Yesterday we mentioned how lust can be produced and lived out in the imagination of those who are saved. Even though we have the Holy Ghost, He does not remove our right to choose righteousness or sin. Many of us have chosen sin in our imagination, and it has made its way to our emotions, words and deeds. We must recognize that it’s okay to be honest about these things, because the Bible says we are naked before God, so He knows it anyway. We must look at the root cause of our lust, meaning where it came from, and how we moved from the place of getting saved and loving the Lord to choosing sin over the God that we were so in love with.
The book, Fingerprints on the Mind, does a good job of spelling out where lust often begins in the saints:
The Memory of Sin: satan will use any means necessary to remind you of the pleasures you once experienced in the world.
Unfiltered Influence: the darkness we allow to flow through the eye, ear and touch gates; i.e. movies, television, novels, unholy relationships, etc.
Flirtation with Curiosity: Remember, Eve flirted with curiosity, regarding the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, before she began to lust for the fruit it bore. Satan uses our curiosity to introduce us to new pleasures.
Unforgiven Offense: the imagination can house hostility, and a need for retribution or revenge
Discontentment: when the eye is not single on Christ, there will be a secret longing for the things of the world.
Resentment: when purpose is not the agenda, then there will be a resentment of God, His way, methods, authority and power over your life.
We must know is that there is no way for us to sin without first rejecting God. If there is a memory of sin, or if we are exposed to sin through our environment, they are not powerful enough to defile our imagination. Jesus said it’s not what goes into a man that defiles him, but what comes out of him. In order for sin to be expressed from a son of God, there was some rejection of the counsel of the Holy Ghost and agreement with the pleasure of that sin. Thus, if any man sin, he is drawn away by his own lust and enticed (James 1:14); it is lust that he created.
The good news is, God has provided a way of escape out of the mess we’ve made:
2 Corinthians 10:5
Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;
This is how the ungodly imagination is to be treated, it must be cast down. It must be hated and rendered powerless as it relates to the influence it has on us. God is offended by a sinful imagination because it boasts against Him and His work in the sons. After all that He has done to make us one with Him, the evil imagination separates us from God. This is why He says it exalts itself against the knowledge of God.
Bring into captivity every thought of obeying Christ. Retain the knowledge of God in your heart, and do not let it go when trials or temptations come your way. Imagine a prison cell with prisoners in it; say that prison is called your heart / mind and the prisoners are the thoughts that encourage you to obey Christ. Hold those thoughts as prisoners, and refuse to let them out. Notice that in this situation God makes you the prison warden, you have the ability to let the prisoners go if you wish, because the sons of God have the power to always obey and choose Christ. As those prisoners remain in the cell of your mind, they will be constantly instructing and enlightening you on obedience. If their preaching makes you uncomfortable, you will treat your prisoners with hostility and you will eventually set them free. But bear in mind that each of those prisoners (thoughts of obedience) are God Himself; they are His influence in your heart. However you respond to them, is your response to God. I pray with all my heart that we will give God the love and obedience that He deserves.
Thanks for sticking with this series, which was taken from the book, “Fingerprints on the Mind”:
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