Tuesday, October 3, 2006

Elements of Wisdom - Fighting Lust

Proverbs 2:16-19 -

"16To deliver thee from the strange woman, even from the stranger which flattereth with her words; 17Which forsaketh the guide of her youth, and forgetteth the covenant of her
God. 18For her house inclineth unto death, and her paths unto the dead. 19None that go unto her return again, neither take they hold of the paths of life."

Proverbs 5:3-5 -

"3For the lips of a strange woman drop as an honeycomb, and her mouth is smoother than oil: 4But her end is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a twoedged sword. 5Her feet go down to death; her steps take hold on hell."

Proverbs 6:23-35 -

"23For the commandment is a lamp; and the law is light; and reproofs of instruction are the way of life: 24To keep thee from the evil woman, from the flattery of the tongue of a strange woman. 25Lust not after her beauty in thine heart; neither let her take thee with her eyelids. 26For by means of a whorish woman a man is brought to a piece of bread: and the adulteress will hunt for the precious life. 27Can a man take fire in his bosom, and his clothes not be burned? 28Can one go upon hot coals, and his feet not be burned? 29So he that goeth in to his neighbour’s wife; whosoever toucheth her shall not be innocent. 30Men do not despise a thief, if he steal to satisfy his soul when he is hungry; 31But if he be found, he shall restore sevenfold; he shall give all the substance of his house. 32But whoso committeth adultery with a woman lacketh understanding: he that doeth it destroyeth his own soul. 33A wound and dishonour shall he get; and his reproach shall not be wiped away. 34For jealousy is the rage of a man: therefore he will not spare in the day of vengeance. 35He will not regard any ransom; neither will he rest content, though thou givest many gifts."

Proverbs 7:7-27 -

7And beheld among the simple ones, I discerned among the youths, a young man void of understanding, 8Passing through the street near her corner; and he went the way to her house, 9In the twilight, in the evening , in the black and dark night: 10And, behold, there met him a woman with the attire of an harlot, and subtle of heart. 11(She is loud and stubborn; her feet abide not in her house: 12Now is she without, now in the streets, and lieth in wait at every corner.) 13So she caught him, and kissed him, and with an impudent face said unto him, 14I have peace offerings with me; this day have I payed my vows. 15Therefore came I forth to meet thee, diligently to seek thy face, and I have found thee. 16I have decked my bed with coverings of tapestry, with carved works, with fine linen of Egypt. 17I have perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon. 18Come, let us take our fill of love until the morning: let us solace ourselves with loves. 19For the goodman is not at home, he is gone a long journey: 20He hath taken a bag of money with him, and will come home at the day appointed. 21With her much fair speech she caused him to yield, with the flattering of her lips she forced him. 22He goeth after her straightway, as an ox goeth to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks; 23Till a dart strike through his liver; as a bird hasteth to the snare, and knoweth not that it is for his life. 24Hearken unto me now therefore, O ye children, and attend to the words of my mouth. 25Let not thine heart decline to her ways, go not astray in her paths. 26For she hath cast down many wounded: yea, many strong men have been slain by her. 27Her house is the way to hell, going down to the chambers of death.

There really are so many principles to gain from these verses, but I will only highlight a few. As always please feel free to add anything to this entry.

1. Immorality brings very serious consequences like death, destruction and even hell (in Chapters 2 and 5).

2. Immorality brings a life long reproach that is nearly impossible for one to fully recover from (in Chapter 6).

3. In Chapter 7:8 here was a young man void of understanding. He is described as being part of a group known in the KJV as ‘simple ones’ or ‘among the fools’ would also be an adequate translation (actually that is how the Geneva Bible puts it). He was setting himself up. We must never put ourselves in situations where we may fall into immoral demise.

4. He was free to roam around, that is he had too much freedom and possibly no curfew (Chapter 7:8-9). So he went into the wrong side of town. Today the ‘wrong side’ may be in our living rooms through television, VHS, or DVD. It may be in our bedrooms through the radio. It may be in our offices or homes through the internet. The point is that pornography is no longer 'geo-graphically' limited (pun intended). We must apply every precaution.

5. He was seduced by the ‘whorish woman’ (Chapter 7:10-22). The Bible makes a strong case about the fact that clothing indeed communicates (in verse 10 ‘attire of an harlot’). How important it is for ladies to wear modest apparel. And how wicked is our culture today to provide clothing for women that are absolutely suggestive, even for young girls. The question that comes to my mind is do her parents really care about her in allowing her to wear the latest fashion trend? I think not. Back to the whorish woman, she was acting holy – (v.14), but that was just false piety. She wanted nothing to do with God, and she really did not care about her husband, nor for the young man, nor for herself, nor anyone for that matter. She probabbly wanted his money and his life. True, godly romance belongs to the married couple. Any intimacy that is outside the marriage bond is a perversion.

6. Just like the young man was seduced by the whorish woman, so it is with our culture through bad entertainment, bad movies, bad music, and even through the internet. We are constantly pressured everywhere to act according to our lusts. Not only do we get pressure from the outside, but also from within. Temptation is a powerful invitation to sin, and so we must carefully guard our hearts.

Proverbs 4:23 "Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life."

Proverbs does not just cover the negative aspects of fighting lust, but it also shares positive insights:
Proverbs 5:15-18 -

"15Drink waters out of thine own cistern, and running waters out of thine own well. 16Let thy fountains be dispersed abroad, and rivers of waters in the streets. 17Let them be only thine own, and not strangers’ with thee. 18Let thy fountain be blessed: and rejoice with the wife of thy youth."

In fighting lust we become faithful men and women, particularly to our own spouse. We will also prove faithful to our faithful God. There is great wisdom in fighting lust.

No comments: