Summary: Adultery is a cruel sin whose pain and destruction strikes twice, both now and in eternity.
INTRO: Lingering glances. Innocent flirtations. Compromising situations. All of those spell “danger.” Office romances. Out-of-town flings. Secret trysts. All of those spell “disaster.”
The more time we spend away from our spouses during the day, the greater the temptation for an illicit affair becomes.
In a society that glamorizes adultery—whose role models plaster the front pages of the tabloids with news of all their illicit lovers—we become conditioned to think that such is both normal and desirable.The Bible paints the true picture of adultery though.
I. ADULTERY’S BIG LIE
A) Adultery Is Full Of Empty Promises. It promises pleasure, love and fulfillment, but in the end it gives pain, suffering, and destruction.
The adulteress is effective at the art of seduction. She uses flattering words (Proverbs 5:3). Her words of love are very gratifying and alluring (Proverbs 7:14-21). Therefore, a gullible man is warned against falling into her trap, “Do not lust after her beauty in your heart, nor let her allure you with her eyelids. For by means of a harlot a man is reduced to a crust of bread; and an adulteress will prey on his precious life.” (Proverbs 6:25-26).
B) Here Is The Crux Of The Lie. Here is the snare. Her beauty is the bait that leads a man to moral and physical destruction. He throws away his life for what can never be his! As beautiful and appealing as the seductress may be, her house is a battlefield strewn with the corpses of many strong men, and her door is a gate to hell, “For she has cast down many wounded, and all who were slain by her were strong men. Her house is the way to hell, descending to the chambers of death.” (Proverbs 7:26-27).
It’s a pretty gruesome sight, isn’t it?
II. THE PRICE OF FREE LOVE
A) Adulterous love appears to be free—but it comes with a high price. The Bible says much about adultery and its true cost. The reason it exposes the false promises of free love is “To deliver you from the immoral woman, from the seductress who flatters with her words, who forsakes the companion of her youth, and forgets the covenant of her God. For her house leads down to death, and her paths to the dead; none who go to her return, nor do they regain the paths of life” (Proverbs 2:16-19; cf. 5:7-14; 6:20-35).
B) The Cost Is Greater Than The Benefit. Have no doubts about it—fracture a marriage, betray a spouse, pursue a selfish fantasy, break up another family, hurt the people you love the most and it will come back to bring you great pain. “Do not be deceived; God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.” (Galatians 6:7). God is not mocked. That is the price that He exacts for sin.
III. OVERCOMING ADULTERY
What safeguards can we implement to help us overcome these temptations? What can be an effective deterrent to this sin, and sap its power to tempt us?
A) We Must Keep Control Of Our Hearts. We must rule over our desires and lusts (Proverbs 4:23). That is where Jesus attacked the problem. The sin occurs because of the lust that first arises in our hearts, “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” (Matthew 5:28-29).
B) We Must Listen To Others Who Have Fallen. Their insight is crucial. The path of adultery won’t lead to a better destination for you than it did for them, “My son, pay attention to my wisdom; lend your ear to my understanding, that you may preserve discretion, and that your lips may keep knowledge.” (Proverbs 5:1-2). The man who thinks “That won’t happen to me” is a fool!
C) We Need To Avoid The Object Of Our Lust. If it means leaving the room, changing departments, or changing jobs—we must avoid any compromising situation, “Remove your way far from her, and do not go near the door of her house.” (Proverbs 5:8). The apostle Paul literally says to run, “Flee sexual immorality” (1 Corinthians 6:18). He describes it as a sin against our own body.
D) Find Love And Sexual Satisfaction At Home. Don’t look for it with another woman, but with your own wife “Drink water from your own cistern, and running water from your own well. Should your fountains be dispersed abroad, streams of water in the streets? Let them be only your own, and not for strangers with you. Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice with the wife of your youth. As a loving deer and a graceful doe, let her breasts satisfy you at all times; and always be enraptured with her love. For why should you, my son, be enraptured by an immoral woman, and be embraced in the arms of a seductress?” (Proverbs 5:15-20). Adultery and sensual passions are counterfeits. They are sex without love—the real thing cannot be improved!