Sin ain’t always what you think it is. Let’s take pride for example. We think of humility as being a bar, say at floor level, and anything over the bar of humility is pride (arrogance, pompousness, egomania).  And that’s true.  But humility actually is a mid-level bar. And anything under it is pride, too.  It’s just harder to recognize.  For example, insecurity and self-consciousness are just as prideful as arrogance and pompousness because the focus is still ME.  Whether we’re over or under the bar of humility, we’ve stumbled into the trap of sin.

Same thing’s true with love of money.  We think of anything over the bar of money as love of money — having too much money, greed, workaholism, overspending, maybe even being rich.  So in our efforts to strive to not love money, we can unknowingly stumble under the bar of money and end up loving it just the same in our lack of it (e.g., choosing to live in poverty or not pay bills, unwisely neglecting to save anything, focusing (obsessing?) on sales and coupons).  In this place, we’re still focusing on money, money, money.  So it’s just as sinful as greed or workaholism — at its essence, it’s worshipping mammon.

Our enemy prowls around like a lion looking for who he can devour. He doesn’t care if you stumble above or below the bar.  He just wants you to stumble.  And he will use any measure of deceit to get you to stumble–he is the father of all lies, after all.  One of his strategies is to get us to sin while we think we’re doing a pretty good job of not sinning.