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[Six times in Matthew chapter five Jesus says,
Ye have heard
that it was said . . . (vs 21, 27, 31, 33, 38, 43) – In saying this
Jesus reveals six areas where the heart is more important than the heal:]
[Murder (vs 21-26) - The Heat of your heart]
[Adultery (Matt 5.27-30) - The Health of your
[Divorce (Matt 5.31-32) - The Harnessing of your
[Integrity/Honesty (Matt 5.33-37) - The Home of
[Revenge (Matt 5.38-42) - The Hurtles of your
[Loving your enemies (Matt 5.43-48) The Harbor of
[The Secret You
- The importance of your heart or who you are in the hidden regions of your mind
can not be underestimated. There are
only two people who know who you really are.
One is you and the other is Almighty God.
There are many who think that they are the only one who really knows who
or what they are, but I assure you the
omnipotent God knows your every thought.
I the LORD search the heart,
I try the reins, even to give
every man according to his ways, and
according to the fruit of his doings.]
[Almighty God never misses a thing.
He knows what is controlling you (the reins).
He knows your thoughts. God
knows that your thoughts affect your heart and your heart guides your actions.
. . . those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from
the heart; and they defile the man. 19
For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries,
fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies:
20 These are
the things which defile a man: .
. . ]
[Too many in our culture misunderstand that importance of
one’s heart and thoughts. Your
thoughts deal with your thinking which pour from your affections and reveal
themselves in your actions. If you
allow yourself to think corrupt things then the result will be a corrupted heart
and your actions will soon follow.
For this reason God has said,]
Keep thy heart with all
diligence; for out of it are
the issues of life. 24 Put away from
thee a froward mouth, and perverse lips put far from thee.
Let thine eyes look
right on, and let thine eyelids look straight before thee.
Ponder the path of thy
feet, and let all thy ways be established.
27 Turn not to the right hand nor to the
left: remove thy foot from evil.]
[What does this proverb say?
It says watch what is in your heart.
Why? Because what is in your
heart will soon come out of your mouth (vs 24) and what comes out of your mouth
will soon guide where you go or your actions and choices in life (vs 25).]
[The Eye and the
Mind – Notice the phrase in Proverbs 4.25
“Let thines eyes look right on”
and the phrase in our text (vs 28) “That
whosoever looketh” and
consider how important what you look at or what you allow to come into your mind
and heart is. You look at the things
you are interested in, these are your affections, and the things you look at and
desire will undoubtedly affect the way you think and will inevitable guide what
you choose to do or your actions.
Therefore, what you allow into your mind and life will either build you
spiritually or it will corrupt you morally.]
[Entertainment Choices – This is why your entertainment choices,
your chosen friends, your home environment, and even your work environment are
so very important. What you allow
into your life, what you see and hear consistently, will eventually affect the
way you think, which will change the way you feel, which will undeniably guide
your choices and actions in life.
Sometimes you may not have a choice about those things around you, but by being
aware of them and their influential effect you will protect yourself from them.]
[Last Week we looked at the need to deal with the way we think and
feel about those people who are around us.
We, the Body of Christ and the Children of God, need to develop a godly
way of thinking about those people who are a part of our lives.
We need to harbor and hone redeemed relationships in our lives.
Having these kind of relationships starts in our hearts or in the way we
allow ourselves to think and feel about other people.
We must value others the way our Heavenly Father values them.]
[Thinking and Feeling – To many people are of the belief that they
cannot help the way they think about those around them.
They believe that their thinking is based on what they feel and their
feelings are based on what has occurred in their relationship.
The truth is that what you feel is actually based on what you think.
Get God’s Word into your mind and its truth’s will find their way into
your heart and your feelings will eventually be conformed to the image of
Christ. Well, this is true in many
different aspects in our lives.]
[Now, before you come and begin to debate about whether your
thinking is controlled by your heart or your heart is controlled by your
thinking, let me say this. Perhaps
there are arguments and cases that prove either case is true.
The undeniable fact is that your heart and your thinking affect each
other. There is a union between your
thinking and your feelings or your heart so that one affects the other.
In the Bible God says,]
Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.]
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things
are honest, whatsoever things
are just, whatsoever things
are pure, whatsoever things
are lovely, whatsoever things
are of good report; if
there be any virtue, and if
there be any praise, think on these things.]
[It seems clear to me that I can find a multitude of
Scriptures that tell me to get (decision) my mind right and the rest will
follow, while I was hard pressed to find a single verse that says get my
feelings right and my mind will follow.]
Consider what Jesus is saying in our text,
Devastation (vs 27; Exo 20.14) [–
About Adultery and Immorality – Ye
have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery:
- Without any doubt adultery has been and is a problem in our culture and a
serious problem within the Church of our Lord Jesus Christ.
The problem has existed as long as mankind has existed.
It is a problem that draws upon men and women alike.]
[Adultery simply put
is breaking the covenant marriage relationship designed by God.
It always has been, and always will be God’s plan that one man and one
woman should be joined together in marriage for the duration of their lives.
To the extent that God commanded in the ten Commandments that,]
Thou shalt not commit adultery. ]
[The punishment for
violating this command was strict and violent.
Those caught were to be put to death to put the corruption out of the
land. The whole idea of adultery and
its biblical punishment has become laughable in our day.
Adultery and sexual immorality are so common and accepted in our day that
to stand on the Word of God relinquishes one to the status of a lunatic in our
culture. So much so that to forward
the idea of being sexually pure until marriage is scoffed at by our world and
sadly to say in many churches.]
[Incredibly, I have
even been approached by some people who use this very scripture to justify their
adulterous relationships. One man
once approached me and said, “If I take this Scripture literally, then if I
think lustfully upon a woman I might as well go ahead and have the fun since I
have already committed the sin.”
Wow, what an incredible manipulation of the words of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Our Lord did not seek to justify sin He sought to teach us to gain
victory over temptation and sin.]
[Sex Before Marriage – to our youth who may be enticed to buy into our cultures lie that sex
before marriage is harmless and no more important than taking a car out for a
test drive. Do you know what God
says about this issue? God says,]
If a man find a damsel
that is a virgin, which is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie
with her, and they be found; 29 Then
the man that lay with her shall give unto the damsel's father fifty
shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife; because he hath
humbled her, he may not put her away all
his days. ]
[God commands you to get married and to never be divorced to
the one you have sexual relations with before marriage.
Guys this command is for you too.
Sexual purity is of great importance with our Heavenly Father and it
ought to be important to you too.]
Let me share with you
three quick thoughts about Adultery,
Contributions That Lend To Adultery
(1 Cor 7.1-5) [– Faithfulness in the
marriage relationship lends itself to fidelity in the marriage covenant.
1 Now concerning the things whereof ye
wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman.
to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let
every woman have her own husband. 3
Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife
unto the husband.
The wife hath not
power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not
power of his own body, but the wife. 5
Defraud ye not one the other, except
it be with consent for a time,
that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that
Satan tempt you not for your incontinency. ]
[From this text we learn that a wife ought never to
reject her husband’s advances and a husband ought never to disregard his wife’s
tender touch. Paul expresses the
importance of this marriage bond by stating that when it comes to intimacy
within marriage the wife belongs to the husband and the husband belongs to the
wife. To neglect the intimacy of the
marriage relationship is to equip the devil in his dastardly desire to destroy
your marriage and home through temptation and adultery. ]
[Whose Fault Is
It – Neglected intimacy at home is no excuse for adultery, but it undeniably
lends itself to its temptation and the strength of this lure.
The fault for the actual act of adultery always lies with the participant
and any blame should never be shifted in any other direction.]
[If, Then –
If adultery has torn at the fabric of your home, all is not lost.
God forgives those who fall to this sin, and a marriage relationship can
survive as well. But the cost is extremely high and hardly worth the occasion.]
Character That Inoculates Against Adultery (Prov 6.32-33) [– The
commands of God are based on the character of God, and the command to protect
the covenant marriage relationship is no different.
So what is the Character of God that is expressed through the command to
not commit adultery?]
[It is the Faithfulness
of God. Think for a few
minutes about the incredible impact of God’s faithfulness.
Because God is faithful we know we can trust Him.
If God has ever or ever does fail to keep only one of the things He has
said He would do, then all of our trust in Him immediately disintegrates.
If a single judgment has gone unanswered, if a single promise has gone
unfulfilled, then God has not kept His word, He is not faithful, and He cannot
be trusted. But God has been
faithful and His faithfulness instills the unshakable foundation of trust, which
provides an incredible source of hope.
Everything we know and understand about God is undergirded by his
faithfulness and is an attack on the characteristic of God’s
faithfulness that He is trying to make a part of our lives and relationships.
If you say that you have accept the Lord Jesus Christ and He has sent the
Holy Spirit of God into your life then you must develop the characteristic of
faithfulness in your life and relationships.
God is in you, and God is faithful so how can you be anything but
faithful. Violate the foundation of
faithfulness in your marriage and everything else will quickly crumble.
Without faithfulness there can be no trust.
Without faithfulness your word is worthless.
Faithfulness is absolutely necessary for a healthy relationship with God,
your family, and your fellowman.]
But whoso committeth adultery
with a woman lacketh understanding: he
that doeth it destroyeth his own soul. 33
A wound and dishonour shall he get; and his reproach shall not be
wiped away. ]
Consequences of Adultery [– Every sin carries a consequence.
There is a cost for sin, every sin.
The price tag that hangs on adultery is high, it is a costly sin.
Now, we know that every sin requires eternal damnation in hell, but Jesus
paid it all on Calvary’s Cross, and indeed He
has. So that, the born again
Christian no longer fears the fire and brimstone of that horrible place.]
[But, lest you think that somehow, the forgiveness of
God washes away the earthly mortal consequences for our sins, think again.
The Bible teaches and demonstrates time and time again that the
consequences for our sins endure long after we have found the forgiveness of our
[So, what is the
consequence for adultery?
Consider what adultery violates.
Adultery violates faithfulness, and faithfulness undergirds everything else that
is vital to our relationships.
Adultery decays and nearly destroys trust and everyone knows how important trust
is to any relationship, especially to marriage.]
for adultery is high but it does not have to be terminal.
The only remedy for broken faithfulness is absolute faithfulness.
The one who broke the covenant must restore it with determination and
diligence. So often couples have
come to be after the devastation of adultery, and often the violator will try to
place the blame for the failing relationship on the innocent party.
They say things like, “They say they have
forgiven me, but they don’t seem to trust me.”
What do you expect?
Trust is the most precious of all
characteristics in our relationships but it is undeniably founded upon
faithfulness and it is the hardest of all characteristics to reestablish.
It takes lots of time, determination, and diligence; but it can be
Desire (vs 27-28) [– Where adultery and immorality come from –
Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not
commit adultery: 28 But I say unto
you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery
with her already in his heart. – Jesus now challenges the teaching
concerning adultery. Jesus again
says, “Ye have heard that it was said,”
and in saying this Jesus is challenging what people had been taught and believed
for many generations. The idea was
that anything was okay so long as you did not actually, physically break the
law. But our Lord says that the
breaking of the law was merely a symptom of a greater problem.]
7.21-23) [– Adultery grows out of the seed of lust planted in the
soil of a fertile heart. This is not
only true of adultery but it is true of many other sins and of immorality in
general. Jesus said,]
For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts,
adulteries, fornications, murders, 22
Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye,
blasphemy, pride, foolishness: 23
All these evil things come from within, and defile the man. ]
[Consider carefully the dastardly list provided by our
Lord. Those sins that pour out of
our lives flow out of our hearts.
They reveal a faltering character that is noticably different from that of our
Savior. Every form of immorality and
wickedness finds it root and source in our heart.
Our heart is fed by our minds and the way we think and our minds are
influenced by our entertainment, friends and culture.]
7.6-10, 22-23) [– How does Adultery or any other sin find its way into
our lives? Through unguarded hearts and minds and destructive decisions.]
6 For at the window of my house I looked
through my casement, 7 And beheld
among the simple ones, I discerned among the youths, a young man
void of understanding,
8 Passing through the street near
her corner; and he went the way to her house, 9
In the twilight, in the evening, in the black and dark night:
10 And, behold, there met him a woman
with the attire of an harlot,
and subtil of heart.]
[Here is a young
[Failed to keep and guard his heart and desires.]
[He made the destructive decision to yield to his desire
rather than be disciplined with his desire.]
[He made the destructive decision to go into the
darkness of his desire in the midst of the night.]
[He made the destructive decision to go to where the
demonic matrons of lustful desire work.
[He made the destructive decision to fall into the
devastating trap of their immorality as an ox goeth to the slaughter (vs 22-23)]
22 He goeth after her straightway, as an
ox goeth to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks;
23 Till a dart strike through his liver;
as a bird hasteth to the snare, and knoweth not that it
is for his life. ]
[Destructive decisions lead to devastating immorality
Destruction (vs 29-30) [- And if
thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast
it from thee: for it is
profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not
that thy whole body should be
cast into hell. 30 And if thy right
hand offend thee, cut it off, and cast
it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy
members should perish, and not that
thy whole body should be cast into hell. – I once had a military chaplain
speak to me about these very verses.
He objected to my literal approach to the Bible and thought that an allegorical
approach was more acceptable. Of
these verses, in trying to prove his point, he said, you don’t believe that
Jesus meant that a person should really pluck out their eye or cut off their
hand do you. My response was simple,
I said, “Yes, that is exactly what Jesus meant.”
In this passage Jesus is saying, if there is anything that is more
important to you than God and going to heaven then cut it off, get rid of it,
because hell is real and its fires burn eternally and whatever it is just is not
worth the cost.]
[Adultery, immorality, wickedness, and sin do not have to
devastate your life. You can
overcome their temptations and allurements and protect yourself from their
horrible affects. How?]
Honoring Discipline (2 Tim 2.22) [– There are two things that you
need to consider if you will be spiritually disciplined in your life.
Jesus mentions your,]
Eye in verse 29. Your eye speaks of
your influences or what you set as your personal affection. What you look at or
Right hand in verse 30. Your right
hand speaks of your power or the decisions that you make in your life.]
[Your decisions are based, to a great extent upon your
desires and your desires normally come from those things you allow into your
mind or life. Get your mind right
and your desires will be right, get your desires right and your decisions will
[When it comes to your desires or influences the Bible
22 Flee also youthful lusts: but follow
righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a
pure heart. ]
[Decide right now that you are going to have a pure,
godly heart and you will go along ways toward directing your desires in the
right direction. This means thinking
about what you are allowing into your life, through your eyes and ears, which is
drawing your heart and mind away from God.
There are many things in our world, on our television, on our computers,
and in our associations that just need to be cut out of our lives.]
[Joseph was a young man whose desire to please God and
be pure in God’s sight was stronger than the influence of his environment.
Potipher’s wife was tempting Joseph but he refuse to allow immorality to
corrupt his life. He ran away from
her alluring enticements and maintained His integrity with his Heavenly Father.]
[God honoring discipline will destroy Adultery’s
devastation in your life. ]
Christ Seeking Decisions [– It is better to go to heaven than it is
to go to hell. If you are here today
and you have never accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and
Savior, then you need to understand that our world offers you immorality,
sinfulness and their devastation and destruction.
You need the Lord Jesus Christ in your life.
Will you accept Him today.]
CrossRoads Baptist, Feb 1, 2009