It is such a sickening cycle in all of us.  We seek the Lord, we sin, we start to feel the consequences, we repent, we beg God to save us, he does, then back again at step 1.  Over and over and over.

God’s mercy is that he keeps sending help until he says enough.  And he was starting to get to the “enough” point.

In Judges, this vicious cycle was happening with the Israelites.  The gods of sex – the Baals and Asherah’s.  They were always a stumbling block.  People wanted God and they wanted sexual behavior without restriction but it didn’t work that way.  Until they felt the heat of the consequences.  But this time the Lord said this:

When the Egyptians, Amorites, Ammonites, Philistines, Sidonians, Amalekites and Maonites oppressed you, and you cried out to Me, did I not deliver you from their power?  But you have abandoned Me and worshiped other gods.  Therefore, I will not deliver you again.  Go and cry out to the gods you have chosen.  Let them deliver you in the time of your oppression” (Judges 10:11-14).

The Israelites said no and they threw out their gods and their illicit behavior.  They were still trapped in misery and the Lord wearied of that misery and had compassion on them.  He raised up another deliverer.

The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in love.  But he does come to a point with his people that the cycle has to change.  There is in a sense a “warning” from the Lord that enough is enough.

I think this is true both corporately and nationally.  The Lord allows sin for a season, but there is a time where he says enough.  No more!  Because while we may enjoy sin, it always breaks down and destroys a person in ways we do and do not see.

Looking back on my own life and the areas I’ve tripped up, I think the important thing is to stop the trickle before it turns into a flood.  Sin always starts as a trickle.  We must stop it before it grows.  We must say something or do something.

As the song says,

It’s a slow fade
when you give yourself away
It’s a slow fade
when black and white have turned to gray
Thoughts invade, choices are made, a price will be paid
When you give yourself away
People never crumble in a day
It’s a slow fade