No, I am not talking about the high technology Lockheed aircraft production facility. I mean the common, black and white stinking variety. This summer our complex has been infested with skunks. My former neighbour took a video of them parading through his back yard, a huge mother, with seven little babies in tow, tails held high! Our landlords have repeatedly issued calls for all garbage to be in containers, however, many people ignore the warnings. This picture is from our neighbour’s yard, showing the destruction possible by one large skunk. I had a chance to exterminate the skunk, but my wife reminded me that he, like Sampson, might do more damage in dying than in life!
Galatians 5:19-25 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.
I wanted to draw some interesting parallels for you from this episode. First, the works of the flesh are that of the skunk.
1. The skunk is pretty from a distance, and intolerable up close. The skunk next door looked fine at a distance, but he stunk up close! Our old nature can look pretty good from a distance, but once placed under the close scrutiny of the Holy Spirit and examined in the light of Scripture it is revealed for what it really is. Galatians 6:8 For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. Never forget that the flesh is corrupt!
2. The skunk makes a mess. I am continually astounded by the destruction possible by the flesh unrestrained. That skunk dug holes in the turf and drug garbage all over the yard. Our old nature also like to make dig up dirt and it does not care what garbage it spreads as long as its needs are satisfied. The old nature will go to great lengths to justify the filth it enjoys. “It doesn’t bother me, the Holy Spirit just hasn’t convicted me of that, and I get a blessing out of it…” are just some of the many excuses some use to justify the mess they are in. Listen, if your life is always a mess, kill the skunk!
3. The skunk causes a big stink if you disturb his comfort! I am certain you have met a few people like this! They feel threatened by the plain teaching of the Bible, so they go on the offensive, spreading discord and lies. All they want is to be left alone… and that’s all the skunk wants too. But I cannot tolerate a skunk in my backyard, and the Holy Spirit of God cannot tolerate the presence of sin in our lives.