Spots of a Leopard

In the message “Guard Against The Yeast” we saw how Jesus warned about allowing even a little hypocrisy to enter our life. When we compromise any area of our beliefs, we are in grave danger of allowing the compromise to spread “through the whole batch of dough” (Galatians 5:9).

In the days of Jeremiah, God warned the people of Jerusalem about the destruction which was coming unless they turned from their evil ways. But the people continued in their sin and refused to listen. God gave them many opportunities to repent, but they had become comfortable in their sin and were unwilling – possibly even unable – to change.

Jeremiah 13:22-23
“And if you ask yourself, ‘Why has this happened to me?’ – it is because of your many sins. Can the Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard its spots? Neither can you do good who are accustomed to doing evil.”

One of the devastating results of sin is that it causes separation from God; and separation causes the defense against temptation to weaken. Unfortunately, a weakened defense makes it easier to continue in sin…causing further separation. The cycle of sin and separation had continued in Jerusalem until sin was viewed as normal behavior. The “yeast” had been mixed into every part of the dough and their conscience had become “seared as with a hot iron” (1 Timothy 4:2).

We need to understand this when ministering to those who are lost. People without Jesus have a difficult time recognizing their sin and certainly see no need to “change.” Rather than simply pointing out their specific sins, which they consider “normal” anyway, we must share the love of Christ – His purpose and plan of forgiveness – and help lead them to faith in the Savior. Only Jesus can create true change; only His grace can reveal and remove sin.

But we must also understand this dangerous condition in our own life. Is there sin which we are beginning to view as “normal” behavior and allowing to hinder the joy of being in His presence? Is our sin forming “spots” which we now call ordinary and acceptable? Sin causes separation which leads to more sin. This cycle must be recognized and stopped!

Although we may have wandered, all hunger for change is the conviction of the Holy Spirit who is calling us to repentance – calling us to respond today and to keep our conscience from becoming seared. Let’s break the cycle of sin and return to a life which glorifies our Heavenly Father in ALL we do. Let’s never become so accustomed to sin that we develop the unchangeable spots of a leopard.

Have a Great Day!

Steve Troxel
God’s Daily Word Ministries