7 Things to Know About Sexual Sin in the Church

article_images/8.20.SexualSin_766650042.jpg

The costs of concealment are far greater than the costs of confession and repentance.

For the past two weeks at NewSpring Church, we dove into the subject of sexual sin IN the church (based on the fact that Jesus rebukes two churches in Revelation chapter two for sexual sin IN the church.)  Here are several thoughts/reminders in regards to what we covered.

(The sermons are available on iTunes and on the NewSpring Church Web site if you want to see/hear them in their entirety.)

1. Who or what you pursue will ultimately determine what you do and who you become.  It is a spiritual impossibility to pursue Jesus AND sexual sin at the same time.  (Psalm 25:15)

2. As a friend of mine has often said, “God is not after our begrudging submission but rather our joy!”  And long-term joy, peace, and fulfillment are never the result of pursuing sexual sin.  (Please read Proverbs 5, Proverbs 6, & Proverbs 7 for further confirmation in regards to this point.)

3. Sexual sin is not something that can be “prayed away,” nor can we simply read Bible verses about grace after committing it in order to feel better.  NOR can we simply promise God over and over that we won’t do it again (how’s that working for you?).  We CAN be set free from it…but it will not be pretty.  It must be confessed (James 5:16) and repented of (Revelation 2:21-23!).  (I did not overcome my nearly 20-year battle with pornography until I confessed it and asked for help!)

YES, it may “cost you” when it comes to your reputation…but remember, the costs of concealment are far greater than the costs of confession…and repentance is WAY more important than our reputation.

Don’t Miss

4. Sexual sin costs us our spiritual esteem…people who are involved in sexual sin feel disconnected from God, guilty, and spiritually dead.

5. For those who want to STOP sinning sexually…a decision MUST be made to renew your mind (Romans 12:1-12), to FIGHT the battles in your mind (II Corinthians 10:5), and to ask GODLY men and women to come alongside you and both encourage and spur you when necessary (Hebrews 10:24-25).

(PS…this means you have to stop saying, “I messed up sexually.”  OR “I made a mistake!”  Call it what it is…sin.  AND stop meeting with people who are doing the same things that you are doing and so when you get together to “hold one another accountable,” you are actually hoping that the other person “messed up” so that you don’t feel bad about doing so!)

6. Understand that IN CHRIST, you CAN have victory over sexual sin!  (See Romans 8:37, I Corinthians 15:57, Philippians 4:13!)  IN CHRIST, you are NOT a victim but rather a receiver of VICTORY!  If Jesus overcame DEATH, then Christ in you can help you breakthrough the stronghold of sexual sin!  (Luke 1:37!)

7. For those who belong to Christ and are trying their best to pursue Him on a daily basis but are still haunted by a sexual past…remember that is who you WERE; it is not WHO YOU ARE IN CHRIST!  (II Corinthians 5:17!)  Do not allow what used to defeat you to define you!  You are no longer defined by what you did but rather by what CHRIST did for you on the cross!

Perry Noble Perry Noble is the founding and senior pastor of NewSpring Church in South Carolina. The church averages 26,000 people during weekend services at multiple campuses throughout the state. Perry is a gifted communicator and teacher, convicted about speaking the truth as plainly as possible. God has given him a vision and a passion for helping people meet Jesus, and each week he shares God’s word and its practical application in our daily lives. Perry, his wife Lucretia and their daughter Charisse live in Anderson, South Carolina. You can read all of Perry’s unfiltered thoughts about life and leadership at PerryNoble.com. Don’t worry, he holds nothing back.

More from Perry Noble or visit Perry at http://www.perrynoble.com

Please Note: We reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive, uncivil and off-topic. Read a detailed description of our Comments Policy.
  • Jogal614

    The only only way to overcome any ongoing sin is simply by placing your faith in the cross of Christ,not the wooden beam but what Jesus there did,the perfect law of liberty in Christ Jesus has set us free from the law of sin & death….place it there and keep it there. Any other way we come up with victory is grossly deficient only at the cross Sin was dealt a death blow and ressurection power was then given to us for NEW life.

    • Needsomeanswers

      I agree with you a thousand percent, but what about a wife who is married to a man addicted to pornography? As a wife who has watched my husband for most of our marriage be sucked into internet pornography, how long do I just hope he stops?  We’ve been round and round about this and I have dedicated myself to help him through it, pray for him, etc., but to no avail. Maybe I am wrong but I have a very difficult time knowing this about him and then see him go off to “Minister”. He says he wants to be free, but I have seen him take no steps to get there. I am slowly losing hope that our marriage will be restored.

      • Eagle36

        I am praying for you and some of your answers are found in this article like with point #3 and #5 but your husband has to be serious about changing.  If he says that he wants to be free but takes no steps to be free then he is lying to you and to himself.  Notice what Perry said in point #3 – “(I did not overcome my nearly 20-year battle with pornography until I confessed it and asked for help!)”  If your husband is deep into internet pornography then he will not be able to get out until he is completely broken and seeks help from God and others.  He needs the power of God to break him free and accountability partners to keep him honest otherwise it will just continue to control his life.  Pornography is terribly evil and will destroy you spiritually.

        Based on what you have said about going off to “minister” I assume that your husband is a pastor but he is living in sin by committing adultry on a regular basis.  The problem with pornography is that it pulls you deeper and deeper until watching it isn’t enough, you have to act it out.  I am not trying to scare you but you need to be prepared to deal with an actual alduterous relationship with a “live” woman if he doesn’t break this sinful lifestyle.  Sexual sin is so destructive and it will always take you places that you never thought you would go and make you do things you never thought you would do.

        Many times it takes a crisis in a person’s life to finally bring them to the point of brokenness and surrender.  I dealt with some sexual sin in my own life when I was working in the church and during a revival service I had a spiritual crisis in my heart and went forward and laid it all on the altar and surrendered my entire life to God, including this sin, and He gave me power over it.  The power of God can set you free but it takes a daily surrender to Him to continue to walk in the light.  My crisis was an internal one but sometimes it takes an external crisis to finally break our pride and bring us to our knees.  You have to be prepared for an external crisis in your husbands life to bring him to his knees if he doesn’t submit to an internal one.

        Continue to pray for your husband and for yourself.  Make sure that you have no sin in your own life so that you have a strong relationship with God.  Pray that God breaks your husband’s heart for Him and that your husband surrenders his life fully to God.  Spend some time looking for resources to help you in this battle because this is a major spiritual battle that you are in.  There are ministries out there that deal directly with this very important issue in the church because you are not alone in this battle.  I can’t remember the name of these ministries right now but I bet that a ministry like Focus on the Family would have resources or would be able to point you in the right direction.  And since the author of this article admitted that he had an addiction to pornography, I bet that he could offer you some advice on what to do and where to go.

        Don’t give up.  God is in control.  Things may get worse before they get better but God loves you and your husband and wants both of you to be free of this terrible burden.

        • PastorK

          Thanks for posting this article and for the previous posts.  My response is to Needsomeanswers.  In our Christian walk, accountability is key to keeping ourselves and each other in check.  Your husband being a minister requires that you hold him even more accountable to the Word of God.  You are the one that is closest to him in order to help him you have to be strict in declaring what the Word says (in a loving way). If you are passive he will continue in sin.  But if you hold him accountable and let him know he can not continue in this manner, he will have to make a choice. 
          The other thing is, he needs to figure out why does he do this sin?  There’s a reason behind it.  He’s either stressed about something he’s not confronting or it started a long time ago and he just feels trapped. 
          A key scripture in overcoming this issue or any sexual issue is found in Romans 1:1-23 (Amplified Bible)but the key verses to focus on are verses 5-11. 
          5For if we have become
          one with Him by sharing a death like His, we shall also be [one with
          Him in sharing] His resurrection [by a new life lived for God].    6We
          know that our old (unrenewed) self was nailed to the cross with Him in
          order that [our] body [which was the instrument] of sin might be made
          ineffective and inactive for evil, that we might no longer be the slaves
          of sin.
              7For when a man dies, he is freed (loosed, delivered) from [the power of] sin [among men].
              8Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him,
              9Because
          we know that Christ (the Anointed One), being once raised from the
          dead, will never die again; death no longer has power over Him.
              10For
          by the death He died, He died to sin [ending His relation to it] once
          for all; and the life that He lives, He is living to God [in unbroken
          fellowship with Him].
              11Even
          so consider yourselves also dead to sin and your relation to it broken,
          but alive to God [living in unbroken fellowship with Him] in Christ
          Jesus.

          Verse 6 IS SO POWERFUL!!!!YOUR HUSBAND NEEDS TO SEE THAT THIS NATURE, ADDICTION TO PORNOGRAPHY/MASTURBATION WAS NAILED TO THE CROSS 2000 YEARS AGO AND THEREFORE (VERSE 9B) NO LONGER HAS POWER OVER HIM.  VERSE 9B SAYS DEATH NO LONGER HAS POWER OVER HIM.  VERSE 23 SAYS THE WAGES OF SIN IS DEATH.  HE NEEDS TO SEE THAT GLORIOUS TRUTH THAT SIN NOR DEATH HAS POWER OVER HIM.  PRAY THAT THE LORD OPENS HIS UNDERSTANDING TO THAT TRUTH AND THAT HE SEES THE IMAGERY THAT IS PAINTED IN THIS TEXT. 
          GOD BLESS YOU ALL!

  • DieDaily

    @68af13ba47f73c1d5fa0a7b7e2de3b3d:disqus  Is that how you overcame?  Also doesn’t the cross mean that you deny self and crucify the flesh through the spirit daily?

    • Jogal614

      Thats what Paul meant when he said under the umption of the holy spirit, i die daily i renew my faith in what HE did on calvary for me dailey this then gives the spirit latitude to go to work in your life, mabey this w/help pray then read romans 5-6 its important as christians that we understand what Paul was telling us on how to live for God. God bless and keep u.
      except for the cross
      jO

      • Virak_Mac

        What on earth is “umption?”

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_34XLOGU3OV2SYS6ZDGK5STLRJA Anthony Hubbard

    we as believers must abide in righteousness we are the righteousness of GOD we have been re made,reborn,and renewed in the LORD JESUS.when we forget that we were bought with the blood of JESUS,satan entices us and use our very weakness to trap us in all manner of sin and weights because believers sometimes are too busy for fellowship they get caught up.Paul said it best GALATIANS 2:20 if we are truly dead and made alive in CHRIST how can the temper get us to sin.amen this is an awesome teaching and i agree.. 

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_APGQ4ZPZFZ6FDLPEGENAS4DLOI kevi

    Every sin has its consequense and is it the death within the family occurs as the cosequense of sexuality,eg.Within David family,his son from Bathsheba died including Amon,Absolom ;Samson etc,isn’t too expensive to commit sexuality or adultery ?As christians do we know more of its consequense?Jesus desciples were sent 2 by 2 of same sex ,do we practice? Often we see man and women evangelists(not husband and wife) travelling together to other Nations, what kind of spirituality is spreading by them ?

  • ePHraimAg (Jacobs Union)

    Personally, many are so ready to point the finger, especially they whom have there perfect partner. Yes God does grant Divorce, but the church does not, yes there is counsel to be found, but the church so lacks. The church does not control the Spirit Of Man and yet has set itself up so. Yes…I have saw that the american church has set itself as they of the Pharisees that would even stone and persecute for their own righteousness. Not all people love to live a life Of promiscuity…but they do love Life to the point what God has for them and not what the church can do for You. Yes, The church today will incur such wrath that it burn in hell with all their labels….and as the adulterous woman…Christ will set Her free before He will ever set the so called church free. Please remember, you do not control the covenant that God has written upon The hearts Of men and Women, but You perceive that You can.
    Please note…this is a subject Of divers places..and hence greater judgement may so come upon your church. A Woman who seeks to control The Man rather than Be with Him as a Helpmeet is very open to losing her husband…even though He himself may still love her. Yes, america is even judged on this as they have judged wrongly and sought no counsel but condemnation. America is in violation Of the Kings’ Code and evenso 9/11. This was not terrorism,..this was Your sickening judgement. Beware!

    • Don51

      Goodness me…read the first line of your attack then try to read the rest objectively, you who never sin (point the finger) remember when you do point 3 fingers point back at you.
      God bless you

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Z7GMTWXF3W7RKZ4I2FJC7AESWM shadow

    Noble, you are a cliche. Every time I see a topic about criticism or sex, i know it is you, and i have never been wrong. Those issues are yours.  Stop projecting them onto everybody else and get some counseling to deal with YOUR issues.  

  • Eagle

    JUST A WORD FOR THE WIFE WHOSE HUSBAND IS DEEPLY INVOLVED IN PORNOGRAPHY. LET ME JUST ASK THIS ONE QUESTION, “WHAT DO YOU SUPPOSED IS THE REASON YOUR HUSBAND IS DEEPLY INVOLVED IN PORNOGRAPHY? HAVE YOU TRIED TO MEET HIS SEXUAL NEEDS THE WAY HE WOULD LIKE IT?”

  • LEWIS

    CONFESSION,REPENTANCE AND LOOKING FOR SEX TRAPS /AVOIDING THEM ARE IMPORTANT WAYS OF ESCAPING SEXUAL SINS. SPEAKING PUBLICLY AGAINST SEXUAL SIN WILL ALSO HELP A GREAT DEAL. MAY GOD HELP ANY CHRISTIAN HAVING THIS PROBLEM TO COME OUT OF IT IN JESUS NAME,

article_images/God_Love_316422517.jpg

WATCH: Tim Keller: A Deeper Understanding of God’s Love

“Everything about God’s nature drives Him powerfully toward you.” Share this video with someone who needs to hear that today.