In the last couple of days, a few unconnected experiences have reinforced in my mind the devastating nature of sexual sin.
First, I’m memorizing the first chapter of Romans this year, and the obvious downward spiral from a hard heart to complete social debauchery travels straight through sexual sin. It’s the first step actually from a heart that refuses to be grateful to God and instead turns to idolatry. God gives people up to a sexually profligate lifestyle as a punishment for refusing to glorify him. What a curse!
Second, stories. I’ve heard several stories of people whose lives were ruined by sexual sin. Men no longer in the ministry because of sexual sin. Wives no longer with their husbands and children because of sexual sin. Teenagers hampered by infectious diseases because of sexual sin. Lots of stories. Hard, heart-breaking stories.
Then a group of us pastors in the area have the habit of getting together once per month or so to discuss a book we’ve read. This go around we read Evanjellyfish. It’s a novel by author Doug Wilson. Fictional but very life like. It is the story of a mega-church pastoral staff that has fallen prey to the pragmatic “doing church as business” model of church growth. Immorality runs rampant within the congregation, the youth group, and the pastoral staff (with many of them sexually involved with unbelievers outside the church). The way Wilson writes makes the book funny, arresting, embarrassing, and frightening. The point is to show people that people and institutions end up where they’re pointed.
I had to ask myself, “Where am I pointed?” The first chapter of Romans shows people pointed away from God. Both real life and fictional stories of people trapped in an immoral lifestyle end up exactly where they’re pointed, away from God. So, where am I pointed? Where are you pointed?
You may not be entrapped in a fully immoral relationship and lifestyle, but pornography is just as seductive and destructive. It’s pointed away from God, and you can’t wade far into those waves without the torrent of lust taking you much further out to sea than you wanted to go. It is nothing to mess around with.
So, where’s the hope? Well, God actually is able to change people from the inside out. He can change you so completely that you eventually grow to hate what you formerly craved. He really can. Jesus died for these very things. Paid the penalty. Burst up from the grave with complete and total victory in hand. He is a better Savior than you are a sinner. Repent and admit the horrific nature of sexual sin. Refocus back on Christ. Then put a knife to your throat, or your eyes, or your feet, or your computer, or your car tires. Come and join our men’s sexual purity study group. But do whatever you need to do. It’s serious, urgent, and important. And Jesus is faithful, available, and able.