I received a flier in the mail yesterday that made me laugh. It advertised a vehicle that was being sold for:
MSRP: $25,855 NOW: $6,464 (75% Discount)
(2) 1 available at this price. 1998 GMC JIMMY #R527. Plus tax, title, license and $459 doc fee.
“Strangely” enough, the further down the ad read, the smaller the font size became. But still – come on, it’s 75% off! That still sounds like a deal right? Until you find out “the deal” is on a used vehicle, that’s 17 years old in automotive years, that does not have its mileage listed; all of that plus no picture to boot. So how does the eye-catching 75% off sound to your eyes ears now that the details have been given?
It is not my intent to say that there is something wrong with driving a 1998 GMC Jimmy (I have bought vehicles that were 10 years old and then drove them for another 10 years) or that the car dealership is doing something flat-out wrong, but I point out what I point to make a point – that point being: I know the Devil is in the details. Every promise the devil makes comes with consequences that are only mentioned in the details (see Adam, Eve, and the serpent in Eden for an example of this – Genesis 3). Every sin comes with a headline that promises pleasure, but the details reveal the pain (Galatians 6:8). Sin ensnares and conquers and makes captives of its targets (Romans 7:19-20, 1 Timothy 6:9, 2 Timothy 2:24-26). Like a flier that advertises 75% off of a vehicle, sin sounds like it’s too good to be true, and then the details reveal the reality of the situation that says that it is!
It is God who urges us to keep the details in mind, because the details of sin mattered enough for the Son of God to fulfill the details of the law in a way that we could know that God’s grace is strong enough to deal not only the with headlines of sin – but the details as well.
May we be diligent enough to recognize the details for what they are. And may God help us to see the details and repent when we’re too foolish to pay attention to the jot and tittles of his word and to the consequences of not following it.
“For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.” (Titus 2:11-14)