Read Hebrews 3
Focus on verse 12-13
Frogs are cold blooded amphibians, and as such can exists in a state of quasi-suspended animation below the frost level at the bottom of a shallow pond or river throughout a cold winter. If I understand it correctly, the metabolism of a cold-blooded creature slows down as it cools and speeds up as it warms. The other thing about a cold-blooded critter is that they seem to be unaware of slow changes in temperature.
I have never actually tried to boil a frog alive, but I remember my father using this as an illustration of some kind, and while I don’t remember what the point was that he was trying to make, I was fascinated by the concept of the frog in the kettle. Apparently, if a frog is place in previously heated water, it will sense the danger and try to climb out of the hot water, however, if the frog is placed in cool water, and then the water is slowly heated, we are told the frog will calmly remain in the water until it succumbs from overheating.
This is a very descriptive illustration of the effect deception has on us as humans. In today’s reading the writer of Hebrews cautions us of this tendency.
Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. (v. 12-13)
If we are not vigilant in holding one another to account on the deceitfulness of sin, we risk becoming hard of heart and thus unable to recognize our own spiritual depravity. Like a frog in a slowly warming kettle of water, by the time we realize that we are in danger it is often too late.
Satan typically does not try to tempt us with things we would easily recognize as sinful, but lures us into what we might think of as “gray areas”. At first they seem harmless enough, but as we get drawn further in, it keeps getting darker, until, if we are fortunate, God somehow gets our attention and we suddenly wake up to the danger, shocked at how we got so far off the path we had intended to walk. The gravest danger is rarely the full frontal assault. It is the subtle slow fade that typically entraps us because it is nearly impossible for us to see it ourselves. This is why we are encouraged to be accountable to one another as we navigate our way through life together.