If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell. (Matthew 5:29-30)
I’ve known some extreme guys in my life. I remember one friend from college who drew no lines in the sand – particularly when it came to pranking. He didn’t care how badly hurt he got or how badly he hurt other people. In fact, on one occasion his roommate kept hitting snooze on his alarm clock, so this guy threw flashlight batteries at him until he turned his alarm off. It was nuts!
In a similar way, Jesus taught his followers that they should be willing to draw no lines when it comes to eradicating sin in our lives. From his perspective, sin is such a cancerous thing that any sight of it should lead us to do whatever we can – no matter how severe – to get rid of it. In his illustration, wouldn’t it be better to lose a body part than to miss out on the glorious future that God has in store for us?
The challenge is that most of us don’t actually believe that sin damages us and God’s plans for our lives. We fail to believe that we miss out on anything special when we choose to indulge in sin rather than to submit to the Lord. But what if we saw it differently? What if we heeded Jesus’ advice? We might be in for a more amazing life than anything we could possibly image. How extreme will you be?
Lord, help me to be extreme when it comes to eradicating sin in my life. Help me to see how truly destructive sin is, and give me the courage to take the necessary steps to root it out – regardless of how hard or painful those steps are.