The Forbidden Entrance: Radical Grace From the Book of Romans (7:11-12)

by | Apr 15, 2020 | Grace, Law, Radical Grace From the Book of Romans, Temptation

“So sin was plenty alive, and I was stone dead. But the law code itself is God’s good and common sense, each command sane and holy counsel.” (Rom 7:11-12, MSG)

How can something so good be so deadly?

Have we ever walked by a door on which was written the following words: “Forbidden Entrance”? What goes through our mind? If we pass by such a door without a hint of curiosity, we would be quite unique indeed. Most among us would be curious as to why. Why! The word kids like the most. The word that drives parents crazy!

What happens when we pass by such a door and the door opens wide? Would we peek in or would we ignore it? It gets even worse when this happens at work. “Why am I not allowed? Am I not an employee? They just don’t trust me!”

I had just driven 60 minutes to pick up my youngest son from the airport, and you can believe me when I say that nature was calling. Not wanting to pay for parking, I picked him up at the door, and then I began looking for a place where I might be able to relieve myself; but the only place nearby was a large pharmacy. Running in, I searched the entire store without positive results. There was this one door that had a security number pad, but there was absolutely no mention of a restroom!

I had no choice but to ask a clerk. “Absolutely!” She responded, and then she brought me to the high security door. I certainly didn’t expect to be heading there, but she put her code in the box and let me in. What was on the other side? Simply two other doors, one for women, the other for men. What a great idea to have maximum security for washrooms! It would certainly stop the folks who stop by such an establishment for the sole reason of wanting to relieve themselves!

This time I had been allowed to enter the forbidden door, and I was left feeling wanting, because there was nothing special there! It was a bit of a disappointment, but it was also a big relief, if you understand what I mean!

There are forbidden entrances that are way up the scale of being dangerous. In Letchworth State Park, there is a forbidden entrance for pedestrians due to the probability of high velocity trains. This doesn’t stop people from going there. They walk over the fence, literally! In fact, more people enter through that entrance for no other reason than one of sheer curiosity. At the Niagara Falls in Canada, the railings that run along the side of the river post numerous warnings to tourists, strongly requesting that they stay on the walkway-side of the railing; yet every year, a few tourists ignore the signs. After all, they can have a better picture if they trespass…Unfortunately, every year, some of these tourists plunge to their death…

Why are we so fascinated by the forbidden zone?

It is the same with the law. Finding out what happens when we break the law is in one way very intriguing…Just like Eve wondered what would happen if she ignored God’s counsel…Before we know it, we are “stone dead”.

New laws are coming to Ontario. Anyone who is distracted while driving (Not keeping their heads up) will receive a penalty of up to 3 demerit points and a fine up to 1000$. If we don’t wait until pedestrians are completely out of the crosswalk before turning, we will have a similar fine. Unfortunately, this isn’t just for those who live in Ontario, it is for anyone driving in Ontario, whether they are familiar with the laws or not. Tourists from Germany or Poland, for example, people who have no idea about these new laws, are penalized in the same way as residents of Ontario. Nonetheless, these new decrees are for the safety of all. Though they are good laws, they are deadly for offenders.

Are we still curious as to what’s behind these forbidden doors? I wonder if curiosity is worth our endeavors…

Rob Chaffart

(To access the entire “Radical Grace From the Book of Romans” devotional series, please click here.)


The Forbidden Entrance: Radical Grace From the Book of Romans (7:11-12)