Bible Reading: Matthew 5:27-30
“You have heard that it is said, ‘You shall not commit adultery’. But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 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. 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 be thrown into hell.” (Matthew 5:27-30)
As Christians, it is our duty to put off sin and put on the new life we have received in Christ. Have we been actively putting our sins to death?
In this passage, Jesus points out the particular sin of adultery. Adultery is more than just an unfaithful marriage. Adultery begins in the heart when we lustfully long for others. Lust and impure sexual desires do not only affect guys, but it affects girls too.
The big problem is this. A pure marriage is a representation of the holy and intimate relationship between Christ and His Church. In other words, God uses the most intimate human relationship in marriage and sex to teach His people that there is a far more intimate and beautiful relationship between God and His people. Therefore, marriages and sex must be kept Holy because they are God’s means to teach us that He is Holy and that He is jealous for His people to return to an intimate relationship with Him. As such, Jesus calls us to keep our actions and minds pure because when we dirty our minds with degrading sexual thoughts, we are replacing God’s holy image of intimacy with fleshly filth.
In an internet age, keeping minds pure is even harder. Pornography is evil. If you are stuck in this sin, can I say, please reach out to someone you trust. There is a way out. Pornography totally ruins our views on sex, and it is in no way close to the idea of purity and holiness. However, it’s not only pornography that messes with our minds and causes us to sin. The media also promotes adulterous content. The movies we watch are sexualised to please our lusts. What we consume on TikTok, Instagram and YouTube promote and triggers lustful thoughts and desires.
If we are to keep our minds pure, we must battle all these things. The battle is hard because we cannot just isolate ourselves from all forms of media as if we are monks who do nothing but meditate. However, we must sever all roots that lead us to sin. As Jesus uses the hyperbole of plucking our eyes and cutting off our hands, we must take extreme action to make sure we avoid such sins. We must consciously put a filter on what media we consume. We don’t need to go searching for impure things before they pop up and find us in the most unexpected places. Are the things we watch in movies, on Tiktok, Instagram and YouTube pure?
The only way we can win over sin is by having our hearts - the root of the issue - renewed in Christ. What can change us is satisfaction in the higher and most intimate relationship, a relationship with God in holiness. When we put off sin, we must put on Christ. We must seek Him in His Word and strive to obey Him. That is where a relationship with God starts. Then, as the Holy Spirit works in our hearts, God will cleanse us from all unrighteousness as we confess our sins and turn to repentance. God will replace our hearts of stone with hearts of flesh as He has promised from long ago so that we can enjoy the fullness of life in holiness.
Lord, please forgive us when we commit adultery. Please help us to realise that the highest fulfilment we can find is in a relationship with You. Help us to fight our sin and temptations in this world so that we can live pure and holy lives that are pleasing to You. In Jesus’ name, amen.