Summary: Everyone has principles they live by, but which are negotiable and which should never be set aside? The truth is, whenever Christians compromise their godly principles, they walk dangerously close to a deadly landmine.
Landmines in the Path of the Believer
Part 1: The Landmine of Compromise
Everyone has principles they live by, but which are negotiable and which should never be set aside?
The truth is, whenever Christians compromise their godly principles, they walk dangerously close to a deadly landmine.
The story of King Solomon reveals the terrible consequences of the landmine of compromise. God warned Solomon against alliances with Egypt, but he bypassed the Lord’s instruction to buy horses. Eventually, Solomon found himself agreeing to an alliance with Egypt and marrying Pharaoh’s daughter. It wasn’t long before King Solomon took more wives who worshiped pagan gods. The result was that “when Solomon was old, his wives turned his heart away after other gods; and his heart was not wholly devoted to the LORD his God” (1 Kings 11:4). Consequently, the nation of Israel became weaker until it was torn apart.
Satan’s deadliest attacks are usually subtle. The deceptive power of compromise is among the greatest threats to any believer.
Key Passage: 1 Kings 9-11
Supporting Scripture: 2 Corinthians 6:14
1. Is all compromise wrong?
Compromise can be beneficial when it promotes cooperation without sacrificing moral values. Solomon, however, disobeyed God’s instruction for his life and leadership of Israel. The Lord told him, “If you will walk before Me as your father David walked, in integrity of heart and uprightness, doing according to all that I have commanded you and will keep My statutes and My ordinances, then I will establish the throne of your kingdom over Israel forever” (1 Kings 9:4–5). Unfortunately, Solomon chose to disobey God to build the kingdom, which ironically left Israel a “heap of ruins” (v. 8).
2. The first step is the most dangerous.
When you take one step in the wrong direction—a direction that you know is unwise—it can lead to ungodly actions and ultimately destruction. Of course, the enemy’s lie to you is: “A little bit of that is not going to hurt you. You can handle it.” However, every time you step across the line, what happens? You endanger yourself in ways you don’t even realize. Like rat poison, even a little bit of compromise can be deadly, so don’t do it!
3. The nature of compromise.
Concessions usually begin in small, insignificant ways, so it’s easy to underestimate their potential for damage. Compromise isn’t usually a huge act of disobedience; more often, it starts as a minor slip in your thinking or behavior toward God. The slope becomes slippery, and each subsequent act of disobedience is easier to rationalize. Every little accommodation weakens your conscience and makes it more difficult to reverse the downhill trend. Conceding in one area opens you to giving in elsewhere, and compromise
always leads to defeat.
4. The consequences of compromise.
Lowering your standards weakens your character, hurts your personal testimony, and hinders your prayer life. Compromise will also corrupt your thinking. While you may believe you’re making accommodations in just one area, every aspect of your life will be affected. For example, once honesty has been breached in some form, it becomes easy to stop upholding the truth elsewhere. If you have compromised on a principle that should have been non-negotiable, you may cease to think in terms of right and wrong. You can easily grow defensive about concessions you’ve made in your faith and behavior; you start to expect everyone to be tolerant of your errors. Finally, you distance yourself from the Lord, becoming totally depraved and out of touch with God, His Word, and the sustaining principles that define a victorious life. In the end, people will regard you as untrustworthy. Compromisers eventually destroy themselves.
5. Avoid compromise—make God’s Word your standard of conduct.
Never compromise your doctrine. Christians sometimes waver on their belief in the bodily resurrection of Christ, His virgin birth, or the inerrancy of God’s Word. Avoid that at all costs. From there, it becomes easier to compromise on issues such as morality and conduct. Make God’s Word your standard for every area of your life.
6. Avoid compromise—begin every day on your knees.
When you begin the day before God in prayer and meditate on His Word, you dedicate the day to Him. You have a spiritual G.P.S.—God’s Positioning System—inside of you, which is the Holy Spirit. God’s Spirit guides you in the truth and helps you to live in obedience to God. When you start the day with Him, you begin with the right heart and perspective to avoid the landmine of compromise.
7. Avoid compromise—obey the initial promptings of the Holy Spirit.
Whenever you draw close to the landmine of compromise, the Holy Spirit will send you warning signals that you need to obey immediately. The enemy will try to subtly tempt you to think about disobeying God. Don’t let him! Listen to the Holy Spirit and obey His promptings immediately. He’ll never lead you astray.