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Sexual Immorality - 1 Corinthians 6:18

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Introduction

1. As we begin addressing specific moral issues confronting the Christian, perhaps a proper starting place is with the issue of sexual immorality:

a. A moral issue faced by every Christian

b. One about which the Bible has much to say - 1 Corinthians 6:18

2. The admonition to flee sexual immorality is needed just as much today:

a. Sexual immorality is rampant in our culture

b. Morality is being loosely defined (and redefined), encouraging many to engage in sinful behavior

 

Body

I. THE DEFINITION OF SEXUAL IMMORALITY

A. THE BASIC CONCEPT

1. The Greek word translated sexual immorality (NKJV), fornication (KJV), is porneia

2. "Used generally to refer to any sexual sin" - The Complete Word Study Dictionary

3. Thus it includes any form of "illicit sexual intercourse - adultery, fornication, homosexuality, lesbianism, intercourse with animals, etc." - Thayer

B. THE PROBLEM THEN AND NOW:

1. Porneia became synonymous with life in the 1st century, reflected by:

a. Their attitude toward adultery: "We keep mistresses for pleasure, concubines for day-to-day needs of the body, but we have wives in order to produce children legitimately and to have a trustworthy guardian of our homes" - Demosthenes

b. Their attitude toward divorce: "Roman women were married to be divorced and were divorced to be married. Some of them distinguished the years, not by the names of the consuls, but by the names of their husbands." - Seneca

c. Their attitude toward family: "Caligula lived in incest with his sister Drusilla, and the lust of Nero did not even spare his mother Agrippina." - Suetonius

d. Their attitude toward homosexuality:

1) "It were better not to need marriage, but to follow Plato and Socrates and to be content with the love of boys." - Lucian

2) "Of the first fifteen emperors, Claudius was the only one whose taste in love was entirely correct." - Gibbons

2. God's disdain for sexual immorality is seen in the fact:

a. There are seven lists of evil in the writings of Paul

b. Porneia is listed in five of them, and is the first in each of them - 1 Corinthians 5:9-11; 6:9-10; Galatians 5:19-22; Ephesians 5:3-5; Colossians 3:5

3. Does it require much insight to see that porneia is rampant in our time as well?

a. Pre-marital sex has become rampant among many, including teenagers

b. Adultery is considered inevitable, even acceptable by many

c. Divorce has been made easy through "no-fault" laws

d. Families have been torn asunder by incest, adultery, and divorce

e. Homosexuality has become an "acceptable alternative lifestyle"

4. Porneia is thus a general term for sexual immorality; i.e., sexual behavior that rightly belongs only to husbands and wives - Hebrews 13:4

 

II. THE DEVASTATION OF SEXUAL IMMORALITY

A. DESTROYS THE BODY

1. Through bacterial STDs (e.g., Chlamydia, syphilis, gonorrhea)

2. Through viral STDs (e.g., genital herpes, Hepatitis B, AIDS), which are incurable

3. Many people have learned the hard way, what Solomon warned his son - Proverbs 5:11-12

B. DEMOLISHES THE HOME

1. Marriages intended for life are broken, often beyond repair - Matthew 19:4-6

2. Children are devastated, with emotional effects lasting into adulthood

C. DESOLATES THE SOUL

1. It will be hard to forgive oneself, there will be self-recrimination - Proverbs 5:12-13

2. Your soul will be deprived of good friends, whose trust you violated - Proverbs 6:30-35

3. If unrepented and unforgiven, there is no hope - 1 Corinthians 6:9-10; Galatians 5:19-21; Hebrews 13:4

 

III. THE DETERRENCE OF SEXUALITY IMMORALITY

A. FORM PROPER DISCERNMENT

1. Remember God's will for you

a. Joseph understood that sexual immorality was a sin against God - Genesis 39:9

b. Paul taught that abstinence was God's will - 1 Thessalonians 4:1-3

2. Remember God's will for your body

a. To control your body in holiness and honor (ESV) - 1 Thessalonians 4:4-8

b. To glorify God in your body, as a temple of the Holy Spirit - 1 Corinthians 6:13-20

c. To present your bodies as living sacrifices, holy to God - Romans 12:1-2

3. Remember the consequences

a. Self-recrimination - Proverbs 5:12-13

b. Lost friendships - Proverbs 6:30-35

c. Judgment against the impenitent - 1 Corinthians 6:9-10; Hebrews 13:4

d. David's sin with Bathsheba serves as an object lesson 2 Samuel 11-12

B. FLEE EVERY OPPORTUNITY

1. Remember Joseph's example! - Genesis 39:10-12

2. Remember the wisdom of Solomon! - Proverbs 5:1-23; 6:23-35; 7:1-27

3. Remember Paul's admonitions!

a. Flee youthful lusts, pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace - 2 Timothy 2:22

b. Make no provision for the lusts of the flesh - Romans 13:13-14

C. FIND A SUITABLE SPOUSE

1. Paul counsels marriage between man and woman to counter sexual immorality - 1 Corinthians 7:1-2

2. Sexual conduct within the framework of marriage is appropriate - 1 Corinthians 7:3-5; Hebrews 13:4

3. Singleness is good, if one has self-control; otherwise, marriage the only option - 1 Corinthians 7:6-9

D. FORGE AHEAD WITH STRENGTH FROM GOD

1. United with Christ in baptism, consider yourself dead to sin - Romans 6:2-15

2. By the Spirit, put to death the sinful deeds of the body - Romans 8:12-13

a. The Spirit is God's instrumental agent by He strengthens the Christian - Ephesians 3:16,20

b. The fruit of the Spirit in our lives includes self-control - Galatians 5:16-25

3. In Christ, we can do all that God desires of us - Philippians 4:13; Ephesians 6:10-13

4. Utilize the tools of prayer and the Word of God - Ephesians 3:16; 6:17

 

Conclusion

1. To prevent the devastating effects of sexual immorality, we need to remember:

a. God's will for us: "abstain from sexual immorality" - 1 Thessalonians 4:3

b. Paul's admonition: "flee sexual immorality" - 1 Corinthians 6:18

2. Sexual immorality is too serious to take lightly

a. It can destroy your body, home, and soul

b. Forgiveness is possible, but physical consequences of sin (STDs) often remain

3. To flee sexual immorality, we need to have:

a. The strength of Joseph

b. The wisdom of Solomon

c. The penitence of David (when necessary)

4. Let these words of Paul encourage us to abstain from sexual immorality, and to repent if need be. - 1 Corinthians 6:9-11

 

Are You Saved?

 

-- Don Treadway, April 2009 --

http://SexualImmorality.info -info  

 


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