By David Faust
Proverbs chapters 5, 6, and 7 urge purity and self-control, while offering practical wisdom to guide us on the journey toward responsible, godly sexuality. Here are some tips for “safe driving.”
Know where you’re going. Biblical guidelines (and when we’re blessed to receive it, wise parental guidance) provide a roadmap to our destination. These precepts “will guide you; when you sleep, they will watch over you; when you awake, they will speak to you. For this command is a lamp, this teaching is a light . . .
keeping you from your neighbor’s wife, from the smooth talk of a wayward woman” (6:22-24). Joseph’s moral compass kept him from yielding when Potiphar’s wife tried to seduce him (see Genesis 39).
Keep your head clear. Car accidents occur when drivers are “under the influence.” Intoxication distorts a driver’s perception and weakens his judgment. Likewise, emotional infatuation and sexual fantasies lead to foolish behavior. (Remember Samson and Delilah?) “Why, my son, be intoxicated with another man’s wife?” (Proverbs 5:20). The most important sexual organ in the human body is the brain.
Watch out for hazardous conditions. On the highway we must drive defensively and watch out for reckless drivers. Likewise, we should beware of reckless individuals who are sexually enticing but spiritually bankrupt. “For the lips of the adulterous woman drip honey, and her speech is smoother than oil; but in the end she is bitter as gall, sharp as a double-edged sword” (vv. 3, 4). “Do not lust in your heart after her beauty or let her captivate you with her eyes. For a prostitute can be had for a loaf of bread, but another man’s wife preys on your very life” (6:25, 26).
Maintain your own vehicle properly. Safe driving starts at home. Keep your car in good operating condition; change the oil; keep your tires properly inflated. Likewise, one of the best ways to prevent sexual immorality is to cultivate loyalty and admiration for your own spouse. “May you rejoice in the wife of your youth. A loving doe, a graceful deer—may her breasts satisfy you always, may you ever be intoxicated with her love” (5:18, 19).
Pay attention to warning signs. King David threw caution to the winds and paid a stiff price when he gave in to temptation with Bathsheba (see 2 Samuel 11). He would have benefited from Proverbs chapter 7, which describes the consequences for a young man who used bad judgment. “With persuasive words she led him astray; she seduced him with her smooth talk. . . . he followed her like an ox going to the slaughter, like a deerstepping into a noose till an arrow pierces his liver, like a bird darting into a snare, little knowing it will cost him his life” (7:21-23).
If you crash, you need a trustworthy mechanic. Moral failure doesn’t mean the journey with God has to end. The woman caught in adultery (see John 8) discovered that God’s grace and truth apply to sexual immorality like other kinds of sin. Christ can repair the damage and put us back on the right road.
David Faust is president of Cincinnati Christian University, Cincinnati, Ohio, and past Executive Editor of the Lookout.
Use this guide to read through the Bible in 12 months. Follow David Faust’s comments on the highlighted text in every issue of THE LOOKOUT.
THELOOKOUT’s Bible Reading Plan for August 5, 2012
1 Timothy 3:11–16
1 Timothy 4
1 Timothy 5:1–15
1 Timothy 5:16–25
1 Timothy 6:1–10
Nehemiah 1, 2
1 Timothy 6:11–21