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, author, national speaker, and purity coach for The Pure Man Ministry and this is Episode #98. In this episode we are going to begin a discussion about the choices we make and the consequences that follow. So, let’s dive right in!
As we begin this week’s episode, let’s take a moment here and begin with prayer.
“Father, we come before you right now and humbly acknowledge the fact that you and you alone are God. Help us as we endeavor to remove King Me from the throne of our heart, and choose instead to allow you to be the Lord and Leader of every aspect of our life. So, we ask You to “Make (us) to know your ways, O LORD; teach (us) your paths. Lead (us) in your truth and teach (us), for you are the God of (our) salvation; for you (we) wait all the day long.” (Psalm 25:4-5) Please “show (us) now your ways, that (we) may know you” (Exodus 33:13b), and would you please “Open (our) eyes, that (we) may behold wondrous things out of your law.” (Psalm 119:18) In Jesus precious name, Amen.”
Acts 3:19 says, “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.” (NIV’84)
I am going to assume that you would appreciate some “times of refreshing from the Lord.” Am I right? I am also assuming that for most of you listening, those “times of refreshing” include that elusive sexual purity you’ve been longing for. Might I also be safe in assuming that you struggle sometimes believing that those “times of refreshing” are even achievable let alone lasting?
I assure you; God is not a liar. God has promised that when you repent and turn to Him, He will give you times of refreshing (Acts 3:19). He will give you victory. That’s the Truth. That’s a Biblical fact. And yet, right now you may find what I’m saying hard to believe. I promise you my friend, you can be completely free from the powerful, relentless grip of lust, porn, masturbation, and any other form of sexual temptation. You don’t have to give in anymore! You have God’s authoritative word on that.
James 4:7 reveals Heaven’s recipe for guaranteed victory. “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”
Notice that only one thing is required here for lasting victory: submit to God. You and I must choose daily to place self under God’s absolute authority in every aspect of our life (including our sexual desires and passions). Yield your will completely to His. Surrender your desires over in favor of His. Submit yourself daily to the Lordship and Leadership of God in your life, and the irrefutable promise in Scripture is that Satan must flee from you.
Now, I want you to notice the wording of James 4:7. You see, Scripture doesn’t tell you to submit to God AND resist the devil – as if they are two separate things. It’s one fluid motion. As you choose to submit to God, as you choose to yield your will to the Lordship and Leadership of God in your life – the very act of submission includes that of resisting the devil. It’s choosing daily to say yes to the Holy Spirit, which in turn is automatically saying no to the lies Satan is whispering into your heart. Cling to the Truth because it is the Truth that will set you free (John 8:32).
The order of things here in James 4:7 is critical to your purity. You must daily choose to submit to God before you can ever effectively resist the devil. If you attempt to reverse the order, if you try to resist the Devil before you submit to God, you will utterly and painfully fail. The enemy will not flee. He’s not afraid of you (Acts 19:15). However, when you submit yourself to God, when you dethrone King Me and allow God to be the absolute authority in your life, Satan has to turn tail and run – guaranteed!
So, to live in victory, to live in purity, we must choose daily to submit to God. We need to make the willful choice to walk in obedience to Him. We must put ourselves under His full and complete authority in our lives–all the time, no matter what. Jesus said (Luke 9:23) “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.”
Think about a soldier who is under the leadership of his superior officer. He acknowledges the authority that has been placed over him and trusts in the fact that his commanding officer knows more than he does. It’s trusting the Commander-in-Chief to lead and choosing to obey his commands and follow his leadership whether you understand and agree with it or not. That is submitting to authority. We must choose daily to do the same with God. Deny yourself – it must never be about what I want, I need, I desire, I deserve, I have to have, or I can’t live without. Choose instead to daily die to the selfish, sinful desires of King Me and surrender instead to the guidance, headship, and governance of the highest authority – God Himself.
Here’s the struggle: In our own sinful, independent spirit, we think we know better. In fact, we usually think we know best. We are a generation of people that are constantly trying to claim our “rights.” As one food chain used to advertise – you should always “have it YOUR way!” This mindset has permeated every aspect of life; to the point where even the concept of submission to a higher authority will tend to rub us the wrong way. When your focus is on King Me, you are easily swept away with the world’s philosophy of “my rights” and “my way” no matter the cost.
Submitting yourself under the Lordship and leadership of God in every aspect of your life is easier said than done. Correct? That’s due, in large part, because submitting yourself to God requires both humility and repentance. Something most of us struggle with in spades. Let’s break that down and talk about both. First, humility.
“Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.” (James 4:10)
Humility in Scripture refers to being fully aware of and in agreement with the fact that you are not God. That flies in the face of everything King Me wants you to believe. But the bottom line is – you are not God, and neither am I. There is only One True God, and we are not it. We are a created being fully dependent upon our Creator for all things. We are in all ways subservient to the One True God. We owe Him everything, and he owes us absolutely nothing.
Pride (the opposite of humility) says, “I am King. I am ‘god.’ Therefore, I want. I need. I deserve. I desire. I must have. I cannot live without.” The primary focus is always upon the sinful, selfish desires of self. I like to put it this way: King Me always has an eye for the “I.” King Me makes sure that the “I” gets everything that the “I” wants. I must be happy, happy, happy no matter the cost. Can you see who is sitting on the throne when pride reigns? (here’s a hint: it’s not God)
On the other hand, humility says “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me.” (Galatians 2:20a) In other words, King Me is powerless. King Me no longer reigns. King Me has no authority in my life. Humility understands that “those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.” (Galatians 5:24) In humility King Me surrenders completely, totally, and unreservedly to the King of all Kings.
(1 Peter 5:5-6) “Clothe yourselves, all of you with humility ... for God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you.”
To be free from the grip of sexual impurity; to be victorious over your sinful habits, you must daily choose to humble yourself by removing King Me from the throne of your heart. You must make that choice. I cannot make it for you, and you cannot make it for me. You must choose to step off, step back and allow the King of Kings to assume absolute Lordship and unconditional leadership of your life – all your life, all the time.
(Proverbs 22:4) “The reward for humility and fear of the LORD is riches and honor and life.”
Let God give you the victory you desire. Let your Creator richly bless you. Let Him raise you up to a position of dignity and honor if and when He so chooses. “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord. For it is not the one who commends himself who is approved, but the one whom the Lord commends.” (2 Corinthians 10:17-18)
It’s not about you fighting the three-headed dragon and emerging at the end of the battle wondrously victorious. It’s not about you being able to shout out “I fought the beast and the beast lost!” It’s all about God getting the praise and the glory for giving you “everything you need” (2 Peter 1:3) to be “more than a conqueror” (Romans 8:37) in this battle for purity. It’s about the fact that only “God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:19) That requires humility on your part. Daily choose to drop to your knees before God and yield your heart and your soul to Him.
(James 4:6-7) “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”
(Proverbs 18:12) “Before destruction a man’s heart is haughty, but humility comes before honor.”
(Proverbs 11:2) “When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom.”
(Proverbs 29:23) “One’s pride will bring him low, but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor.”
Consider this next statement carefully: There can be no victory where there is no surrender. Let me repeat that: there can be no victory where there is no surrender. You will not experience victory over the beast of sexual temptation until you fully surrender to the Beast Master (God). Don’t be deceived into believing you can beat sexual temptation on your own. You cannot. Your past attempts and failures prove that point. As we just read, James 4:7 commands you to “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” You don’t have to give in to your sexual temptations anymore.
Submitting yourself to God requires both humility and repentance. We’ve talked about humility, now let’s talk about repentance. Repentance refers to having a change in your thinking. You have been accustomed to thinking about pleasing King Me. Up to this point you have been trying to defeat the beast. You have been trying to quit. You need to stop trying and start turning. You need to do an about-face and chose to only think about glorifying God instead of satisfying self. You have repeatedly failed yourself, He will not.
In 2 Chronicles 7:14 God says, “If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”
Can you see both humility and repentance here? Do you see the promise that God gives you? Submit yourself to Him. Humble yourself before Him. Resist the devil. Turn from your wicked ways. Then God will hear, God will forgive, God will heal! There can be no victory where there is no surrender.
Oh, my friend – Please listen to me! Only God can give you what you are seeking. Only God will give you what you are needing! Only God truly satisfies you. You cannot do this without Him!“The LORD your God is gracious and merciful and will not turn away his face from you, if you return to him.” (2 Chronicles 30:9b)
“Rend your hearts and not your garments. Return to the LORD your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.” (Joel 2:13)
Let me once again remind you of what James 4:7 says: “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” Are you doing that? Are you choosing daily to submit to God? Are you choosing to plant your feet firmly on the solid rock of Christ and set yourself against the devil? Resist his temptations. Refuse to give him any ground to stand on. When he pushes – push back harder. When he feeds you lies – shove God’s truth down his throat.
“Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith.” (1 Peter 5:8-9a NIV’84)
In Ephesians 4:27 we are commanded to “give NO opportunity to the Devil.” Don’t miss that my friend. NO OPPORTUNITY! Submit yourself to God – resist the enemy. We are to “put on the whole armor of God that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil.” (Ephesians 6:11)
Please understand that God is giving you yet another powerful promise here. Willingly place yourself under His authority, allow Him to be Lord and leader over all your life (including your sexuality) – then, upon His perfect and absolute authority alone you can resist the devil. Through God’s power alone the devil must flee from you. Did you catch that? The enemy of your soul HAS TO GO!
No matter how long you’ve been fighting (or giving in to) the beast, no matter how defeated you may feel right now, you can live in victory and freedom. Your sin can be wiped out and you can experience “times of refreshing!”
“Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.” (Proverbs 28:13)
The question here is not whether you want to be in this war. You’re already in it. Either you are daily defeated by the devil and thus you are following the whims and wishes of the enemy like cattle being let to the slaughter, or you are daily choosing to “resist him, firm in your faith!” (1 Peter 5:9)
There is no neutral zone You either triumph “by the blood of the Lamb and the word of (your) testimony” (Revelation 12:11 addition mine), or you will be enslaved by Satan. So, let me encourage you with two standing orders from our Commander-in-Chief:
“Share in suffering as a good soldier of Christ Jesus.” (2 Timothy 2:3)
“Wage the good warfare.” (1 Timothy 1:18)
OK, we’re going to hit the pause button here until next week’s episode as we look forward to continuing this study. 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 here is my book entitled “The Pure Man’s Devotional Guide: A Biblical Toolbox for Purity” available on Amazon.com. You see, building a life of purity doesn’t happen overnight, and like any building project it’s best done when you use the right tools for the task.
“The Pure Man’s Devotional Guide” is a toolbox, equipping you with everything you need to build a lasting life of biblical purity. “The Pure Man’s Devotional Guide” is a 5-week, seven day per week devotional written to help you see how the enemy attacks and, more importantly, how you can skillfully handle the Word of God as you learn to submit yourself to God, resisting the Devil, watching the enemy of your soul flee from you. (James 4:7)
With over 600 verses of Scripture within its pages, “The Pure Man’s Devotional Guide” is a Biblical resource to help you demolish the arguments that plague you, taking captive your sinful, sensual, selfish King-Me centered thoughts, not only making them obedient to Christ but enabling you to walk in freedom and live in victory.
So go to our website, ThePurityCoach.com, and check out our resources page, or go directly to Amazon.com and purchase your copy of “The Pure Man’s Devotional Guide: A Biblical Toolbox for Purity” today.
And if you have not yet subscribed to this podcast, let me encourage you to do so today so you won’t miss any of our upcoming episodes!
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.