Is Purity Possible?

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[The adulteress’] feet go down to death,
Her steps take hold of Sheol.
She does not ponder the path of life;
Her ways are unstable, she does not know it.

Now then, my sons, listen to me
And do not depart from the words of my mouth.
Keep your way far from her
And do not go near the door of her house,
Or you will give your vigor to others
And your years to the cruel one; –Proverbs 5:5-9

I’ve had a thought lately (dangerous, I know). If you want to be pure, it makes sense people once chose to cut themselves off from society. That was centuries ago (although some Christians still want to do it to a degree), and the visual demands on our attention have only become increasingly sexual and provocative.

You can hardly watch a cereal commercial anymore without some sort of innuendo involved.

So to repeat my thesis question, is purity possible?

Most people know the truth of these verses in Proverbs. It may have nothing to do with a physical person. It could be pornography or something similar. Either way, they produce the opposite of life and stability and you waste your time, offering it to a cruel master.

But if you don’t go live in a cave as hermit, what chance do you have to remain pure?

The Amplified version of verse 8 says this,

Let your way in life be far from her, and come not near the door of her house [avoid the very scenes of temptation]…

Reminds me of Jesus’ statement about looking in lust on a woman, that this is what equals adultery. This agrees with what Solomon is saying here also.

Your eyes look at the world and those in it, but only your heart can lust.

If you “let your way in life be far from her,” that involves your heart. He’s not talking about physical distance and space. He’s talking about the core of his son’s life being so removed from the pull of such things.

This world, however, confronts us constantly with sensuality and temptation. Your heart is not safe here, which is why it must be safely located as far away as possible.

Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. –Colossians 3:1-2

God gives us an out, a way to stay away from the temptress’ door. He says, “come sit with my Son while I make this enemy a footstool.”

That’s not to say it’s easy or automatic. It’s learned behavior and the gift of grace. I’m not going to pretend like I don’t have battles with lust because I do, but I also know that the more I grow in love and relationship with Him and the more I set my mind on thing above–the more He releases His victory and purity through me.

What do you think? Do you see purity as possible in this life? Why or why not?


Another in a series of posts where I go through Proverbs a verse (or more) at a time and share what the Holy Spirit impresses on me (click here for more verse by verse posts).

Comments

  1. Bill (cycelguy)

    I have difficulty with this one Jason. I’m a man. 🙂 Actually, it raises a good question. The psalmist said, “I will put nothing before my eyes that is worthless.” (my translation). How can I do that? I have a computer. I have a TV. I have a WalMart. This is not an easy question to answer.
    Bill (cycelguy) recently posted..OppositesMy Profile

    Posted on November 13, 2014
    • Kari Scare

      Plus, Bill, we don’t have to “put” anything before our eyes… it’s more often put there for us these days. We don’t have to go looking for it. In fact, if we do nothing, it will find us. We have to be proactive and prevent as much as possible from reaching us. And, as Jason wrote, that isn’t by living like hermits but by focusing our hearts on God. Once again, focus determines reality.
      Kari Scare recently posted..Struggling with HumilityMy Profile

      November 13, 2014
      • jasonS

        That’s what is so difficult for sure! It’s everywhere. Grace and more grace is needed for every moment and every single day. Thanks Kari.

        November 15, 2014
    • jasonS

      I’m definitely not saying it’s easy, but I do believe Jesus won victory over EVERYTHING and all sin. The world we live in is messed up and my struggles and experiences can’t define for me what the truth is. He says purity is not only possible, but expected according to living out His grace (not our will power). It’s a tough one, Bill! Thanks so much. 🙂

      November 15, 2014
  2. Sharon

    You know, a few thoughts come to my mind. First of all, it seems that the Bible puts a strong emphasis on sexual immorality. God doesn’t “rank” sins -- but it seems that sexual sin is particularly injurious as it strikes at the body and the soul of a person. That being said, the issue of purity is tough. As everyone has stated, society makes it difficult to avoid impure thoughts and desires. We are tantalized and teased and tempted in so many venues. The only way to maintain purity, or to remain sinless in any area of our lives, is to constantly and continually and willfully yield our lives, and our entire selves, to the Lord. Maybe if we got a better grip on the Truth that we are the very temple of God, that He actually dwells within us, maybe that would help us stay pure? Who would think of defiling the Holy of Holies?!

    GOD BLESS.
    Sharon recently posted..THE WONDER OF GOD’S NAMEMy Profile

    Posted on November 13, 2014
    • jasonS

      It’s true. I believe God condemns immorality so much not because it’s more important to Him but because it so defiles and destroys us more than other things. It’s a trap. There is often healing that needs to take place in our hearts to deal with these issues as well. Unhealed places cause destructive patterns. Lots to pray on and consider! Thank you, Sharon.

      November 15, 2014
  3. floyd

    The only answer is to be constantly drawing nigh unto our Father. Not the easiest thing to do in this weak flesh, but you’re right; He gives us a way out… it’s just the gift of our free will that betrays us… and Him.

    Posted on November 13, 2014
    • jasonS

      That’s it. Submitting heart, mind, will, and strength completely to Him--that’s the key! Thank you, Floyd.

      November 15, 2014

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