

1 Peter 5:8

Photo courtesy of Bryan Eastham

Has this ever happened to you? Have you ever unknowingly strolled down a path of destruction without even realizing it? Chances are good that you have, at least to some extent. Unfortunately, we often get blindsided by these sorts of things. Looking back, we should have known, but we were just too naive to see the danger.

As we see in James 1:14-15, sin doesn’t always result in instant destruction. It is often a slow fade. First, we are tempted and dragged away by our desires. Next, desire conceives and gives birth to sin. Then, when sin reaches fruition, it results in death; Death of our happiness, death of our marriage, death of our career, and yes, possibly even physical death.

This is a process. Sometimes this process is rather quick, taking place over a few hours, or a few days, as you make one bad decision after another. Other times the process takes months or even years. I know people struggling to recoup from decades of self-inflicted destruction that has finally caught up with them. No one knows when the weight of their choices will come crashing down. All we know is that sin eventually leads to death (Romans 6:23).

Take Heart!

Don’t get discouraged just yet! Thankfully, there is a way out! We can choose not to conform to the patterns of this world (Romans 12:2) and instead choose to call out to Jesus (Romans 10:13). When we put our trust in Him, we can be forgiven. Don’t let the temptations of this world deceive you and steal your joy. Jesus offers us a new path, one that leads to a truly full life (John 10:10)!

No matter where you are on the path, you always have the ability to change course. In the same way a deer catches wind of danger and hightails out of shooting range, we too can stay alert.

“The righteous person is rescued from trouble, and it falls on the wicked instead.”

Proverbs 11:8

‭The buck pictured below was deceived by desire and was caught chasing after the wrong doe. That mistake put him within 20 yards of a different type of ferocious hunter who was anxiously awaiting his arrival. His misstep earned him a free ride in the back of an F-150.

Sniff out the traps and avoid the pitfalls that are trying to entice you away from your true calling and away from a full life with Christ.

Choose Jesus, choose life.


*For more stunning wildlife and nature photography from Bryan Eastham, visit bryaneastham.com

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