Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Uncleanness—are you savvy?

TODAY'S SPECIAL: 1 Thessalonians 3:6-4:8

"For God didn't call us to uncleanness but in holiness. Therefore he who rejects this does not reject man, but God, who has also given us His Holy Spirit." 1 Thessalonians 4:7,8

"For God has not called us to impurity, but to consecration [to dedicate ourselves to the most thorough purity]. Therefore whoever disregards—sets aside and rejects—this disregards not man but God, Whose [very] Spirit [Whom] He gives to you [is] holy—chaste, pure." 1 Thessalonians 4:7,8 AMP.

After specifically naming sexual immorality as a sin to avoid, Paul warns the Thessalonians about general "uncleanness."

[The word uncleanness (akathars) is translated "impurity" (NASB, AMP), "impure" (NIV, NLT) and "immorality" (GNT). In the Greek akathars—uncleanness— refers to physical uncleanness as well as uncleanness in a moral sense: "The impurity of lustful, luxurious, profligate living."]

Paul suggests that people who resist his call to pure living aren't only rejecting him, but God whose Spirit in the believer is holy—"His Holy Spirit."

As believers all these many years later we too get the gift of the Holy Spirit when we put our faith in Jesus for salvation. He makes good and sure that we know we're on dangerous ground when we're around uncleanness.

Have you ever been in the middle of a novel and realized—this book is not good for me? Or walked out of a movie that exalted immorality? Or turned off a comedy routine on TV because it was rife with dirty humor? Or purposefully avoided the astrology section of the paper? The Holy Spirit in you is behind those feelings of offense, outrage, and wanting to get and stay away from certain things.

I am currently taking Priscilla Shirer's course Discerning the Voice of God. In the workbook that goes along with the DVD lectures, Shirer gives lots of good teaching about how we can sharpen our spiritual ears to hear the Holy Spirit speak ever more clearly. Here are some bits I've underlined:

"If we want to hear God's voice clearly, we need to immerse ourselves in the Word of God" - Priscilla Schirer, Discerning the Voice of God, p. 40.

"God is doing everything to reveal His will and cause us to go after it! Through the Holy Spirit, 'He writes His laws on our hearts and on our minds, and we love them and are drawn by our affections and judgment, not driven, to our obedience' " Ibid. p. 42, Shirer quotes Hannah Whitall Smith, The Christian's Secret of a Happy Life, p. 76.

"As I seek Him, stay in His Word, and continue to keep an intimate relationship with Him by confessing my sin, He transforms my mind and emotions to align with His plans" - Ibid.

"When you delight yourself in Him, you can relax in knowing that He will speak clearly to you, order your steps, and cause you to desire what brings Him pleasure"  Ibid. p. 43.

PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for the Holy Spirit who lives in me and alerts me to thoughts, influences, reading material, and media (TV, movies, the internet, music) that will plant seeds of uncleanness in my heart. Help me to practice obedience in getting and staying away from these things. Amen. 

Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked AMP are taken from the Amplified® Bible, Copyright © 1954, 1958, 1962, 1964, 1965, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission." (

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