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1. “The contemporary evangelical Church is ‘Corinthian’ to the core. It is being stewed in the molten juices of its own sensuality.” I agree because many times the way we behave towards the opposite sex at church would be no different than the way we treat others outside of church. Praise God, at my church it is more enforced and spoken against, though we aren’t perfect in this matter. In my personal life I still constantly battle the temptation to stay pure though most likely I still have many actions and attitudes that came from the past.

2. “At the moment [of lust] we forget about God and lose all reality.” In my battles with temptation I have found this to be true, that as soon as I give in to temptation everything God has done for me and told me to do goes out of the window. The most effective way to prevent moral lapses is to prevent ourselves from even “taking a second glance.” To remember why it is we strive for godliness and purity. For God, because He forgave me for every sin I have commit and will commit to free me from sin’s grasp.

1. Prayer

– pray for purity

2. Accountability

– with your spouse, with brothers and sisters of the same sex

3. Discernment

– what situations to avoid, to not “take a second glance”

A way I found effective in helping me flee from temptation is as simple as spending time investing in someone else’s life. Whether just hanging out, spending time with them or even praying for them.

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– Just a few minutes spent watching TV or surfing the web today and one can find sensuality being paraded as fine. Sex, lust and adultery are becoming less of a deviance but is even being encouraged in our culture today.

Progressive desensitization to sin and descent from holiness can take any man down.

– Even if the culture allows the sin, by the Bible it is still a sin, abominable in God’s eyes.

1. R. Kent Hughes uses the example of David and Bathsheba to present the dangers of not being on guard and pursuing the discipline of purity.

– Dangerous to relax at disciplining myself; if I am not pursuing and growing in discipline, what direction am I going in? I must be backsliding!

– When lust takes control I forget about God.

– In the heat of the moment it seems we can come up with the weirdest rationalizations to justify our lust. one ex. would be “I’m acting in love.”

2. Eventually a thought becomes an action, and an action leads to another until this snowball effect destroys the lives of not only the individuals involved but also their friends, family, church, life.

– There are great consequences for our sin (specifically lust)

3. The discipline of purity involves:

1. Accountability

– your spouse, your brothers/sisters in Christ, your mentor. Ask them to keep you accountable in this area.

2. Prayer

– to be intentionally and consistently praying for your intention to be pure and for others also in this regard.

3. Memorization

– Let God’s word change me, to be able to recall scripture at the most critical time when we must choose to either fall or flee from lust.

4. Mind

– To be careful what we think about and what we look at; Our actions, our words will reveal the impurities of our hearts.

– We must forbid a second thought, a second glance at temptations but instead focus on Christ’s love for all men and women.

 

Great chapter on the discipline of purity, thank you R. Hughes!

Application/Response

 

God spoke to me most specifically that with my life being undisciplined I am ignoring many other people’s needs and instead of being one who exhorts his fellow brothers and sisters I instead dragged them down.

Some practical ways to grow in discipline

-          Set aside time with God

-          Set aside time for studying the Word

-          Make a schedule of tasks/goals and follow it.

 

2. Anyone can become disciplined men of God – a spiritual Mike Singletary or Winston Churchill. As Christians nobody had a spiritual advantage over another – all men fell short of God’s perfect standards. We all draw strength from the same Creator; the same God is with us all and with Him, who can stand against us? Let the gospel be preached to all nations, Jesus saves!

1.      1.  I am willing and prepared to pay the price of discipline because I see that a lack of discipline in my life has injured many relationships with friends and family; the lack of discipline has cost me days, months, even years of time being wasted. I want to see my family and I grow together in our knowledge and love for Christ; I want to see my friends become encouraged and unyielding in their commitment to the love of Christ.

2.      2.  It is true, that “No manliness no maturity! No discipline no discipleship! No sweat no sainthood!” As a man it would be unbecoming of me to not step up and protect and provide for those God entrusts to me. If I continue to be passive in my actions and words I will have lived a life no different than an animal that just eats, sleeps, and cares for only its well-being. Even now as I strive to communicate this knowledge and information for myself and the well-being of my fellow believers I would rather be doing something else; it is abnormal for me to want to pursue discipline, to love others.

3.      3.  Spiritual discipline differs from legalism in the motivation of our actions; legalism is self-centered while discipline is God-centered. Many times in the pursuit of discipline I fall into the trap of legalism. Some of the dangers of legalism is that we begin to lose heart in our work, we get frustrated when we don’t get the results we want, that if what motivates me is not God’s love then the work or discipline I am pursuing surely isn’t bringing me closer to developing a heart for God’s love and other people!

1.      I am willing and prepared to pay the price of discipline because I see that a lack of discipline in my life has injured many relationships with friends and family; the lack of discipline has cost me days, months, even years of time being wasted. I want to see my family and I grow together in our knowledge and love for Christ; I want to see my friends become encouraged and unyielding in their commitment to the love of Christ.

2.      It is true, that “No manliness no maturity! No discipline no discipleship! No sweat no sainthood!” As a man it would be unbecoming of me to not step up and protect and provide for those God entrusts to me. If I continue to be passive in my actions and words I will have lived a life no different than an animal that just eats, sleeps, and cares for only its well-being. Even now as I strive to communicate this knowledge and information for myself and the well-being of my fellow believers I would rather be doing something else; it is abnormal for me to want to pursue discipline, to love others.

3.      Spiritual discipline differs from legalism in the motivation of our actions; legalism is self-centered while discipline is God-centered. Many times in the pursuit of discipline I fall into the trap of legalism. Some of the dangers of legalism is that we begin to lose heart in our work, we get frustrated when we don’t get the results we want, that if what motivates me is not God’s love then the work or discipline I am pursuing surely isn’t bringing me closer to developing a heart for God’s love and other people!

  1. 1. Timothy 4:7-8 “Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales; rather, train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.”

The literal meaning of the greek word for train, gumnos, means “to exercise naked.”

  1. Practically I need to be throwing off everything that is burdening me to follow Christ, every sin, every habit, tendency that impedes godliness. Through this I need to labor and toil.
  2. Hebrews 12:1 “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.” This passage says I should throw off not only everything that hinders me in my relationship with Christ, but also the sin that will always be trying to be master over me. To strive for godliness as in a race.
  3. Many things are holding me back in my relationship with God. My own self-centeredness, unwillingness to intentionally change my wrong attitudes and character, not coming before the Almighty God and acknowledge that I cannot do anything apart from Him. My intentional lusts, the jealousy of my heart. I am hanging on to my burdens because they don’t require me to make any sacrifices; I am lazy, unwilling to take action.
  4. The cost to spiritual discipline is choosing to live in a way that is unnatural (since no one is naturally pursuing God). I will have to acknowledge that I am not self-sufficient. I will need to plan to grow since growth will not happen on its own.

 Some practical ways to grow in discipline

–          Set aside time with God

–          Set aside time for studying the Word

–          Make a schedule and follow it.

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