My son, keep my words and store up my commands within you. Keep my commands and you will live; guard my teachings as the apple of your eye.
~Proverbs 7:1-2, NIV
Do not bite the bait of pleasure until you know there is no hook beneath it.
Young people have a lot to deal with these days and sexual temptation may be at the top of the list. In truth, it is a temptation that seduces all generations. The internet has opened a new venue of pornography. Whereas, in the old days, people had to sneak into a video store to get their porn, they now have it in the privacy of their home at the click of a button. I grew up in the 50’s and 60’s which means I remember America before the sexual revolution. I am an eye witness: everything has changed. Ozzie and Harriet slept in twin beds: no, I am not kidding. Now days even the soup opera’s should be rated R. The world has a powerful influence and as followers of Christ, we must guard the apple of the eye. The apple is the pupil. The pupil of the eye is the black dot in the center of the iris. The iris is the circle that is colored, blue, brown or green. The pupil is the lens that controls the amount of light that the eye absorbs. The ancients believed it to be vital to the function of the eye and therefore should be protected. I’m afraid we have done a poor job protecting our eyes.
Temptation almost always begins with the eye. Genesis 3:6, “When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye…” Jesus said, “But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” Job said, “I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a young woman. If any man ever had a reason to cheat on his wife, it was Job; yet he remained faithful to a despicable woman who encouraged him to commit suicide when he was at his lowest point. What a wonderful helpmate was she, not! This world system, with all its evil, has a seductive power that can attract us and distract us. Our success in life boils down to our ability to resist temptation. The young man in Proverbs 7 made some fatal mistakes.
- He over estimated his power to resist. He put too much confidence in the flesh. We must fear temptation just as we fear evil for temptation is the first step toward evil. This is why Jesus taught us to pray, “Lead us not into temptation.” Flirting with temptation is like playing with fire, sooner or later you are going to get burned. Solomon said, “You can take hot coals into your lap without it burning your clothes.” It’s common sense; if you keep flirting with temptation, you will fall.
- He was careless. He was at the wrong place at the wrong time. He walked down Hell’s Avenue right before dark. He knew this seductive woman lived on this street or others like her. If you don’t want to fall, stay out of slippery places. This young man was asking for trouble and he got it.
- He didn’t understand her power or his weakness. I must tell you the truth: Solomon is not high on women and he usually paints them as the villain or seductress. I think he would almost say, “Women are evil.” Women are not any more evil than men but they do have an advantage sexually. Women use sex to get what they want. Men need sex to be happy. When it comes to seduction, they have the edge. This woman began flattering this kid and he melted like wax beneath a hot sun. She played to the male ego and it was like taking candy from a baby. He followed her into her den of iniquity like an ox following it’s master to the slaughter. Solomon, watching from his upstairs window, watched the young man fall into this trap.
The moral of the story is to guard your eyes. The longer you look, the more pressure you put on your weak and frail character. Don’t over estimate you ability to resist and don’t underestimate the world’s ability to seduce. Satan is no dummy: he will use something that appeals to your need; something that is very desirable. Do not trust him or your flesh: both will betray you.
Wow! What a gorgeous day yesterday and they say we are getting another one today. If we get to 80, we will set a record and they say it is a possibility. June and I ran the A/C going to Huntsville yesterday.You can’t order better weather. My basketball team lost last night to Miami. Yes, I am a Notre Dame fan, in basketball. I use to be a big Kentucky fan but I have not pulled for the cats in years. To be honest, College basketball is not that interesting until tournament time. I do like March Madness.
I know that most of you don’t remember Ozzie and Harriet or the Nelsons. Ricky was a pop star: he could sing and dance, the whole nine yards. David the older son was a Hollywood producer. Ricky and his band did a gig in Guntersville, Alabama and were flying to Dallas for a concert there on New Year’s even 1985 when they plane caught fire in the air and was forced to crash land. The pilot and co-pilot survived. Nelson had become a big drug user and it had almost destroyed in singing career. Traces of cocaine, marijuana and the pain killer Darvon were found in Rick Nelson`s blood after the crash. The Nelson’s seem to be the all American family. Just another testament on the lethal power of drugs. It is no respecter of families. Quick Quiz: How is Ricky Nelson related to Mark Harmon? Not by blood but Ricky married Harmon’s sister Kristin. Pictured with him on the right. She couldn’t take Ricky’s lifestyle and they divorced before the plane crash. They had four children.