Jesus Christ said, “It is written, My house shall be called a house of prayer.”

12 Things That Christians Ought to Unhitch From, Part 10


Daniel Whyte III

Daniel Whyte III

TEXT: Hebrews 12:1-3

1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,

2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

3 For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.

———-

John Piper said, “Sinning is any feeling or thought or speech or action that comes from a heart that does not treasure God over all other things. And the bottom of sin, the root of all sinning, is such a heart — a heart that prefers anything above God, a heart that does not treasure God over all other person and all other things.”

Not too long ago Andy Stanley said that Christians should unhitch themselves from the Old Testament. Of course he was wrong, but I took a liking to the word unhitch. Here are 12 things that Christians ought to unhitch themselves from as they enter the new year.

First, we need to unhitch ourselves from sin. A saying of unknown origin says “Sin will take you further than you want to go; keep you longer than you want to stay; and cost you more than you want to pay.” Recently in a newspaper article Francois (fran-swa) Dermine, a priest and exorcist said, “The most common manifestation of the demonic is temptation, which is much more significant than possession. We must not undervalue the significance of temptation. It’s not as spectacular as possession, but it’s far more dangerous to the soul.”

Here are some things to notice about the danger of sin:

First, sin ends purity and innocence. The innocence of Adam and Eve was destroyed after they committed the orginal sin, and by proxy, the innocence of all humanity. The Bible says in Genesis 3:7-11, “7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons. And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden. And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou? And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself. And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?” Adam and Eve were created in God’s image, but when they used their free will to go against God, their entire mindset was altered to sinfulness. In Titus 1:15-16, Paul says, “Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled. They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.” Sin corrupts our conscience so that we will attempt to corrupt even good things that God has created. When you look at sin, you will notice that many sins are attempts to corrupt God-given blessings. The pleasure and necessity of eating and drinking becomes the excess of gluttony and drunkenness. The command to procreate turns into adultery and fornication. Committing sin defiles our hearts and turns us against the things of God.

Second, sin breeds more sin. Jeremiah described the mindset of the sinner in chapter 9, verse 3: “And they bend their tongues like their bow for lies: but they are not valiant for the truth upon the earth; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they know not me, saith the LORD.” In 1 Corinthians 5, the church was warned against engaging in fornication and pride and spending time with sinners because “a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.” Sin will destroy our will, so that we continue to committing sin despite knowing that it is wrong and knowing the risk involved. Sin is like a drug. Someone can start with a small dose of soft drugs but as their body becomes acclimated to the drug they need harder drugs and larger doses to get to the highs that they desire. Similarly, someone can start off with what seems to be a minor sin, but as that loses its thrill they will be pulled into deeper and deeper perversions. The author of Hebrews 3:12-14 wrote, “Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.” Sin enslaves us so that we keep doing it. Paul wrote in Romans 7:17 “Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.” and in verse 23 “But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.” Jesus said in John 8:34-36 “Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin. And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the Son abideth ever. If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” We are made free from sin through Jesus. We should enslave ourselves to it again.

Third, sin leads to death. James 1:13-16 says, “Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.” The first half of Romans 6:23 says, “the wages of sin is death.” Not only does the sinful nature that we inherited from Adam and Eve lead to the first death, where our bodies cease to function and begin to decay, but if we continue in sin and do not trust Christ as Saviour and repent, we will die a second time. The Bible tells us that the second death is the lake of fire, or hell. Revelation 21:8 says, “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.” Revelation 20:14-15 says “And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.” But we can be saved from the second death. The second half of Romans 6:23 says, “the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Sin leads to death, but repentance and trust in the blood of Jesus gives us eternal life. This year, Christians should unhitch themselves from sin and guard themselves from temptations.

Second, we need to unhitch ourselves from weights. These things are not necessarily sinful but they are holding us back from what God wants us to do. Maybe you are being held back in advancing in your profession or school because you are spending too much time on movies or video games. You need to put aside the distractions that are taking your attention away from your goals and God’s will.

Third, we need to unhitch ourselves from people who are enticing us into sin. This goes for both friends and family members. If someone is pulling into a lifestyle that is not pleasing to God and you are not being a good influence on them, you need to distance yourself from them. Instead, you need to join with fellow Christians who are striving to live the way God wants them to live.

Fourth, we need to unhitch ourselves from politics. 2 Timothy 2:4 says “No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.” Recently, an evangelical magazine called for the removal of the president, which put them at odds with other evangelicals who supported him. It was sad to see these Christians who are supposed to be leaders get up on TV and social media and bash each other over politics instead of being united in preaching the word of God. As we begin another contentious election year, we need to step aside from politics and focus on following God’s commandments.

Fifth, we need to unhitch ourselves from false teachers. 2 Corinthians 6:15-17 says, “And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you.” We have seen several so-called Christian leaders abandon the faith or stop holding some of its tenets this past year. We need to keep our eyes on the true teaching of the Word of God so that we will not be impacted by these people.

Sixth, we need to unhitch ourselves from following others on social media. The only person that Jesus ever called you to follow is Him. The word of man is always fallible. We need to study the Bible for ourselves so that will be following Jesus and we will know when someone has abandoned following Jesus. Do not latch onto the words of Christian leaders unless those words line up with what the Bible’s teachings are.

Seventh, we need to unhitch ourselves from the abomination of homosexuality. Denominations are splitting over this issue, homosexuality is clearly condemned in the Bible as an abomination. God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah because of their homosexuality. Paul condemned it also in the New Testament, and Jesus stated that God created marriage for a man and a woman. The abomination ofHomosexuality is not something that the church should tolerate or be connected to in any way.

Eighth, we need to unhitch ourselves from debt. Proverbs 22:7 warns that “the borrower is servant to the lender.” Dave Ramsey said, “The decision to go into debt alters the course and condition of your life. You no longer own it. You are owned.” Debt cripples you with continual worries about money. Debt will have you wondering whether it’s more important to pay for food or pay your lender. You need to work hard to get out of debt and never get in it again.

Ninth, we need to unhitch ourselves from lying about our family. How many times have we seen a family that looks so well put together in public but are then embroiled in a messy divorce a week later? Earlier this year, a family was torn apart after the mother killed her two children and then committed suicide. Although you shouldn’t be airing your problems to everyone you know, you shouldn’t be lying on social media with posts about your picture-perfect family either.

Tenth, we need to unhitch ourselves from hate and racism. Recent years have seen an exacerbation of racial tension in this country, so that at one point the Klan and white supremacists held marches. There have been several deadly attacks by both black and white supremacists this past year. As Christians, the Bible tells us that Jesus call to save us all, regardless of race. Christians should condemn racism and preach the truth that God created us all, loved us all, and sent His Son to die for us all.

Eleventh, we need to unhitch ourselves from prayerlessness. Leonard Ravenhill said, “Prayerlessness is disobedience, for God’s command is that men ought always to pray and not faint. To be prayerless is to fail God, for He says, Ask of me.” 1 Thessalonians 5:17 tells us to, “Pray without ceasing.” Prayer is where we commune with God and receive strength from Him. It changes our hearts so that we are aligned with His will rather than attempting to align His to ours. If we prayed more, we would be doing a lot better – not because God gives us what we want, but because we are doing what God wants.

Twelfth, we need to unhitch ourselves from not evangelizing. In Mark 16:15-16, Jesus tells his disciples “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.” It is only through the labor of God’s disciples throughout the centuries that those of us who are Christians have been saved from damnation. Unfortunately, today’s church is preoccupied with everything except the Great Commission. We are involved in politics, social justice, and preaching on everything other topic under the sun, but we have failed in witnessing to the loss. In this New Year, let’s dedicate ourselves to obeying God’s commandment to preach the Gospel.

We had a Merry Christmas
And now we welcome the New Year
We’ll march into this New Year blessed
Ready to fight and persevere.

Yes, I have sinned and made mistakes
And even so have you
But God forgave us and washed us clean
And made us all brand new

I have been forgiven much
And even so have you
Let’s learn from all our past mistakes
And succeed in what we do.

This is a New Year, my friend
So stand and do not fall
Hold up the banner of our Lord
And answer the Gospel call.

I prayed to God each day last year
And He heard my cry
He answered me with miracles
My prayers He never denied

I had some friends to die last year
My troubles were not few
But God in love and mercy gave
And carried me through.

I’m happy for this New Year
But I’ll be happier still
When Jesus Christ comes back to earth
According to His will.

Jesus died for me, my friend
And Jesus died for you
He saved me from the pits of hell
And He can save you too.

Let all past troubles be forgotten
But remember friends so dear
Let’s praise and thank our God forever
And rejoice in this New Year!

——-

Now, if you are with us today and you do not know Jesus Christ as your Savior, allow me to show you how you can place your faith and trust in Him for Salvation from sin and Hell.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 18:8: “Wherefore if thy hand or thy foot offend thee, cut them off, and cast them from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life halt or maimed, rather than having two hands or two feet to be cast into everlasting fire.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the Cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at dw3@gospellightsociety.com and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.

God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.


Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.

He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.

He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.