I recently read that during the fall of Cambodia the Communists used a simple but very effective way of controlling their prisoners as they forced them to walk through the jungle.  Using a long needle they would thread something like fish line through the palms of each of their captives.  If a prisoner lagged behind or tried escaping, the pain would be excruciating for all.

When people think of being under sin’s bondage they often think of the “big and dirty” sins like murder, adultery, addictions.  They picture sin’s bonds as heavy duty chains.  But the devil is smart.  He often controls people like those Communists in Cambodia controlled their captives – with slender threads of pride, bitterness, and the like.  One of his most common “threads” is self righteousness.  That was the thread the devil used to bind the Pharisees of Jesus’ day.

What is so devious about all this is that it’s very difficult for both the person bound and others to see that they are truly captives. Often nothing looks amiss.  Things look good.  So much so that the captive doesn’t even try to escape and thus doesn’t feel much pain.  Life is not that bad.  But whether their bonds are seen or not, they are captives of sin and are walking on the broad way that leads to destruction.

They too need to be rescued.  That is what Jesus did.  He came and defeated the devil.  He broke sin’s power.  He cut the bonds enslaving us.  “Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part the same, that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.” (Hebrews 2: 14-15)

It is my prayer that everybody sees that all sins – even the nearly invisible ones – are deadly. That they not only see them, but then see that in Jesus and in him alone, is deliverance.

7 Responses to “CAPTIVITY OF SIN”

  1. 1 TJayT
    February 23, 2012 at 4:21 am

    Amen to everything you said here Mark.

  2. February 23, 2012 at 1:30 pm

    Thank you, Pastor Cares, for the vivid imagery you used to describe the deceitful bondage of sin. It makes it all the more beautiful to see the powerful rescue of our Savior!

  3. February 23, 2012 at 2:43 pm


    Although, we will all be entangled by these threads to varying degrees until we are taken home to glory. I am sure that’s at least covered in Romans 7 wretched man lament!

    It is very sad to me how many people in the Christian church think that their self righteousness = Biblical sanctification. I tend to agree more with Gerhardt Forde:

    The talk of progress and growth we usually indulge in leads us all too often to do just that. But if we are saved and sanctified only by the unconditional grace of God, we ought to be able to become more truthful and lucid about the way things really are with us. Am I making progress? If I am really honest, it seems to me that the question is odd, even a little ridiculous. As I get older and death draws nearer, it doesn‟t seem to get any easier. I get a little more impatient, a little more anxious about having perhaps missed what this life has to offer, a little slower, harder to move, a little more sedentary and set in my ways. It seems more and more unjust to me that now that I have spent a good part of my life “getting to the top,” and I seem just about to have made it, I am already slowing down, already on the way out. A skiing injury from when I was sixteen years old acts up if I overexert myself. I am too heavy, the doctors tell me, but it is so hard to lose weight! Am I making progress? Well, maybe it seems as though I sin less, but that may only be because I’m getting tired! It’s just too hard to keep indulging the lusts of youth. Is that sanctification? I wouldn‟t think so! One should not, I expect, mistake encroaching senility for sanctification! But can it be, perhaps, that it is precisely the unconditional gift of grace that helps me to see and admit all that? I hope so. The grace of God should lead us to see the truth about ourselves, and to gain a certain lucidity, a certain sense of humor, a certain down-to-earliness. When we come to realize that if we are going to be saved, it shall have to be absolutely by grace alone, then we shall be sanctified. God will have his way with us at last.”

  4. 4 Kent
    February 24, 2012 at 5:23 pm

    Only someone who believes that he or she can progress to the point that they themselves can completely overcome the bondage of sin would think, for example, that they can be good enough to become gods themselves and have their spirit children worship them on their own planet.

    When I pointed out to a Mormon on another site that even if there were such a thing as spirit children, they would be required to worship God only and no one else, as shown in Exodus 34:14, “for thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God”, here below is how he responded.

    “The Bible doesn’t allow the worship of anyone else but God, but the Bible doesn’t apply to anyone other than those to whom the Bible is given. Where does the Bible state that the commandments contained in it apply to the spirit children from gods other than our God? Where does the Bible state that its teachings are equally applicable even to God’s children on other planets? The Bible is a specific set of teachings given to a particular people in a particular place. One cannot make the blanket assumption that it would apply anyone other than those to whom it has been given since the Bible nowhere makes such a claim. It is silent on the matter because it is a book limited in scope to the doings of this world and no other.”

    Shem or one of the other Mormons who was posting here told me to get off of my ‘we can become gods’ kick but that is the crux of the whole matter that Mormons, it seems, want to be worshipped but why would they ever want to be gods and be worshipped anyway as it is quire an honor to be able to worship the one of true God of not only this planet but of the whole of creation, the whole universe, or if there are other universes, the God of those universes as well.

    Besides the Bible shows that the god of this world is Satan so a god who is only the god of this world is not a god I want to worship as he is the father of all lies that he uses to blind people from believing in the one true God.

    2 Corinthians 4:4

    4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

  5. 5 TJayT
    February 26, 2012 at 5:17 am

    Personally becoming a “god” as it where doesn’t factor into my mind (though I’m not going to sit here and try to say Mormonism doesn’t teach that). I see it as a side effect of being made of the same essence as God. I just care about worshiping God with all my heart and will let the rest fall into place when I finally get to meet him.

  6. 6 shematwater
    February 27, 2012 at 4:40 pm


    I think what you wrote is beautiful, and I agree with every word.


    Yes, I said to get off that kick, because it generally has nothing to do with the topic at hand. It is like someone who is constantly bringing up the laws of physics when the discussion is on the workings of living cells. Are they related? Of course they are. But discussing how an object will stay in motion is not all that helpful when one is trying to understand how DNA is replicated.

    “Mormons, it seems, want to be worshipped”

    You have no understanding, because you can make such a claim as this. You assume that us believing in the opportunity to becomes gods is a desire to be worshiped, and that is not true. God is the one who is worshiped, not the gods. Nowhere do we read that we will be Gods, but that we will be gods. The difference is very important. The first is a title, one that demands worship. The second is an adjective that describes a state of being.
    I have no desire to be a God, and thus I have no desire to be worshiped. However, I do have a desire to be a god, which means I desire to live in the same state of existence as my Heavenly Father.
    Also note that even when we are gods we will still worship the Father and Jesus Christ. We do not give up that honor to become gods. We merely increase our ability to fulfill it.

    “the Bible shows that the god of this world is Satan”

    This is true, when the term ‘world’ is referring to the man made civilizations; the kingdoms, principalities, and other man-made devices. Satan is the god of the world. However, and I think if you asked the person on the other thread would agree, Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ are the God of this world, meaning this planet, or the physical, natural existence that God created, and it is to this planet, or this Earth that the Bible pertains to, and no other.

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February 2012

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