They promise them freedom, while they themselves are slaves of depravity—for “people are slaves to whatever has mastered them.”
2 Peter 2.19 NIV
There are many varieties of addictions. All of them are insidious and seem harmless at first. Even when the addict is fully overcome by his drug of choice, he may not recognize his sorry plight. The impact of his condition is gradual, relentless, and very real. Others see it, but he denies it. He is deceived by the lure of sin and his fascination with its false promise of happiness.
There is a hole in the addict’s heart, and he is desperate to find enough meaning to plug it. He escapes often into an artificial, fleeting comfort offered by his cruel master. His vision is clouded by temporary relief from the pain of his sad existence. His judgment is impaired, yet he remains resourceful enough to develop an intricate system of lies and cover-ups. His excuses and self-validations do not work. Everyone who matters soon learns the truth. Even the sinner becomes aware of his imminent demise.
In lucid moments, the addict may express (and truly feel) a sorrow resembling repentance. But he possesses neither the courage nor humility to walk away from the grip of sin and its medicating power. The prodigal son has not yet “hit bottom” in the pigpen of his own making. It may take another divorce, job loss, car wreck, or treatment center to get his attention, or he may never come to his senses.
Are you that person?
It is not too late. It is never too late. Peter was that man. He was “overcome” by shame, hopelessness, and despair on the day he denied Christ. He was “enslaved” by the bondage of his addictions until he exchanged one master for another.
“This letter is from Simon Peter, a slave and apostle of Jesus Christ.”
2 Peter 1.1 NLT
Slavery to Christ is freedom from self. He who proclaimed “freedom for the prisoners” (Luke 4.18) sets us free from the private hell of our secret addictions.
Contributor: Dave S. (Adapted from World Traveler blog)