Internet Pop-Ups and Sin

Over the last several weeks I have been dealing with a series of rather nasty viruses or maelware (still not sure of all of this terminology) on my home laptop computer. Somehow these intruders invaded this computer and at times seemed to take over- randomly popping up all kinds of websites including porn- and I had no control over this. Since this is the computer we let our six-year old use to play games on PBS Kids and Playhouse Disney this was even more alarming.

The computer did have an anti-virus program that turned out to be totally useless against this stuff. It even recognized some of the viruses but told me- “no action has been taken”. Of course I am wondering, why is it even on here then! lol

It got so bad that I stopped using it for a few days and had decided that it would have to go into the shop until a friend suggested another anti-virus program. So far, this program has done the job (still holding my breath though). It identified a couple of dozen bugs some called “trojans” and others identified as “tracking” and zapped them- I guess.

All of this reminded me of a phrase I heard years ago- long before our computer age. “You don’t have to go looking for sin, it will find you.” Just imagine checking out your fantasy baseball league and all of a sudden pornographic images flash before your eyes and bombard your senses!

This week in preparing for my sermon I revisited Romans 7: 14-20. This is the text in which Paul confesses his struggle with sin (and the law’s failure to help overcome this sin). Here he speaks of the “sin living in me” or his “sinful nature” and how when he does the things he “hates” it is not him, but this sin doing it.

Could it be that sin is like these viruses on my computer? It gets within us and entangles itself in our values and before we possibly even realize it- it pops-up, engages us and off we fall into it’s trap. Like Paul, we want to do the right thing and are doing it, but then “the power of sin within me keeps sabotaging my best intentions.” (7:19 The Message)

The answer- virus control! We have to arm ourselves with God’s armour (Ephesians 6). Paul actually asked, “Who will rescue me..? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!”- was his answer. Through him we can identify and take care of the sin within us. (See Paul’s continuing discussion in Romans 8 )

Anyway, hopefully my virus problems are under control. Hopefully, we are all letting Christ control our sin problems.

Just for your information:

  • John Eldridge in his book Wild at Heart explores the idea of “sin living within us” that is very interesting.  I recommend reading this great book.
  • My buddy John Dobbs and his youth minister Jason Barnard do an “Internet Awareness Seminar” which you might want to consider hosting.

11 Responses to Internet Pop-Ups and Sin

  1. That Girl says:

    Sadly, there are chinks in my armour.

  2. dannydodd says:

    Teri, you are not alone! We all have those chinks, but again God is prepared. It is called- grace.

  3. Danny Holman says:

    James says that Satan tempts us by appealing to the desires within us. Maybe he was speaking of spiritual “trojans” that he deposits within us to activate when he wants. Is there a lesson about the unintended files we download when we enter new software into our lives? What about basic software maintenance and upkeep rules? It seems “keep the cookies deleted,” “if the site looks suspicious… don’t go there, ” and “be weary of communication from an unknown source,” work spiritually as well as on the computer. There may be even more great rules that apply in both arenas.
    Great thought… great blog.
    P.S. If you hear I preached this, I’ll be sure you mom hears me give you credit.

  4. Donna says:

    You know this post just emphasizes the fact that we have to be relevant to our society. Who in 1950 would have a clue what you were talking about.

    But, as always…great post!

  5. c3andp says:

    Sorry you had to deal with the frustrations of viruses maelware. But at least you got a great post out of it.

  6. D. Meadows says:

    One of my students commented today about why God would let 9-11 happen? I said that He did not “let” it happen in the sense that He would have stopped it. I made the case to the student that we have free will. This action is the kind of thing that does happen when the viruses are not addressed and deleted in our lives. The student then asked why people are so sick and I explained about Jesus being the Great Physician.” Hence, we need Him to heal our “viruses.” I didn’t know about your blog when I made that point, but it’s relevant. (and yes, I teach in a public school and the student brought this up, not me. I will not stop using every opportunity presented to me to witness for God.)

  7. kenny says:

    i have had that problem, too. i then had my computer geek friend tell me about some freeware downloads that i have been using since he told me about them. one is ccleaner, and the other is ad-aware.

    i highly recommend both of these for yourself, and your readers. i run ccleaner almost every time i use the internet, because it removes cookies and a lot of other junk.

    i hope these help. i remember the first time i used ccleaner that it removed almost 500Mb of junk. plus, it was when i was using dial-up and all that junk was truly slowing down my internet activity.

  8. kenny says:

    i see that my last comment has been deleted. did i offend someone?

  9. dannydodd says:

    Thanks for the input everyone.

    Kenny, your comment was not deleted- just shoved into the waiting to be approved list- likely because of the links you included.

    Danny, preach on brother! 🙂

    Always glad when my sister, Donna M posts.

  10. Jim says:

    sin does seem to pop up like a virus. Of course, we can lower risk with care but Satan is pervasive with temptation.

  11. kenny says:

    sorry to jump to conclusions. i thought maybe the viruses were so bad that they knew we were after them, and they deleted what i posted! LOL! :o)

    i really like what paul i had to say. i liked it so much that i had my email address as that romans verse, rom7.15, for quite a while until i got so much junk email to that address that i discontinued using it.

    thanks for sharing danny!

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