stumbling blocks

I have a few matters against you: some who live among you hold to the teaching of Balaam, who instructed Balak to set up a stumbling block before the people of Israel. [Revelation 2:14 VOICE]

What do you think of when you read "stumbling block"? One commentary defines it this way:
"literally, that part of a trap on which the bait was laid, and which, when touched, caused the trap to close on its prey; then any entanglement to the foot"
The sense is that such obstacles are not accidental but something planned to ensnare its victim. Life is full of innocent indulgences that can lead us down a path of addictive behavior.

Apart from the obvious traps, like drugs and sex, stumbling blocks are often subtler. Good things, like discipline and exercise can become traps when they become extreme and obsessive.

Generally speaking, I think that the way to avoid stumbling blocks is to practice moderation in life. And to really know and understand ourselves - moderation is different for each person.

Dear Lord: Please keep us on the bright path and out of the dark ditches.

... this devotion is part of a series from the book of Revelation

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