The downward spiral of sin and the choice of sinning

James 1:14-15 (NLT) 14 Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away. 15 These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death.

Genesis 4:6-7 (NLT) 6 “Why are you so angry?” the Lord asked Cain. “Why do you look so dejected? 7 You will be accepted if you do what is right. But if you refuse to do what is right, then watch out! Sin is crouching at the door, eager to control you. But you must subdue it and be its master.”

Bernard of Clairvaux taught the following.

The process, order, and bondage of sin and choices of sin:

  1. Sensual Desire—listening to our fallen nature, or the voice of others, or the thoughts from the evil one.
  2. Consent—succumbing to the idea of sinning
  3. Action—the act of sinning
  4. Habit—repeating the act over and over again
  5. Contempt—No one—even God, is going to tell me what to do! Proverbs 18:3 (NLT) 3 Doing wrong leads to disgrace and scandalous behaviour brings contempt.

(Adapted from P 34 Ralph Martin. The Fulfillment of all Desire)


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