Manspeak book study… by bigplew
September 12, 2008, 9:35 am
Filed under: Featured Resource | Tags: , ,

by Mike Plewniak

Lust = craving sexually what God has forbidden.  Do you battle lust?  Probably (definitely) every one of us would say “yes”.  In some way or form, there is a daily and probably hourly battle with our thoughts and our desires.  Thankfully, Jesus Christ is fully aware of our temptations.  Hebrews 4:15 — “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are yet without sin.”  That without sin is important.  Because in his life, death, and resurrection, Jesus has represented us and has won!  He did it without sinning.  And now we are credited with his righteousness, his perfect obedience.

Not only did He purchase our forgiveness and righteousness, but He has ransomed us from being slaves to sin, He has given us His Spirit inside of us to live for God, to be free, to enjoy God and true pleasure.

So, let’s battle lust and impurity so that we can enjoy God fully!  Thankfully, to help us do this, Josh Harris has written this wonderful little book, Sex is not the problem (lust is).

So, beginning in 2 weeks, we will be reviewing this book chapter by chapter.  If you do not have a copy of the book, you can buy one here, or you can pick one up at the CCK bookstore.  This little resource is a gift from God, so let’s take this opportunity to use it, to grow, to bring God glory, and to enjoy Him!


6 Comments so far
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I disagree with “Lust as defined by ‘craving sexually what God has forbidden.'” I think that definition of lust is not broad enough. Sometimes its perfectly ok to desire some things, but you can desire it too much. Furthermore, Lust may also be a form of escapism ranging from avoiding envy, insecurity, anxieties, and even your emotions. I have found in my life that the heart can even lie even in what it really wants, (by lusting) thus remain unsatisfied. It is deceitful above all things. I think defining lust by legalistic standards can lead to legalism. I don’t think that really definition applied to the depth of my own problems. Instead, I think some people need to put on self control in many more desires than just sexuality.

Comment by David McCarthy

Sure, biblically you can lust after a lot of things…but the category of the book is “sex”.

I think you are right that lust can often be a part of other sins….envy, pride, unbelief, etc… but i don’t think we need to expand the definition to include those. Often, our hearts are filled with various sins that are all firing together on all cylinders. Lust can often be an expression of bitterness and unbelief towards God and His sovereignty.

But, anyway, the definition stands.

Comment by bigplew

What a great topic to discuss; overcoming sexual lust. We live in a society that feeds our fleshly desires, of lust, on a regular basis. Whether through tv commericals, radio lyrics, or the “dress code” of our culture.

However, this is a battle that we will most undoubtedly lose on our own. Ephesians 6:12 says we wrestle “not against flesh and blood” (people), but against “rulers of darkness,” and “spiritual wickedness in high places.” This is a battle we must fight with divine intervention, we can not overcome “the wicked one” through our own self will.

So how can we overcome lust? Well for starters reading Mr. Harris’s book will probably only allow for interesting discussion, but other than that it will do you know good. You could probably make a very strong effort to overcome these desires on your own, but Jesus tells us that if we even look upon a woman we have already sinned in our hearts. (Matthew 5:28) I know I can not control every thought.

The only way I know how is to follow what the Bible teaches. If we go back to Ephesians Paul (the author) tells us to “put on the whole armour of God.” Which includes this important piece called the “the sword of the spirit, which is the Word of God”(the Bible). 1 John 2:14 is a great verse that shows us what victories we can have in our own lives by being armed with “the sword of the spirit.” It states, “I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.”

It so happens that John (the author) is writing to “young men.” Maybe this was John’s own manspeak blog…

The topic of “sexual lust” is a good one to confront, but I think the most common theme within all sin is that we cannot face it own our own. We need to confese our sins to our soverign Creator and cleanse ourselves through the reading of His Word, as stated in Psalm 119:9.

The Psalmist gives us a direct answer to the question of “how to overcome lust(sin)?” In Psalm 19:7-14.
“The law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the [whole] person; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple. The precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the Lord is pure and bright, enlightening the eyes. The [reverent] fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; the ordinances of the Lord are true and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, even than much fine gold; they are sweeter also than honey and drippings from the honeycomb. Moreover, by them is Your servant warned (reminded, illuminated, and instructed); and in keeping them there is great reward. Who can discern his lapses and errors? Clear me from hidden [and unconscious] faults. Keep back Your servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me! Then shall I be blameless, and I shall be innocent and clear of great transgression. Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my [firm, impenetrable] Rock and my Redeemer.”

I said all that to say this, Mr. Harris’s book may be well written, but it will not help you overcome lust. Only the Bible can free you form sin.

Priase to our Glorious Creator and Redeemer!

Comment by brian paul

Within my broadened definition for lust, I am just talking about lust with regard to sex.

Those other sins you mention can hide beneath lust and remain undistinguishable from lust. An example is a person who is promiscious because it gives a boost to their ego. There are several other examples I could think for which lust can subsitute as its main expression.

I guess I am dealing with lust as it is present in the corrupted heart. Rather than as an objective reality within God’s law. Yet, Sin will always be shown to be sinful beyond measure in the human heart. I don’t think simplicity for a definition on lust is always the right answer though especially when it comes to fighting sin.

Comment by Dave McCarthy

“A man may beat down the bitter fruit from an evil tree until he is weary; while the root abides in strength and vigor, the beating down of the present fruit will not hinder it from bringing forth more. This is the folly of some men; they set themselves with all earnestness and diligence against the appearing eruption of lust, but, leaving the principle and root untouched, perhaps unsearched out, they make but little or no progress in this work of mortification.”
-John Owen. (Overcoming sin and Temptation 75-76)

I guess that sums up my concern in the definition of lust. I think I am trying to define the sin by the root. I am not sure if you are or not. I don’t believe coveting something that God has forbidden is always the root even if it is that which is done.

Comment by David McCarthy

[…] you remember, we are going to walk thru Josh Harris’ book Sex is not the problem (lust […]

Pingback by Sex is not the problem, part 1… « Manspeak

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