The Downward Slide

[S]in, when it is full-grown,
gives birth to death.
   —James 1:15

English essayist Thomas De Quincey’s On Murder, published in 1827, evoked lots of grins. It ran this way . . .

Many a person who upon committing a murder begins a downward slide and soon may come to robbing and then Sabbath breaking, may even sink to incivility and finally, arrive at procrastination. You never know once you begin this downward slide where you will end. Many a person can date his ruin from some murder or other that he thought little of at the time.

I’m sure you get De Quincey’s tongue-in-cheek point, as he turns James’ order upside down . . .

[E]ach person is tempted when he is drawn away and enticed by his own evil desires. Then after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin, and when sin is fully grown, it gives birth to death (Jas 1:14–15 HCSB).

We are free to choose, but we are
not free to choose the consequence of our choice.

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