Serious Threat of Lust (Matthew 5:27-30) by Bro. Luis Cortez

Alright, good morning everyone, happy Lord’s day! I’d like to start off by sharing to you that thousands of years ago, there was this king who was called to go to battle against the Ammonites. And of course, as a king, meron kang duty to fulfill: to defend and protect your people. Sadly this King did not fulfill this duty, and stayed at home alone, instead. And while he was alone, he got up from his bed, looked outside this window, and saw a woman bathing. This King, instead of just looking away, looked longingly, and had lustful intent towards the woman. And because of this lust, he asked for the woman to sleep with him. And in result committing adultery. We all know of this story in the Bible as David’s great sin with Bathsheba. This dark part of his life documents his lust, adultery, deception, and then later on murder. And it all started because of one long lustful look.

And even though this happened many years ago, we can see, somehow, familiar patterns from David that are also seen in our lives today. In fact the temptations today of sexual lust are more aggressive because of easy access to photographs and videos on the internet. We have our phones, our tablets, our computers, and as good as technology is in advancing things, these are deadly tools that can be used by the enemy to feed our sinful lusts. And when this sin of lust is deeply nurtured in a Christian’s life, yung tipong wala nang regard sa pag slay ng sin na ito at naging habitual na siya. This often leads to heavier sexual sins. Yes, we agree that the act of sexual sin weighs deeper than the thought, but this doesn’t mean that we should underestimate the effects of lust in our minds. We all know that the enemy uses our minds as a playground and tempts us with lustful thoughts, and if left on their mind, or kung hindi natin ito i-sslay agad, lust can be a serious threat in the Christian life.

That is why in our text this morning we will see why Jesus also took the standard of the law higher when it comes to the sin of adultery. And some of us may have not committed the act of adultery, but we will read later that Jesus is not just after the external act, but is also concerned with the internal, which is our thoughts. So if you have your Bibles with you, kindly open it with me to Matthew 5 verses 27 to 30. That’s Matthew 5 verses 27 to 30. And I’ll be reading from the English Standard Version:

“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. If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into hell.”

May the Lord add blessing to the reading of His Word. And before we dive deeper into our text this morning, let us open in a word of prayer. Aming banal na Diyos, maraming salamat sa umagang ito na dinala mo kami dito. This is not an accident. You have ordained sovereignly in bringing us here in this church, O Lord, to hear your Word. Though this topic is very heavy and maybe some of us here, O Lord, are struggling deeply, secretly with this sin, Lord I pray that you convict us first and foremost. I pray that you discipline us with your Word and with this guilt and shame that we might feel this morning, and hopefully that we would feel, this morning, when we hear your Word for us. I pray Lord that we would see how horrible the sin is and how deadly the effects of the sin is, and I pray Lord that you would give us strength to endure this preaching and be humble enough to to apply it as best as we can, O Lord. With the power of the Holy Spirit, and I pray, O Lord, that we see also the beauty of your grace that you forgive us, O Lord, whenever we confess our sins to you. And may this forgiveness and grace motivate us, O Lord, to live lives that are pure, lives that are holy and pleasing to you, O Lord. We are thankful, Lord, for this morning that we can approach your throne of grace because of Christ. May the saints be sanctified and edified and may the lost be saved today, O Lord, and may you be glorified. In your name we pray, amen.

All right, so far we have been going through The Sermon on the Mount here in chapter 5, where we see Jesus at the beginning of the sermon teaching about yung totoong meaning of blessedness and righteousness, and how Christians should live as people of God. Clearly stating a huge difference between God’s way of blessedness and righteousness, versus the world’s view of happiness and righteousness. In the sermon, Jesus also states in Matthew 5 verse 20, that the true people of God will have a righteousness that exceeds the scribes and Pharisees. Kasi the Pharisees think that they are righteous, but deep inside they are not because they misunderstood and misapplied the law. And they were known for looking beautiful on the outside, but on the inside are full of dead men’s bones and everything unclean.

It is clear that the righteousness of God goes beyond the standard of the Pharisees and other religious leaders in their day. And that is why Jesus went deeper when talking about the sin of adultery — addressing both the inward motives and the physical act itself. Church, God looks at the heart, alam natin ‘to. He sees the things that we may seem to be hiding, and maybe some of us here have been struggling with secret sins — na parang, naging Pharisees na rin ata tayo. Trying to look good on the outside, thinking that we are not as bad as those who commit adultery or murder, but are struggling deeply in our hearts with lust or other secret sins that we might be keeping. Napaka-deceiving ng sin. Tingin kasi natin ibibigiyan tayo ng pleasure, diba? Pero alam natin ng sinasabi ng Salita ng Diyos na deadly ito and it will affect our spiritual lives tremendously. Mukha siyang nakakapag-satisfy, but this is a trap. And when we fall into sin and do not deal with it right away, we will be wanting for more and we will still be left unsatisfied. We all know what happened to Ravi Zacharias, right? It’s sad. On the outside he looked like a faithful minister of God, but behind the scenes he actually struggled with sexual sins that were later on exposed. We all know what happened to Joshua Harris. Kilala siya sa pag-uso ng “purity movement,” and maybe most of us here alam ng book niya na “I Kissed Dating Goodbye.” But years after that he divorced his wife and today he no longer considers himself a follower of God, a Christian, nag apostate na siya.

At times this is what happens when someone who struggles with the sin of lust hides it, nurtures it, and is not repentant of it. This is damaging not just to the soul of an individual but it also damages others and the reputation of Christianity in the world. Kaya naman when we talk about lust, we should take the sin issue seriously. Hindi ito dapat ginagawa ng topic about jokes or stuff! And that is why my message for all of us this morning is this: The sin of lust offers a false pleasure that must be dealt with seriously. And we will unpack this message into two parts to understand this further. The first part is “The Deeper Issue.” We fight this sin not on our own wisdom or pragmatic steps na hindi nakapag-change talaga ng heart or nakapag-renew ng mind. We must address the heart of the sin issue, and only God can understand the human heart and help us fight this sin. Apart from Christ we naturally will harbor malice, lust, and all other secret sins for our hearts are desperately sick. Binasa natin ‘to kanina sa Scripture reading: “the heart is deceitful above all things and desperately sick, who can understand it?” Ang sagot dito ay si God! God understands it! And praise be to God for his power and grace in our lives that despite our indwelling sin, we can trust that God can cure sinful hearts through the gospel of Jesus Christ which offers perfect and everlasting satisfaction.

Sin will never make us happy and it will keep us from being joyful in Christ. The righteousness that he has gifted us, the precious word of God that he allows us to feed on to make us spiritually healthy, the means of Grace that we have every Lord’s day, ito ang bagay na nagpapaligaya sa atin. At ito yung bagay na mag-ffeed ng appetite natin for the things of God. The challenge is we think that there are other things that can give us pleasure instead of finding it in God. And we will talk more about this in the second part of our sermon, “The Greater Pleasure.”

In fighting this sin of lust, we must remember our calling as people of God to live holy lives despite our difficult ongoing battle with sin. He calls to those who are saved by grace to seriously fight the sin that remains in our lives. Kaya kapatid, kung distracted ka na sa mga ibang bagay, na nag-ccultivate na ng sins sa buhay mo, hindi yan mag bibigay ng totoong pleasure sa buhay mo. We can only find true satisfaction in the forgiveness and grade of Our Redeemer, Jesus Christ, and through his grace and love, he preserves his people through sanctification until he returns and ushers the saints to glorification. And so as we go through the message of God for us this morning, let us ask him to shape our hearts and renew our minds into Christ’s likeness and may he convict us with his Word and restore the joy of our salvation.

Let us now consider the first part, “The Deeper Issue.” So in verses 27 and 28 of our texts, we learned that Jesus opposes the act of adultery, but goes deeper pointing out the lustful intent of the heart. During their time the people and the teachers of the day were teaching that adultery was wrong but they applied the law pertaining only to the act of adultery. And they didn’t consider the heart that motivated the act. Kumbaga, abstinence lang ang ginagawa nila. And we all know that in pursuing Purity, this isn’t enough. May mga iba na nag-aabstain sa act ng adultery dahil takot silang mahuli, but deep inside their hearts they struggle with sinful lust.

But before we go deeper deeper into this, tignan muna namin ano ba talagang ibig sabihin ng word na lust? It basically means in Greek “epistemia” or desire. And so in the New Testament this word is also used in the context of desiring an office in a local church and there are other cases lusting or desiring is honorable to God and it’s not evil like sinful lust. Pero pag dating naman sa desire or lust na hindi sang ayon sa Panginoon, or out of bounds ito sa tingin ng Diyos na tama, then this lust becomes sinful. For example for married couples, it is not a sin to have sexual lust or desire for each other. For God designed sex to be good in the context of marriage. But if the man or woman who are married to each other craves sexual intimacy in his or her mind with someone who is not their spouse, then this sexual desire turns into a sin of lust. And our text says that this is adultery in the heart! Kung ikaw naman ay single, hindi ka exempted dito. You may fall into this sin by looking at someone with lustful intent. Jesus is not forbidding us to look at a man or woman, rather he forbids us to look with lustful intent. Okay, so if we see someone who is handsome or beautiful, guys, hindi sinful tumingin at mag appreciate ng creation ng Panginoon. Actually, makikita pa lang natin dito sa Church — covenant duty natin as members to encourage one another, and if needed, we can complement one another with our God-given appearance or looks. It is not sinful to admire beauty, but to look at someone with the purpose of gratifying one’s sexual desire — kapatid, sin yan! And what we’re talking about here is yung long, lustful look. Hindi ito yung glance or dumaan lang in front of our eyes, the look here that Jesus is talking about is gazing upon someone with sexual purposes. Kung baga hindi ito accidental, this is actually planned to feed the inner sensual appetite of a sinner. So kamusta tayo when we browse the internet? Do you struggle with porn? Alam natin na watching porn is an ugly sin! And those who are struggling with this do not just commit sinful lust but it extends to other sins! Tim Challies actually enumerates seven more sins that the Christian commits when he or she struggles with porn. Sabi niya, “It also extends to idolatry, adultery, deceit, theft, greed, sloth, and ignoring the Holy Spirit.” And so if you are a Christian and you deeply struggle with this, ngayon pa lang sinasabi ko, I humbly ask you to repent and ask for help! Ask for help! Be accountable, be willing to undergo discipline that will help you hate this sin and appreciate the beauty of God’s grace that will help you mortify this sin!

This issue of lust is something we must not take lightly and we all know that for the Christian, God provides a way out! Whenever we get these temptations — and I just want to make it clear that being tempted is not in itself sinful, we know that Christ also experienced temptations during his earthly life, but he didn’t sin. The Spirit Led Jesus into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil — it wasn’t God who tempted it was the devil. That is why we can never say that God tempts us. James 1:13-14 says, “Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire.” So meron po ng two types of temptations: yung uno, ito yung internal. These temptations come from inside us, our own sinful nature. At yung pangalawa, ito yung external. These are from the devil, the evil spirit, and the fallen world. For example si Eve, she got tempted internally when she reacted out of lust to satisfy her desires despite opposing the command of God. And she also got tempted externally from the lies of the serpent and seducing an image of the forbidden fruit. Alam din natin ang buhay ni Job; he mostly got tempted externally, inallow ni God ‘to, and it was brought by Satan. Alam din natin yung story ni Josep; he got tempted by external factors coming from the wife of Potiphar. We all know how Joseph responded here; he resisted the temptation and obeyed God by running away from the woman.

And so for God’s people, temptations normally will happen, but we can overcome this if we submit ourselves to God and resist the devil. Sadly some of us here when we get tempted usually kapag naging habitual na yung sin, nawawala na tayo ng gana to strive in slaying the sin — to flee and use the way out that God always provides! And when we allow our mind to dive deeper and deeper into thinking lustful thoughts, we end up wanting to commit the act of sexual sin. Lustful thoughts that are nurtured usually develop into acts of sexual sin. That is why it is important to get rid of such thoughts before it gives birth to sin! Hangga’t maaari i-filter natin ang mga pumapasok sa thoughts natin! Labanan natin yung temptation nito by looking away from things that provoke lust. Pwede din natin siguro i-filter yung pinapanood natin or pinapakingan natin. Maybe this creates lustful thoughts. Clear ang sinabi ni Paul in Romans, “Do not be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewal of your mind.” Kapatid, tandaan natin that God calls us to be set apart even sa thoughts natin to fight the sinful patterns of this world and to keep our minds renewed by the word of God.

You see the goal here is not perfection! This is impossible to attain habang buhay pa tayo dito in this fallen world. Our sanctification here on Earth is imperfect. Stated ito sa confession of faith natin, we read this earlier: “The sanctification is throughout the whole man yet imperfect in this life.” Although this doesn’t mean na may error yung pag sanctify ni God sa atin, this basically means na yung mag process sa atin to become like Christ is incomplete here on earth because sin still remains. And so paano nga ba? What does or how does sanctification look like, then in a Christian? It is a life of daily repentance and faith in Christ. This is not perfection — this is a life that trusts in the power of God to combat remaining sins and pursues holiness out of joyful obedience. Wag tayo magpapaloko sa demonyo na porket wala ng perfect satin na hindi nalang tayo mag strive in slaying our sins! Maging aware tayo sa mga patterns ng mundo na baka sinusundan natin tuwing nahuhulog tayo sa sinful lust. And when temptation arises — and it will keep on coming, again it will keep on coming — wag nating hahayaan mag linger yung sinful lust natin. Martin Luther shared his thoughts about being tempted, he says, “you cannot keep birds from flying over your head, but you can keep them from building a nest in your hair.”

Because we live in a fallen world, the temptation to sin will surely come. So dear brothers and sisters, my first challenge for all of us is this: Be alert to sin’s deceitfulness and do not dwell on lustful thoughts. Again, do not dwell on lustful thoughts! Resist the lies about the lust of the world loves to tell us every single day. Flee from places and get rid of things that will tempt you tremendously to commit this sin and be drowned by it. Be extra careful, brothers and sisters, on what you browse on the internet. Again, if kaya, unfollow mo yung mga posts na hindi nakakatulong. Maybe delete mo yung mga apps na hindi nakakatulong. I-limit mo yung time mo sa internet. You see, John Owen, he actually sees only two options is that a believer has sa remaining since natin: either you kill it or it kills you. And so if you’re attending church today, for the first time at hindi ka bothered by your sins and you love it, at hindi mo kilala ang Panginoon, Scripture is saying that spiritual death awaits those who love their sins and who do not trust the gospel message of Jesus Christ. Kaibigan, gusto kong sabihin sa inyo walang mararating na maganda ang buhay na punong punong ng kasalanan. Lumapit ka sa Panginoon! Turn away from your sins now because if you don’t, and at the end of your life talagang hindi ka nawala sa Diyos, you will face judgment and will experience the eternal wrath of God. Wag mong hayaan tuloyin kang masira sa mga kasalanan mo! Ask God for strength to change you and see that in Christ there is a life that is free from bondage and slavery to sin. This doesn’t mean that when you become a child of God or a Christian ma mag-disappear na yung sin. What will happen is our view towards sin and our relationship with it will change, and it must change.

And this is God’s gift to those who will repent and believe in him: So you may find true joy and true peace. Peace that only Jesus can offer by repenting of your sins and believing in the finished work of Christ on the cross. Learn to hate sin! I’m also talking to those who are in the faith, brothers and sisters, hate sin! Not just the after effects of it, but sin itself. Train your heart and your mind to hate it. We must hate evil and hold fast to what is good. And we know that what is good is Christ. He’s the great physician, the one who can cure our sinful hearts, and he has redeemed us by becoming like one of us, human, who was tempted in every way but did not sin. He wasn’t born with a sinful nature like us because Scripture tells us that he is sinless, unlike us who have a sinful nature and gets tempted eternally, Christ doesn’t have one because there is no sin in him, and yet he willingly lived here on Earth that is greatly affected by sin. He experienced suffering, he was beaten, mocked, ridiculed, and was nailed to the cross because of the sins of the world. It was our sins that nailed him there! But he willingly went through this because that was the way for sinners to be reconciled to God; that was the way for him to demonstrate his love for his people; that was the way for us to see how the wrath of God was poured on Christ when he became sin for us; that was the way for us to see how horrible sin is. But at the same time how merciful and loving our God is. And because of this we can ask God for strength to stand firm against sin and hold fast to Christ.

Alam niyo yung mga times na pag nakaalis na kayo ng bahay biglang marealize na, “Ay wait, may nakalimutan pala ako.” Nakalimutan siguro mo yung phone, yung wallet mo — or maybe today, pagpunta mo dito sa church siguro yung Bible or whatever. This is because we are forgetful people, and when it comes to the gospel, maraming beses din na nakalimutan natin ‘to eh, ‘no? We get preoccupied with the things of this world and we neglect practicing spiritual disciplines on weekdays and neglect the Lord’s Day, tapos pag dumating na yung matinding battle with sin, napapaisip tayo, “Shucks, paano pala ulit labanan ‘to? Madedepend ba ako sa sarili ko? Paano pala ulit ‘to? Ano pala yung sinabi ni God sa Word niya?” We forget how to deal with sin and most importantly we forget what Christ has done to save us from sin! And so brothers and sisters, let us keep reminding ourselves of Christ who completely satisfies us and who is our greatest treasure. And so whenever we are tempted to look with lustful intent at someone, fight it by looking to Christ, for he is the one who offers true pleasure.

And this leads us now to the second part of our sermon: “The Greater Pleasure.” In verses 29 to 30 Jesus makes an illustration that points out yung drastic need to throw away what causes people to sin. He used intense words like “cutting off your right hand” if it’s making you sin. And we should take note that Jesus is using hyperbole during this time, he’s illustrating something intense regarding sanctification. So hindi siya nagtuturo na i-damage o i-injure yung bodies natin in order for us to be holy. In fact, even if we cut off both our hands and our eyes, we will still struggle with lust by using our imagination. O baka din yung brain tangalin natin. We need to know that the problem here is not our physical body, the problem here is our sinful nature. And what Jesus is pointing out is that there must be an intense and serious manner in our battle against sin. In reading this verse, sinabi ni John Stott, he thought of it this way, and I quote, “Not mutilation but mortification is the path of Holiness that Jesus taught.” But again, slaying our sins is not always easy. The flesh will always want to make us think that we are missing out on pleasure whenever we deny the flesh. And sometimes actually most of the time God calls us to do hard things for us to kill our flesh so that we find joy in obeying his commands! Yes, we agree that the words of Jesus here are intense and we also understand that this should not be taken literally, but this doesn’t mean that we won’t do anything about serious sins creeping into our lives. We must apply this text if we think of it this way — “Hindi naman ito literal so hindi ko nalang gagawin, wala nalang akong gagawin about the sin.” And when this becomes our mindset, we fall into the traps of licentiousness or lawlessness. And we are grateful that Christ has freed us from the bondage of sin and live moral lives, pero may times na kailangan natin i-restrict yung sarili natin sa freedom na binibigay saatin ng Panginoon. Kung alam mo sa sarili mo na matindi yung struggle mo with lust, then go and restrict yourself from watching TV shows that may ignite that lust. If it means saying no to friends or office mates that invite you to places that will ignite your lust, by all means go ahead! To the ladies, to my sisters in Christ, how do you present yourselves in public with how you dress? Do you wear clothes that draw attention to your skin? Di ko sinasabi na mag-balot ka lalo na ngayon ang init or kapag sira yung aircon. But there is a fine line between appropriate and seductive. And think of it this way — a Christian woman whose life has been made beautiful through the grace of God will delight to dress in a way that pleases the Lord. Remember one of the Proverbs in chapter 31, “Charm is deceptive and beauty fleeting but the woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.” So for the single girls here, here’s a brotherly tip: help your brothers in Christ by not igniting their lusts with how you dress, but instead attract them with godliness.

And we must take note that we should do this because we want to honor the Lord! And the problem is at times nahihirapan tayo to honor God kasi we think so much of how people may think about us: “Grabe ang baduy naman ito, ‘holy holy’ naman nito, grabe.” Pero ito yung tanong ‘to, iniisip mo pa yung tingin ng ibang tao sa’yo sa pagdating ng pursuit mo ng purity? Kaysa tingin mo na kung ano yung tama sa tingin ni God? And here’s another problem: whenever we hear the word purity meron na tayong iniisip na masama… “Ay, legalistic,” “Ay shucks, magffail ako, wag nalang.” Pero alam niyo, sa totoo lang, you’re right, we will fail! Kaya kailangan natin yung gospel! Kailangan natin tumakbo papunta kay Christ! Kailangan natin timingin sa kanya because purity is more than just saying no to worldly things, it is actually changing your focus to the things of God. Hebrews [12:1-2] says to “lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith.” And so in every turning away from sin, there must be a complete turning to God. We should be running away from sin because we are running towards Christ. We are laying aside every false pleasure that sin offers because we are running with endurance to the richness of Christ.

In battling with lusts, we don’t just try to not think of sexual images in our heads and replace them with with basketball, with food, with vacation or work because we can throw away our computers and our for our phones or we can stop going to malls and watch movies, or lumipat tayo sa koti lang yung tao, or walang internet — I don’t know if there is such a place. But we can do all these drastic things and employ disciplines, but if this is all that we do and we are not cultivating graces in saying no to our flesh, then we are not killing the sin of lust.

Brothers and sisters we must remember that mortifying our sin of lust comes from cherishing Jesus Christ. And how do we do this? By letting the word of Christ dwell in us richly, instead of letting our minds dwell with lust over worldly things, we ask God to help us devote more time to savoring — hindi ito yung 15 minutes lang or five minutes or 10 minutes — ito yung savoring his Word in the things of God. Let us ask God to help us be accountable to someone who will point out our sin, who will help us repent of our sins, and who will also encourage us to keep pursuing Christ. And so if you’re struggling recently, brothers and sisters, there is hope in Christ. Mag mong kahiya, wag mong itago, wag mo i-keep secretly yung sin a yan. There is hope in Christ, so repent of that sin and run to him and find Grace and forgiveness in the gospel of Christ. Sana makita mo yung importance ng magmortify ng sin na ito because our spiritual health depends on how we fight our sins. John Owen says this about our need for mortification: “The promise of life and vigor in our spiritual life depends much upon our mortification of sin. To gain spiritual strength, we must weaken sin, disentangle our hearts from false ambitions and cleanse our thoughts. We must also mortify our affection so that we become more engaged in the worship of God than in the worship of our own idols. Mortification prunes indwelling sin and allows the graces of God to grow in our lives.”

And so brothers and sisters my last challenge to all of us is this: May we find joy in saying “yes” to Christ and “no” to the flesh. Again, may we find joy in saying “yes” to Christ and “no” to the flesh. Sin will always be there to tempt us but we can fight it by the grace of God in the power of the Holy Spirit to say no to it and say yes to Christ. We say yes to Christ because his mercies are greater than our sins. We say yes to Christ because his grace is stronger than our sins. We say yes to Christ because his kindness overwhelms our sins, his goodness, his compassion, his light of love overshines and overpowers our sins. Kapatid, do you believe this? Do you not see the vast and rich spiritual blessings that we have in Christ? Take a hold of this and use this as a motivation to say yes to Christ and no to sin, especially the ones that we think we have mortified already. And in the case of lust and adultery in the heart, we need a daily dose of the gospel message to motivate us in slaying the sin and take drastic measures to keep our joy in Christ.

One of the most prolific writers during the early years of Christianity is Augustine. He is mostly known for writing “Confessions” and “City of God,” and his many works were very inspirational even to the reformers like Martin Luther and John Calvin. And up until today many church leaders still look to his work as a source for teaching biblical doctrines. But did you know that during his early years Augustine indulged himself in sexual immorality by having a prostitute before? And when he eventually, by the grace of God, got saved, this past of his came back creeping in — literally. One day he was walking alone and this prostitute saw him. This woman kept calling Augustine and kept going after him, and when Augustine saw her, he kept his eyes forward and continued walking. But this woman was desperate; she continued shouting and calling Augustine and ran after him then finally she said, “It is I, Augustine.” He looked at her and replied, “It is no longer I.”

Church let me encourage you with this, our sins may be great but we have a Savior that is greater. He can change the worst sinner into faithful men and women who are not perfect, but followers of God who are persevering in the battle against sin. And the saints of God will persevere because he is the Author and Perfecter of this new life that we have in him. So when temptations to lust and commit sexual sins keep coming at us, let us remember that we have been blessed by Christ with new life. A life that is obedient to Christ who dwells in us by the spirit to direct in us in righteousness and purity. This new life gives us humility in acknowledging our sins and our need for Christ who is abounding in mercy and grace. And one day, he will return and bring all the redeemed ones into glory in heaven for eternity where we will no longer look at things with sinful eyes and will behold with our very eyes true and everlasting glory and holiness! And so until then let us keep asking God for strength to persevere in this fight and battle with sin.

In closing, may we use our eyes in looking away at false pleasures and keep our sight fixed on the beauty of the gospel. Let us be motivated by the richness of Christ’s forgiveness and grace as we pursue purity in the heart and in the mind until the Lord brings us to glorification where our eyes will finally see the fullness of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Let us pray. Panginoon, maraming salamat sa umagang ito. Thank you, Lord, for your Word. Lord, this is a heavy topic, but thank you Lord for convicting us. Thank you Lord that we have read this seriously and I pray Lord that we seriously fight the sin of lust, O Lord, especially to those who are deeply struggling with the sin. I pray, Lord, that you help us whenever we are guilty of the sin. I pray that you bring us, O Lord, into your throne of grace to motivate us in running to you, Lord, in finding means of graces, O Lord, that will help us slay the sin and restore the joy of our salvation. Panginoon, maraming salamat sa Lord’s Day dahil totoong nakakarefresh ito ng puso, totoo nakakarenew ito ng mind, totoong nakakapag-bago at nakakapag save ito ng unbelievers. Salamat Panginoon dinala po kami dito sa church nito. And we pray, Lord, for the remaining time that we have for this Lord’s day, and I pray, Lord, that you will keep our eyes focused on Christ. And I pray that our fellowships, O Lord, that our lunch with our friends, with our brothers and sisters, would be glorifying to you and I pray, Lord, that we would be good representatives of Christ. And thank you, Lord, for this day, we love you, in your name we pray, amen.

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