The Bible speaks to the characteristics of apostates in the last days. It’s careful to note their utter hypocrisy, in that they feed themselves “without fear,” even among the brethren. They enjoy the very benefits of Christian sainthood, and the fellowship of the church, without actually knowing Christ in a personal way. It’s the fear of the Lord that is the beginning of wisdom, and among the wicked, “there is no fear of God before their eyes.” We talk so much about the dangers of eternal judgment, the punishment of rejecting Christ. That is certainly warranted, and Scriptural! It is also part of the great commission. But what we often fail to point out is the dangers that sin brings presently, in the here and now.
The Bible makes it absolutely clear that, “righteousness keepeth him that is upright in the way.” As we order our lives to love the Lord our God and keep His commandments, righteousness exalts the individual in much the same way it does a nation. As we seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, all the necessary provisions of this life are added unto us. Not only because God loves, blesses, and takes care of us. But also because righteous, Biblically based living, establishes order and fruitful results in our life.
Quite the opposite is true of sin and those who practice it. Apart from humble and genuine repentance, all the sinner can expect in this life is death and destruction. Wickedness overthroweth the sinner, and the way of the wicked is as darkness. They know not at what they stumble. The Bible is full of examples of sin having present and very real consequences for: individuals, their spouses, children, siblings, parents, princes and potentates, kings and queens, cities and nations. So, the next time you’re tempted to think that you won’t have to answer for the consequences of your sin in this present life, maybe think again. Be sure that you will stumble and fall if you walk in darkness. But the path of the just is as a shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.