How Badly Do We Want Purity?
Read Psalm 119:1-24
Ps 119:9 How can a young man keep his way pure? By living according to Your word. 10 I seek You with all my heart; do not let me stray from Your commands. 11 I have hidden Your word in my heart that I might not sin against You. 12 Praise be to You, O LORD; teach me Your decrees. 13 With my lips I recount all the laws that come from Your mouth. 14 I rejoice in following Your statutes as one rejoices in great riches. 15 I meditate on Your precepts and consider Your ways. 16 I delight in Your decrees; I will not neglect Your word.
I’ve stated it before and it bears repeating: spiritual maturity is not for the spiritually lazy. We who are vulnerable to giving in to same-sex attractions often think, “How can I keep my way pure?” The Psalmist has some great, great thoughts on that subject. These few verses give us some very powerful ideas. I can almost guarantee that any of us can achieve sexual sobriety if we will but utilize the truths that lie in these verses.
Every time someone calls me, lamenting that he has once again failed in his quest for purity, I can guarantee that he has not been heeding this advice. Truly, a man or woman who is escaping the slavery of homosexual addiction cannot and will not achieve his desired goal of purity if he or she ignores God’s word. I’ve never heard one man say, “I’ve been faithful in diligently studying and meditating on God’s word, and still I gave in to my weakness.” Let’s examine what the Psalmist writes.
Living according to Your word.
Well, this one is a given. Of course, if any of us will live according to God’s word, we will never again give in to our same-sex temptations. The Psalmist stated a simple truth, which we all know, but have failed to heed. If the writer had stopped at this point, we would have gained nothing which could help us work toward sexual purity.
I seek You with all my heart.
Now the writer is getting personal. How many of us can truthfully say, “I have sought the Lord with all my heart.” Not many of us can be so bold. Here is where the spiritual laziness comes into play. To seek Him with all our hearts will require much more diligence and perseverance than most of us are willing to commit. Giving the Lord our undivided attention for just a few minutes each day does not fit the definition of ‘seeking with all one’s heart.’ It will require lot of work, both in studying God’s word and in focusing our minds on Him all day every day.
I have hidden Your word in my heart.
Have we? How much of His word do we know? Have we sincerely studied and meditated so often on God’s word that it has become a permanently implanted fixture in the vaults of our minds? Our purity will demand that we know His word, learning more each day, and retaining what we have learned. But there’s more. Is His word in our hearts? Have we come to not only know His word, but also fallen in love with it? We must love God’s word; otherwise, we will not obey it. Many men know what the bible says; few men are in love with its truths.
I meditate on Your precepts and consider Your ways.
How often do we think about His commands during the day? How often do we turn to His word when that first moment of temptation shows up in our minds? God’s word must be the most important thing we think about during the day. Every move we make each day must be filtered through the word of God. If it is not, we are very likely to make a wrong decision. That is true no matter what we are doing at that moment; whether working, playing, interacting with friends or family, or whatever. Everything should be done taking His word into consideration.
I will not neglect Your word.
This one wraps up all the others into a neat package. We cannot neglect God’s word and expect to be victorious over our enemy and his ways. The biggest mistake that any Christian can make is to neglect the bible. And once again, let us remember that our bible study must be more than simply reading it. We must immerse ourselves into the spiritual work of bible study. It is the most important, and perhaps the most difficult, thing we will do every day. We cannot succeed in our spiritual walk without it.
Prayer: Lord, we know with our minds that today’s topic is vitally necessary to our spiritual growth and our spiritual welfare. However, as You know, we sadly neglect to apply it to our lives as we should. We know that our sexual purity will not come if we are not fully involved in Your word, in all the ways the Psalmist mentioned. Help us to be resolved to remedying this shortcoming in our lives.