The Bible gives in rich detail how life unfolds for people who fall into sexual sin. It was pure visual seduction for David when he laid eyes on his neighbor’s wife Bathsheba (2Sam 11). His heart followed his eyes in violating the 10th commandment, and in short order that act stimulated violations of the 9th (lying), 8th (stealing), 7th (adultery), and when these couldn’t be covered up, he went on and broke the 6th by murdering her husband. Previously a man of great virtue, he quickly broke half the ten commandments, and it all started with his eyes. For her infidelity, Bathsheba may have gotten a palatial upgrade on her residence, but she had to endure her lover’s murder of her dear husband, feel his remorse expressed publicly in the hit song of its day (Psalm 51), and then like so many adulterers in therapy afterwards, watch helplessly as her children and step-children lived out the generational after-effects over the years to come: rape, incest, violence, job loss, family disintegration, etc. What does David’s story tell you about yourself? About God?
In Genesis 39, we see a strong example of Joseph resisting seduction by Potiphar’s wife, going to jail for it, and then having a wonderful life restored to him because of his obedience. Read the story carefully, and ask the Joseph in you to teach you some lessons.
Hosea gives us a compassionate look into the forgiving heart of God through a broken-hearted victim of his wife Gomer’s infidelity and chronic bondage to sex. The father of the prodigal son is another (Luke 15). If you believed God has already forgiven sin before it happens, that asking just accesses what’s already there waiting for us, how would it change your prayer life, and your life?
We see many successful lives turned around through repentance, confession, and obedient forsaking of sexual sin. David shows us the way in Psalm 51, and several women in Jesus’ life followed it -- the one at the well in John 4, the one weeping for the joy of her forgiveness and cleansing at the house of Simon the Pharisee (Luke 7), and the one caught in the act of adultery, about to be stoned for it (John 8). Paul Tournier in Guilt and Grace teaches both perpetrators and victims that we all need a healthy amount of guilt about our sin, not too much like the woman had, and not too little like the Pharisees had. Godly sorrow for sin is shown in 2Cor 7: 8-11, which joins Psalm 51 as excellent roadmaps to repentance and restoration for the sexual sinner. Brokenness will show in a full confession, a broken open heart, and behavior change. What do these passages teach you about how to repent, and how to forgive yourself?
To prevent or to break bondage to sexual sin, it is necessary to guard what comes into the mind (Phil 4:8) and heart (Pr 4:23), through the eyes (Mt 5:28-9), through what we touch (v.30), so that unclean acts do not come out from our bodies (Mt 15:18-19), so that we and others are not perverted and ruined by the words coming out of our mouths (James 5:5-6), or what we join our souls to as we unite in a sexual embrace (1Cor 6:15-20). You check the doors of your house every night to keep your family safe. What good would it do to check every day your mind gate, heart gate, eye gate, ear gate, skin gate, mouth gate, and groin gate?
Computer porn and cheat chat smells badly of “all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life” (1Jo2:16). We find the strength to avoid all this from our God, embodied in the Holy Spirit (John 14-16) poured out through the church/fellowship of believers (Eph 2:18-21, 4:4-6), the word of God (Heb 4:12-13, 2Tim 3:16-17), friends (John 15:15), people we help (Mt 25:37-40), and small support groups (Mt 18:20). Is your God able to come to you through all these channels, or have you tired some of God’s blessing arms behind him?
Dr. Paul Schmidt is a psychologist life coach you can reach at [email protected], (502) 633-2860.