The Adventures of Dr. Jekyll and Mr./Mrs. Hyde

May 1, 2023

There is a huge wrestling match going on inside us. Paul describes it clearly in Romans 7:15-24. Summarized, Paul is saying that we don’t do the things we know we should, and we do the things we know we shouldn’t do. As the great hymn “Amazing Grace” sings, we struggle with wretchedness. We have an internal battle with a part of ourselves called the flesh, or our sinful nature. Verse 18 summarizes it this way, “For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.”

It sounds a lot like the famous novel, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson that was first published in 1886. Briefly explained, Dr. Jekyll was attempting to separate his good and evil side. At first, he believed he could manage it with potions, but the situation went out of control and became involuntary. Dr. Jekyll made several tries to halt the process but failed. He knew one day; he would permanently become his evil side, Mr. Hyde.

Whether we realize it or not, we all have a little Dr. Jekyll and Mr./Mrs. Hyde living within us. No matter how handsome and well-mannered we may seem, we all feel the influence of Mr./Mrs. Hyde, that unholy roommate that also dwells within. S/he lives inside all of us. The Bible tells us so. S/he’s that arrogant; belligerent, incredibly egocentric version of you that shows up when you are not winning or when you are winning, and you want to rub everyone else’s nose in it. You think, “Me! Not me! I’m always so pleasant and fun to be around.” Ask someone close to you if this is true.

Like most of you, I have learned to disguise my Mr. Hyde very carefully so that he doesn’t always appear so bad. My Mr. Hyde prefers running shorts, athletic shoes, and being well groomed. He goes to great lengths to be respectable because he feeds on people’s praise and applause. I carefully hide all the skeletons in my closet, so everyone thinks I got it together.

Robert Louis Stevenson has put into words the wretched wrestling match that I have felt in my heart for so long. It is as if two people live inside of me, one bad and one good, and both of them battle for my attention, my cooperation, in an unholy tug of war, the outcome of which will greatly affect how well I live to glorify God and experience the abundant life God desires me to have.

If you have given your life to Jesus Christ, then satan has lost you from his kingdom. Next satan will try to use your sinful nature, Mr. or Mrs. Hyde, to make you ineffective in God’s Kingdom. satan will do everything he can to keep you from fully embracing God’s grace. satan wants you to be so constantly preoccupied with what you are not, that you never get around to realizing all that God is. Our enemy wants to keep us so consumed with our inadequacies that we never get around to experiencing the love and transforming power God has made available to us through His Son.

Have you given your life to Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior? If you are not sure what this means, take some time to think of who you trust the most that has confessed Christ, and ask them what it means. When was the last time you recommitted your life to Christ and searched to understand what His will is for your life? What keeps you from doing this today? Are you too busy with the stuff of life to spend time with God in worship, prayer, and study of the Bible? What are your biggest struggles with Mr. or Mrs. Hyde? What are the biggest sins that unravel your life of faith and obedience to Jesus Christ?

Do not lose the unholy battle in your soul. Turn to God for strength, forgiveness, and love that you may receive the abundant life God intends for you now and the eternal life He has prepared for you into eternity.