15 Ways to Fight Lust with the Sword of the Spirit

This was a helpful article by Kevin DeYoung at Gospel Coalition – 15 Ways to Fight Lust with the Sword of the Spirit.

The beginning of the article is downright depressing, about how many pastors are giving in to sexual immorality, especially on the internet.  I understand and know the problem very well even though I don’t struggle with pornography.  I certainly struggle with other temptations.  It’s depressing thinking about so many pastors giving in to sexual sin, and yet I also remember Romans 7, that we all do what we don’t want to do, and we are broken, sinful, and will continue to struggle with sin until Jesus comes back.  I expect all of us to struggle and fail at times.  What scares me for real is the pastors who have the habit of sexual addiction in some form, but they aren’t fighting it or repenting of it.  That is very serious.

DeYoung’s Bible passage commentaries are very good.  This is a good little devotional.

I am only troubled by #1.  It’s easy for Scripture to say to rejoice in my wife, but what if she doesn’t rejoice in sex, but rather only does it because she has to?  The marriage bed is not a delight for everyone, and for those of us that have a problem in that area, it sure makes it even more difficult to not give in to temptation.  But resist we still must.  It’s hard, but – is possible, and Jesus is coming back soon, or we die soon.  Either way the struggle is short compared to eternal life.  Also DeYoung’s 2nd passage and commentary addresses this concern.

#5 is a comfort to those of us with unwanted temptations.  Temptations are not the same as giving in to temptations.  We should not judge ourselves for the temptations, nor let others judge us for them.  And yet, we should be continually growing in our relationships with God and holiness so that the temptations get weaker and weaker and disappear more over time.  In the path of sanctification, not only our actions should change, but gradually our affections and desires should change as well.

#8 is difficult for those of us with a crossdressing temptation.  We can get led astray by looking even at a woman who is not particularly attractive just because of her clothing.  We get led astray by the internet and television which are hard to go without these days.  Even all the news lately triggers us when talking about transgender issues.  And we can’t very well ask our wives to put a lock on her closet and the laundry bin.  Temptations are there and we must do what we can to minimize them, but ultimately we need self-control because we can’t remove all the temptations.

#15 is a good reminder for hope for change.  It CAN happen.

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7 comments on “15 Ways to Fight Lust with the Sword of the Spirit

  1. Kirk says:

    Thorin – Thanks for your continued support and encouragement. I try to read everything you post as this is one of many motivations that I use to overcome my fleshly desires.

    I’ve seen firsthand in the12 Step group I attend how sexual temptation is destroying pastors.

    I read the article and it strengthens my resolve to continue the good fight. After several months without cross dressing I slipped about 2 weeks ago. Instead of wallowing in my shame and holding onto the guilt I repented immediately, thanking God for his grace. With the act so fresh in the mind I’m struggling with the desire to want to cross dress but I know each day of success helps renew my mind as I focus on my Lord and Savior Jesus.

    Your continued support has become paramount to the success of many who struggle with this insidious sin.

    Thanks for your love and compassion!
    Kirk

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  2. thorin25 says:

    Thanks Kirk for the encouragements! It really means a lot.

    We’ve all been where you are, the important thing after a failure is to repent and live victorious life again. Don’t be like a dog who goes back to his vomit. But enjoy God’s grace and live again 🙂

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  3. Destry says:

    Thorin, you have said before that we should not suppress our desires and I’ve realized I can never get over my crossdressing desires. Also I struggle with lusting after women and internet porn (even though it has been a week since I’ve watched porn but that’s no new milestone). On the topic of internet porn, I have also realized I don’t need the internet to look at porn. When I go out in public and especially at school, I see so many women wearing form fitting clothes and other immodest apparel. I wish women didn’t dress that way all the time. It may sound misogynistic but it’s true. When a man brings up that women should stop dressing immodestly he gets slammed for it. It’s so much pressure to walk in Christ and then be exposed to so much sex. Most say it’s a man’s responsibility not to look then others say men are visual creatures. Women maybe visual too but everybody knows how men are. But I guess I’m being a total hypocrite on this issue seeing is how I thought I looked good in leggings.

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  4. thorin25 says:

    It’s a tough battle, and we can expect to struggle with sin until we die. And yet, there is more hope than you are letting on. I’m not perfect, even on this issue of CD, and yet I have found great healing in the last several years, to the point that the temptations are rare. And I’m not the only one. Plenty of other guys I’ve communicated with feel the same way. So keep fighting, keep resisting, keep allowing God to change your heart and attractions. Remember that over time it can gradually slowly change, but every time you give in you are feeding the addiction and setting back your progress. Praying for you!

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  5. Destry says:

    There’s hope in me getting rid of internet porn but when it comes to looking at women in public, it will be very hard not to look. Right now I don’t have a girlfriend (actually don’t have time for one now), and at the college I go to, mostly all the women are wearing form fitting apparel. I lust after them but thank God I don’t envy their bodies nor feminity. That only happens with anime. If it did in real life, I may would’ve ended up shooting myself.

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  6. thorin25 says:

    Destry, I don’t think you should feel guilty when you noticed a beautiful woman. That is how God created us. And beauty is a good thing. We feel attraction and that is how God wired us. The sin only comes when we dwell on it and lust and view them as an object rather than a real person. My suggest is to practice this, see the woman, acknowledge the beauty, even thank God for it, then look away and move on, don’t dwell there. That’s hard, but possible, it’s basically impossible not to notice the beauty in the first place. You could also make yourself wonder what her hopes and dreams are, what pains are in her life, obviously you don’t know, but such an exercise reminds you she’s a real person, or you can imagine her spouse which makes it easier not to lust. But Agreed, its HARD

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  7. Destry says:

    Actually there’s too many women to just focus on one. There’s more women than men on the campus and that’s the problem.

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