A soul is worth more than the entire world and all its riches. There is one individual who has caviar tastes and a hot dog budget in this regard—Satan. Satan craves those valuable souls; but being the bargain shopper he is, he is usually able to find them at steep discount. Prices usually decline during times of recession; and during times of spiritual recession Satan picks up all sorts of bargains. Many films have been made about someone selling his soul to Satan, and Satan gives that person a great deal—worldwide fame and untold fortune—to get his soul. In reality, however, is most definitely a “buyer’s market” when it comes to souls. Satan actually does not have to give most people very much at all to purchase their souls for eternal torment.
Jack’s Soul: The Price of Brief Satisfaction
Jack is married with two children, and loves his family very much. He has worked hard for years to provide a house they can share together. But another woman comes on the scene, and begins acting “just a little too friendly” with Jack. It is not too long before he begins to respond in kind, and their flirting eventually leads to fornication. For a brief fling with another woman, Jack will give up everything that meant so much to him. Not only will he give up his precious family and home, he will give up his eternal soul of infinite value.
Sadly, many men and women sacrifice far more than ever occurred to them when they first succumbed to temptation. As they lose their families, or even should they remain together, they leave their children scarred from the experience.
Others may not commit literal fornication, but the proliferation of pornography has made “virtual fornication” more common and serious than ever. And viewing pornography constitutes sexual sin; as Jesus said, “Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart” (Matthew 5:27-28). Even “adultery in one’s heart” can devastate one’s life. Many have lost their jobs because they viewed pornography while at work, and hurt their ability to be hired again. Sexual sin is addictive, leading one to commit more frequent and more grievous offenses against God. And sexual sin is against God (cf. Genesis 39:9). A child of God who engages in such mocks the grace of God (cf. Romans 6:1).
Satan must be thrilled with Jack, and with all the souls he is able to obtain for the low price of brief sexual satisfaction.
Jared’s Soul: The Price of Autonomy
Jared has never liked being told what to do. He has always wanted to be in control. He has never liked the idea of a God to whom he owes his existence and must give account. He has never liked the idea of any standard different from what seems good to him personally. While he has learned about God, he “did not like to retain God in his knowledge” (cf. Romans 1:28, 21). He identifies closely with the words of William Ernest Henley, who wrote in his poem Invictus, “I thank whatever gods may be For my unconquerable soul. . . . I am the master of my fate; I am the captain of my soul.”
Whenever someone believes he is the captain of his own destiny with no need for God, he can be assured that Satan is the real driver of the ship. James warns,
. . . God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up (James 4:6-10).
If one refuses to submit to the authority of God, and particularly to that of Christ (cf. Matthew 28:18; John 12:48; Colossians 3:17), he has no chance to resist the devil. One who never will submit to God remains the slave of sin and of Satan (cf. Romans 6:16-18).
Jane’s Soul: The Price of the Lustful Glances of a Few Men
Jane has always liked attention. And she has noticed that she gets plenty of it when she dresses revealingly—short shorts and skirts, spaghetti strap- and halter tops, low-cut dresses—they all show off what Jane knows to be alluring to men. She is not worried that her attire might detract others from noticing her warm personality, her bright intellect, or her once deep spirituality. Those attributes were never noticed so readily or obviously as her physical attributes are now that she dresses “sexy.” And she assures herself that she is just being “fun”—she would never engage in inappropriate acts with a man.
But by presenting herself in this fashion, she encourages men to look on her to lust; and thus, to “commit adultery in their hearts” (cf. Matthew 5:27-28). Jesus warned, “But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea” (Matthew 18:6).
For the price of the lustful glances of a few men, Satan is able to get the soul of this woman; and as an added bonus, he gets the souls of those lustful men thrown in.
Just because the going price of a soul seems to be dipping down does not mean that one has to sell at market price. A smart merchant would never make it a practice to sell his goods at an overall loss. Yet Satan is able to entice the majority of people to sell their own most precious possessions—their souls—at low cost and eternal loss. When it comes to one’s soul, there simply should be no price placed upon it—ever:
For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? (Matthew 16:26).
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