Have you ever been around someone who is lazy? And if they’re in here don’t call them out
I remember when I worked for the government, and this will shock you, but I worked with many many people who were just lazy
And they were paid an obscene amount of money to be that way
Medical warehouse, government employees would come through the warehouse for a few weeks at a time, and I was put in charge of them.
This was a second job to them, they weren’t driven to leave a mark, they were just there to collect a paycheck
I think in a way, we as believers can be guilty of the same thing. We’re signed up, we’re on board, but we’d much prefer just to coast.
is our text for this evening, and it says this, “ 6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, 7 casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. 8 Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”
The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.
Very Real Danger
Very Real Danger
Verse 8 is a common verse to us, one I’m sure many of us have heard before, “Be sober-minded, be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”
And we saw in the video a man named Darryl, who had fallen into one of the sins that we tend to classify as a “big sin” - gambling addiction
And I thought it was interesting and very telling that before he fell into that, his life had been pretty much set up financially. He had it made. Which had led to him getting lazy
And before he knew it, he was trapped
And that’s why Peter says in verse 8, that we are to be sober-minded, we are to watch out for those pitfalls in our own lives. Those areas of our lives where we are lazy, or we aren’t vigilant, or we aren’t willing to fight against sin
However, I’m not sure too many of us in here could say at the age of 32 we are independently wealthy and are teetering on the verge of a gambling addiction
But, the truth is, Satan doesn’t need a big area of our live to utterly and totally destroy us
In fact, he is quite happy working his way into our lives in a very small way.
All he needs is for us as men to get lazy
See, sin will look for an opening in our lives, no matter how big, no matter how small, and if we aren’t willing to watch out for it, that sin can take over.
The book of James in chapter 1 talks about this idea when it says “desire conceives sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.”
So the question is where are we allowing sin to thrive in our lives as men?
Maybe it’s in the things we watch, and I’m not just talking about the sites we can visit on the internet. I’m talking about the shows and the movies that feed those sinful desires that can lead to those bigger issues
Remember, it can start small and work it’s way in
Maybe it’s in our jobs. Where we act one way here at church, but at our jobs, we act like the rest of the world, looking out for number one, using the same language that others do, doing whatever we can to climb a corporate ladder
Government Example - look out for number one
Maybe it’s in the close friends we keep, friends that are much quicker to bring us down than to bring us up
Maybe it is an addiction, because that’s not out of the question. We are all very addictive people.
Give me a pack of gum and it’ll be gone in a day or two
See, as men, we all feel like we have a certain stereotype we need to fit, or we need to act a certain way, and we’ll sacrifice our vigilance to fit those stereotypes
But real men, real men of faith, will humble themselves as verse 6 said, and no longer focus on those things.
So what in your life is distracting you, what in your life is out of sync with God’s Word?
Very Real Consequences
Very Real Consequences
With the dangers come very real consequences, as I’m sure we have all experienced in our lives, regardless of how long we’ve been living.
But, we tend to look at consequences with a “how does this affect me” mentality.
Which isn’t totally wrong, our choices to sin have and will always affect us personally
And apart from salvation through Jesus Christ, as that passage in James told us, we are destined to death and separation from God eternally
Look at verse 8 with me again, “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”
Notice the language used there. Your adversary....seeking someone
Peter doesn’t say your adversary is seeking you to desire.
Although he is - and even if it’s a quote on quote “small sin” it can lead to us being devoured
But Peter says he is seeking someone to devour
And if we aren’t watchful, if we choose to give in to sin in areas of our lives, we have no way of controlling who that sin can and often will affect
In the video, we saw a very real example of a father’s decision affecting his son, and his realization that he had set the example for his son
The same is true for us....the things we choose are examples for others
Father’s especially, the things we choose to watch, do, the way we act, the things that find importance....we are setting an example for our children
Men of the church, the same is true of us. If we are in church on Sunday, but setting a totally different example Monday - Friday, we are influencing the younger men
I was talking to one of our youth guys this week, encouraging him to live his life as an example for the middle schoolers that look up to Him.
But it’s also true that the things we choose can have very real negative effects on people as well
Tangible effects, like we saw in the video
And so Peter is telling us to be watchful, but not just for our own sake, but for the sake of others
As men, society tells us to do what we want, when we want, however we want. To be men who have no master, men who can live life in whatever manner they want to
you be you
But God’s Word is telling us no, humble yourselves, cast those worldly cares (and desires) on Him, and be watchful:
for your own sake
and for the sake of others
Some of us in here may have experienced a father who didn’t model a good life for us, and we’ve struggled because of that
Some of us in here may currently still be going through that, or trying to make sense of that
And if that’s you, I’d encourage you to find a strong male believer who you can look to for an example, for guidance, for wisdom
Again, why we’re doing this Bible study
But also, some of us in here may be guilty of being a father, a grandfather, a friend, a mentor, a church goer who isn’t modeling a life that is being vigilant and watching out
But the truth is if we are going to be men who act like the men we were created to be, we have to be willing to quit being lazy, to fight against those seemingly small…to maybe those really big sin issues in our lives
And our prayer is that all of us will become men who fight, men who watch out
As we head to our groups, don’t be afraid to be real, to discuss how being men who watch out, or not being men who watch out has affected you personally.