Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Lessons from Ashley

There are a lot of newsworthy stories out there, so much so that writing about something like this seems to be very unnecessary and insignificant. In some ways, that would be true. I want to help us focus, however, on the truth that we can learn from the dreadful (to many) Ashley Madison Scandal. If you live in a vacuum, or are just coming back from a coma, or maybe lived in the jungles of a remote part of the world, follow the link above; they will summarize what happened for you.

Millions of men and women are cowering in a corner right now. They tremble with fear that they will be found out by their significant other. Or maybe they are single and looking for a man or woman out for a "cheat" thrill; but now they tremble as well.

Who is on the list? In short, people from virtually every walk of life. I can't find it now, but one Imam (a Muslim leader) insisted he never put his name out there. I'm not saying he did; I am only demonstrating they are from every walk of life.

What can we learn from this, as we read and hear about this person and that person being outed? What can we learn when place by place, country, state, and city, names are splashed all over the internet for others to see? One place will tell you not to look at the list; let it be. Another tells you to go ahead and take a look; you may find that special loved one's fidelity is in words only. What to do with all that conflicting counsel?

Here is the lesson I draw from Ashley:

As men and women, married and single cringe in fear that their secret is out of the bag, their greater fear is yet to come--unless they repent and believe the gospel. Rev. 20:11, 12 reveal a day when all the earth will try to hide from the Lord God, who will judge all men.  Verse 15 in the same book promises that those whose names are not found in the book of life will be cast into the lake of fire; eternally separated from God. Eternally punished for their sins, both public and secret.

Second, I am reminded of what Jesus said in Luke 13:1-5. Instead of a direct quote, let me paraphrase it for you. There were millions whose identities were divulged from a website designed for adulterers, and whose lives were ruined by their foolish choice. Do you think you are more righteous than they? I tell you, no; unless you also repent you will perish, too. 

Finally, I am reminded that forgiveness is available to all who will turn to Jesus Christ. I am so grateful that Jesus paid for my sin; not just mine, but the sins of the whole world. Anyone who will come to Jesus will find him ready to pardon and cleanse from the pollution, stench, and stain of sin. I suspect a lot of men and women are scrambling to find a good lawyer. Let me recommend the best lawyer of all. His name is Jesus. Come to him and let him plead your case before the Father in heaven.

And that is what I can take away from Ashley Madison.

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