Yesterday, I talked about the deeper message within the song “Let’s Talk About Sex” by the group Salt and Pepa , written almost 26 years ago. You can read it here.
First comes love. Then comes marriage. Then comes the baby in the baby carriage.
This seems to be a thing of the past these days. Pretty ancient really. Or is it?
We know that sex sells. It is interwoven in almost everything you see on TV, on billboards, in the movies, books, social media, in schools and even cartoons!
It’s everywhere. One couldn’t avoid being exposed at some point if he/she tried. It’s promoted as something good and it is…because God created it and anything He creates is good, including you!
Here, however, is where current culture and its thinking can get one into trouble and down the road to compromising really quickly.
God’s will is for you to be holy, so stay away from all sexual sin. Then each of you will control his own body and live in holiness and honor—not in lustful passion like the pagans who do not know God and his ways. ~1 Thessalonians 4:3-5
It is His will for us to be holy and that means staying away from all sexual sin-not just intercourse, but anything related to that.
Paul, the writer of Thessalonians, makes it clear that one can have control of his/her own body and thus, live in holiness and honor-by staying away from it. Don’t forget that holiness (married or single) starts in one’s heart and mind, and will eventually be carried out in his/her actions and behavior. You can still be married and involved in sexual sin.
How do we avoid this
We should stay away from anywhere or anything that could put us in a position where we get ‘caught up’. As Billy Graham so eloquently said,
The very appearance of sin is almost as bad as the sin itself.
Paul also concludes that because we know God and His ways, we don’t have to live in lustful passion, like the pagans do, who do not know God and His ways. Ask yourself, “Do I know God and His ways?”
The Danger of Compromise
There are some (myself included) who in past times have know His ways and still given into lustful passions. I am so thankful that He forgives us if we confess it. I like how the Amplified version says it:
to abstain and back away from sexual immorality. ~1 Thess. 4:3
There it is again, a word similar to stay away-to abstain or back away.
A devotional I was reading several months ago referenced the scripture above and talked about the thinking so many women have when we get into a relationship. We don’t want the man to leave so eventually, we find ourselves compromising on what we believe, value or know to be true. We start backpedaling little by little, thinking that will make him stay or that this is just what we are supposed to do. (I talk a little bit more about it here.)
What a bold faced lie satan has sold us over and over (again myself included). As the author said, it boils down to a lack of trust in God. If we truly trust God, we can easily give the relationship over to Him and say, “Lord, Thy will be done”, even if that will means the relationship ends because we refuse to compromise.
One of the things I found true for me was that I entered several relationships with this faulty reasoning. I would say, “as long as he believes in God or as long as I can hold onto my convictions, I won’t let God down”.
I left out one important point, i.e. we weren’t on the same page regarding my values and my relationship with the Lord. Therefore, it was never going to work. Someone was going to end up compromising and most times it was me and my values. I choose them (and myself) over God each time.
The author of the devotional also pointed out that when we submit to the lust of the flesh it also causes significant spiritual damage, often the one thing we forget. We hear about the physical and the emotional impact, but don’t consider the spiritual component.
After my last relationship, God began calling me out on my Pharisaic ways. I was having a religionship (yes I made that word up!) not a relationship with Him and He wasn’t having it anymore. Any time I made the choice to compromise (not just physically), it was because I had not stopped to consider that I was in a relationship with Him first.
As I began considering my own relationship with Him, I asked myself, “Is He really as important to me as I was claiming?” It was no longer just about going to church, paying my tithes, and serving in ministry.
I became really focused on knowing God more and actively working on building a relationship with Him, allowing the Holy Spirit to lead me. Eventually, my ability to control my own body and not succumb to temptation changed, with the power of the Holy Spirit, as I grew closer to Him in relationship.
It no longer became about just fleeing all sexual sin because the Bible says so. Instead it was, “because I love God and because I am in a relationship with Him, I don’t desire to do anything to jeopardize that relationship.”
I now understand that I was bought with a price when I said yes to Jesus as my Savior. This body that I think I own really isn’t mine. The enemy wanted me (and you) to think I could handle these temptations and urges on my own and that I was strong enough.
It’s a lie. Don’t drink that Kool-aid.
I am here to encourage you to:
- Begin working on your relationship with the Lord first.
- Focus your attention on Him first while waiting.
- Freely admit that you cannot be kept on your own , cuz ain’t nothing good dwells in this flesh.
Wait, my sister. I promise you that you are well worth waiting for and the Lord is well worth you waiting.