Compromise is rampant in our world. It takes place in backroom deals that are crafted out of sight of those who will be negatively affected by the product or agreement of the compromise. We see the fruit of compromise taking place between politicians and large corporations to create government regulations that make unhealthy products available to an unsuspecting public. It happens when Church leaders compromise historic biblical truth to appease the shifting appetites of a culture. It can happen to individuals who violate a point of spiritual integrity opening the door of their soul and allowing evil to enter.
Compromise is defined as settling a dispute between two opposing sides by entering into an agreement of mutual concession. In other words, someone must give up something to make the deal happen. Compromise is the act of accommodating. Accommodating some things can be dangerous. One verb form of the word compromise is defined as “to place in danger.”
Early usage of the word referred to a mutual promise made between two opposing parties. It was the result of an arbiter’s decision asking both parties to fulfill a promise. The word compromise contains the word “promise” in its composition. The first part of the word “com” means “with or together.” The telling point in the negotiating process is who or what is arbitrating the compromise that will lead to a mutual agreement. Is the arbitrator truth or deception, justice or injustice, honesty or dishonesty, evil or good?
The most dangerous kind of compromise is spiritual. This is where the first step on a journey toward evil choices begins. It is unseen to onlookers. It is a backroom deal done in the shadows of personal compromise. The arbitrators present with us in that decision-making process are the Lord and the influence of evil. The two most untrustworthy arbiters in that process of negotiating are our undisciplined desires and the subtle offers made by hell. Only the Lord and His word can righteously arbitrate a righteous decision.
When an unholy compromise is being negotiated the Lord will always provide a way of escape from an evil agreement. That escape will many times come as a whisper of truth while the noise of our passions is shouting loudly in agreement with a dark offering. If we follow the wisdom of that whisper, we will escape the consequence of compromise.
“And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure” (I Corinthians 10:13).