I missed Pastor Beau’s preaching today because I was ministering God’s Word to the brothers and sisters up north along the I-15 Corridor in Dubois, Idaho. But I am taking a stab at this week’s text where Jesus speaks on adultery, lust, and divorce.
My questions related to the text . . .
Observation (questions for the head):
- What commandment is Jesus quoting from the Old Testament?
- Jesus says you commit adultery in your heart when you do what?
- What are you to do if your right eye causes you to sin?
- People dominated by their lust are in danger of heading where (v. 30)?
- Jesus said that divorce and adultery are committed except on what grounds?
Interpretation (questions for the head and heart):
- When has a “look” crossed over from just a look to actual sin? Long ago, Martin Luther taught this insight: “You can’t prevent the devil from shooting arrows of evil thoughts into your heart; but take care that you do not let such arrows stick fast and grow there. Do as a good old man of past times has said: ‘I can’t prevent a bird from flying over my head, but I can prevent him making a nest in my hair.’ “
- Is masturbation a sin?
- Do women have the same temptations to lust as men?
- How would you interpret verse 29?
- What is significant about the “right eye” and the “right hand”?
- What is the Old Testament context of verse 31?
- Sexual immorality is the Greek word, porneia, in verse 32. What is porneia?
- What does God think of divorce? Is there any grounds for getting a divorce? What about remarriage?
Application (questions for the heart and hands):
- As a man, have you ever lusted in your heart toward a woman?D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preached, “There are highly respectable men and women who would never dream of committing an act of adultery, but look at the way in which they enjoy sinning in the mind and in the imagination. . . . If we can conceivably be satisfied with our lives because we have never committed an act of adultery or of murder or any one of these things, I say that we do not know ourselves nor the blackness and the foulness of our own hearts. We must listen to the teaching of the blessed Son of God and examine ourselves, examine our thoughts, our desires, and our imagination.”
John A. Broadus also joins in, “Many a one would boast, like the Pharisee in the parable, of being no adulterer (Luke 18:11), who yet has often committed adultery in the heart; and God has seen it.“
- Is it your fault that you looked in lust at a woman dressed immodestly? Or is it the woman’s fault? Sometimes a man will blame his lusts on the woman. But just a couple days ago, an author named Jonathan wrote on the lies that modesty culture teaches men.
- In my past, I have seen pictures that I should not have looked at. Have you? How did it make you feel? Did you repent of your sin and take your sense of shame to the cross of Jesus?
- What is your game plan for making a covenant with your eyes (Job 31:1)?
- The old Puritan, John Owen, wrote the book, The Mortification of Sin. Mortification means putting to death. How do you get radical in dealing with and putting to death the lust in your life? William Hendriksen passionately wrote, “Take drastic action in getting rid of whatever in the natural course of events will tempt you into sin. . . . Temptation should be flung aside immediately and decisively. Dillydallying is deadly. Halfway measures work havoc. The surgery must be radical. Right at this moment and without any vacillation the obscene book should be burned, the scandalous picture destroyed, the soul-destroying film condemned, the sinister yet very intimate social tie broken, and the baneful habit discarded. In the struggle against sin the believer must fight hard. Shadow-boxing will never do (I Cor. 9:27).“
- Is God able to completely forgive and transform your heart from the lustful memories of the past? Oswald Chambers wrote of Christ’s power, “He can alter our dispositions, and He can alter the dreams of our dreams until lust no longer dwells in them.”
- How is adultery hurtful?
- What should our earthly marriages picture?
- How does Jesus feel when we say that we love Him and yet love someone or something else more? Or when we altogether stop loving Him?
- How can you minister to someone who has been through a divorce?
Elizabeth Barrett Browning wrote a poem, “Loved Once“. It’s convicting. The words “loved once” come from humans in their sin. Not from heaven.
Let this be our prayer – “Thy nature, gracious Lord, impart; Come quickly from above; Write Thy new name upon my heart, Thy new, best name of Love.”