Sin Makes Ya Stupid

You’ve seen those TV reports that showcase criminals who make dumb mistakes. Like, a guy who held up a bank . . . but left his driver’s license on the counter. Upon hearing about such things, my sister has been known to blurt out, “Sin makes ya stupid!”

12th century mosaic
Sodom’s destruction, Lot escapes. 12th century mosaic, Monreale Cathedral, Sicily (Photo: Sibeaster/Wikimedia Commons)

And stupid has consequences. Think of these examples:

Lot’s wife—The Lord (via two angels) said to hurry, leave the city, and not look back. But Lot’s wife disobeyed the Lord’s instructions . . . and we know what happened (Genesis 19:15-17, 26).

Nadab and Abihu—They violated the Lord’s rules about lighting the ceremonial fire. They got more fire than they wanted (Leviticus 10:1-3).

Absalom and Ahithophel—Absalom, King David’s son, got advice from Ahithophel on how to overthrow his own father. Never mind that David was God’s directly appointed king. Not only did Absalom die tragically; Ahithophel committed suicide (2 Samuel 17:1–18:18).

King Ahaziah—2 Kings 1 tells how this king was injured and sought a prediction from a pagan source (though he knew the true God and that he wasn’t supposed to go to false gods). Elijah entered the picture. The story is pretty funny if you can forget the tragedy and just think of “sin makes ya stupid.”

King Amaziah—This king of Judah had a successful military campaign. But then he set up the idols he’d confiscated . . . and worshipped them. He worshipped the gods of the losers? Duh. (The story is in 2 Chronicles 25.) From the time Amaziah turned away from the Lord, he was pursued—and eventually killed.

Proverbs 10:21 says that “fools die for lack of sense.” And in Scripture, the term fool generally indicates those who don’t follow the Lord’s path. In Psalm 119 David is “singing” to the Lord: “Your commands are always with me and make me wiser than my enemies. I have more insight than all my teachers, for I meditate on your statutes. . . . I have kept my feet from every evil path so that I might obey your word” (vv. 98, 99, 101).

It’s a good kind of circle: Stay away from evil in order to stay in line with the Lord’s ways. And staying in line with the Lord’s ways keeps ya from being stupid.



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