19 October 2009

Purpose In Your Heart – 10.19.09

Daniel 1:8 But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king's meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.

Daniel was an intelligent, talented, attractive young man who was taken away from his parents, his people, and his temple by a nation who gave him a new name, taught him a new language, and placed him in the court of a heathen king. Yet he stayed clean and pure and true to God throughout his entire life because early in his life he made a decision not to defile himself.

Likewise, if we are going to be blameless and harmless as the sons of God without rebuke in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation among whom we shine as lights in the world (Philippians 2:15), we must recognize that is not going to happen by accident or default. If we want to be used of God (2 Timothy 2:19-22), we must purpose in our hearts not to defile ourselves with…

I. Sexual immorality

Hebrews 13:4

God created marriage and is the designer of the blessings that go with it (i.e. the physical relationship between a husband wife, Genesis 1:28). But He has established some very definite boundaries in which that relationship can be enjoyed – one husband and one wife committed to each other for their entire lives – and gives a sure and certain promise of judgment to any who step outside of those boundaries in any way.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20

To step outside of the boundaries God has established is to sin against one's own body. Again, if you get involved with something God has said to save for marriage, you're only going to get hurt. So FLEE fornication. The best way to keep from falling off a cliff is to stay away from the edge. The devil would have you get as close to the edge as possible, telling you all the while that you'll never "go too far," and all so he can push you off and laugh when you crash on the jagged rocks below.

1 Corinthians 7:1-2

God's idea for making sure that you keep yourself pure is HANDS OFF.

Romans 13:14

Make no provision for the flesh. Don't pack a lunch for lust. You CAN'T handle the temptation. If you think you can, that just proves how close you are to falling over the edge of that cliff (1 Corinthians 10:12).

II. Alcohol

Proverbs 20:1

You're stupid ("not wise") if you think drinking is cool. You're stupid ("not wise") if you think one drink won't hurt. You're stupid ("not wise") if you think it's OK as long as you don't get drunk. The devil laughs at your ignorance.

Proverbs 23:29-32

It's pretty hard to drink something you're not even supposed to look at. But everybody's doing it…it biteth like a serpent and stingeth like an adder. But they'll make fun of me if I don't…it biteth like a serpent and stingeth like an adder. But I know when to stop…it biteth like a serpent and stingeth like an adder.

III. Music

1 Corinthians 15:33

Music is a powerful thing, and you're deceived by the devil if you think the music you listen to doesn't have a major effect on your life.

Ephesians 5:18-19; Colossians 3:16

A Christian has no business listening to anything but music that glorifies God and encourages him/her to do what's right. A Christian has no business singing anything but music that glorifies God and encourages him/her to do what's right.

IV. Money

1 Timothy 6:9-10

Money is not the root of all evil – it's necessary for love. But if you LOVE money, if you make it your goal in life to get rich, then here's what you have to look forward to: temptations; snares; foolish and hurtful lusts; drowning in destruction and perdition; piercing yourself through with many sorrows.

Riches are uncertain (1 Timothy 6:17). They make themselves wings and fly away as an eagle toward heaven (Proverbs 23:5). So labor not to be rich (Proverbs 23:4). The richest man in the world said it was empty and meaningless (Proverbs 30:8-9; Ecclesiastes).

Life isn't about what you can get (Luke 12:15). It's about God and the people He puts in your life and relationships and memories and making a difference in eternity. So invest your time and effort into those things – not making another dollar – because godliness with contentment is great gain (1 Timothy 6:6-8).

So work hard and provide for yourself. Work hard and provide for your family. If God gives you riches then praise Him for it and use that money for Him. But don't be deceived and defiled by the love of money.

It's important that you make up your mind about these things ahead of time. Daniel would have never survived in Babylon had he not purposed in his heart from the outset that he would not allow himself to be defiled.


  1. Great post! Thanks for your God-honoring blog. I really appreciate you and Lauren's hearts for the youth ministry and how you don't wait until they're teens to befriend them, but you are already approachable by even a little five year old. It means so much to parents knowing that the youth pastor and his wife are leading by their consistent, Godly examples.

  2. Very good, so true, and so important...I want to print this and distribute it to all the Christians I know on campus! Oh there is so much ignorance among Christians today it is so so so so so sad and dangerous! Thank you for your commitment and diligence to studying and teaching God's word.
    --Jenessa Spaulding