“Do not follow the crowd in doing wrong”
Exodus 23:2, NIV
I recently bought a new Bible and have been reading it afresh from the beginning. It’s a large print Bible with all the text set out in paragraphs, rather than individual verses. I have found it very refreshing and, indeed, challenging as the Lord has been showing me so many new things from His Word that have really arrested me in my reading. Already there are many places which I have picked up my pen and underlined something, or written comments in the margin for future reference.
Our Scripture for today is just one of those sentences that is now underlined. We often talk about how difficult it must be for young believers today to be faithful to God’s Word. The massive changes in public perceptions of morality and of what is right and what is wrong have steadily eroded the backbone of truth which was the Christian heritage of our nation. The ‘peer pressure’ on the young – and also the not so young! – is huge. And the temptation to think that society must be right, and to start re-interpreting Scripture to make it say something different from the obvious, has led to many people falling into traps of the enemy.
In days past, when tigers were common and a danger to human life, one way of catching a dangerous animal was to construct a tiger trap – a deep pit, across the top of which are carefully laid thin branches, so that they look like solid ground. When the tiger treads on the branches its own weight makes the branches give way, the tiger falls through and is trapped at the bottom of the pit.
There are many different ‘tiger traps’ which Satan has laid across the paths of unsuspecting Christians and unless we are aware from Scripture as to what is right and what is wrong, we can all be in danger of falling into them. And when the crowd seems to be going in one direction it’s very hard to resist the crowd’s pressure and refuse to compromise on what you know to be true.
I often hear people talking about praying for revival. But with so many people caught in the tiger traps of the enemy’s making, I believe that in order for there to be revival, there first needs to be a season of repentance so that God’s people will, once again, be choosing to walk in the opposite direction to the crowd, because they have learned afresh from God’s Word the difference between what is right and what is wrong. Only then will they have the discernment to spot the tiger traps that lie ahead of them and avoid falling in!
Prayer: Thank You, Lord, that Your Word is very clear about what is right and what is wrong. Help me, Lord, not to be swayed by the pressures of the crowd when the crowd is going in a direction different to the way of truth and life. Where I have followed the crowd and fallen into a ‘tiger trap’ I pray that you will forgive me, lift me out and set my feet once again on the rock of truth. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.