There is nothing innocent about sin, yet it often seems to begin with innocent things.
For example, we may like to joke around with our friends, and that seems like perfectly normal behavior. But the apostle Paul warns us in the New Testament to be careful of the kinds of things we say. "But shun profane and idle babblings, for they will increase to more ungodliness." (2 Timothy 2:16)
The key word here is "profane". And as sincere Christians we need to watch out for profane talk (see Webster's definition), which may seem harmless, because it leads to profane thinking, which leads to ungodly choices and behavior. What we allow ourselves to joke about influences what we think about — what we allow into our hearts and minds. And what we dwell on in our thoughts affects what we want, and choose, to do in daily life.
And along with idle talk among our friends that turns in the wrong direction, we should also be careful of what we watch on TV and in movies, what we read in books and magazines, the kinds of games we play, and the kinds of jokes we listen to.
Here's the problem: Sin is never passive. It leads to more sin, prompting us to self delusions and even outward deception. It will also lead us to try and justify our wrong behavior. Sin is all about doing what pleases self at the expense of others.
Even actual sin itself may seem harmless, since many sins do not involve anyone else. But the time we spend with sin is time and imagination and creativity lost to us forever. Had we spent that time and effort doing good instead of evil, we may have accomplished real good for someone else. We may have even changed the world we live in. But we will never know how God might have used us if we make room for sin instead of right thinking and acting.
Learn to discern (recognize) what is off color, less than worthy, or even evil, and why it is wrong. Discipline your mind by God's Word, training your self to think according to God's truth and righteousness.
None of us are ever perfectly pure in our motives or thinking. Not naturally, anyway. But God will help us if we are willing to spend time in His Presence, reading the Scriptures, praying in the Spirit, and listening to His good Spirit.
The Lord Jesus is our way out of the trouble sin brings. Jesus is the life and power we need for godly living. And He alone is the light we need in a world oversaturated with darkness, deception and confusion. By hanging close with Jesus, we can learn God's way of victory.
- 35 Reasons Not To Sin (ccwtoday.org)