Jesus Christ said, “It is written, My house shall be called a house of prayer.”

How to Overcome Temptation, Part 44 (Onward Christian Soldiers #168)



In this section of our Onward Christian Soldiers discipleship class, we are going to continue looking at specific temptations that are, as the Bible says, “common to man.” We are looking at what the Bible says about these sins so we can be aware of its dangers and so that we can hide Scripture in our hearts to use when we are tempted.

The sin that we are going to begin looking at today is the sin of “lust.” This is the second sin in a list of 12 temptations that comes from two sources — one ancient and one modern. The first source is a list that was developed by monks in the early church called “the seven deadly sins” or the “cardinal sins.” The second source is a Barna survey from 2011 which tracked the top temptations Americans admitted to struggling with.

Today, we are looking at Job 31:1. (Remember, the text of this lesson is made available online after each class, so you can go to our website GLHOPI.com, click the “Onward Christian Soldiers” banner on the home page, and begin to learn these verses by heart throughout the week.)

Job 31:1-4

1 I made a covenant with mine eyes; why then should I think upon a maid?

2 For what portion of God is there from above? and what inheritance of the Almighty from on high?

3 Is not destruction to the wicked? and a strange punishment to the workers of iniquity?

4 Doth not he see my ways, and count all my steps?

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We just completed over twenty lessons dealing with the temptation of covetousness or greed. Sometimes, when the Bible speaks of covetousness, it uses the word “lust”, referring to our fleshly desires. However, today, we are looking at lust as it pertains to “intense or unbridled sexual desire, which leads to fornication, adultery, rape, and other immoral sexual acts,” including homosexuality and pornography. In Dante’s Inferno, those souls who were unable to master their lustful tendencies are eternally blown about in hot, restless hurricane-like winds symbolic of their own lack of self-control.

We begin this study with the words of the righteous man, Job, found in chapter 31 of the book that bears his name. He said, “I made a covenant with mine eyes; why then should I think upon a maid?” This is an excellent verse by which to begin our discussion of the temptation of lust because it squarely identifies the way in which we allow lust to enter our lives. It begins with the eyes and continues in the mind.

The eyes are the gateway of lust for men especially, but for women as well. That is why we must be careful of what we allow our eyes to dwell upon. Today, with the internet, mass media, and low cultural standards for proper attire in public, it is harder than ever to keep opportunities to lust away from our eyes. But, that is where the second part of Job’s statement comes in. He says, “Why then should I think upon a young woman?” The eyes are only the avenue for lustful images. The actual sin takes place in the mind and in the heart. You may not be able to always control what is placed in front of your eyes, but you can control what your mind does with what you have seen.

In his commentary on Job, Mike Mason writes, “When Job says that he has made a covenant with his eyes to abstain from lust, he does not mean that he has stopped experiencing lust altogether. What he means is that he refuses to dwell upon the lustful feelings which, as the normal red-blooded male he is, come to him very naturally.” Of course, Job lived in a time where polygamy and concubinage was accepted and even expected of a wealthy man such as himself. No one would have had second thoughts if Job took numerous single young women as wives or concubines. Yet, Job still had this commitment, and the Bible shows that he only had one wife. His example shows us that, in our culture — one in which polygamy may be frowned upon but promiscuous sexual activity is expected to go on without criticism, we, too, can make theme type of commitment that he made. We can make a covenant, a commitment with our eyes not to entertain lustful thoughts in our mind or heart.

If you struggle with lust, take this passage to heart and begin to use it the next time you face that temptation.

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If you do not know Jesus Christ as your Saviour, John 3:16 states, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

The Bible also says in Romans 10:9 and 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved…. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and I want to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! I want to congratulate you on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

Until next time, May the Lord Bless You!