• Lust of the flesh: Putting our desires first. – Sex, pleasures
• Lust of the eyes: Putting things first –material things
• Pride of life. Putting our accomplishments first. Success
We have all had to fight with one of these battles before but God tells us that if we are obsessed with these things then we are not walking in righteousness. You can’t be right with God and pursuing the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes or the pride of life.
I think there are some high profile examples of where these three sins can lead you. Here are some celebrities. Tell me if you recognize. Show a picture of Chris Farley, JFK Jr, and Allyiah. I am sure if each of these wealthy, famous and DEAD stars could talk to you today, I am sure they would say the things of this world don’t last.
You see each of these people died as a result of one of the three categories of sin we are talking about.
Chris Farley was an up and coming comedic star. His movies grossed lots of money and he had the ability to make people laugh. But, Chris Farley was addicted to drugs. They became what he worshipped. You see the drugs had control over him. At the end of the day, he still had an emptiness inside him that he tried to fill with illegal drugs. One night he went on a binge and overdosed. His friends found him lying on the floor, dead in 1997 at the age of 33. I believe that Chris Farley is a great example of what becomes of someone entrapped in the sin of the lust of flesh. He became enslaved to the pleasure that drugs gave him but died trying to let them fill the empty space that only God can.
Aaliyah was a successful recording artist. In 2001, at 21 years old, she had platinum albums and had begun to find success in movies as well. She was incredibly talented. She was very successful. She had just finished filming a music video for her latest album. She had spent all day singing and dancing on a luxury yacht in the Caribbean. When the day was done, she was to fly back home on her own private jet. While boarding the plane with a few close friends, she was told that all of the things that she wanted to bring with her were too heavy for the flight. She insisted that she needed everything she had on board. Reluctantly the pilot agreed to fly home even though the plane was over weighted. The plane crashed shortly after takeoff, about 200 feet (60 m) from the runway killing all on board. Aaliyah died because she wanted all her stuff on the plane with her and wouldn’t leave anything behind. Allyiah died as a result of the sin of the lust of the eyes. She equated her success and some degree who she was as a person with material things. So much so that in the end the very things that she placed so much importance on were what led to her death. Her desire for material things, the lust of the eyes that John talks about in this passage cut her life tragically short.
JFK Jr. has been referred to as America’s prince. He was the son of one of our most beloved presidents. He was good looking and wealthy. He had much success in the eyes of the world. One afternoon in 1999 he was piloting his private jet with his wife and sister-in-law traveling with him to his cousin’s wedding. That day there was very little visibility. JFK Jr. was warned that the sky was unsafe for flying. Still, he took off. He was sure he was a good enough pilot to fly the plane using only instrumentation. He was wrong. The plane crashed and all three passengers were killed. JFK Jr. died because of the sin of the pride of life. He was too proud to admit that he could not successfully fly the plane. He assumed his abilities were greater than they were. He ignored good advice and his pride led to his death.
You know what I think each of these famous people would tell us if they could. I think they would tell us that things of the world just don’t last.
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