By Robert Halsey Pine
“Jesus answered them, ‘Very truly, I tell you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not have a permanent place in the household; the son has a place there forever. So, if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.’” (John 8:33-47 NRSV).
Sin is like a drug. We keep doing it even though it is killing us. Some stay out of the Christian community because a slave to sin does not feel worthy of a permanent place in the household of God. Some people come into community and feign piety while the slaving in sin continues. Jesus the Son, has a place in the household of God forever. He has given us the key to the house in His life and death on the cross. We are indeed free to come into the House if we repent and turn to Him.
I have been a slave to sin for the greater part of my life. It has been through continuous prayer that I have been able to begin to measure up as a trustworthy seeker of the key to His kingdom. Even now, I stumble and fall as I seek Him. As a teenager, we asked our natural father or mother if we could borrow the key to the car so that we could leave the house. As a seeking Christian, we ask God for the key so that we can get back into the house.
Sin is an addiction. It is a place where we hide. It is a place where we seek satisfaction. We are a slave to it. Each of our lives should be a constant state of prayer for relief from our sinful nature. This is our journey. We do not become fully forgiven until that last day when He takes us home, but we are commanded by God to continually seek Him and His Son in His house. It is by His Spirit that we are led. The Spirit is the locksmith. We must work through the locksmith in order to qualify for the key.
Father God, I am too comfortable in my slavery to sin. I am too accepting of this fate. Please help me, Father, to see the way out. Allow me to see that my joy in this life is to seek You and keep sin at bay. I know that if I am always seeking You, the day will come when my forgiveness will be complete, and I will dwell in Your house forever. Amen.
Robert Halsey Pine was born at Newark, Ohio in 1943. He is a graduate of Northeastern University and completed the program of Theological Education by Extension: Education for Ministry, School of Theology, the University of the South.