Thursday, September 5, 2013

Digging Ditches and Breaking Walls

One Year Bible
Old Testament passage for Thursday, September 5, 2013:  Ecclesiastes 10:1-12:14

He who digs a pit will fall into it, and whoever breaks through a wall will be bitten by a serpent.  Ecclesiastes 10:8 (NKJV)

Beth Moore, in her great book Get Out of that Pit, teaches that there are three kinds of pits.  

Life in the Pits

First, there is the pit that you are THROWN INTO.  These are not your fault.  Someone did it to you. Joseph is an example of this kind of pit.  His brothers turned on him and THREW him into a pit.

Second, there is the pit that you SLIP INTO.  This pit sneaks up on you.  You never meant to end up there, but slowly you found yourself bound in something you never wanted.  It's like gaining weight.  You never meant to put on pounds; you just slid into it one bite at a time.

Lastly, there are pits that we JUMP INTO.  Eyes wide open, we actually dig the pit that traps us.  We make willful decisions to go the wrong way.  It is in this light that someone once said that "sin is temporary insanity."  It is self-destructive -- all the while promising to make you "really live."

Solomon speaks to us about this last pit.  It is amazing how many times we dig our own graves.  It's crazy. It's like someone battling depression but having a habit of watching soap operas.  "Rome wasn't built in a day", and personal pits don't develop overnight!  We dig them with our thoughts and actions.

A good example is marriage.  Every day, a couple is either building up or tearing down their relationship. Too often, we dig the very ditch that we fall into.  If you harbor a critical, cutting attitude, don't be surprised if one day you find love gone and bitterness settled in.


The second half of this verse carries us even further.  "Whoever breaks through a wall will be bitten by a serpent."  Transgression, by definition, is to go beyond the limits.  It is a SIN OF COMMISSION; an intentional breaking of the law.

Satan, by nature, seeks to "steal, kill, and destroy" (John 10:10).  But, when anyone intentionally breaks through the God-given limits (walls) that surround them, they have a sure PROMISE OF SCRIPTURE:  "Break through that wall, and a serpent WILL bite you!"

Deliverance for Ditch Dwellers

One of the surest ways to break out of a negative cycle is to begin doing what's right.  Sounds simple. Consider afresh your daily schedule -- your routine, attitudes, and patterns.  Look at where all this is leading.  Are you building a temple or digging a ditch? Are you staying close to Jesus, or are you living near the edge?

If you are now in a pit, Jesus can deliver you.  It begins by asking.  "Lord, set my spirit free that I might once again worship You."  He loves to liberate those who are His.

If you are engaged in ditch digging, please lay down your shovel, and lift up your head.  All it takes is a glance at God's grace, and those bitten by serpents are healed.  He sets us free.  Instead of dwelling in a ditch, you can live in the sunlight of God's goodness.

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