Wisdom for the Ages: Seek Freedom from Lust. Message Magazine’s Online Devotional for Sunday, March 4, 2018
“The wicked will be captured by his own iniquities, and he will be held by the cords of his own sin. He will die because there was no discipline; because of the greatness of his folly he will reel.” (Proverbs 5:22–23, NET).
When Lust Takes You Down
Today’s Scripture focus is a carryover from the thoughts on yesterday’s passage. The wicked face two challenges to their ultimate well-being in this regard. First, the wicked person continues to disregard God’s wisdom and instructions. He or she chooses to continue down the path of sexual indiscretion. Then, the wicked choose lust and sin’s captivation. He or she ignores the fountains of intimacy within his or her own marriage. Lust captures that person, enslaving them unto destruction.
“Do not be deceived. God will not be made a fool. For a person will reap what he sows, because the person who sows to his own flesh will reap corruption from the flesh, but the one who sows to the Spirit will reap eternal life from the Spirit” (Galatians 6:7–8, NET).
As we can see in the news media lately, sexual indiscretion is no light matter. It has permeated all areas of our society. This is not new, but strong courageous men and women stand up now. You can count on them to say “enough is enough.” No longer will we sweep this scourge under the rug. No longer will we act like it’s OK to behave badly and victimize others in the area of sexual immorality.
Twisted Morality and its Antidote
Anyone who is honest with themselves will tell you that once you travel down the road and begin to tamper with lustful temptations, you risk the slippery slope of self-deception, addiction, family dysfunction, potential abuse, financial ruin, and twisted imaginations. You could find yourself facing disease or involved in crimes of passion, leading to premature death. This principle does not only apply to sexual sins, but since this is the context of our passage we must address it head on, realizing that any unfettered sin practice will have similar outcomes.
What is the antidote?
Paul asked the same question, and the answer is wonderful:
“Wretched man that I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.
There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the life-giving Spirit in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and death. For God achieved what the law could not do because it was weakened through the flesh. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and concerning sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, so that the righteous requirement of the law may be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
For those who live according to the flesh have their outlook shaped by the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit have their outlook shaped by the things of the Spirit. For the outlook of the flesh is death, but the outlook of the Spirit is life and peace,” (Romans 7:24–8:6, NET).
Free and Clear
Seek freedom from bondage to sexual sin, or any other sinful inclinations. To do this, surrender your all to Jesus Christ! He can remove the stain of guilt, subject your fleshly lusts, give you a new heart, and make you a representative of His power to recreate anyone who submits to Him, into the image of God in all areas of life.
A word to the foolish is wasteful. A word to the wise is sufficient.