Sexual purity is a big deal. Something that scares me is that many Christians seem to have slipped into believing that sexual purity is not very realistic, and in many cases hardly achievable. Just look at the porn statistics. And some seem to settle with thinking “It’s the norm”. “It’s the norm, that most men struggle with pornography, so you may as well not make a big deal out of it.” For many, living a sexually pure life seems so insurmountable, that just leaving the skeletons in the closet seems to be a fairly feasible option.
It’s not o.k.
And I think it’s important that those of us who have victory in this area, and keep themselves pure, speak up.
If I’m struggling and feeling hopeless, the last thing I need to hear is that it’s the “norm.”
We have to raise the standard high.
The closer you hang around the cliff, the easier it is to slip.
Yes. It is possible to live in real freedom.
Yes, it is possible to live a life sexually pure, with nothing hidden. And it’s possible whether you’re married or not.
One of the most important parts of keeping yourself pure, is the WHY.
You can’t fight for something if you don’t know WHY it’s worth the fight.
Here are 6 reasons that motivate me personally. (Obviously there are more)
1. Our level of sexual purity is one of the ways God tests us, to see how much He can trust us with.
Anyone who did anything great for God had to pass this test.
In some cases the temptations were tremendous.
Jesus was tempted in the desert. Not to mention all the temptations associated with the unprecedented fame Jesus had on earth.
[Jesus] in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Hebrews 4:15
Think of Joseph, who Potiphar’s wife tried to seduce.
Joseph demonstrated for all of us what it literally looks like to “flee from youthful lusts” when he got out of there like his pants were on fire.
My desire to be a true father who God can trust his daughters with is one of the strongest motivations I have to keep myself pure.
If I experience temptation, but I shift my focus to the fact that the young woman I’m tempted to lust after, is a daughter of the King, that changes everything.
Where our hearts are at in the area of sexual purity, is a very pivotal factor in whether God can promote you or not.
2. So you can see God
Impurity distorts our vision (the pure in heart will see God). Chris Cruz
The pure in heart will see God. I want to see God.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. Matthew 5:8
The opposite is true also. Impurity distorts our vision like a cataract.
Your eye is the lamp of your whole body.
When your eye is healthy, your whole body is full of light, but when it is bad, your whole body is full of darkness.” Luke 11:34
Impurity warps how you see women, how you see God, even how you see something inherently pure, which brings us to the next point.
3. So you can view prostitutes the way God does.
It’s relatively easy to view sisters at church the way God views them.
They dress appropriately, and act piously.
But what about the girl in the miniskirt?
What about the strip dancer?
What about the porn star?
Think of the story of Jesus, and the prostitute.
Jesus is having dinner with a new friend, and a prostitute comes in and starts doing something right in front of everyone.
She’s washing his feet with her tears.
Wiping them with her hair.
Then she starts kissing his feet and anointing them with expensive perfume.
Pharisee Simon’s insides are turning over. This lady is a prostitute! How awkward!
Isn’t it a beautiful story though?
It is… if your mind is not defiled.
“To the pure all things are pure, but to the defiled and unbelieving, nothing is pure; but both their minds and their consciences are defiled.” Apostle Paul
You can’t do that unless you are pure.
Jesus was pure, therefore this astonishingly intimate thing she did to Him was beautiful to Him.
True intimacy is only possible with purity.
4. Intimacy is sabotaged by sexual impurity
If you’re married, sexual impurity will eat your lunch, and leave you and your spouse the scraps.
It’s the same in our relationship with God. The law is not enough to keep you sexually pure.
That is why intimacy with God is so important.
If you don’t have an intimate relationship with God, then there’s not as much at stake, other than just feeling horrible about yourself if you fall into sin.
But when you have an intimate relationship with God, then you have a lot to lose. You have something worth fighting for.
5. You can live a transparent life, and have true peace.
There’s no peace, when you’re living with secret sin in your life. No rest.
It’s the life of a fugitive afraid of getting caught.
6. You can go to hell
If nothing else, then at least burning in hell should motivate you.
You can’t go out and buy moral-failure life insurance, just in case you die before you repent.
The fear of going to hell would be a bad long-term motivator to keep you pure, but it’s a good safety net to fall on if you’ve forgotten about the incredible calling God has for your life, that could be sabotaged by sexual impurity.
You can fall from any level.
I never want to lose a healthy level of fear of the fact that it’s possible to lose my salvation if I screw up and make enough bad decisions.
Only you and God knows where your heart’s really at.
There’s nothing more terrifying than dying and not being sure of the eternal fate of your soul.
Toying with compromise and nitpicking about what sexual impurity is actually sin is playing with fire. Hell fire.
It’s a dance by a cliff.
If you’re not tired of reading yet, here’s a little bonus story that illustrates some of what I’m talking about:
Bob Johnson, the author of Love Stains, is an incredible evangelist. He and his wife Kimberly go to some of the darkest corners of the planet to bring the light of the gospel. (not to mistake with Bill Johnson, his brother)
Once, while ministering in South America, he felt the Holy Spirit lead him to buy some roses and bring them to a brothel. He wanted to give them to the prostitutes, and share the love of the Father with them.
When they opened the door of the apartment, to his surprise, all of the several prostitutes were naked. He gave them the roses and shared with them why he was there, as best he could given the situation.
Later he was talking with his wife over Skype and shared how he was struggling with getting rid of the images of those naked women that kept coming up in his mind. They prayed about it. Later the Holy Spirit gave him a tool. He instructed him that if they appeared in his mind, that he was to look into their eyes and prophesy over them, as if they were there in real life. As an image of one of the naked young women came up in his mind, he looked in her eyes and started prophesying Gods plan over her life. As he did that, the images went away and never came back. Brilliant.
We need the Holy Spirit folks! And we need to be vulnerable, and transparent.
In my next post I will share some practical tools that have more to do with the HOW to keep yourself sexually pure.
Here’s another post on this topic you might want to check out also:
If you’re struggling with sexual temptation, get help. Connect with a friend. Staying alone and isolated is a bad plan.
I also recommend resources by Kris Vallotton’s ministry Moral Revolution.