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Are You Playing With Fire? - How to Deal With Sexual Temptation (4 of 7)
Series: Good to Great
1 Thessalonians 4:1-8
Preached August 2, 2009
A few years ago a good friend of mine called me during the winter months and asked me what I was doing.
I said I was enjoying the fire.
He said, “I hope you have a fireplace.”
Why would he say something like that?
Fire is good and useful when kept in certain parameters and used for a certain purpose for which it was created.
In fact, look at these pictures.
Picture of fire in fireplace (3)
Makes you feel kinda snuggly, doesn’t it?
But when fire is unleashed and uncontained, it becomes destructive.
Look at these pictures of the California wildfires taken a couple of years ago:
Picture of blazing wildfire (4)
The same thing is true of the gift of physical intimacy that God gave to married couples.
Sex, when used within the confines of marriage, is beautiful and useful.
When experienced outside those parameters, it becomes destructive.
In fact, Solomon in one of his proverbs concerning this topic asked the rhetorical question,
“Can a man carry fire next to his chest and his clothes not be burned?”
Sexual immorality is rampant in America. We’ve seen just in the last few months where politicians such as presidential hopeful John Edwards, senators Mark Sanford from South Carolina and John Ensign from Nevada have been guilty of adultery.
But sexual immorality is also a problem in the church. It is accentuated and highlighted when high profile Christian leaders experience moral collapses.
Sexual immorality among Christians is not a new thing.
It was a problem in the early church, as well, as many non-churched, or non-religious people (Gentiles) were coming to faith in Christ, coming out of a culture where sexual immorality was rampant; even seen as a part of some religious practices.
So Paul is addressing the ...
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