“Surely not I,” comes to mind whenever I want to do something that might have consequences attached.
29:1 Whoever remains stiff-necked after many rebukes will suddenly be destroyed–without remedy. NIV
29:1 He who hardens his neck and refuses instruction after being often reproved (corrected, criticized), will suddenly be broken beyond repair. AMP
“Surely not I” comes straight from Mark 14:18-19 when Jesus told the disciples that they would betray Him,
18 While they were reclining at the table, Jesus said, “I assure you and most solemnly say to you that one of you will betray Me—one who is eating with Me.” 19 They began to be grieved and deeply distressed and to say to Him one by one, “Surely not I?”
We all think that we are bulletproof concerning certain things. Sugary drinks, chocolate, alcohol, certain places and actions, drugs, etc. These “vices” have avoidable consequences. Can they be done in moderation? Some can, some cannot, and some have more dire consequences than others, but whatever calls to us with the Siren Song* must be avoided at all costs–because it may cost us all. If anything, they teach us to ignore the Spirit’s prompting, which creates dissonance and interference between us and our Lord Jesus. It can be seen as a betrayal like the disciples (a turning away from the Lord).
Yet, Jesus did not condemn any of the disciples for their betrayal–even Judas. How did Jesus great him in the garden of Gethsemane? He called him, “friend” (Matthew 26:50). Our best passage about no condemnation from Jesus is John 8:1-11 about the woman caught–or rather, trapped in adultery. Jesus first of all called every leader into account, from the oldest to the youngest, and then he addressed the woman,
10 Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?”
11 “No one, sir,” she said.
“Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”
Jesus knows what calls to us, our Siren Song*. We know from James 1:13-18 that only good things come from God. How can that be so? We will talk about it tomorrow.
Abba, we all have our weak spots. May we cling to Your Spirit for direction, strength, rescue and solace. The relationship we have with You through the Spirit trumps anything this world has to offer. May we remember that truth the next time we come under temptation. Amen.
*Siren song describes something that is very appealing and alluring on the surface but ultimately deceptive, dangerous, or destructive. Siren song’s origins are rooted in Greek mythology. The Sirens were beautiful women with the upper bodies of humans and the lower bodies of birds whose bewitching songs lured sailors to their doom. So irresistible were their songs that sailors who heard them would be tempted to navigate the ship close to the shore and risk crashing or they might jump overboard into the water and drown. In Homer’s Odyssey, the hero Odysseus cleverly stops the ears of his crew with wax to keep them from hearing the Sirens’s song. He tied himself to the mast so he could hear the song yet survive.