Suggested Reading: Ezekiel 20:21-26
A number of years ago, DC Comics decided to explore the possibilities that existed if Superman had been found by more sinister individuals than the salt of the earth Jonathan and Martha Kent. The resulting character in this alternate universe was Ultraman. Ultraman had all of Superman's natural gifts, but none of his character and thus he took the very same tools that Superman had used to save people and used them to hurt people for his own personal gain. The natural gifts were the same but Ultraman had twisted them into something cruel and evil.
In Ezekiel 20:25-26, God spoke to the prophet about his chosen people, saying, "I gave them over to worthless decrees and regulations that would not lead to life. I let them pollute themselves with the very gifts I had given them…" (NLT). God had given his people the gift of the law. This gift was intended to lead them to life, to show them how to live in a covenantal relationship of trust with God. But instead, they had taken that gift and twisted it into something that gave them an excuse for behaving badly. Rather than following the laws that said, "Don't oppress the poor," or "Don't commit adultery," and utilizing the sacrificial system as a way to bridge the gap between themselves and their Creator, they indulged themselves and then used the sacrifices as a point system to let them do whatever they wanted.
God has given each of us gifts. To all of us who believe God has given us the gift of freedom, which Paul urged us not to use as an excuse to indulge our sinful natures. To some of us God has given the gift of intelligence, to some empathy, to some material blessings, and all of us have the potential of twisting those gifts into something disgusting. We can take intelligence and use it to talk ourselves out of what we know to be true. We can employ our empathy to understand the plight of someone who has wandered into sin and begin accepting sin rather then employing empathy to gently restore the sinner. We can take material blessings and then place our trust in our own deceptive self-sufficiency rather then depending on God.
What gift has God given you? How could it be twisted into something corrupt? Make certain that you use your gift as God intended and never allow something good to be twisted into something less.