Helping men and women find hope, help, healing, restoration and redemption
leading to lasting victory over sexual addiction through a growing, vibrant, powerful relationship with Christ.
Would you like to know how to escape the temptation trap and effectively say “No!” to Lust, Porn and Masturbation? Do you desire to avoid the snare altogether and stop giving in to the beast? Would you like to know how to live completely and unreservedly for God? Do you long for the time when you never have to lie to cover up your sin? Then you’ve come to the right place my friend.
Welcome to The Point of Purity Podcast. A weekly study filled to the brim with the all the tools from Scripture you will ever need to build a lasting life of Biblical purity. I’m your host Steve Etner, and today we are going to dig into Psalm 25:15 and discover how to not just be pure, but live pure – all day, every day.
So let’s dive in to Episode #19 entitled “The ‘Eyes’ Have It – Guarding your mind by guarding your eyes.”
Proverbs 2:6 says, “The LORD gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding”
To live a life of sexual purity, to powerfully stand firm in the faith and resist the enemy (James 4:7), to effectively say “No” to lust, porn, and masturbation, you must choose daily to open your Bible and let the truth and wisdom of God’s Word penetrate every part of your heart and mind. As it does, the Holy Spirit will guide you into all truth (see John 16:13 and 14:26) and He will open your spiritual eyes and show you wondrous things out of God’s Word (Psalm 119:18). Then you will see what you need to do, where you need to go, and how to accomplish it all for the glory of God. But for that to happen, (as Psalm 25:15 says) your eyes must always be “toward the LORD, for (only) he will pluck your feet out of the snare” of the enemy.
God promises in Proverbs 4:11 that through His Word He “guides you in the way of wisdom and leads you along straight paths”. Think about that. God’s words of wisdom are found in Scripture. Every time you invest time opening your Bible and studying God’s Word, the verses you read act as “a lamp to (your) feet and a light to (your) path” (Psalm 119:105). They are a massive spotlight pouring pure godly light on your life, saying, “This is the way to victory; walk in it.” (Isaiah 30:21) In other words, God’s Word will give you perfect vision.
So, let’s take a Look at Psalm 25:15 which says, “My eyes are ever toward the LORD, for he will pluck my feet out of the net.”
I want you to notice that David declares, “My eyes are ever toward the LORD.” Where are your eyes my friend? Yes, I know – they’re in your head. And yes, YOU know that’s not what I mean. What are you looking at? What are you watching? Where do you let your eyes wander? It is vital that you are daily, constantly and consistently careful about what you allow your eyes to see. Why? Because what you see affects what you think, and what you think becomes what you do.
Every day you are faced with choices about what you’re going to permit yourself to see. Are you going to allow yourself to see only those things that encourage you to live a godly life, or are you going to let into your mind things that persuade you to indulge in the lusts of the flesh?
If you want your life to glorify God, the Scriptures are clear that what you fill your mind and heart with make all the difference in the world. When you fill your mind with ungodly things and yet try to live a godly life, you are going to be frustratingly unstable in all your ways (see James 1:8).
Ephesians 5:15-17 warns, “Be very careful, then, how you live – not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is”
God does have a will for you in what you should see and what you shouldn’t, and you are to understand what that will is. However, you will not find anywhere a listing that says “Thou shalt look at these things and thou shalt not look at those.” Wouldn’t that be nice!
God expects us to exercise Godly wisdom and discernment – which He gives to us through His Word. The way you discover God’s will for what you should or should not see, is to daily become a student of God’s Word. As you are intimately familiar with the Author of Scripture, it will become easier for you to discern between things that are going to help you grow spiritually and those that will draw you away from God and thus weaken your faith.
Your eyes must always be “toward the LORD.” We are instructed in Philippians 4:8 that our minds are to be thoroughly occupied with things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely and admirable. Since what you see has a direct impact on what you think, then it stands to reason that the things you see should also be true, noble, right, pure, lovely and admirable – all to the glory of God.
Yes, you are living in the age of Grace, and as a Christian you have great freedom because of Christ, but keep in mind that (as Galatians 5:13 says) “You were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh”. Even in that amazing freedom you must still be very careful about what you allow your eyes to see. What you see influences what you think. What you think directly impacts what you do.
This is why Psalm 119:37 says, “Turn my eyes from looking at worthless (vile) things.”
And in Psalm 101:2-3 we read, “I will walk with integrity of heart within my house: I will not set before my eyes anything that is worthless (vile).”
When you set before your eyes a vile thing (in other words: that which is good for nothing, unprofitable, and can lead to destruction – when you allow your eyes to see those things) you are also exposing your mind to those things. When exposed enough, your mind will become accustomed to what you are seeing, and your thinking process will be altered. This in turn will modify your behavior and you have stepped into the enemy’s trap.
This is why David writes in Psalm 25:15, “My eyes are ever toward the LORD, for he will pluck my feet out of the net.” Let me repeat here that what you see influences what you think, and what you think directly impacts what you say and do. So, once again I ask: What are you choosing to look at? What are you choosing to expose your mind and heart to? What programs do you allow to be viewed on the television set in your home? What shows do you watch on your tablet or computer or smart phone? What movies do you permit to be seen?
In Psalm 101:7 David said, “no one who practices deceit shall dwell in my house; no one who utters lies shall continue before my eyes.” Okay, it’s vital that you get this point, so I am going to repeat Psalm 101:7. Listen closely. “No one who practices deceit shall dwell in my house; no one who utters lies shall continue before my eyes.”
Are you letting those who practice deceit and speak falsely to stand in your presence? Are you letting your eyes see things you shouldn’t? Are you exposing your mind to things that are harmful to it; things that subtly influence your thinking, pulling you away from a closer walk with God and a life that honors and glorifies your Creator, Savior, and Heavenly Father? I challenge you (I urge you) to seriously evaluate everything you are allowing your eyes to see (including – and even especially – that “harmless Hollywood entertainment” you are relaxing in front of. OR even the news you are flooding your mind with). Paul urges you “to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them.” (Romans 16:17)
Now I guarantee that some of you listening right now will disagree with me about this, claiming that watching TV or going to the movies is just “harmless Hollywood entertainment”, and that you can tell the difference between what’s happening on that screen and what’s real; but let me challenge you to carefully, very carefully, consider the things you are watching.
Now please don’t misunderstand me here. I’m not saying you should never watch television or see a movie or play computer games ever again. I am saying, as Paul did in 1 Thessalonians 5:21-22, that you should “test everything; hold fast to what is good. Abstain from every form of evil”.
1 John 2:15-16 warns, “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world – the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life – is not from the Father but is from the world.”
And Mark 12:30 says, “you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.” Can you do that while filling your mind with the world’s philosophy? Can you do that while watching, while looking at the things you are allowing in front of your eyes? I submit: the answer of necessity must be “No, I cannot.”
In the final analysis, anything you see that draws your love and focus away from God, from His word, and from doing His will doesn’t belong in your life.
If you do not guard your heart, by being careful what you allow yourself to see, the deception of Satan will slowly creep in and it WILL warp your thinking; it WILL pull you away from God. You need to, as Numbers 33:55 says, “drive out the inhabitants of the land,” (in other words: get rid of all forms of porn and all access points to it). Why? Because “those you allow to remain will become barbs in your eyes and thorns in your sides. They will give you trouble”. (Numbers 33:55)
Don’t forget that Jesus Himself said in Matthew 6:22-23 that “The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness”. What we see influences what we think, which in turn strongly and directly impacts what we say and do.
1 Corinthians 15:33 warns, “Do not be deceived: Bad company ruins good morals.”
Think about the typical shows you watch on TV or movies you attend. Consider the typical websites you tend to frequent. What kind of “company” are you allowing into your mind through the television and movies or via the computer?
If you allow your eyes to see that which does not glorify God, you are allowing your mind to think on things that do not glorify God, which will result in a life that does not glorify God. So, as the children’s song says, “Oh be careful little eyes what you see”! Always watch what you watch!
Let me remind you of what David writes in Psalm 25:15. “My eyes are ever toward the LORD, for he will pluck my feet out of the net.” In Proverbs 4:25 we read, “Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you.”
These verses are saying you must always pay close attention to what you see. You must constantly consider carefully the things that your eyes are observing. Remember, what you see influences what you think, and what you think directly impacts what you do.
So again, I ask the tough but important questions that demand an answer. What do you allow your eyes to see? What kind of images do you look at – both digitally, and in real life? Where do your eyes linger? Everything you see has a powerful influence upon everything you think.
Right now, you may be thinking (or shouting to your podcast player) “alright, alright, I get it already!” But I challenge you to think long and hard about this. Do you really get it? Do you really understand the impact what you see has upon what you do?
This is why God says you are to “look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you,” never to the left or the right. Now, we understand this isn’t being literal. God isn’t saying it’s wrong for your eyes to literally look left or right. So, what exactly is he saying?
Listen to what God says in Joshua 1:7. “Only be strong and very courageous, being careful to do according to all the law that Moses my servant commanded you. Do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may have good success wherever you go.”
In other words, stay faithful and focused on Scripture. Don’t allow yourself to deviate from God’s Word, God’s will and God’s way one little bit. God says in Deuteronomy 28:14, “do not turn aside from any of the commands I give you today, to the right or to the left, following other gods and serving them.”
In Joshua 23:6 God instructs Joshua to “Be very strong to keep and to do all that is written in the Book of the Law of Moses, turning aside from it neither to the right hand or to the left.” Don’t ever let the things of this world, don’t ever let the sinful desires of King Me, don’t ever let the deceptive lies of the Devil pull you, draw you, take you off the path that God wants you to walk. The path that leads to His glory.
Okay. Now let’s consider again Proverbs 4:25 in light of the verses we just discussed and our understanding of the meaning of “look straight ahead”. The command from God is “Let your eyes look straight ahead, fix your gaze directly before you.” Your focus, your attention, the things you think about, are to be always centered upon and around the word and will of God.
How are you doing with that? Be honest now. How are you doing with that? What are you going to do, starting right now, to improve?
When you daily choose to make your relationship with your Heavenly Father the center of your attention – when you choose to remove King Me from the throne of your heart and allow God to be Lord of your life – then I promise you that God and God alone will influence and direct your thinking, and that’s when your daily behavior, your attitude, your choices, your actions will be that which glorifies Him. That’s when He will, as Psalm 25:15 says, “pluck your feet out of the net.” That’s when you’ll live in victory and freedom from the 3-headed beast that’s been dominating your life.
Ok, I have a question for you. When you consistently keep God in front of you, when you choose to live daily with God ever and always on the throne of your heart ... what happens when you stay focused on that which is directly in front of you? How does that affect your choices and actions?
Consider this: Like the blinders on a horse, you will not be distracted by other things that have the potential of drawing you off the straight path. You won’t see that lure dangling enticingly off to the side, trying to pull you away from your single-hearted devotion to Christ. Here’s my point – keep your eyes straight ahead. Purposefully and intentionally stay focused on God. Don’t let the things of this world distract you, don’t let their enticements pull you off the straight path that God has laid out for you.
Deuteronomy 5:32 warns, “Be careful therefore to do as the LORD your God has commanded you. You shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left”
David writes in Psalm 141:8 “My eyes are toward you, O God, my LORD; in you I seek refuge.”
Oh, my friend, that which should be always directly in front of you is Jesus! When you are looking at porn, when you are lusting after another person, when you are fantasizing and masturbating, your eyes are definitely NOT on Christ. That is why you get drawn away and caught in the snare of the enemy – you’re not watching where you’re going! You’re not focused on what is right in front of you. It is critical that you always keep your eyes on the Lord, keep the focus of your heart on God and you will not step into the net.
I find great significance in the fact that Scripture says your eyes are to look “straight” ahead. In Psalm 27:11 the Psalmist prays “teach me your way, O LORD; lead me in a straight path”. David’s prayer here is that God would instruct him on the direction he should be going (teach me your way). And so I ask: Is that the prayer of your heart? It should be.
I also want you to notice that David is asking God to lead him, to guide him in a straight path. Do you realize that the only path God will ever lead you down is the straight one? God’s promise in Proverbs 4:11 is that “I (will) guide you in the way of wisdom and lead you along straight paths.”
This is why Proverbs 4:25 tells us that our eyes are to look straight ahead. Straight ahead is where God is! Straight ahead is the direction where God is leading. When you choose to allow God to lead you and when you keep your eyes fixed on Him, when your gaze is always looking straight ahead, here is what will happen:
Proverbs 2:6-15 says, “The LORD gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding; he stores up sound wisdom for the upright; he is a shield to those who walk in integrity, guarding the paths of justice and watching over the way of his saints. Then (when your eyes are firmly fixed on God, not King Me) you will understand righteousness and justice and equity, every good path; for (then) wisdom will come into your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul; discretion will watch over you, understanding will guard you, delivering you from the way of evil, from men of perverted speech, who forsake the paths of uprightness to walk in the ways of darkness, who rejoice in doing evil and delight in the perverseness of evil, men whose paths are crooked, and who are devious in their ways.” (Proverbs 2:6-15)
Consider carefully what Proverbs 3:5-6 says. “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” Keep your focus on God. He will make sure you are walking the straight path, the path that will glorify him – the path that will lead to His abundant blessings in your life, the path of freedom and victory.
Investing time in the word of God every day will provide you with wisdom. It will give you an understanding of what is right, just and fair. It will show you every good and straight path. It will show you the snares of the enemy and how to avoid them.
God’s word will give you discretion and understanding. It will keep you from looking to the left or to the right and thus being drawn off the straight path. Proverbs 15:21 says that “a man of understanding walks straight ahead.” Keep in mind, though, that simply reading God’s word is not enough. Although God will show you in His word the path you are to take, you must daily choose to actually walk in it.
Now, think again about Proverbs 4:25 and take note that God says you are to “fix” your gaze on that which is directly in front of you. That verb to “fix” here means you are locking something down, setting it as in cement. Specifically, you are to fix your gaze. In other words, your eyes are not to wander away from God at all - never. You are to look straight ahead and fix (lock) your gaze on God and only God. You must allow absolutely nothing to ever take your eyes off of your Heavenly Father.
Set your focus on God my friend, and never wander from it, no matter what lure may be trying to get your attention. Don’t look to the left, don’t look to the right (don’t look at porn, don’t lust, don’t masturbate) as that is not where God is, that is not the place of peace and blessing.
Hebrews 12:2 commands us to “Fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith.”
In Deuteronomy 11:18 God commands us to “Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds.”
Hebrews 3:1 commands, “Fix your thoughts on Jesus.”
2 Corinthians 4:18 declares “we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
Do you get the idea that what you see and what you think about matters to God? God’s command is clear: get your fix right. Look to Him, fix your eyes on Him. The things you see, no matter how you may define them, have a direct impact on what you think. What you think has a direct bearing on what you do. So, you must be careful about what your eyes see.
Remember that 1 Corinthians 10:31 and Colossians 3:17 command us to glorify God in everything we do. Do you understand how this applies to what you see? Are you glorifying God in everything you look at, everything you watch? Are you looking straight ahead or allowing your eyes to glance ever so slightly to the left or to the right?
Psalm 25 has a lot to say regarding our battle with sexual temptation (with any temptation for that matter). Although our study of this particular Psalm officially comes to an end, we have only scratched the surface of all the treasure God has buried here in this Psalm. I strongly encourage you to keep this text in front of you frequently. Read it again, and again. Let its truth and its message sink deep into your heart as you daily choose to lift up your soul to God and fully trust in Him!
Hey, would you take the time today to jot me a quick note? Send me an email and let me know your What is your biggest takeaway from this week’s episode? You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org – again that’s email@example.com. I look forward to hearing from you.