On the Deadly Exposure and Effects of Sexual Sin
In the early morning hours of April 26, 1986, a testing error caused an explosion at the Chernobyl nuclear power station in northern Ukraine. A radioactive fire ensued and burned for 10 days, expelling 190 tons of toxic materials into the atmosphere. The explosion released 100 times the amount of radiation unleashed on Hiroshima and Nagasaki combined.
Over 7 million people were exposed to the deadly radioactive material, which in the course of time has revealed a staggering array of health concerns. The list includes thyroid cancer, leukemia, nervous system disorders, bone and muscle disorders, diabetes, birth defects, genetic mutations, cardiac abnormalities, and a variety of other and new forms of cancer. Also a large percent of the environment in which Chernobyl residents continue to live (i.e. the air, ground water, soil and food) is still contaminated—over twenty years later.
A common misconception is that only a few people died as a result of the Chernobyl disaster, yet the facts show different. Those who experienced acute exposure, which is a high dose of radiation over a short period of time, saw quicker results. Approximately 134 power station workers were exposed to extremely high doses of radiation directly after the accident. About 31 of these people died within three months. Another 25,000 “liquidators” (i.e. the soldiers and firefighters who were involved in cleanup operations) have died since the disaster from diseases such as lung cancer, leukemia and cardiovascular disease. In the case of the millions of others who were and still are exposed to lower doses of radiation, the ramifications will be felt for decades to come.
Sexual Sin's Exposure
As tragic as that may seem, it pales in comparison to the enormity of another silent killer called sin, whose toxic cloud has overshadowed the whole of humanity in its hideous, cold and chilling death grip. Both man and the creation groan under its curse, “For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope; because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now. (Rom. 8:20-22)
Sin is a poison that affects the whole human race. Sexual sin, in particular, is like a great fire that begins with a spark, and if left unchecked, devours everything in its path. It destroys the soul and burns to the lowest hell. The person who thinks he can live and continue to expose himself to the toxic fumes of lustful thinking, pornography, and infidelity and not be affected is sorely deceived and doesn’t realize that this inconspicuous killer is already at work, deep within his soul. The man who continues to expose himself to any kind of sin is basically throwing himself into a consuming fire that won’t relent until his whole body and soul are utterly destroyed.
“Can a man take fire to his bosom and his clothes not be burned?” (Prov 6:27)
The Bible clearly states that sin can manifest itself in the lives of people in many forms. In Galatians, the apostle Paul makes a list of sinful deeds and what each one leads to: “adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.” (Gal. 5:19-21) Most assuredly, unless a man is released from sin’s deadly exposure, the end result is not only a physical death, but everlasting ruin, where fallout will be felt throughout all eternity. The penalty of sin is as certain as the laws of nature, and far more terrible and destructive in its power.
“Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death. Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren.” (Jas. 1:15-16)
Anyone who has a sight of the reality of his sexual sin and where it leads to, would be absolutely insane to even consider exposing himself to it again and again. It would be like asking someone to go and stand inside of the now sealed Chernobyl nuclear reactor, which is as hot as ever inside. We know because of science that would prove fatal. How much more should we reverence and obey the Word of God, which warns us that “the wages of sin is DEATH.” (Rom. 6:23)
Sexual Sin's Effects
We were born in sin, and therefore, it affects every aspect of our lives. “Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin my mother conceived me.” (Psalm 51:5) Millions die an eternal death every year due to sin’s toxic fumes. People basically go about life unaware of what is taking place deep down in their souls—even those who sit smugly in church pews week after week who’ve never truly repented of sin.
The psalmist describes sin’s affect on the human soul when he says, “When I kept silence [before I confessed], my bones wasted away through my groaning all the day long.” (Psalm 32:3) That is the reality of what is taking place in a man’s soul when he doesn’t confess and forsake his "pet sin" of masturbation or pornography but rather continues to live in it.
Those dealing with the aftermath of the nuclear accident at Chernobyl are at the mercy of scientists and doctors who are grappling with all the problems related to their exposure to radioactive material. Yet with the most advanced technology and human ingenuity, these men cannot break out of the circle of mankind’s fallen nature. Even if medical researchers could prolong some lives through medicine and technology, those affected will still die and face the consequence of a greater cancer of the soul if they don’t repent and turn to Jesus.
Sexual Sin's Cure
Thankfully, what man could not do, God has done through His only begotten Son Jesus Christ, who took away the curse and penalty of all sin. God has enabled us to get outside of the circle of fallen nature where there is hope for the sin-sick soul. He has given us a living hope through the blood of Christ. Praise the Lord for His divine healing power for the soul!
Confession and repentance pave the way to the cure for sexual sin. The light of God has come, which is like a divine x-ray of the soul, that reveals how and where we are exposing our soul to sin’s deadly influence. When that light comes through His word, by His Spirit, or through one of His saints, the first thing we must do is acknowledge our sin and confess it before God and man.
“But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1Jo 1:7-9)
“Be not wise in your own eyes; reverently fear and worship the Lord and turn [entirely] away from evil. It shall be health to your nerves and sinews, and marrow and moistening to your bones.” (Prov 3:7-8)
The tremendous hope we have is that we can turn from our sin to God at anytime. We don’t have to succumb to the deadly influence of sin. Confession opens the door to life and the fear and worship of God is what enables us to walk in “newness of life.” A lifestyle centered on loving God and being a doer of His word, will expose us to His divine presence, which in turn will shelter us from sin’s lethal exposure.
God is always calling sinners to repentance. He can see the danger we are in, every minute we allow ourselves to continue in sin. We can’t afford to live one more moment under its influence. It’s a matter of life or death! “Today if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts!” God desires that all would come to repentance. He doesn’t delight in the death of one sinner.
Jeff Colón is a minister of the Assemblies of God. He held various positions during his 22 years with Pure Life Ministries. Jeff holds an MDiv and BA in Biblical Counseling from Master’s International School of Divinity. He recently branched out on his own, launching Lighthouse Biblical Counseling Center in Dry Ridge, Kentucky.
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