Whether you have experienced them personally, seen them in the movies, or studied them in school, most people are familiar with leeches: those blood-sucking worms that seem to make their way into every jungle river movie ever made. There are many different kinds of leeches, but their general nature is the same: they survive by sucking the blood out of their hosts. I know, for most people it is gross and starts giving some the willies just thinking about it.
Have you ever thought about the fact that sin is very much like a leech? It lives through making you bleed both physically and spiritually. Sin will bleed your health, your financial resources, your influence, it will bleed away your friends and family, but most important of all, it will kill your relationship with God.
However, there are some ways in which leeches and sin are quite different. You see, the leech will suck on its prey until it is full, then it will detach itself and leave. Sin does not work that way. It will not voluntarily disappear or just walk out of your life, it has to be forced to leave. Sin will hang on as long as you will allow, until you forcibly remove it and cast it from you.
Once a leech has been removed the wound needs to be cleansed in order to heal. Likewise, once sin has been removed (through repentance – 2 Corinthians 7:10), the wound that has been left behind to the soul must be cleansed. This can only be done with one salve: the blood of Christ (1 John 1:7) received through obedience (Hebrews 5:9).
Have you checked yourself for leeches lately?