Summary: Living the Life of Christ
Scripture: Proverbs 7
Staying Moral in an Immoral Age
Introduction: We live in a sex-saturated society. TV, movies, videos, novels, magazines, billboards, and computer screens bring immorality into our homes and make it appear as the norm. How can God’s people remain pure? How can you develop a personal morality strong enough to withstand the seduction of the current age? Today, I’d like to tell you about a man who once saw sex in the city. This man lived long ago, but just like us, he had a window on the world. His window wasn’t a television set, but a real window in a real city. This story is found in Proverbs 7. This is a longer passage than I usually read on a Sunday morning, but I think we need to hear the entire chapter.
Scripture Reading: Proverbs 7
Introduction: Sex outside of marriage is a violation of the character and the Laws of God. We don’t know if this young man was engaging in premarital or extramarital sex, but Ephesians 5 says, "Among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality" (NIV). Sex itself isn’t bad; it’s a gift of God. But premarital sex, extramarital sex, post-marital sex, and homosexual behavior are perversions of God’s plan. The entertainment industry is on a vast evangelistic mission to convince us otherwise, but the devil can never alter the character or standards of a holy God. So, as the writer of Proverbs 7 stood in his window and peered through the lattice, he witnessed a scene with three storylines.
1. Seduction. This young man was seduced, presented with temptation so attractive he seemed unable to resist it. Verse 7 calls him a youth, so we would suppose he was full of hormonal energy. Verse 13 says that a woman met him, embraced him, and passionately kissed him. Having ignited this masculine energy, she said, "Let’s go to my place." With persuasive words, she seduced him. The devil is in the same business today. He plies his trade by plastering our television shows, movies, and magazines with stimulating sexual images. He does it with men and women who dress immodestly. He does it by getting us involved with a platonic friendship at work. And he does it with the Internet.
2. Destruction. The youth paid a high price for his evening of pleasure (vv.22ff.). We don’t know what happened to him. Perhaps he caught a sexually transmitted disease. Perhaps the husband found out and it led to a fight. More likely, the writer was saying that this young man’s immorality took him down a road that led him away from God, from holiness, and from eternal life. See Galatians 6:7, 8.
3. Instruction. The whole purpose of Proverbs 7 is to instruct, warn, and help us avoid the tragic mistake this youth made. A careful reading of the chapter gives three weapons for staying moral in an immoral age.
A. Store Up God’s Commandments Within You (vv. 15). See Psalm119:11 and Matthew 4:111. When we fill our minds with the Word, we have ammunition to fend off the devil’s attacks.
B. Whenever Possible, Avoid the Temptation. Verse 6 says the youth lacked judgment. How do we know? Because of verse 8: "Passing along the street near her corner; and he took the path to her house." He wasn’t just an innocent victim. He was looking to be seduced. He was walking in that direction. What change do you need to make in your lifestyle that will lessen temptation? How can you walk down another street, away from the seducer’s neighborhood?