The dangers of a little impurity

Liam Johnsen

Just how dangerous is a little impure thought? As long as you don’t do anything with anybody else what’s so dangerous about it?

The Bible says clearly in 2 Timothy 2:22: “Flee youthful lusts,” but this is taken less and less seriously in our modern world. Looking at pornography, fantasizing about people in your thought life, letting your thoughts run rampant and unchecked, these things are increasingly common, even among Christians. How bad can a little impurity really be? As long as you don’t do anything with anybody else what’s so dangerous about it?

A little impure thought is one of the most destructive forces in the world. You don’t know where that thought will lead. Or maybe you do know but you just don’t believe it will happen to you. The truth is that we as human beings are incredibly weak when it comes to sexual thoughts and temptations. We can say that “it’s not that bad” or “it won’t lead to anything worse” but the reality is that once you give Satan a finger, he won’t stop until he’s got your whole being.

The way downward…

The reality is that once you give Satan a finger, he won’t stop until he’s got your whole being.

Impurity in your thoughts is as bad as impurity in your actions – Jesus makes that very clear. (Matthew 5:28) God created the sexual relationship to be between one man and one woman within marriage. Here it is meant to be a mutual blessing, but outside of marriage giving in to sexual desire, whether in thought or deed, is only serving to satisfy your own lusts.

All sin is living for yourself rather than God and that is why God hates it so much. Maybe you don’t involve anyone else but it is an attitude that shows your real mind, which is purely selfish. You can never be a blessing and never serve God as long as you let sin rule your thoughts and ultimately your deeds.

But of course nobody makes any sudden, drastic decision to just jump into sin and start living for their lusts completely. It’s just baby steps the whole way. Just this once. Just this one website. Just this one thought. That’s all that Satan wants; just that one step at a time. And pretty soon you’ll find yourself in a world of sin wondering how you got there and how on earth you are ever going to find your way out.

No happiness in impurity

When your happiness is based on your lusts then of course you’ll never be happy because your lusts are never satisfied. It always leads to a darker place, a more disgusting sin. All you’re doing is feeding your own self-will and when you are too concerned with yourself you actually lose your relationship to God. Once you start giving in to your lusts then you start losing the battle on every other front as well.

When your happiness is based on your lusts then of course you’ll never be happy because your lusts are never satisfied.

You feel that you can’t pray anymore; you feel uncomfortable when talking to fellow Christians. You feel judged when you read your Bible. You wander about with downcast eyes and hoping nobody knows how much you’re sinning on the inside. Too ashamed to talk to your pastor or youth worker. Too ashamed even to talk to God. Then Satan can do whatever he wants with you. He has complete power over you.

Because of sin things that you would never have considered doing before seem natural now.  Your conscience begins to die and as it dies things that seemed revolting and foul before now become natural and you don’t feel bad about a little pornography, a little fantasizing in your thought life. You start thinking it’s okay to go even deeper in.

Sin destroys your soul

And when you live in sin in the corners like this, you will never have peace or rest. It destroys your soul. The anxiety that comes with a little impurity is immense. Fear that people will find out. Shame if they already have. You give in consciously here and you lose everywhere else. You become sad, bitter, angry and everything in between.

What you’ve sown to the flesh must also be reaped and it is not a pleasant harvest. If you fill yourself with impurity in your youth you can’t just come out of it in an instant – even though you can get forgiveness for your sins instantly. It will take years of reaping what you have sown before you are completely free.

Giving in to your lusts so that they start to control you will destroy your soul. It can destroy your ability to form or maintain a meaningful, lasting relationship or to stay faithful to your partner – both in thought and in deed. It’s a huge struggle to “wipe the slate clean” so that mental images you have acquired don’t plague you anymore.

You can be free!

Satan only has power over you when you are consciously committing sin.

But it doesn’t have to be like this. Yes, you will have to reap the consequences of every sin you’ve committed but that’s just all the more reason to stop sinning now. Satan only has power over you when you are consciously committing sin.

From the minute that you decide to fight a battle against your lusts then Jesus is there by your side with power to help you overcome.

You can take up a battle right now and be called a brother of Jesus. You don’t have to live in shame because you’re doing this or that in the corner. Right now you’re living in the light, as soon as you take up that battle. And even if you fall again you repent thoroughly and get right back up and then you’re in the light and you’re on the way to victory.

Flee youthful lusts, it’s written. (2 Timothy 2:22) Sexual temptations are one of Satan’s most destructive tools. He has destroyed many lives with this tool and if you are not absolutely radical you can very quickly find your life destroyed as well. But God is ready and waiting to give you power and help from heaven if you decide that you want to be free.

As long as you have a burning desire to be finished with sin then it is not only possible but guaranteed. God will help you then.

This post is also available in: Norwegian Bokmål

You might also be interested in our theme page about Overcoming sin.

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