Summary: 5 principles that will help all of us to live up to God’s high standards for our lives.
Start Walking in Purity
Sermon by Rick Crandall
McClendon Baptist Church - April 6, 2008
*Let me start tonight by saying that sex is a good thing. I think we can say that can’t we? -Sex is a good thing! One way we know this is because none of us would be here without it. But even better, we know that sex is good, because it was created by God. God designed sex to be a wonderful blessing to us. And it is a wonderful blessing when practiced according to God’s plan for marriage.
*On the other hand, sex will bring great pain, if we don’t follow God’s plan for it. The introduction to Psalm 51 says, “A Psalm of David, when Nathan the prophet went to him, after he had gone in to Bathsheba.” Nathan the prophet confronted David about the terrible sin of adultery he committed with Bathsheba, -- a sin that led to the murder of Bathsheba’s husband, and the death of the baby conceived through David’s adultery.
*David’s song of confession is in Psalm 51. Let’s read vs. 1-15:
1. Have mercy upon me, O God, According to Your lovingkindness; According to the multitude of Your tender mercies, Blot out my transgressions.
2. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, And cleanse me from my sin.
3. For I acknowledge my transgressions, And my sin is ever before me.
4. Against You, You only, have I sinned, And done this evil in Your sight That You may be found just when You speak, And blameless when You judge.
5. Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, And in sin my mother conceived me.
6. Behold, You desire truth in the inward parts, And in the hidden part You will make me to know wisdom.
7. Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
8. Make me to hear joy and gladness, That the bones which You have broken may rejoice.
9. Hide Your face from my sins, And blot out all my iniquities.
10. Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11. Do not cast me away from Your presence, And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.
12. Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, And uphold me with Your generous Spirit.
13. Then I will teach transgressors Your ways, And sinners shall be converted to You.
14. Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, The God of my salvation, And my tongue shall sing aloud of Your righteousness.
15. O Lord, open my lips, And my mouth shall show forth Your praise.
*Tonight is a special night as some of our young people are publicly committing themselves to a life of purity. This is a good and Godly thing for them to do, -- far too rare in our society today.
*We honor you for the commitment you are making tonight. But the truth is that you are going to need help to keep that commitment. We all need help living up to God’s high standards for our lives, and we can find great help right here in the Word of God. Tonight we will look at 5 principles that will help all of us to live up to God’s high standards for our lives.
1. First: Be wise about the challenge.
*Keeping your commitment is not an easy thing. This is partly true because of the world we live in today. God’s ways of purity have been stubbornly rejected by all of our media, and much of our society today. We live in a world where “Sex in the City” reruns are on TV as much as “The Andy Griffith Show” used to be. We live in a world where there are 5 or 10 porn channels on TV, and literally millions of sites on the web. We live in a world where McDonalds has become a member of the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, because company leaders want to aggressively promote homosexual business ventures. McDonald’s CEO Jim Skinner wrote on their website that this was part of their company “being a socially responsible organization.” (1)
*That’s the world we live in -- but keeping a commitment to purity can also be hard because of our weakness. If a man like King David -- one of the greatest heroes of our faith -- giant killer -- a man after God’s own heart -- writer of the 23rd Psalm and many more. If a man like that can fall so far, -- then we have to face up to our own weaknesses.
2. We must be wise about the challenge. -- And be warned about the dangers.
*We must be warned about the dangers of sin. David went through incredible pain and hardship because of his sin. Sin always costs more than we ever want to pay -- even though the costs may be hidden at first. David Lansdown gave a great explanation of the effects of sin we can see in this Psalm. (2)