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Let us begin our study on the seventh commandment by turning to Exodus 20:14.
"Thou shalt not commit adultery."
This commandment forbids impure acts, impure thoughts, and any activity that would lead us into impure thoughts and actions.
Jesus loves acts of purity or fidelity.
He loves pure thoughts and desires based on love.
He loves it when we practice those things that encourage pure thoughts and passions.
Jesus hates any acts of impurity.
Jesus hates the sensual thoughts and desires based on lust.
Jesus hates any practice that would tend to excite impure thoughts and passions.
The first three commandments of the second table deal with human relationships.
5th Honor our parents. This is where life begins.
6th Thou shalt not kill. We are to safeguard the sacredness of life.
7th Thou shalt not commit adultery. We are to protect the sanctity of marriage, which is the strength of the church and society.
The seventh commandment concerns the most intimate of human relationships, the one on which the perpetuity of the human race depends.
Concerning this most intimate relationship there needs to be moral purity. We are to be pure in our thoughts and actions.
Jesus said, "Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, that whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart." Matthew 5:27, 28
Jesus made adultery a matter of the heart. A person may not commit the act of adultery because he lacks the opportunity. But he can still be guilty of adultery by lusting after her in his heart.
Jesus said, "For out of heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: These are the things which defile a man; but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man." Matthew 15:19, 20.
John said, "Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth forever." 1 John 2:15-17
Lust is the foundation of all sin. It is the devil's counterfeit of love.
Love is kind, caring, and giving. But lust is truly destitute of all things noble and virtuous.
James wrote, "But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death." James 1:14, 15
We are able to tempt ourselves from within with impure thoughts and desires.
Paul wrote, "And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God." Romans 12:2
The battleground between Christ and Satan is the human mind. We must be so ever careful to guard the avenues to the soul.
Paul wrote, "Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind. Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God." 1 Corinthians 6:9, 10. See also Ephesians 5:3-7; Revelation 21:8
Pornography on the internet and in literature
Worldly television and the theatre
Evil company or associations
Eph 4:29; 5:4
I Tim 2:8, 9
Alcohol and illicit drugs
If you are married do not tell someone that is not your spouse that you are attracted to them, and do not allow them to tell you that they have feelings for you.
Avoid the appearance of evil.
Avoid flirtation or suggestive conversation.
Do not lust after someone who is not your spouse.
Pray for a large measure of fidelity.
See your spouse as ever growing and changing in Christ. In this way you will not be looking elsewhere.
Guard yourself from unnecessary exposure to the culture of immorality.
Look out for one another. Do not just assume fidelity, but protect it.
Be a giver in the marriage and meet one another's needs.
Set aside blocks of time for one another.
Learn to communicate intimately, both verbally and physically.
Commit yourself to the Lord and your marriage each day.
Plan to be together. This could include lunch, a mutually hobby, time for walking after a meal, or studying together.
Speak encouraging words and words of appreciation to each other.
Think about the things you appreciate about one another. Practice cherishing one another.
Never yell at one another. Do not speak harsh words. Refrain from physical abuse. Do not gossip about your spouse.
Let your spouse know that you enjoy being faithful to them and that you appreciate their fidelity.
Ask your spouse how you may pray for them that day.
Help one another grow in Christ. Study and pray together. Find a way to minister together in helping others.
Surprise your spouse with something pleasant. It could be an unexpected date. It could be breakfast in bed, or just finding time to have fun together.
Find friends who share in your values.
Foster an attitude of humility and servanthood. Put your spouse first. Make a list of what each one of you would like to receive from the other.
Foster an attitude of an unforgiving spirit.
Be careful about debt. The reason given for half of divorces concerns money problems.
Consider these verses: Exodus 20:3, 7; Colossians 3:5; Psalms 50:15; 1 Timothy 6:10; Luke 12:15; 1 Timothy 6:6.
Figure out ways to save money.
Use things up and waste not.
Use a shopping list to avoid unnecessary expenditures.
Agree on charitable giving
Make tithing a priority
Set realistic financial goals.
The number one enemy of love seems to be unresolved anger.
Anger stems from remembering grievances, sensing an injustice done, frustration, hurt, disappointment, and fear.
Signs of anger are (1) being overly critical of others, (2) our inability to see our own shortcomings, (3) addictions and abuses, (4) feelings of discouragement and depression, (5) being at odds with several people for long periods of time, (6) having a hard time forgiving someone, (7) overreacting to comments, (8) showing a lack of trust in others, and (9) blaming others.
There are ways of overcoming anger. We can begin by coming to Christ for forgiveness, guidance, and love. Realize that in every trial we can become bitter or better. We can look for the good to come out of bad. What can I learn from this? How can I grow from this situation? Here are some of the possible benefits we can receive: patience; a forgiving spirit; seriousness; responsibility; appreciation; hopefulness; and thoughtfulness.
It is well to define the cause of our anger. Allow yourself to grieve any losses involved. Try to understand your offender Perhaps they have had a rough past. Choose to forgive and not retaliate. Reach out to the offender.
This verse shows us five ways to be a loving spouse.
First, be of one mind. A lot of marriages have split because they are not of one mind. They are not growing together. As men we must first know what we believe. Then find time to study and pray together with your wife.
There are many topics to study: The life of Christ; doctrinal beliefs; family values; lifestyle issues; and such.
Second, be compassionate. At times, our wife may suffer. She can be suffering physically, emotionally, and spiritually. She is assailed by Satan because her role in the family is so important.
Whiie wives suffer, husbands often react with (1) impatience, (2) withdrawal, feeling overwhelmed not knowing what to do, and with (3) a let-me-fix-it attitude.
But we must remember to be compassionate. Evidences of compassion are listening and comforting.
Third, be loving to your wife. The Bible says, "Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of thine hand to do it." Proverbs 3:27.
Is it within my power to tell my wife that I love her? Yes.
Is it within my power to tell her that often and compliment her on other things? Yes.
Is it within my power to tell her that in deeds as well as by words? Yes.
If we have not accustomed ourselves in doing these things, then we may ask of God to fill us with such loving acts. Couples have the option to withhold love and thus steal from one another's joy, happiness, and health.
Fourth, be tenderhearted. If you wife does something that would normally anger you, choose not to be angry. Ask God to give you a tenderheart.
Fifth, be courteous. Never speak rudely about your spouse to a friend or stranger. Do not displace your frustrations and anger from work on your wife when you get home.
Why should we not be harsh? First, it is wrong. Second, your wife may become the kind of person she never wanted to be.
You never want to let your words to turn into weapons of criticism to destroy the one you want to preserve, protect, cherish, and love.
Remember, your wife was created as a gift from God to make you complete. So give yourself unreservedly to make her complete.
Speak affirmative words one to another. Proverbs 18:21; 12:25
Serve one another in love. Galatians 5:13
Let all bitterness and evil speaking die. Ephesians 4:31; Colossians 3:19
Parents are to encourage their children, not provoke them. Colossians 3:21
Practice intimacy with one another. 1 Corinthians 7:2-5
Sow bountifully with many kind words and acts. 2 Corinthians 9:6
Withhold no good thing from one another. Proverbs 3:27
In closing, we can best keep the seventh commandment by practicing those things that promote love from above. May the Lord write upon our hearts this beautiful commandment that our marriages may glorify Him, and that we may learn what it means to be a chaste virgin to Christ.
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