Friday, October 12, 2007
Devotional #13 (part 9 of 1 Timothy 4:12 study)
Hello, ladies! We are continuing on with our 1 Timothy 4:12 devotional study. 1 Timothy 4:12 says, "Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity." We have come to the part of the verse which speaks on us being an example to the believers in purity, and are on part 2 of this purity aspect of the study. If you have not had the opportunity to read the previous devotionals in this series, then please click here so you can do so. Then, you can continue on with this one.
*note: This will not be the last devotional on the purity aspect of this verse-there is just so much to cover, that there will be at least another devotional after this one, if not two more. :) So, you have a little while longer before this series is over and completed. :)
In the devotional on Wednesday we saw what our standard of purity is to be. We Biblically and successfully answered the all-too-popular question, "How far is too far?". The study of Ephesians 5 in the previous devotional showed us what the high standard of purity that God requires of us is. This is not something to be taken lightly! We are not to brush aside this passage and say, "Yes, that may be what it says, but it isn't really all that important or crucial that my standard of purity is that high. That's just being legalistic. I can set my own standard of purity, and everthing will be ok. I don't have to have such a strict standard of purity." My dear sisters, that is the saddest mistake that a girl will make! The girl who says such things is not only lying to herself, but is showing where her heart truly is. We cannot be true Christians and yet not follow Christ's precepts, commands and principles! They are for our good and His glory and are not to be discarded(and if they are, we will face severe punishment for that)! As Christians, our goal, desire, passion and mission in life ought to be to glorify God daily in all things we say, all things we do, and all things we think. We ought to have an immense love for our Savior and that love should spur us on with a desire to obey all of Christ's commands with heartfelt love, obedience and joy. The true Christian will see this standard of purity, and wholeheartedly thank the Lord for it! He would know that this standard of purity is a gift! He would also know that this high standard of purity is for our good! It is a rich blessing! It ought to be our joy to have such a high standard of purity! Not only is it for our good, but this standard of purity glorifies God! It lifts Him up and honors Him, and a true Christian would see this fact, and desire to live by this high standard of purity in order to glorify God and bring Him praise. But there is also another reason why the true Christian would see this high standard and would delight in it, love it, and desire to live it out. And this reason is that this gift of total and complete purity would be able to be presented to that Christian's future spouse one day, whole, complete, and without blemish or impurity. And this knowledge would bring the follower of Christ great joy and immense happiness! But if we disregard this high standard of purity that is commanded of us as Christians, and don't love it and desire to live it out daily, are not thankful for it, don't see it as the rich blessing that it really is and only see it as a "restriction that limits us of any fun", then it is highly doubtful that we are even love Christ at all. This may seem harsh, but it's the plain and simple truth. It is also really doubtful that we even care in the least bit about our future husbands, let alone love them. Because if we truly loved our future husbands at all, then we would preserve our purity with all joy, diligence, perseverence and happiness! It would be our joy and honor to preserve our purity for that special future spouse that the Lord already has picked out for us. We would be oh-so-diligent to preserve every part of that blessed purity-purity of body, mind, heart, spirit and soul. We would not only resist any temptation that would lead us to impurity but we would quickly run far from it and flee in the opposite direction!! One thing that our vile and impure culture must regrasp is the love of purity! We must rediscover the beauty, blessedness, and wonderful gift of it! It is something to be treasured, kept safe, and diligently preserved from all harm, and from all of those bad influences who would seek to destroy it. I cannot stress enough the importance and beauty of purity, or the vitally crucial importance and necessity of obeying Christ and living out His blessed high standard of purity! There are so many verses in Scripture where Christ commands us to preserve our purity and to keep the marriage bed holy and sacred. If I were to include all of them now, and speak on all of them as I would like to, this devotional would be the length of a book(I do hope to have devotionals on each of these passages sometime, though!)! The Lord could have in just one verse commanded us to remain pure, and that would be enough for us to know that we better obey. But rather He commanded it over and over in numerous passages and in numerous ways to show us just how hugely important it is to the Lord that we are pure in word, thought and deed. Our purity is not something that the Lord takes lightly, and neither should we! The Lord views our purity and the preservation of it as being very very crucial! He abhors impurity so much that in Old Testament times, those found to be impure, immoral, or caught in adultery were taken into the city streets and stoned for what they had done. Only once we grasp in our hearts the importance and beauty of our purity, will we ever hope to or be able to live out a life that is God honoring in this area and that is truly and joyfully lived out according to the high purity standard found in Ephesians 5.
Please return on Monday for the continuation of this series! I will be offering all of you ladies practical help on ways to perserve your purity and resist temptation. As I stated once again, I will also be ending this series (whenever that is ;]) with a devotional for all of you women who may have already lost some of your purity, be it of body, heart or mind. None of us is perfect, and there is forgiveness to be found, and a second chance! I hope that devotional as well will be an encouragement and blessing!
Have a wonderful weekend, dear ladies!!
All for His glory,