Monday, February 18, 2013

Side Effects and Sin

Prescription medication and me usually don’t get along very well. I tend to always be the 1% of patients that experience the unusual side effects. Many of the medications on the market today that we take can cause side effects, some more serious than others. Mild ones include things like headaches, dry mouth, stomach upset. Very serious side effects can cause permanent organ damage or death. Others can be anything in between.

I have had to make some tough decisions about medications in the past. Sometimes the “cure” is worse than the disease itself and you have to weigh the risk involved to the possible benefit. Often I find myself taking one medication to treat an illness and then needing another medication to treat the side effects of the first meds. I rationalize that the treatment must be taken for the greater good, and deal with the bad things that come as I hope to see some good results.

If you have read any of my previous blog posts, I tend to find spiritual analogies to fit the medical situations I face. As I prepare to begin a new medication to treat my current nerve issue, I thought at how the domino effect of one medication causing side effects and the need for other medication is very similar to sin. We tell one little lie, thinking that there will be very little “side effects” or consequences.  One untruth can’t be that bad, right? We rationalize that it will happen just this once, it won’t hurt anyone else.

Sin has consequences and it can snowball into something deadly. We lie, steal, cheat or are unfaithful. We think it is no big deal. One lie causes another and then another. Pretty soon the side effects are catastrophic. Families and lives are destroyed.

You should read the instructions and warnings before starting a new medicine, and you must know the dangers of your sin. “For the wages of sin is death….” (Romans 6:23). There is only one “treatment” to fix your sinfulness, and that is Jesus Christ alone. “…but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

The side effects of sins are too great, the consequences are eternal. Are you aware your sin has deadly side effects? Are you choosing to continue in them, or are you looking to the “cure”, Jesus Christ for forgiveness?


  1. I'm also the 1% except I call myself "the 5%". Just to let you know you have company. When they say, "This shouldn't happen", it often does. Unfortunately, most don't cure, they only treat the symptoms. (I'm not anti-med, I take a lot of them.)

    What you say is a good antidote (get it?) to moralism. Most people don't bother to research medication they take or think ahead of what sin will do. I would like to think I prefer to not even go that far as far as sin and just know it's wrong, but some can start out small like you say. But Jesus is the answer, not trying harder or expecting people to act like they have the Holy Spirit.

    I like to think of it as counting the cost, whether it's something we probably shouldn't do or even something we want to undertake that's something good.

    1. It is good not to be the only one that has this problem. I figure they should just test new drugs on me, since they will find out all the bad side effects!

      Counting the costs is most definitely the best policy. Thanks for reading!