The Control Delusion

The Control Delusion

I’m in control of nothing, follow you at any cost Some call it sovereign will, all I know is you the boss – Lecrae “Background” (feat. C-Lite)

Romans 6:12-16 “Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness. For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace. What then? Are we to sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means! Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness?”

1st Corinthians 6:12,13 “ ‘All things are lawful for me,’ but not all things are helpful. ‘All things are lawful for me,’ but I will not be enslaved by anything. ‘Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food’ – and God will destroy both one and the other. The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.”

Alright men, I have a question for you. When do you have control? I ask this, because as Christians, we benefit from having God’s word on such questions, and yet, I think we are just as guilty as everyone else in deluding ourselves. What I mean is this. Take for example, the pagans in the Bible. It seems that they believed they exercised a certain measure of control over their gods – so long as they sang the right song, sacrificed the right sacrifice and danced the right dance – their gods would respond as requested. So too with our present day occult practitioners, those who believe they can conjure spirits or the elements or supernatural powers to do their bidding. They believe that they, because of their incantations and rituals or own personal power – that they have the power and can get these otherworldly forces to serve them. Operating from a Biblical worldview, as Christians we believe that these spirits, “elements”, and “supernatural forces” being “commanded” are actually demons. Fallen angels, spirits yes, but evil spirits that choose to cooperate with their human “masters”, to actually advance their own malevolent agenda of human destruction and enslavement. That those who involve themselves with evil spirits are not in charge, and that all the while they think they are the master being served, in reality it is the human practitioner who is having the enslaving chains of bondage wrapped ever tighter. Logically this would culminate in a “betrayal” wherein the “servant” spirit turns on their human “master”, stops cooperating and or dominates their human slave – either in this life, or through simply diverting from the only salvation that is in Jesus Christ. It is, after all, perfectly satisfactory for the devil to trade a few mortal favors in exchange for the eternal destruction of the human soul.

You may have noticed that I am tending to add various quotes to these devotionals, when I find them to be relevant. In that vein, I actually found the above described principle played out rather compellingly in the recent Batman movie, “The Dark Knight Rises” –

Roland Daggett: Where’s Bane?
Bane: Speak of the devil, and he shall appear.
Roland Daggett: Your operation at the stock exchange, it didn’t work!
Bane: Our plan is proceeding as scheduled.
Roland Daggett: Then why am I not in control of Wayne Enterprises?
Bane: (Bane motions to Stryver) Leave us.
Roland Daggett: No! Stay here! I’m in charge!
Bane: (Places hand on Daggett’s shoulder) Do you feel in charge now?
(Stryver leaves the room quickly)
Roland Daggett: I’ve paid you a small fortune…
Bane: And this gives you power over me?

Personally, I found this exchange to be fairly striking in terms of the spiritual warfare parallels. It is the control delusion. The myth that evil serves us, when in reality, we are drawn ever deeper into slavery and the ultimate end being that we are consumed.

But, as Christians, we don’t fall for this delusion, of course not! We know better than to mess around with the supernatural, trying to get spirits to do our bidding! We pray and worship God alone, and we know very well that God can and will do what He wants. Certainly we don’t think we have control or power over God! Whew!

How about sin friend? I am personally convicted and persuaded regarding the rest of us, that we all fall under the same control delusion – easily. What I mean is this. When I sin, largely, it is because I want to. Hence the temptation, leading to my choosing to act, leading to the consequences of that sin. – James 1:14,15 “But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.” Do you see it brothers! The trap, the lie, the snare, the delusion! I sin, because I am doing what I want to – do you think I want to die? Of course not! I very much doubt that you want the consequence of sin either, and yet, you still sin! Brothers, I strongly suspect that we are deluding ourselves into believing that our choice to sin is a choice that serves us. Take a look at that belief, sin serves us. What a colossal LIE! What an absolutely incredible delusion! What an … OLD trick! The oldest in fact. All the way back to the garden of Eden – the lie, that to eat the forbidden fruit was a choice that served us. WRONG. It lead to slavery and death. Yet I fall for that same delusion! I know what I’m contemplating is sin, I know what I am choosing is sin, but I still want it, because I think it serves me!

What a delusion brothers. Sin does not serve us, it enslaves. Take a look at those verses at the beginning of the post. Take a look on the relationship we have with sin. We “present ourselves to” are “instruments”, we are “obedient” and “slaves” and “enslaved”. Or in reverse, the relationship sin has to us – instruments are “played”, as we present ourselves sin would “receive” us, slaves are “owned” and it is “commands” that are obeyed. This to speak nothing of sin having “dominion” over us apart from grace. Does this sound like we are in control? Does this sound like we are the ones being served? No. Brothers, we are being played.

But, there is another way. There is another master. Serve (because serve we must), but choose to serve God, choose to serve the One whom loves you and died for you and has your best interest at heart. Choose to be “…slaves of righteousness.” (Romans 6:18). This is why we choose to not give ourselves to sin, but to give ourselves to God. He owns us, and so besides the fact that sin never serves us, besides the fact that we are going to choose either to serve sin or serve God,  besides the reality that we are not made to sin but are in fact made for God, we have the incredibly comforting truth that God is also for us!

Read that again!

1st Corinthians 6:12,13 “ ‘All things are lawful for me,’ but not all things are helpful. ‘All things are lawful for me,’ but I will not be enslaved by anything. ‘Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food’ – and God will destroy both one and the other. The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.”

Christian! Your sinful desires are against even yourself! They enslave you, they do not serve you! They result in destruction! Sin is not what you were meant for, you were meant for God, AND “the Lord for the body.”.  God is for you, God is for you, God is for you!

Sin is a lie. Sin is a trap. Sin does not serve you – it kills you.

Conversely, Almighty Holy Omnipotent God – He not only is for you, but at the cross He served you. “For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Mark 10:45 (and Matthew 20:28)

Sin doesn’t add to your life. It does not enhance. It just lies and kills.

I will enjoy “nothing” from God better than “everything” from satan.

Fight warrior, fight.


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