The Point of Purity Podcast


Episode #34 - Wise up, Wise Guy

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leading to lasting victory over sexual addiction through a growing, vibrant, powerful relationship with Christ.




Episode #34 "Wise Up, Wise Guy"



Transcript

To win our battle against sexual impurity, we must grasp the vital necessity of growing in our relationship with God. If you want to know how to defeat the dragon of sexual impurity, read God’s Word. If you want to live a life that honors and glorifies God, fill your mind with Scripture. As you apply God’s truth to your life, as you walk in obedience to God’s standards, you will be wise—you will be free!

Welcome to today’s episode of 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, Author, National Speaker, and Purity Coach for The Pure Man Ministry. C’mon in, grab your Bible, and join us as we “Wise Up – Wise Guy!”

(01:00) Wise Up Wise Guy

Psalm 19:7 says, “the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple.”

Typically, a “testimony” is considered to be a statement someone gives to tell others about a specific event or experience they had. We often hear people give their testimony in church, sharing how they came to know Christ as their Savior and all that He has done in their life.

Here in our text, the “testimony of the LORD” simply refers to what God has to say about Himself. It is a phrase David uses to speak of Scripture, for the Bible is where we learn about God. So, in essence, David is saying that God’s Word is sure—it’s reliable, it is 100% trustworthy. When God says something, you can always take it to the bank. You see, (Psalm 111:7-8) “All his precepts are trustworthy, they are established forever and ever, to be performed with faithfulness and uprightness.”

I challenge you here to take a close, hard look at your life. Can you honestly say (as David did in Psalm 119:24) that God’s “testimonies are (my) delight; they are (my) counselors”? Do you delight in God’s Word “as much as in all riches” (Psa. 119:14)? Is the Bible your “heritage forever … the joy of (your) heart” (Psa. 119:111)? It should be. Why? Only through Scripture are we able to grow in Christ and be victorious over the 3-headed dragon of lust, porn and masturbation.

To win our battle against sexual impurity, we must grasp the vital necessity of growing in our relationship with God. In fact, let’s take the word “grow” and make it into an acrostic. Each letter of the word will give us an important aspect of growing in Christ. To grow in Christ, you must daily:

  • Give Him your heart and mind. In Proverbs 23:26 God says, “O my son, give me your heart. May your eyes take delight in following my ways.” It is vital for your spiritual growth that you daily follow the command of Proverbs 4:23 which says, “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Proverbs 23:19 commands you to “keep your heart on the right course.” Why? Because, as Proverbs 28:26 says, “One who trusts in his own heart is a fool.” This is why in Matthew 22:37 Jesus commands you to “love the Lord your God with all your heart, all our soul, and all your mind.” So, let me repeat this point: To grow in Christ you must (G) daily Give Him your heart and mind.

Secondly, to grow in Christ you must also daily ...

  • Read your Bible. Jesus reminds us that “People don’t live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.” Matthew 4:4. And in 2 Timothy 3:16-17 the Apostle Paul writes, “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.”

OK, so, to grow in Christ you must (G) daily Give Him your heart and mind. You must also (R) daily Read your Bible – and, you must (O) ...

  • Obey what God reveals to you from His Word. In John 14:15 Jesus says, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” In other words, the best way to show God ... and others ... that you love Him is to not just read His Word but obey His commands. Put into practice what God is teaching you, daily live out what He is revealing to you. In John 14:23 Jesus goes on to say, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching.” In 1 John 2:4-5 we read, “If someone claims, ‘I know God,’ but doesn’t obey God’s commandments, that person is a liar and is not living in the truth. But those who obey God’s word truly show how completely they love him.” And then in 1 John 5:3 we also read, “Loving God means keeping his commandments, and his commandments are not burdensome.”

OK, so, to grow in Christ you must (G) daily Give Him your heart and mind. You must also (R) daily Read your Bible. You must (O) faithfully Obey what God reveals to you from His Word. And finally, you must then (W) ...

  • Work out your faith. Paul instructs us in Philippians 2:12 to “continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling.” Another way to put that is like this: Work hard to let your life continuously demonstrate to the world around you the results of your salvation. Obey God with deep reverence and fear.

    Galatians 6:7-9 gives us the solemn warning to not “be misled – you cannot mock the justice of God. You will always harvest what you plant. Those who live only to satisfy their own flesh will harvest decay and death from that flesh. But those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit. So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up” (Galatians 6:7-9).

Let me remind you of our point here. To grow in Christ, you must not only daily Give God your heart and mind, Read your Bible every day, Obey what God teaches you from His word, you must also Work out your faith. Live it out every moment of every day of your life. G-R-O-W, grow.

Our base text for this podcast, Psalm 19:7, says that God’s Word is not only trustworthy, but it will make you wise. Great! So, what is this wisdom and how do I get it? Simply put, wisdom is the skillful use of knowledge. In other words, when you read God’s Word, you gain knowledge—you learn who God is and what He expects of you. When you invest your time every day in the study and memorization of Scripture, and then throughout the day meditate on what the Holy Spirit is revealing to you, God promises that you will become wise. You will understand how to apply what you have learned to your own life. You will begin to actually live a life that glorifies God.

In Psalm 119:130 David reminds us that “The unfolding of (God’s) words gives light; it imparts understanding to the simple.” In Psalm 119:9, 11 we see that when you memorize Scripture, and when you hide God’s Word in your heart, it becomes a great deterrent to sin. Why? It is God’s Word that “makes (you) wiser than (your) enemies, for it is ever with (you).” As you dig into Scripture, you will “have more understanding than all (your) teachers, for (God’s) testimonies are (your) meditation” (Psalm 119:98-100).

I cannot overemphasize the importance and the necessity of investing your time daily to be in God’s Word. If you want to know how to defeat the beast of temptation in your life, read God’s Word. If you want to live a life that honors and glorifies God, fill your mind with the testimony of the Lord that is trustworthy, found only in God’s Word. As you apply the truth of Scripture to your life, as you walk in obedience to God’s standards, you will be wise—you will be free!

(11:13) Follow the Instructions

Psalm 19:8 goes on to say, “The precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart …”

Did you know that God has a code of conduct for His children, a certain behavior He expects from each and every of us? David called them “precepts.” Precepts are the Scriptural guidelines that provide us the principles of life.

A great example of a precept from God is found in 1 Corinthians 10:31, which says, “Whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” Another one is this: “Whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him” (Colossians 3:17). Here is another one to consider: “Among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality” (Ephesians 5:3).

Do you understand why God gave us His precepts? God’s code of conduct gives you the tools you need to maintain a close relationship with Him. They reveal God’s boundaries that give you an amazing freedom in serving Him. Please, my friend, don’t look at Scripture as a set of rules handed to you by a God who is distant, detached, and doesn’t care about you. Don’t look at God as someone who is sitting up in Heaven just waiting for you to screw up so He can zap you.

God isn’t out to make your life miserable; He has amazing plans for you, plans to bless you beyond your wildest imaginations (Jeremiah 29:11). I know that when you are in the thick of the battle against sinful desires it sure doesn’t seem that way. That is the time we must desperately cling to God’s promises and trust Him completely. That is the time we must fight to be in God’s Word!

To know God’s blessing and to experience victory over sinful behavior in your life, God has given you a set of guidelines. These precepts are trustworthy—in other words, they actually work! (Psalm 111:7). They show you how to live in a way that is not only free from impurity but will ultimately glorify Him. He wants you to keep these precepts diligently (Psalm 119:4). Why? When you choose daily to follow them no matter what, you will be free. God’s precepts are right, my friend, they will never lead you wrong. In Psalm 119:128 David writes, “Each of your commandments is right. That is why I hate every false way.”

We should strive to be like King David who deeply desired to know God’s code of conduct. In Psalm 119:40 he cries out, “How I Iong for your precepts!” In fact, David didn’t just long for God’s precepts, He loved them (Psalm 119:159) and he daily meditated on them, always fixing his eyes on God’s ways (Psalm 119:15). This is why he was described (Acts 13:22) as a man after God’s own heart. In Psalm 119:63 we see that he kept company only with others who were seeking God’s precepts as well. Oh, my friend, what are your eyes fixed on? With whom do you associate and keep company? Who do you spend your time with?

When we seek out God’s precepts and walk in them, we are walking in freedom. Psalm 119:45 says, “I will walk about in freedom, for I have devoted myself to your commandments.” When we seek out God’s precepts and walk in them, we will know God’s richest blessings on our life (Psalm 119:56). Oh, that doesn’t mean we will be free from temptation, and it doesn’t mean we won’t have to fight the battle anymore. However, it does mean that God is always there as our refuge, our fortress, and our solid rock who will save us from destruction (Psalm 119:94).

Listen one more time to David as he talks about God’s wonderful precepts:

“Through your precepts I get understanding; therefore I hate every false way.” (Psalm 119:104) And in Psalm 119:128 he says, “I consider all your precepts to be right; I hate every false way.”

(19:39) Obedience is the Very Best Way

Our base text in Psalm 19:8 goes on to say, “the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes.”

When you hear the word “commandment,” what comes to mind? Let’s consider it in military terms. “Command” is the authority a person in the military lawfully exercises over subordinates by virtue of his or her rank and position. The purpose of that command is to influence others to accomplish the mission by providing purpose, direction, and motivation.

Although the subordinate may not understand or agree with the command, he or she is to follow those orders to the letter, trusting that their commander not only sees a bigger picture (the ultimate mission) but also has a plan and a purpose.

God is our Commander-in-Chief, and we will stand before Him someday to answer for our actions—did we follow His orders or not? 2 Corinthians 5:10 says, “We must all stand before Christ to be judged. We will each receive whatever we deserve for the good or evil we have done in this earthly body.” 1 Samuel 2:3 warns, “Stop acting so proud and haughty! Don’t speak with such arrogance! For the Lord is a God who knows what you have done; he will judge your actions.” And Ecclesiastes 12:14 also warns us that “God will judge us for everything we do, including every secret thing, whether good or bad.” “So then,” Paul reminds us in Romans 14:12, “each of us will give an account of himself to God.”

Psalm 19:8 says, “the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes.” The word David uses for “commandment” here literally means “words of wisdom.” God is not blindly moving pawns around on a chessboard just to get His jollies. He has a plan and a purpose for your life—a mission for you. In great wisdom He instructs you in the task He has called you to. Job asked the question, “Where shall wisdom be found? And where is the place of understanding” (Job 28:12)? The answer is, “With God are wisdom and might; he has counsel and understanding” (Job 12:13). You see, God’s “wisdom is profound, His power is vast” (Job 9:4). We can trust that God knows exactly what He’s doing – and what He is doing is exactly what is right!

In earlier years, before technology enhanced the ability of armies to communicate with each other, a courier would be dispatched with written orders. Once received, the written command was to be completed to the letter. If the orders were not followed, if the senior officer on the field disregarded the command in favor of his own plan, he might win the skirmish, but the battle could be in jeopardy.

In a sense, that’s what our Bible is: written orders from our Commander-in-Chief, God Himself. These commands are not to be taken lightly; they are to be followed to the letter. They’re not up for our own personal interpretation, they are words of wisdom from the One who sees the whole battlefield and understands the movements of the enemy.

In our battle against sexual impurity, our Commander has given us marching orders. He has told us how to fight. James 4:7 commands, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” He has also told us how to stand in the fight. “Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous. Be strong.” (1 Corinthians 16:13) Galatians 5:1 commands us to “stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.” And we are even told what weapon to use against the enemy. Ephesians 6:17 says we are to “take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”

Ours is not to question God’s command or doubt His wisdom. Ours is not to try to figure out how on earth that method or weapon is going to work when everything else we tried has utterly failed. The responsibility that falls upon us as soldiers is simply this: obey.

Psalm 19:8 says God’s commands are pure. They are clean, without error, without deceit, and without an ulterior motive. Follow them to the letter and one day you will see the bigger picture as your spiritual eyes begin to realize what God is doing in your life.

I can remember a song my kids used to sing in Sunday school. It said, “Obedience is the very best way to show that you believe. Doing exactly what the Lord commands, doing it happily. Action is the key, do it immediately, joy you will receive. Obedience is the very best way to show that you believe!”

(26:28) Do You See What I See?

Psalm 19:8 goes on to say, “the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes.”

Do you want to know how to effectively say “No!” to sexual temptation? I know, silly question. If you didn’t, you wouldn’t be listening to these podcasts. And yet, I still ask: Do you desire to stop giving in to lust and the pull of porn? Do you long for the time when you never have to lie to cover up your sin? God can show you how! Solomon said, “The LORD gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.” (Proverbs 2:6)

It begins by daily opening your Bible and letting the truth and wisdom of God’s Word penetrate your heart and mind. As it does, your eyes will be opened and you will see what you need to do, where you need to go, and how to accomplish it. One of the primary ministries of the Holy Spirit in your life is to guide you into all of God’s Truth (John 16:13). Open your Bible my friend and let Him do just that.

God promises (Proverbs 4:11) that as you study Scripture “(He guides) you in the way of wisdom and (leads) you along straight paths.” David declares in Psalm 19:8 that God’s words of wisdom are radiant; they enlighten your eyes. In other words, God’s wisdom gives light to help you see the way to victory; it illuminates your path.

Those words of wisdom are found in Scripture. So, 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 for (your) path.” (Psalm 119:105) They are a massive spotlight pouring pure white light on your life saying, “This is the way to victory, walk in it!”

Recently I was sitting at my computer when a nasty mosquito landed on my forehead and began to feast. I quickly slapped my hand to my forehead and nailed the little bugger. Pulling my hand away I saw not only the smudge of the bug, but blood. So, with a sigh, I went into the bathroom to deal with it. Wouldn’t you know, when I looked in the mirror, I couldn’t see anything. I had to turn the light on. The brightness of the light allowed me to see the problem and deal with it.

When my mind is focused on self—when the goal of my life is to please King Me—every decision I make, every word I speak, everything I do will be focused on that singular goal: self-satisfaction. Truth be told, without Christ I’m working in the dark and so I can’t see what needs to be done to deal with my sin issues. In fact, I won’t see my sin – period. It will seem like I’m making good decisions at the time, but that way is always the wrong way (Proverbs 14:12).

The only way to know where God wants you to be, and what God wants you to do is to dig into Scripture daily. Psalm 12:6 says, “The words of the Lord are pure words, like silver refined in a furnace on the ground, purified seven times.” Proverbs 30:5 reminds us that “Every word of God proves true.” This means that “the unfolding of (God’s) words gives light; it imparts understanding to the simple” (Psalm 119:130)

(31:35) Are All Desires Bad?

Ok, let’s take one more look at Psalm 19 before we close today’s episode. Psalm 19:10-11 says of Scripture, “More to be desired are they than gold, even much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and drippings of the honeycomb. Moreover, by them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward.”

One of the greatest struggles we face in the war against sexual impurity in our lives is on the battlefield of misplaced desires. The lie of Satan is that “I need this” and “I deserve that.” We get caught up in believing that our sinful sexual desires are somehow justified because our particular situation is “unique.” We are convinced that “feeling good” will help us cope.

Let me read, one more time, Psalm 19:10-11. Listen closely. “More to be desired are they than gold, even much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and drippings of the honeycomb. Moreover, by them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward.”

We learned this week that the Scriptures are perfect, sure, right, pure, clean, and true. When you saturate your mind and fill your heart with God’s Word it revives your soul, makes you wise, rejoices your heart, and enlightens your eyes. Why on earth, or anywhere else for that matter, would you desire anything more than you would desire a closer walk with God through your study of His Word?

Unfortunately, the answer to that question is all too true for the majority of us. You see, we have learned to focus our thoughts and feelings on pleasing self instead of pleasing God. We have developed the nasty habit of making our self-pleasure a higher priority than honoring and glorifying our Heavenly Father. We are on a self-appointed quest to find personal satisfaction instead of being on a divinely-ordained mission to honor our Creator, Savior, and Friend. As a result, we don’t see God (or His Word) as someone (or something) that will “meet my needs” and “provide me with pleasure.” This, in turn, creates in me a wrong desire. That desire leads me down a bad path where I make sinful choices.

In Psalm 19:10 David uses the word “desire” to refer to taking great pleasure in something—namely, God’s Word. Do you take great pleasure in God’s Word? Can you say as David did, “Oh how I love your law! It is my meditation all the day” (Psalm 119:97)? David began the book of Psalms by saying that the man who knows God’s blessing on his life is the man whose “delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night” (Psalm 1:2).

More to be desired is God’s law, God’s truth, and God’s standards of righteousness and holiness – far more than any lustful thought or sexual fantasy or self-pleasuring experience. I know that to many people this sounds boring, dull, unfulfilling, and mind-numbingly pointless. After all, how can I possibly find reading my Bible to be more pleasurable than lust, porn, fantasies, masturbation, and other sexual impurities?

The reason we battle with this, the reason we struggle with comprehending something that seems so incomprehensible, is because we don’t really know God. We haven’t invested the time yet in digging for the hidden treasures He has buried for us within His Word. We are too focused on the here and now - on the tangible things we can touch, see, and feel in the moment.

This is one of the primary reasons for this podcast: to encourage you to dive into Scripture daily and to get you to meditate on the Word of God, seeking the God of the Word. I assure you, as a man who spent 30 years of his life pursuing sexual pleasure, God’s Word truly is sweeter—more pleasant—than any sexual fantasy or extra-marital affair.

God’s Word is powerful (Hebrews 4:12) if you but let it work in your heart. As Psalm 19 says, not only is it worth more than gold and sweet to the taste, but also by it we are warned. As we walk in obedience to it, the end result is great gain—a deep relationship with the Almighty God who loves you more than you will ever know.

If you would like to learn more about today’s study, or if you’re interested in learning more about our ministry, be sure to visit our website to see the multitude of resources we’ve made available to you – you can find our website at ThePurityCoach.com.

One of those resources I would like to highlight for you today is my book entitled “The Pure Man’s Devotional Guide: A Biblical Toolbox for Purity.” You see, building a life of purity doesn’t happen overnight, and like any building project – it will be best when you use the right tools for the task.

This book, “The Pure Man’s Devotional Guide: A Biblical Toolbox for Purity.” is a toolbox filled with nearly 700 passages of Scripture all for the purpose of equipping you with the proper tools to build a lasting life of Biblical purity.

This 5-week devotional guide will help you see how the enemy attacks and, more importantly, how to skillfully handle the Word of God as you learn to fight back. So I encourage you to visit the resource section of our website, or go directly to Amazon.com and search either for “The Pure Man’s Devotional Guide” or just look up my name, Steve Etner, and purchase your copy today.

(37:24) Closing Soundtrack

Thank you so much for listening to today’s podcast. If this has ministered to you, if this has blessed you, challenged you, or encouraged you I ask you to do two things. First of all – would you please let your friends know about The Point of Purity Podcast. Help us help men and women across the globe win their war for sexual purity and live in freedom.

Then second, and this is so important, please take a few seconds right now to go over to your favorite Podcast Player and rate our program and this episode – why? because every time you do, your rating lets them know this podcast is important, it is valuable, and your ratings helps us get this program and this ministry into the ears and hearts of people just like you. So, until next time this is Author, Speaker, and Purity Coach Steve Etner reminding you that if you are going to glorify God in your everyday living, He must first be glorified in your every moment thinking.

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