You are currently viewing Breaking Bad Habits 5 – Lustful Thoughts

Breaking Bad Habits 5 – Lustful Thoughts

Breaking Bad Habits Day 5: Lustful Thoughts

 You have heard that it was said, “You shall not commit adultery.” But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart. (Matthew 5:27-28, ESV)

 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever. (1 John 2:15-17, ESV)

 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. (Galatians 5:16-17, ESV)

Lustful thoughts are a powerful force to fight against. Our sinful nature, when paired with a crude and promiscuous world, leaves us with what feels like an uphill battle. Battling lustful thoughts was already difficult enough before the age of the internet and social media, but now those things can be vehicles that allow us to dive deeper and deeper into a sinful pattern. Thankfully, we are equipped with help from the Lord, the Holy Spirit within us, and fellow believers around us. 

It might not seem that lustful thoughts are much of a sin. After all, they’re just contained in your mind and you would never act on them, right? Well, the Bible paints a different picture. I am sure we all know that the Ten Commandments say that we should not commit adultery. As believers, we realize that adultery is wrong; however, the Bible also includes lustful thoughts as a form of adultery. The Lord Jesus said, “Everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart” (Matthew 5:28).

As you can see, the Lord takes lustful thoughts very seriously. Such thoughts can easily lead to adulterous actions if not eliminated. My uncle gave me a great book to read when I was a teenager titled “Every Young Man’s Battle.” (I would like to interject and say that I don’t mean to suggest that this is only a battle for young men. I know there are plenty of men and women of all ages who struggle with lustful thoughts, pornography, promiscuity, and sexual addictions of all types.) The book is about having a mindset that is in opposition to the world of premarital sex, pornography, etc. that plagues our society today. One concept that has stuck with me all these years is the idea of bouncing your eyes, and it is something I have tried to use since reading that book.

Bouncing your eyes simply means that when something enters your field of vision that could lead to temptation, force yourself to look elsewhere. Often, we cannot control what enters our field of vision when we’re walking down the street, heading to class, and sometimes even when we’re browsing online. However, we can control what we continue to look at. Next time you see something that could lead you to be tempted, force yourself to look away. I do believe that it gets easier the older you get and the more experience you have, but the perils are still the same. It can still be difficult to battle these thoughts no matter what stage of life you are in.

One way to effectively battle this temptation is to carve out more time for spiritual things. Reading our Bibles, praying, spending time with faithful believers, studying the Word of God—all these things will aid us in battling these tempting thoughts. The closer our relationship with Jesus, the less we will be interested in the temporary pleasures of this world. The temptation will always be there, though. Satan’s desire is for believers to falter and ruin their testimony. Thankfully, in this battle we have the Lord, the Holy Spirit, and our fellow Christians on our side. It would be my prayer that each of us work to strengthen our relationship with the Savior, encourage and check in on those around us, and keep the temptation of lust at bay.

Please follow and like us:

Leave a Reply