Bible Verse: “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)
Scripture Reading: Colossians 3:1-2
In Matthew 5:27-28, Jesus is certainly emphasizing the importance of not lusting after those we aren’t married to, but He’s making another important point here as well.
Naturally, if you commit adultery with someone, as Jesus says here, then you must also be committing adultery against someone. With this statement, He is speaking to both married and singles, so in either case, who would the listener be committing adultery against?
We are certainly committing adultery against our spouse, if married, but there is more to it than that. Jesus has also established a covenant with us and is jealous for our hearts and minds. When we gaze lustfully at a person we aren’t in a marriage covenant with, it’s committing adultery with that person and also against our covenant with God. He wants to be the ultimate object of our affection rather than seeing us take a lustful glance at someone made in His image.
Jesus is welcoming Himself into these moments by essentially saying, “Remember your covenant with me. Let any beautiful person remind you that they are just a hint of the immense beauty I possess.”
In highlighting the people’s focus on not committing adultery, Jesus also tells the audience that they have only been thinking about this issue on an earthly level. He wants us to set our hearts and minds on things above, not on earthly things (Colossians 3:1-2) so that we are constantly growing in our awareness and awe of the One who truly satisfies our hearts.
Next time you are tempted to look at someone with lust, ask Jesus what He thinks of that person, pray for them, and then praise God for the beauty of His satisfying presence.
Prayer: Lord, I invite you into my heart, my mind, and my eyes in this area of struggle. Help me to be faithful to my spouse in every way (if married), help me to honour Your daughters, created in Your image, and help me to remember my covenant with You, who alone can fully satisfy my heart.
Reflection: Think of someone you have looked at or thought about inappropriately. Pray for them as Your Father (and theirs!) would want you to pray for them today.
If you or someone you know are struggling with sexual issues, we encourage you to reach out to Restored Ministries. Restored Ministries is for both men and women who wrestle with sexual addiction, betrayal, abuse and more.
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