Lust is in our face everyday, probably more than any other generation that lived before us. News reports that would shock generations decades ago are casual stories today. When I was fifteen, I found myself in a compromising position with a prostitute who had sneaked into my hotel room. We had gone on a school road-trip with friends and the half-naked lady was in the room at 2am trying to seduce me. What was I to do while she was coming in full swing? When I was eighteen, everyone was getting a girlfriend and everyone was making out. The girl came and I found myself alone with her at her place. These stories abound and I’m only 24. They are probably similar to things you have encountered. In retrospect, I notice that every encounter for a Christian to compromise on their sexual purity strives to blind our vision.
As a follower of Christ, you recognize clearly from adolescence that there exists a war for your soul as far as your sexual drive is concerned. You realize that once you give your life to Christ, you are saved from the world but you are not yet saved from its influence. The day of deliverance from the world draws near. However, until then, the influence of an over-sexualized culture on our purity is a war we must fight everyday. Perhaps your story when you were fifteen makes my story look like a flare in comparison to Hiroshima. However, that’s not the case. Christ allocates grace to each of us even when temptation abounds. 1 Corinthians 10:13 “No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will provide a way out so that stand up under it.” No temptation that comes to any believer is stronger than the grace allocated. At times we fail, like I did when I kissed that girl when I was eighteen. However, we can also succeed like I resisted the prostitute when I was fifteen and turned on like an oven!
For us men, the struggle for sexual purity begins with our eyes. If our eyes are not trained to shun sexual profanity as followers of Christ, we will lose our vision as men. Job knew this.
Job 31:1 “I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a girl.
Job knew that lingering our vision is dangerous. The first glance is always natural, but the second glance ties our hands. It looks casual for a while, however, the cords of sin tying around our hands are too light to be felt until they are too strong to be broken. We even give it a religious phrase, us Christians, “We are appreciating God’s beauty.” The excuses we give are the exit from the highway to purpose and great vision. In a slow fade, we teach our eyes that it is okay, as long as we are not physically doing something. Beloved, listen. Sexual sin is not manifested in just an act. Sexual sin is birthed from the seed of a thought. When the acts come into full swing, it is just testament that we sinned and fell a long time ago, Beloved- with our thoughts. You were not admiring God’s beauty; you were admiring God’s booty! Our vision is blurred each time we allow our thoughts to simmer from what we see. Jesus knew it. He said in Matthew 5:27-28 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Do not commit adultery.’ But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. A church can have many practicing virgins (physically) who are whores at heart. I know it because I was one of them. The moment you allow your eyes to see, you lose your vision.
So, what do we do Ernest, you ask. We can’t avoid all the “twerking” girls in the world. You’re right. We can’t. Why? The world is full of short skirts and tempting sights. We can’t pretend we just live in Mars and they live in Venus. We are all on earth. That’s where the Grace of Christ comes in. God’s grace does not say that you will live in a pure world without temptation. Nay! It says that you will live purely despite that temptation. God’s grace does not say that you will not be faced with difficulty. It says that you will have strength to overcome that difficulty. I want to encourage many believing men out there. Your following Christ has more power than you think. The reason you do not see it is because sexual sin blinds our vision. There is hope to escape the addiction of pornography and masturbation. The reason you do not see it is because sexual sin blinds your vision. There is hope to stop living a lie, serving in church while sleeping with your girlfriend. But you don’t see hope to turn back to God because sexual sin blinds your vision. And when a man’s vision is blinded/blurred, he cannot plan for a future with a woman, he cannot lead her, he cannot teach her, he cannot be an example to her, he cannot foresee a godly marriage, he cannot hope for a life of purity, he cannot see restoration, he cannot see deliverance from his addictions, he cannot have zeal for life even though he calls himself a Christian! Sexual sin blinds the vision of a Christian and it kills hope. I want to share with you a few things that will help start clearing your windscreen. You need your vision back.
Be at the right place
The Bible says in 2 Samuel 11 that in the spring time when kings go out to war, David the King stayed behind in Israel. As he was in his balcony, he saw a gorgeous naked women bathing. His eyes lingered and he lusted for her. He found out the women was married but he didn’t care. He lost his vision. He called for her and took her to his bed. He used her body to fulfill his lust and got her pregnant. Beloved, learn from this. When Kings go out to war, join them. Be at the right place, always. David was in the wrong environment and it caused him to lose vision. Are you in the right place? When everyone is having dinner, why are you browsing videos online alone in your bedroom? Why do you visit her house alone? The day you refuse to go to the place where Kings are, you become a palace fool and you will lose vision. Kings are men who go out to fight for their sexuality. They fight to protect the virtue of their women-even from themselves. When you don’t do something about your environment, like David, you will find yourself in a rollercoaster of sin and struggles. Like David, you will try to cover it up. He slept with Bathsheba. He got her pregnant. He kept the affair a secret. He tried to trick the husband, Uriah, to sleep with her to cover his siring of the pregnancy. He failed, so he murdered Uriah and then he hypocritically took in the wife. David was exposed by prophet Nathan and his sin is available for thousands of generation after him to read. The Bible says in Numbers 32:23 that your sin will find you out. Sexual sin blinds our vision as a Christian. You want your vision back? Ask yourself this: Are you in the right place?
Avoid the avoidable.
Even in the right environment, sin can catch you. Joseph was in his daily routine of work. His boss’ wife grabbed him to sleep with her (Genesis 39). Joseph ran! Beloved, the prostitute in my room had to be avoided for me to be victorious! The girlfriend coming to your hostel has to be avoided. The smartphone with the porn videos has to be replaced. The company with the wrong influence has to be detached. Don’t fool yourself that you have no grace since the temptation came to you. When in campus, girls came to my hostel even when they knew my stand and my relationship. When they did, I had to avoid the hostel. I took walks. I invited another girl/guy into the hostel so that the situation wouldn’t be compromising for me. Avoid the avoidable to gain your vision.
Sexual sin has no expiry date as long as you live
Your battle as a man to keep pure will not end- but it can get easy to tackle. From adolescence to the grave, you will face the struggle. If you do not master how to tackle it now, it will always win. Your blindness to its power will always be your undoing. We need strength, beloved. We need power such that the next time the temptation comes it is no big deal. Looking away becomes simple. Walking away becomes possible. Running from the temptress becomes a no-brainer. Stopping that lustful movie or TV series even when we have reached halfway is not a struggle. Deleting that phone number becomes necessary. Closing that Internet link with the porn site becomes second to nature. Finding out that others struggle too makes us relax but it doesn’t take away out blindness. A blind man cannot lead another blind man. We need our vision restored. All this happens when we assume a humble posture and accept we need help where we struggle.
Find an avenue to confess your struggle. The fear of judgement is real but it must be overcome. Your vision has to be restored firstly by doing the difficult. Humble yourself and become vulnerable to a group of men. Once you do that, dedicate to that confession team to walk together. As you do that, spend time to heal your lost vision; spend time in the Word of God. Just as physical exercise trains our body muscles, so can our eyes be trained for purity. The Holy Spirit is our trainer and the Bible is our gym, Beloved. You must go to the gym everyday until you attain to the full measure of Christ. You now when that is? When He returns. As long as you are alive, you need the spiritual gym every day. As you dedicate yourself as a Christian, you will see your muscles develop. You will have distaste for junk food that destroys your sexuality. You will get new vision to marry a gorgeous girl and have a family. You will have vision to raise daughters whom you will give over to godly men. You will have vision to raise sons who will change the world with purpose through purity. Consecration increases your concentration. Your purity will empower you vision. You dedication to the things of God will protect you from blindness.
Jesus overcame so you could win!
Beloved, the Bible says in Hebrews 4:15 about Jesus Christ. “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are–yet was without sin.”
First of all, we have Christ Jesus as a High Priest. You know what that means. That means we have an advocate. We have one to plead for our case when we sin. That means that the grace is sufficient. It does not matter how far you have fallen, you are forgiven, loved and accepted. Cast your cares and anxieties to him. He remembers your sins no more and you shouldn’t either. Think of the worst thing you have ever done. Now thank God because he forgives you for that. His grace is not only compassion to forgive; it is also power to overcome sin and give us vision (Titus 2:11-12).
Secondly, the High priest sympathizes with our weaknesses. That means He understands. How does he understand? The Bible says Jesus understands our weaknesses because even He was tempted IN EVERY WAY JUST LIKE US-Yet he did not sin (Hebrews 4:15). Wow! Jesus was tempted in EVERY WAY LIKE US. Beloved, in Jesus’ lifetime, he was human with the power of the Holy Spirit but he was tempted like us. That means even sexually, Beloved. Despite Jesus being tempted sexually, he did not sin. He achieved that power over sin and then activated it on the cross for you and I to conquer and for His Supremacy over all creation. And that power now lives in you dear Christian. You too can overcome because Greater is the one in you than the one in the world (1 John 4:4)
May your vision be restored!