Summary: A sermon examining the severe consequeces of sinful choices in our lives. Not only the personal consequences but also the impact on our family and friends.
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Sinful Choices & Severe Consequences
If you choose to spend more money than you take in, eventually you will go bankrupt. If you choose to lay out of work, eventually you will find yourself unemployed. If you choose to eat too much, you will gain weight. If you choose to neglect your spouse, it may cost you your marriage.
Dr. Adrian Rogers once said - “You Are Free to Choose, You Are Not Free to Not to Choose, You Are Not Free to Choose the Consequences of Your Choice”.
Some choices are trivial and some choices are vital. In the spiritual realm choices have eternal consequences. When choices are sinful... there are SEVERE CONSEQUENCES!
The Children of Israel
And many, many others!
In our text, we have an example of choices and consequences in the actions of a man named Elimelech and his family. Things got tough and he made a choice to flee the land. After this came a downward spiral of events that impacted each member of his family.
Background: The book of Ruth is the only book in the Bible that is about the history of a woman. There are two books in the Word of God that are named after women. Esther & Ruth. (Interesting Bible fact: Ruth who was a Gentile married a Hebrew and Esther who was a Jewess married a Gentile)
Ruth is a type or a picture of the Church. (She was a Gentile bride).Boaz (who we will see in a future sermon) was the kinsman redeemer; he is a type or picture of Christ. There are many great truths to be found in this book. Today we will look at the first 5 verses and see a great lesson concerning people who choose to walk away from God.
It has often been said that “Sin will take you farther than you want to stay, Sin will keep you longer than you want to stay, Sin will cost you far more than you want to pay”. We will see just that in this message.
Join me as we consider the thought “Sinful Choices & Severe Consequences” There are many examples of the consequences to being outside of God’s will in this portion of scripture. Let’s begin with the:
I. Sinful Choices v1-2
Now why would anyone make a sinful choice? Unfortunately there are many answers to this question. Notice:
A. The Reason For Sinful Choices - v1 ¶Now it came to pass in the days when the judges ruled, that there was a famine in the land. And a certain man of Bethlehemjudah went to sojourn in the country of Moab, he, and his wife, and his two sons.
We see that there was "a famine in the land." ….A famine is a shortage of food. We also read that this story takes place during the time of the Judges. This in itself may explain the famine: Judges 21:25 tells us that - In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes.
This was a time of:
o False religion
o Sexual perversion
o National division
Sounds very familiar to the day and age in which we live! We live in a time when men and women “do what is right in their own eyes”
In man’s eyes …it is alright to live together without being married
In man’s eyes …men can marry men and women can marry women
In man’s eyes … it is ok to get drunk and “have a good time”
In man’s eyes … it is ok to partake in illegal drugs
In man’s eyes …it is ok to commit adultery
In man’s eyes …it is ok to kill unborn babies
Though these things may seem to ok in man’s eyes, THEY ARE NOT OK IN GOD”S EYES!!! And there are consequences. Many times in the Bible, famine was a means of discipline from God. When His people disobeyed and turned from Him, there would often be a time of famine. This is where Elimelech and his family were… enduring a time of famine.
When difficulty comes we often make decisions without consulting God. In some situations we just disobey God and go our own way. You may be here today and you have faced a time of famine/discipline in your life and as a result you have walked away from God. Now you are dwelling in a place of wickedness. THERE ARE SEVERE CONSEQUENCES COMING YOUR WAY!!
Elimelech chose to leave "Bethlehem-Judah" for the country of Moab.