Summary: Life can cut you wide open. More dangerous than the cuts of life, is the very real danger that spiritual bacteria will take advantage of the situation and turn a person from God.
An opportunistic infection is an infection caused by pathogens, that take advantage of certain situations. These infections usually do not cause disease in a healthy host, a compromised immune system, however, presents an "opportunity" for the pathogen to infect.
Today we are going to talk about the danger and cure for opportunistic spiritual infections. First we will look at some opportunistic scriptures. Then we will discuss the parallel between medical and spiritual conditions. Then we will discuss how and when we become vulnerable, and finally how to overcome opportunistic spiritual infections.
Mt 26:16 And from then on he [began] looking for a good opportunity to betray Him.
Lu 4:13 And when the devil had finished every temptation, he departed from Him until an opportune time.
In the Matthew text, Judas is described as looking for a good opportunity to betray Jesus. In other words he was looking for a better set of circumstances to do an evil deed. In the natural world as well as the spiritual world there are circumstances and situations that are more conducive for certain things to take place. The bible tells us that our enemy goes about as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour. It doesn’t say he devours everyone he runs in to, because he can’t. Lions look for the sick, the weak, the isolated, these are all conditions in the natural, but speak to conditions in the spiritual that can produce opportunities for spiritual attack.
In Luke, Jesus has been in the wilderness for 40 days, and tempted by the devil. After numerous attempts the devil finally got it through his head Jesus wasn’t going to fall for his temptations. Yet the devil didn’t throw in the towel, he just thought there would be a better set of circumstances that would allow him to get his hooks into Jesus. Fortunately for us, the devil never succeeded in getting Jesus to sin. The scriptures in fact teach that the devil used every and any point of leverage against Jesus, and they all failed. It also tells us, that since Jesus has faced all these different opportunistic types of temptation, He is well suited to helping us overcome in every situation.
Heb 4:15 For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as [we are, yet] without sin.
Heb 4:16 Let us therefore draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and may find grace to help in time of need.
Ok, so far we have seen that sin is always looking for an opening and an opportunity in our lives. Let’s now talk about the parallel between medical and spiritual conditions.
I have longed believed that for every medical condition there is, there is a similar condition that can effect the spiritual life. For example someone in the natural could have a cancerous growth, likewise in the spiritual someone could have something very unhealthy for them growing in their spirit. In the natural someone could have ringing in the ears, in the same way for some people - the internal noise of life is hindering your ability to hear God. If that describes you, get somewhere alone with God and calm yourself down. Let Him lead you beside the still waters.