Faithlife
Faithlife

2012.07.08AM.ROOTED.in.Freedom.from.Life.Dominating.Sins.Eph5.3-7

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Freedom from Life Dominating Sins Preached by: Matthew S. Black Text: Ephesians 5:4-7 Series: Rooted in Christ Date: July 8, 2012, 10:30am Living Hope Bible Church of Roselle, IL Introduction: Open your Bibles to Ephesians 5. We are continuing our series: “Rooted in Christ”. The title of the message is: “Freedom from Life Dominating Sins”. Last week we talked about how we could have godly communication. Today we are talking specifically about how we can have victory over sexual sin, and live godly, wholesome and pure lives. This kind of living is the exact opposite of the sinful, selfish, rebellious, greedy, and sensual culture that we live in. How can we avoid the temptation to sexual sin and other life dominating sins? Lost in the African Bush I heard the story of a man who was leading a Safari in Kenya in an animal reserve. They were all hundreds of miles from a telephone and many miles even from a main road. The guide is trained to work with lions in the reserve. He’s an expert. He knows how to keep his distance. He has several assistants with tranquilizer guns. The people are amazed to see the wild animals. They are a safe distance away, but the guide seems dangerously close and is in the lion’s sights. Suddenly the guide is ripped away from all security and finds himself looking into the mouth of hungry and irritated lion. As his life flashes before his eyes, he realizes he has seconds to live. Suddenly the sound of a gun explodes and the lion falls over. Peter tells us, “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9 Resist him, firm in your faith…” (1 Peter 5:8-9a). John Owen once said, “You will be killing sin, or else sin will be killing you.” God wants to give us victory and freedom from life dominating sins! God’s Promises John tells us in 1 John 4:4, “Greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world”. Jesus said, “Anyone who sins is a slave to sin”. And to those who are shackled in the bondage of sin He says, “Come unto me all who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). Do you want rest? Paul tells us how to be free from sin in Ephesians 5:3–7 (ESV), “But sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints. 4 Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving. 5 For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. 6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7 Therefore do not become partners with them”. This morning we are going to talk about · The Hope · The Heart, and · The Help for life dominating sins I. There is Hope for life dominating sins (only if you take it seriously)– not once named (vs. 3). Ephesians 5:3 (ESV), “But sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints”. Paul says that we ought to have nothing to do with life dominating sins! That means there is hope. That means there is freedom. It is commanded and it is possible. You can be free from life dominating sin. Ø When you have Life Dominating Sins you need total re-structuring. Drunkenness, pornography, drug addiction, a pattern of sinful anger, and sexual immorality are just a few examples of what we are calling life-dominating sins; they usually affect every area of life. 1. Paul speaks of these very problems as sin (1 Cor. 6:9, 10; Gal. 5:19-21). 2. Throughout the Word of God they are seen as problems that dominate every area of life and cause heartache for the person and bring on the wrath of God (Eph. 5:18; 1 Cor. 6:12; Deut. 21:21; Prov. 20:1; 7:6-23; 23:29-35; Isa. 5:11, 13, 22; Joel 3:3; 1:5; Amos 6:6; Hosea 4:11). Ø They often affect a person's — · Eating habits · Home relationships · Sleep · Job · Friends (social life) · Church attendance and service · Emotions (self-pity, anger) · Economics (finances) · Health · Character & practices (deceitfulness) · Marriage and family life The drunkard, homosexual, drug addict are insecure, unhappy people who are looking for satisfaction. R. Kent Hughes says this about the temptation the Ephesians were facing: “Bear in mind that these verses were addressed to Christians who had come to Christ while living in the notoriously sinful port city of Ephesus. In that wicked metropolis the dominant religion was the worship of the very sensual looking goddess Diana, and ritual prostitution was a way of life. Moreover, there was cultural acceptance of sexual perversion as a valid, and even exalted, way of life. Ephesus is a paradigm of any of the great cities of today’s world — San Francisco, Berlin, Hong Kong, Moscow, Chicago…” Hughes, R. K. (1990). Ephesians: The mystery of the body of Christ. Preaching the Word (156). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books. Two Laws (Compulsions) Have you ever felt like a spiritual schizophrenic? We all struggle with sin! This is way Paul says in Ephesians 5:3 – have nothing to do with sexual immorality! Yet sometimes we all feel like a spiritual schizophrenic with various temptations in our lives! Look at Romans 6:18-19 (ESV), “For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing.” Look at verses 21-25, “I find it to be a law [compulsion] that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. 22 For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, 23 but I see in my members another law [compulsion] waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law [compulsion] of sin that dwells in my members. 24 Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? 25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.” O wretched people that we are! We inhabit a body that is hostile to God! There is a compulsion to sin in us because of the desires of the body and of the mind. What shall we do about this? There is HOPE! Consider God’s Promises! · 1Thessalonians 5:24 (KJV), “Faithful is he that calls you, who also will do it.” · Philippians 2:11–13 (ESV), “work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.” · God promises to conform all of His children into the image of His dear Son, Jesus Christ (Romans 8:28-29). · 1 Corinthians 10:13-14, “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. 14 Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry.” What should you do when you encounter temptation? Remember Joseph? He was tempted by Mrs. Potipher. (Whisper) What should you do when you encounter temptation? RUN!!!!!!!!! Do as Joseph did and get out of the situation. Have NOTHING to do with it! II. The Heart of life dominating sins– out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks! (vs. 4). Ephesians 5:4 (ESV), “Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving”. Have nothing to do with sexual sin. Don’t leave any place for it. A. Filthiness – There ought never be any kind of innuendo! To the pure everything is pure, but to the filthy of heart everything is defiled! No hint of worldliness in our talk. B. Foolish Talk – Moronic, silly talk – Saturday Night Live. Meaningless talk. All talk ought to have a purpose. C. Crude Joking – We ought to walk away from filthy jokes. This is 95% of TV. The idea is that there is not a hint of sexual immorality. You Cannot Serve Two Masters Mt 6:24 “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.” D. Instead there ought to be thanksgiving. 1. It’s wrong to talk filthy because the things you are talking about are precious. 2. Sex is a gift from God. 3. Life is a serious thing. There ought not to be silliness. Fun ought always to have a purpose. Laughter ought to be used as a way to love and edify one another. III. Help for life dominating sins (vs. 5-7). Ephesians 5:5 (ESV), “For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.” Are you partnered in your life with sexual sin? Do you partner with TV shows whose focus is of a sexual nature? That’s pretty much 95% of sitcoms and network and cable TV. “Pornea” is the Timothy McVeigh of Sins Timothy McVeigh is known as the most infamous American terrorist in our history. On April 19, 1995 he detonated a homemade truck bomb in front of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City. The attack killed 168 people and injured over 800 people. What made McVeigh dangerous was that he looked like an ordinary person. He walked away casually from the scene leaving a bomb that would cause the most amount of damage to the most amount of people. Sexual sin is like the Timothy McVeigh of sins. It looks harmless but it is cold, calculating, and absolutely destructive. It will bring such damage into your life. Sexual sin can even damn your very soul. Sexual Sin is Serious Are you a worshipper at the altar of sexual idolatry? Even though true Christians have fallen into this type of sin, they cannot be happy in it. They cannot remain in it. If sexual sin is a pattern in your life they you can have no assurance that you have eternal life. Nothing is more serious. In other words a true child of God may struggle with lust, but you will be able with the application of God’s Word and the working of the Holy Spirit, to conquer not only sexual sin, but all kinds of sins in your life. I want to ask you this morning to take sexual sin seriously. Sexual Sin Can Be Conquered Let me give you some hope this morning. Sexual sin can be conquered! But you must take it seriously. Those who don’t do anything about sexual sin die and go to hell. The word here is πόρνος pórnos; or those who live in sexual sin for gain. Sexual sin is their life. The Christian says, “for me to live is Christ” (Phil. 1:21). If you live for sexual pleasure, you cannot have assurance that you have eternal life. Ephesians 5:5–7 (ESV), “For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. 6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7 Therefore do not become partners with them”. A. Forsake Lying (Radical Restructuring) – don’t be deceived by empty words. Ephesians 5:6 (ESV), “Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. Blame it on the Brain Satan has a strategy to weaken and defeat Christians and families today. He is redefining sin. If he can get you to call sin a sickness, then you don’t need to take responsibility for it. Excuses There are so many excuses for sin today. The homosexual might say: “I was born this way” The under achieving child may say: “I have ADHD” There are many excuses: · “My alcoholism is a disease” · “My parents abused me” · “I’m Irish” · Whatever! No it is called sin! Paul speaks of these very problems as sin (1 Cor. 6:9, 10; Gal. 5:19-21). Ø The idolator, drunkard, homosexual, drug addict are insecure, unhappy people who are looking for satisfaction. And don’t tune me out because there is a little idolator in all of us. John tells us to walk in the light and admit your sin. If you say you have no sin you are a liar! They often do not know how to cope with life and are riddled with guilt. They turn to the bottle or drugs for quick satisfaction. For example, when Jorge performs poorly at work, he feels bad, so he turns to the bottle or an immoral relationship, or FILL IN THE BLANK for satisfaction. The he performs worse and feels worse. SO he drinks again, and consequently his health suffers and his relationship with his wife becomes strained. This causes him to feel worse, and he turns again to the bottle for relief. Ø Others turn to fantisy and sexual self-gratification, what ever it is that you rely upon that consumes both you and your world around you must be recognized as that which controls you. Others blow up in a fit of rage. It could be any number of things. Ø You must admit in your heart that addiction, in what ever form that you are dealing with it, has been replacing the true fulfilment in life that only God can give a person through His Son Jesus. 3. Since the problems are sin (not disease), there is hope. a. 1 John 1:7 (ESV), “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.” b. 1 Cor. 6:9, 10; Rom. 6:14; Eph. 5:18 B. Fear God – because of these things the wrath of God comes Ephesians 5:5–6 (ESV), “For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. 6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience.” Matthew 10:28, “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” C. Flee Every Form of Temptation – (Radical Amputation) – take action! - Have no Partnership with them. Ephesians 5:7 (ESV), “Therefore do not become partners with them”. How Sexual Sin is Conquered The key to conquering sexual sin is found in this passage. 1. Identify Sin. Proverbs 5:15-20, “Drink water from your own cistern, flowing water from your own well. 16 Should your springs be scattered abroad, streams of water in the streets? 17 Let them be for yourself alone, and not for strangers with you. 18 Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice in the wife of your youth, 19 a lovely deer, a graceful doe. Let her breasts fill you at all times with delight; be intoxicated always in her love. 20 Why should you be intoxicated, my son, with a forbidden woman and embrace the bosom of an adulteress?” Proverbs 6:26-29 (NKJV), “For by means of a harlot A man is reduced to a crust of bread; And an adulteress will prey upon his precious life. 27 Can a man take fire to his bosom, And his clothes not be burned? 28 Can one walk on hot coals, And his feet not be seared? 29 So is he who goes in to his neighbor’s wife; Whoever touches her shall not be innocent.”   Proverbs 6:32-33 (NKJV), “Whoever commits adultery with a woman lacks understanding; He who does so destroys his own soul. 33 Wounds and dishonor he will get, And his reproach will not be wiped away.”   Job 31:1 (NKJV), “I have made a covenant with my eyes; Why then should I look upon a young woman?”   1 Corinthians 6:18–20 (ESV), “Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. 19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, 20 for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” 2. Have no partnership with these sins! Sexual sin can be conquered because the love of Christ is more powerful than sexual sin. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 6:14-7:1 (ESV), “Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness? 15 What accord has Christ with Belial? Or what portion does a believer share with an unbeliever? 16 What agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; as God said, “I will make my dwelling among them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. 17 Therefore go out from their midst, and be separate from them, says the Lord, and touch no unclean thing; then I will welcome you, 18 and I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty.” 7:1 Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God.” 3. Radically Amputate in Every Part of Your Life Matthew 5, “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ 28 But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29 If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell. 30 And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into hell.” Make a purity covenant with your parents or with a trusted friend if you are a single adult. A purity covenant might look something like this: · Commitment #1: I commit to reserve my purity for the person God wants me to marry. I commit not to give my body in any way to any one except to the person I have committed my life to on the day of holy matrimony. · Commitment #2: I commit to refuse to participate in conversations that promote or joke about immorality. If I do speak in this way, I will confess to those I was conversing with that I sinned. · Commitment #3: For men and women: I commit to wear modest clothing that in no way promotes sensuality. I will “occasionally” ask a godly believer if my clothing is too revealing (too tight, too short, etc.). · Commitment #4: I commit to confess each time I view pornography or have any sexual contact with an accountability partner to who will help me keep this covenant. I commit to register with the technology of choice that promotes the wisdom and safety of accountability whether or not I struggle with pornography. We must take every provision to avoid sexual immorality of any kind. It ought not once be named among us. Ephesians 4:22, “be renewed in the spirit of your minds…”
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