Isaiah 5:18 says- Woe to those who begin by pulling at transgression with a thread, but end by dragging sin along as with a cart rope.”
Picture people, not horses, harnessed to a heavy wagon, pulling it along, straining with all their might. Isaiah understands the burden that sin is. But we do it to ourselves! Why? Because sin is deceitful. That’s how it happens. Sin lies to us. It’s not as though sin fulfills its promises to make life better. It’s a drag.
It starts with us toying with a thin thread, like a kitten with a ball of yarn – toying with something that is amusing, but cannot master us. Frighteningly, it ends with us in a full body harness, attached to ropes that drag the entire cart load of sin around with us. When the threads become ropes, we have been mastered.
So why don’t we throw off the harnesses and run free? Because we are deceived—doubly so, for even as we cling to our favorite sins, so heavy but so dear to us, we also wonder, “I’m so bored. I’m so disappointed. Why isn’t God more real to me? And look at the condition of this whole wretched world. Where is God?” That is what Isaiah sees in the human heart, according to verse 19—a mind that blames God, defies God, taunts God.
Real faith gladly strains after God. And that is the faith that welcomes the impact of grace.
We have to be willing to cut those ropes with the nails of Calvary’s cross- with the blood of Christ shed for us, and by the power of His resurrection. So that by His grace, we can live free.
Free to worship
Free to sing
Free to laugh
Free to ride off into the sunset because we know, that on the other side of that dark river from which no one returns,
is real Freedom
And there, and only there, will we see the dead ends of those threads of temptation
And be eternally bound to our Savior with cords of love.
And we will be free to weave a beautiful tapestry with the Creator of the Universe for all eternity.