When does judgment begin?

I’m not talking here about the end-times, Judgment Day, Jesus’ second coming, etc. but about God’s intervention against sin in our lives.

I’ve been reading through 1 Samuel, and in chapter 2, God announces judgment on Eli and his sons for their actions against his name and against the people he loved.  These guys were doing some downright nasty things, like sleeping with the women who came to serve God, stealing from the sacrifices, and telling people what kind of offering to bring so they could get their favorite barbecue.  In verses 27 to 36, God sends an anonymous prophet to announce the judgment of God on Eli and his sons.

Most of us would think judgment began at that moment, but in reality it began far earlier.

Judgment begins the moment we let sin into our hearts.

Sin separates us from God, makes us less willing to obey him, deadens our hearts to him, deafens our ears to his voice.  Judgment began the moment Eli quit correcting his sons and started winking at their… acts of indiscretion.  Judgment began the moment Hophni and Phinehas first noticed how easy it was to bully the people.

Whether we see it or not, sin truly has immediate and disastrous consequences.  Oh, how I have too often given a place to rebellion and compromise in my heart.  May I give it no foothold, and if I fail may I quickly repent.

And may I be like the man described in 1 Samuel 2:35:  “I will raise up for myself a faithful priest who will do according to what is in my heart and in my soul.”

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