Hey, I don’t mean to start the week off with a “Danny Downer” blog, but last week, a mass murder in Hanau, Germany grabbed my attention. A 43 year old extremist shot and killed 9 Middle Easterners who frequented “Hookah Bars.” People gather together in Hookah Bars to smoke flavored tobacco from Middle Eastern water pipes. Regarding this catastrophe, Chancellor Angela Merkel summed things up as the “poison of hatred” within many Germans. One murderer swallowed the “poison pill” of hatred which manifested itself in 9 senseless murders.
Never forget that the devil is in the middle of all this. The Bible states in John 10:10 that his strategy is to “kill, steal and destroy.”
After reading this story, I reflected on “poison pills” that we as believers swallow that have devastating impacts on our environment, relationships, and, most importantly, our relationship with the Lord. A list of some of these pills include the pill of bitterness, the pill of rage/anger, the pill of hopelessness, pill of sexual immorality, the pill of selfish ambition, the pill of envy and jealousy, the pill of selfishness, the pill of addiction of idolatry, the pill of obsessive control…
Allow me to highlight several of these pills as examples of their poisonous impact:
The Pill of Bitterness. Hebrews 12:15 declares “See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.”
The Pills of Selfish Ambition and Envy. James 3:16 states “For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.”
Pills of Jealousy and Anger. Proverbs 27:4 admonishes, “Anger is cruel and fury overwhelming, but who can stand before jealousy?” Proverbs 30:33 warns, “For as churning cream produces butter, and as twisting the nose produces blood, so stirring up anger produces strife.” James 1:20 admonishes, “Everyone should be…slow to become angry, 20 because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.”
So, what is the antidote to these poisonous pills?
- Galatians 5:16, 22 explains, 16 So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh… 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control.”
- Ephesians 5:22-24 “Regards to your former way of life, put off your old self, which is being corrupted (poisoned) by its deceitful desires; 23 be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
Let’s keep the poison out of our lives. Our Holy Pharmacist has exceedingly abundant above ability (Eph. 3:20) to keep us holy walking in a newness of life.