All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.
It is often difficult for us to comprehend the capacity for evil that exists in mankind. But simply watching the news and seeing what sick and twisted things people come up with is enough to tell us that evil is alive and well in the hearts of men. We are easily repulsed by murderers and terrorists and serial killers. But how often are we repulsed by the sin that lurks in our own hearts?
But for the grace of God, but for His precious Spirit at work in our hearts and lives, we can hardly know what evil might produce from out of each one of us. When we struggle through a stressful day where we may have lost our patience or said something unkind, we realize how difficult it is to control even the smallest of sinful impulses. We might just be surprised at how dirty our hearts are on even our “cleanest” days.
But that just makes Jesus’ work of redemption that much sweeter. And it shows us with greater clarity the importance of walking near to Him each day. How amazing it is that a God of pure holiness and righteousness would even desire to come close. How truly amazing it is that our Jesus, who never knew any sin, would willingly take all of our hideous, ugly, nasty sin upon His own pure shoulders. Oh, what amazing grace and love that Jesus has.
Yes, at heart we are dirty, rotten sinners. Yes, we are born to live with a sin nature inherent in all of us. But that doesn’t mean we give in to it. That doesn’t mean we stay dirty. That doesn’t mean there isn’t a cleansing available and a path we can take that lessens its influence in our lives. It won’t be easy. It’s a battle, after all. But we have Jesus, the Victor, the Redeemer, the King. And His power has conquered sin.
Let’s be careful not to take sin lightly in our own lives. Let’s be honest with ourselves and with God when we know we are doing something we shouldn’t be. Let’s work every day to overcome the impulses to sin, to keep ourselves pure, to keep our hearts right with God. His Spirit is with us to enable us to get the victory each time we are tempted to sin. Let’s be aware of what evil may be lurking within us so we can be on guard against it and prevent it from defiling us in God’s sight.