Bandages Are Bondages
Roman stoic philosopher and statesman Lucius Annaeus Seneca (4 BC-65 AD) stated “It is not the man who has little, but he who desires more, that is poor.” Second century Greek philosopher Epictetus (50-138 AD) observed “Wealth consists not in having great possessions, but in having few wants.” And in more recent times The Beatles sang“I don’t care too much for money, money can’t buy me love.” (Can’t Buy Me Love, 1964).
Centuries before any of these the wisest of all men, Solomon, lamented “He who loves money will not be satisfied with money.” (Eccl. 5:10). “All the labor of man is for his mouth, And yet the soul is not satisfied,” he added (Eccl. 6:7, NKJV). Jesus completed the equation teaching, “Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you.” (John 6:27).
All of these echo the eternal truth… a hard truth to many… that only Jesus satisfies. Any time our hearts seek satisfaction outside of Him… any time we turn to a gospel that tries to add to Him… any time we try to subtract from Him or dodge what He requires of us we will most certainly come away empty.
Sin has created a great problem, a great alienation from our God. Our souls instinctively cry out to God but in our sinful self-will we refuse to surrender to Him. We try to drown out our soul cries with the constant noise of this world, but these attempts only make us suffer more. Addictions, conflicts, self-hate and isolation – just a few of the fruits and still the soul cries out! We try to bandage our wound but our bandages only become our bondages. The only answer… the only answer is full surrender to Christ!
This is Paul’s message to the Galatians: we must surrender all to gain all and that which we gain is Christ and Christ is all that we need.
“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” (Gal. 2:20).
The Christian has made this surrender and makes it again with each new day, each new challenge, each temptation, snare and allure of this world. One step is not the journey; the journey is in one step, and then another… and another… and another… following Jesus in the Way.