Day by Day - May 16-17, 2009
May 16-17, 2009
Closing the Door to Lust, Part Two
by Charles R. Swindoll
Yesterday we looked at the grim, pitiful life of Samson, a powerful leader whose lust ultimately destroyed him. (Read Judges 16.) Lust is a deadly intruder you dare not entertain for a moment. When lust knocks on your door, you must call on Christ to meet it.
Before giving lust a firm shove away from your life, have Christ inform this intruder that the permanent peace and pleasure you are enjoying in your home with Christ are so much greater than lust's temporary excitement that you don't need it around any longer to keep you happy.
For sin's power over us was broken when we became Christians and were baptized to become a part of Jesus Christ; through his death the power of your sinful nature was shattered. Your old sin-loving nature was buried with him by baptism when he died, and when God the Father; with glorious power, brought him back to life again, you were given his wonderful new life to enjoy. (Romans 6:3-4 LB)
But lust is persistent. If it's knocked on your door once, it'll knock again. And again. You are safe just so long as you draw upon your Savior's strength. Try to handle it yourself and you'll lose---every time. This is why we are warned again and again in the New Testament to fleesexual temptations. Remember, lust is committed to wage war against your soul---in a life-and-death struggle---in hand-to-hand combat. Don't stand before this mortal enemy and argue or fight in your own strength---run for cover. Cry out for reinforcement. Call in an air strike. If you get yourself into a situation that leaves you defenseless and weak, if your door is left even slightly ajar, you may be sure that this ancient enemy will kick it open with six-guns blazing. So don't leave it open. Don't give lust a foothold . . . or even a toehold.
Joseph was a dedicated, well-disciplined believer, but he was smart enough to realize he couldn't tease lust without being whipped. (Read Genesis 39.) When it came time for a hasty exit, the son of Jacob preferred to leave his jacket behind rather than hesitate and leave his hide. But not Samson. Fool that he was, he thought he could cuddle lust, inhale its heady perfume, and enjoy its warm embrace without the slightest chance of getting caught. What appeared to be a harmless, soft, attractive dove of secret love turned into a reeking nightmarish vulture.
Lust is one flame you dare not fan. You'll get burned if you do. Samson would sign this warning in my place if he could, for he, being dead, yet speaks.
Reprinted by permission. Day by Day, Charles Swindoll, July 2005, Thomas Nelson, inc., Nashville, Tennessee. All rights reserved. Purchase "Day by Day" here.