Together in Christ: 'Held Captive' — Proverbs 5:22-23

Wednesday, April 19, 2023

An evil man is held captive by his own sins; they are ropes that catch and hold him. He will die for lack of self-control; he will be lost because of his great foolishness.

— Proverbs 5:22-23 NLT

Key Thought

Jesus stated the reality behind our relationship verse today very clearly:

"I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave of sin." [1]

From the beginning of humanity, Satan has tried to lure people away from God by promising them freedom and delight in his way of living, suggesting that God is trying to limit, deny, and control them. [2] If we trust Jesus and know the Scriptures, we know the exact opposite is true. Satan desires to gain control over us and destroy us through sin and his demonic powers. [3] Sin enslaves us, little by little, to the evil one. [4] Some sins can enslave us immediately to addictive processes, influences, and substances. [5]

As a person becomes enslaved to evil, Satan holds them in his grasp through sin, its addictive seductions, and the spiritual powers using evil to enslave. [6] Such a person is dying and lost. Only turning to Jesus can bring deliverance and salvation! [7] Thankfully, Jesus has the power to free us from sin, Satan, death, and hell! We can turn to Jesus as our supreme relationship and find freedom from Satan and his power to enslave us to what will ultimately bring death. /[8]

[1] John 8:34.
[2] Genesis 3:1-24. This passage is the story of the Fall and is driven by human desire and the devil's ability to deceive and appeal to this desire. When humans fall for Satan's lies, they eventually end up in bondage to death — James 1:13-15.
[3] This principle is powerfully illustrated in the man known as legion — Mark 5:1-13. See Ephesians 6:10-12.
[4] Romans 6:6, 16-22, 7:14.
[5] Romans 7:23-24; 2 Corinthians 4:4; Ephesians 2:1-2; 1 John 2:15-16.
[6] Ephesians 2:1-3; Colossians 1:12-13.
[7] John 8:32, 36; Acts 13:38-39 ESV; Romans 6:7, 18, 8:1-4; Galatians 5:1.
[8] Ephesians 1:15-23; Colossians 1:15-23; 1 John 4:4.

Today's Prayer

Dear Father and God, thank you for setting me free from the power of sin through the saving work of Jesus and the transforming work of the Holy Spirit. Lord, the Eternal God, and my Father in heaven open my eyes to the deceptive work of Satan as I open my heart to the freedom found in Jesus. I ask that You unleash the Holy Spirit in me to well up inside me and bring me Your eternal life. I ask all this in Jesus' name. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Genesis 3:1-24
  • Romans 6:3-14


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Illustration of Proverbs 5:22-23 NLT — An evil man is held captive by his own sins; they are ropes that catch and hold him. He will die for lack of self-control; he will be lost because of his great foolishness.

About This Devotional

Together in Christ is a daily devotional that focuses on what Scripture teaches about godly living in relationships.

'Together in Christ' is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.