MY SON, IF SINNERS ENTICE YOU, DO NOT CONSENT.
Much of the Book of Proverbs was written to give practical advice on how to live a moral life for God. Solomon wrote the most of it and it focuses on passing his wisdom onto the younger generation. One good thing you can say about Solomon is that he was wise in knowing the importance of training the next generation in the ways of the Lord even though he failed to follow his own advice later on his life.
The title of our lesson comes directly from:
Proverbs 1:10 My son, if sinners entice you, Do not consent.
This is clearly great advice for anyone. Do not let a sinner entice you into sin. Let’s take a closer look at the word “entice.” It can be defined and used in several ways:
Persuade, deceive, seduce.
Another good description of this word comes from the Latin meaning of this word, which means to set on fire. To be enticed is to have a burning desire for something, and as we will learn in this lesson that this something usually ends up being something that God forbids. Let’s look at some examples.
Exodus 22:16 " If a man entices a virgin who is not betrothed, and lies with her, he shall surely pay the bride-price for her to be his wife. 17 "If her father utterly refuses to give her to him, he shall pay money according to the bride-price of virgins.
The law of Moses had laws that helped protect the innocent young ladies from being taken advantage of. Notice if man entices or we could persuades or seduces a virgin who is not betrothed and lies with her, then he must pay the bride-price and marry this young lady. The bride-price is a dowry. However, if the Father refuses the marriage then the man who did the enticing will have to pay a greater price and will not have her as a wife.
Anything can be exploited, but this law no doubt helped prevent men from enticing women to lie with them before they were married because it would cost them money and they would have to marry the lady. Besides it being sinful, the others consequences would make it less appealing.
Today, we do have such a law in place, but if it were it would certainly cut down on people fornicating. This is real problem in our society today because the media makes fornication out as being something that is normal and does not really matter, but God’s Word says differently. While you will not be forced to marry the one you enticed to like with you or have to pay a brides-price, there are many other reasons of why people should not lie with each other without being married.
There are many reasons we should not allow ourselves to be enticed by a man or a woman to lie with them before marriage. This is can be a challenge thing not to do especially with all the outside influences that we have, but we must be diligent in not allowing anyone to seduce, persuade, or deceive us into committing sexual sin. This of course would apply to the unmarried and to the married that are enticed by someone other their mate.
The Book of Proverbs has much to say about avoiding being enticed by women, which would also apply to being enticed by men. Since sexual sin is one of the most alluring sins that people find themselves in, I want to share with you what the writer of proverbs says about it in chapter 7. This is a bit a read, but offers strong warning to those who are being enticed by someone that is married.
Proverbs 7:1 My son, keep my words, And treasure my commands within you. 2 Keep my commands and live, And my law as the apple of your eye. 3 Bind them on your fingers; Write them on the tablet of your heart. 4 Say to wisdom, "You are my sister," And call understanding your nearest kin, 5 That they may keep you from the immoral woman, From the seductress who flatters with her words. 6 For at the window of my house I looked through my lattice, 7 And saw among the simple, I perceived among the youths, A young man devoid of understanding, 8 Passing along the street near her corner; And he took the path to her house 9 In the twilight, in the evening, In the black and dark night. 10 And there a woman met him, With the attire of a harlot, and a crafty heart. 11 She was loud and rebellious, Her feet would not stay at home. 12 At times she was outside, at times in the open square, Lurking at every corner. 13 So she caught him and kissed him; With an impudent face she said to him: 14 "I have peace offerings with me; Today I have paid my vows. 15 So I came out to meet you, Diligently to seek your face, And I have found you. 16 I have spread my bed with tapestry, Colored coverings of Egyptian linen. 17 I have perfumed my bed With myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon. 18 Come, let us take our fill of love until morning; Let us delight ourselves with love. 19 For my husband is not at home; He has gone on a long journey; 20 He has taken a bag of money with him, And will come home on the appointed day." 21 With her enticing speech she caused him to yield, With her flattering lips she seduced him. 22 Immediately he went after her, as an ox goes to the slaughter, Or as a fool to the correction of the stocks, 23 Till an arrow struck his liver. As a bird hastens to the snare, He did not know it would cost his life. 24 Now therefore, listen to me, my children; Pay attention to the words of my mouth: 25 Do not let your heart turn aside to her ways, Do not stray into her paths; 26 For she has cast down many wounded, And all who were slain by her were strong men. 27 Her house is the way to hell, Descending to the chambers of death.
Solomon gives some sound advice. He does not pretend that life is grand and that everyone does what is right. No, he is being real. He is letting his readers understand that you can always finds someone on the prowl. In this case it is a woman whose husband had gone on a long journey so she knows she can hide lustful desires from him because he is not there to see it. Solomon could have easily described a man doing the same thing.
The point of the matter is that we must not be so naïve to believe that such people are rare and that it would never happen to us. Instead, we must wise as serpents and harmless as doves. While we should not allow our minds to linger on such things, we must be aware of the kind of people that are out there and that some of them are so desperate for attentions that they can be very persuasive if they catch off you guard.
In our example, this young man gets killed as result of allowing himself to be enticed by a married woman. This same consequence can happen today because some husbands will go ballistic over such a discovery and many people have been killed by such husbands who have had the hearts torn out from their wives cheating on them. This is can also happen with some wives who catch their husbands cheating on them.
Though enticement can be very powerful, Solomon tells us exactly how we can keep from consenting to it, and that is keeping God’s Word close to your heart. Allow it to be a part of your life daily. Dwell on it, live by it, and let it speak to you. The more you grow in God’s Word, the easier it will be for you to recognize when you are being enticed and it will be like a loud voice that screams from deep within in your soul to tell you, “No, don’t do it.” However, you must prepare heart beforehand to listen to your conscience that has been trained by the Word of God, otherwise you will do the dirty deed anyways.
Our second example of enticement being used in a sinful way is found in:
Deuteronomy 13:6 " If your brother, the son of your mother, your son or your daughter, the wife of your bosom, or your friend who is as your own soul, secretly entices you, saying, 'Let us go and serve other gods,' which you have not known, neither you nor your fathers, 7 "of the gods of the people which are all around you, near to you or far off from you, from one end of the earth to the other end of the earth, 8 "you shall not consent to him or listen to him, nor shall your eye pity him, nor shall you spare him or conceal him; 9 "but you shall surely kill him; your hand shall be first against him to put him to death, and afterward the hand of all the people. 10 "And you shall stone him with stones until he dies, because he sought to entice you away from the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.
We can certainly see how serious things were when it came to those who were trying to entice people to turn away from God. During Moses time it would get you stoned. Such strict punishment would certainly be a deterrent to keep most people from trying to entice other to worship something false, but things have changed under the N.T. because this law is no longer binding. Think about the impact such a law would have on people today. Things would be different.
Though no one is to be stoned under the N.T. for seeking out other gods or practicing their own religion, the Bible still teaches us that it is wrong. It pretty obvious that seeking after other so called gods is wrong, but I want to show that is also wrong for those who claim to love God yet they have allowed themselves to be enticed by others to worship God in their own way.
1 Corinthians 1:10 Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment. 11 For it has been declared to me concerning you, my brethren, by those of Chloe's household, that there are contentions among you. 12 Now I say this, that each of you says, "I am of Paul," or "I am of Apollos," or "I am of Cephas," or "I am of Christ." 13 Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?
These Corinthians were confused and they were guilty of giving their honor and their devotion to men. While these men mentioned here were great servants of God and were in no way trying to get people to follow them, these Corinthians were enticed by the miracles they working and the authority they spoke with and so they were starting to call themselves after their names.
Sometimes people just cannot seem to help themselves when it comes to this kind of thing, because a more recent examples come from the Lutheran church. Martin Luther was just a man, but he impressed many by his stand against the Catholic church. Though this man taught several things wrong from the Bible, one thing good I can say about him was that he taught those following his teaching not to call themselves Lutherans, but Christians. Yet, the people did not honor his request and we now have the Lutheran church.
Paul made it clear. He did not die for us nor did anybody else. The only person that died for us that made it possible for us to be reconciled to God was Jesus. We are to call ourselves after Him and not by some manmade name or by some act like baptism.
We must also not full ourselves into thinking that people will not take advantage of you and try to deceive you into believing their false way. Paul warns us in:
Colossians 2:8 Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ.
We have a serious problem with this today. There is no end to religious groups who call themselves by a different name and who will say and do whatever it takes to get you to follow after them. There are many today who are willing to listen to them because there way is easier and makes living the Christian appear to take little effort with no sacrifice.
Paul warns us over and over again about this:
1 Timothy 6:20 O Timothy! Guard what was committed to your trust, avoiding the profane and idle babblings and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge –
2 Timothy 3:13 But evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived. 14 But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of,
2 Timothy 4:1 I charge you therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom: 2 Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; 4 and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.
We live in a society that teaches us that easier is better. Advertiser understand that we are busy people and we do not have a lot of time to waste on cooking, cleaning, or exercising, this is why every infomercial you watch that deal with these topics will use phrases like, “it will save you time” “it only takes 15 min a day 3 times a week” “it is so easy” and “it will save you money.”
Due to a lack of Bible study and taking God’s Word seriously many are willing to take this mentality to their worship to God and how they live their lives. They will take a gospel of convenience and entertainment over having to spend the necessary time needed to grow as Christians and to be pleasing to God. It is easy to be enticed by the easy way and to follow false teaching because you can feel good about yourself even though you are believing a lie.
If people would read their Bible and study what is saying they would see that the easy way is not the right way. Jesus said:
Matthew 7:13 " Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. 14 "Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.
The easy way is follow the path that many are traveling, but if you want to make it to heaven Jesus said that it is a difficult way and only a few will find it. So, do not allow yourself to be fooled into believing it is ok if you do want you want to as long as you love Jesus and praise His name. The Bible teaches just the opposite. Notice a few verses that points this truth out:
Matthew 7:21 " Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.
Galatians 1:8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.
2 John 1:9 Whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God. He who abides in the doctrine of Christ has both the Father and the Son. 10 If anyone comes to you and does not bring this doctrine, do not receive him into your house nor greet him; 11 for he who greets him shares in his evil deeds.
James 1:22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; 24 for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. 25 But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.
I could list many more verses that teach the same thing, but the point is clear. Do not allow yourself to be enticed by man or by worldly ways. If you compromise God’s truth and take the easy path, you will not make it to heaven no matter how much you claim Jesus is your Lord because Jesus said that you must do the will of the Father and if do not abide in the doctrine of Christ you will not have the Father or the Son.
1 John 2:15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world -- the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life -- is not of the Father but is of the world. 17 And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.
Man and the ways of the world can be very enticing, but we do not have to consent. James teaches a great lesson on this in:
James 1:13 Let no one say when he is tempted, "I am tempted by God"; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. 14 But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. 15 Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death.
First, it brings us comfort that God does not tempt us with evil. In fact, 1 Cor. 10:13 tells us that He provides a way of escape, but we have to look out for it and be ready to take it. Notice what James says about sin. First we are tempted by sin when we have a desire for it and we are enticed by it, but it only causes us problem if indulge in it.
So, James tells us exactly how sin comes about and how we keep from entering into it. We must train ourselves to look for the signs that we are heading for trouble. Temptation itself is not a sin, otherwise Jesus would be a sinner because He was tempted, but the Bible tells that he was without sin. While we cannot avoid all temptations in this life, we can avoid many things that tempt us by planning ahead.
If your alcoholic, stay away from places that serve it and stay away from drinking buddies. If you struggle with pornography on the internet, get rid your of computer or install software that will prevent you from going to pornography sites. If you try, you can decrease the temptations in your life by carefully avoiding them.
Since you cannot avoid all temptation you can work on changing your desires by praying to God and making God’s Word part of your life. As Paul says:
Romans 12:2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
As you change your desires it will also change how those that tempt you entice you. So, if you can keep your eyes open for such things in your life you be much better at seeing the escape route that God provides and will keep from sinning.
There is much more that could be said on this topic, but I hope each us make sure that we never allow people or worldly ways to entice us in the way of sin because it will cause to become separated from God. Let us never let our guard down or be ignorant of what people are capable of doing when their desperate for attention. Living the Christian life is not easy, but when we arm ourselves with the Word of God by reading, studying, living by it, and having active prayer life, we can do it and we resist the enticement that man may through our way. I want to close with the words of Paul in;
Colossians 3:1 If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. 2 Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.