There is a tremendous influence exerted by the life of one individual. And the influence is more potent when it is in the wrong direction. History bears this out. Adam sinned and his sin has affected the entire race of mankind. Achan sinned, and because of him an entire nation went down in defeat. Rehoboam's sin split the kingdom of Israel. The sin of Ananias and Sapphira brought the first defect into the early church, and from that day on the church has not been as potent as it was in the beginning.
You and I have an influence, either for good or for bad. No matter who you are, you occupy a place of influence. "For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself" (Romans 14:7). My friend, all of us are preachers. You are preaching to those around you by the life that you live....
You may be influencing a wide circle of human society. You may have influence in your neighborhood and in your community. You have influence in your Sunday school. Somebody is looking at you and watching to see whether or not you mean business with God. Does your going to church mean anything more to you than going to a drive-in to pick up a hamburger? Does your life suggest that there is a heaven to gain and a hell to shun? You have influence.
You remember that Peter preached a mighty sermon on the Day of Pentecost. Andrew just sat on the sidelines and could say, "That is my brother. I brought him to Christ." That was Andrew's influence. You, today, are pointing men to heaven or to hell. Now, if you want to go to hell, that's your business, but you have no right to lead a little boy there. You have no right to lead your family and those who surround you there. Even if you want to go, it's awful to lead others. Influence - "One sinner destroyeth much good." Think about it.
Taken from "Who's Following in Your Footsteps?" (used by permission).
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