By this point in the summer, you must have realized that Proverbs repeats itself often. In this book of practical biblical wisdom, we are told again and again to seek God’s wisdom and find blessing, life, and peace. And we are warned over and over again against the same core group of sins that can keep us from experiencing God’s best. We have been warned against greed and laziness and cautioned to beware of pride and anger. And once again, in today’s longer passage, we are told to flee from one of the most dangerous and deadly sins of all – sexual immorality. If sexual sin was a big enough problem in ancient Israel, a place without television and the Internet and where women wore long robes and rarely or never spent time with men who weren’t family members, then surely we must be on constant guard against this vicious enemy.
Simply put, we cannot be vigilant enough against sources of temptation in this area – we must be like Joseph and run from Potiphar’s wife in whatever form she comes. As you read through the remainder of Proverbs 7, you will see a sad story of a naive young man who was not wise like Joseph. Instead, this fool was led astray by an adulterous woman who flattered him with physical touches, compliments, allurements, and the false promise of a guilt-free sexual relationship. Known as the harlot, you can read for yourself and see that such women can literally destroy young men who had their whole lives ahead of them. To our Christian young men at NRCA, the message is clear – stay far away from girls who remind you in any way of the immoral lady in this passage. And don’t watch shows that would lead you to admire such women in your heart and mind. Instead, wait for a godly girl who like you is saving her affections for marriage. To the Christian young women at NRCA, the male equivalent of this evil woman is the seemingly really cool guy who will lead you into a bad relationship and to places that you don’t want to go physically or emotionally before marriage. Hold out for a godly young man whose life is clearly being led by God’s Word and Spirit. And for both our young men and young women, wait until late high school or college before dating and have mature Christian adults you trust (parents, pastors, and teachers – not just your friends) evaluate any potential dates ahead of time.
You may think that I (Mr. Reel) am being a bit crazy for harping on the “no dating in middle school and after that be really slow and careful with relationships” message. But I am only doing this because: 1) The Bible talks about sexual purity and immortality a lot, 2) You are not yet mature believers who are fully secure in your identity in Christ, 3) You have plenty of time to enjoy other things in life right now, and 4) I am older and wiser than you 😉. Read God’s Word below for yourself and see if you think my warnings are on target.
The Text (Proverbs 7:10-27)
10 And there a woman met him, With the attire of a harlot, and a crafty heart.
11 She was loud and rebellious, Her feet would not stay at home.
12 At times she was outside, at times in the open square, Lurking at every corner.
13 So she caught him and kissed him; With an impudent face she said to him:
14 “I have peace offerings with me; Today I have paid my vows.
15 So I came out to meet you, Diligently to seek your face, And I have found you.
16 I have spread my bed with tapestry, Colored coverings of Egyptian linen.
17 I have perfumed my bed With myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon.
18 Come, let us take our fill of love until morning; Let us delight ourselves with love.
19 For my husband is not at home; He has gone on a long journey;
20 He has taken a bag of money with him, And will come home on the appointed day.”
21 With her enticing speech she caused him to yield, With her flattering lips she seduced him.
22 Immediately he went after her, as an ox goes to the slaughter, Or as a fool to the correction of the stocks,
23 Till an arrow struck his liver. As a bird hastens to the snare, He did not know it would cost his life.
24 Now therefore, listen to me, my children; Pay attention to the words of my mouth:
25 Do not let your heart turn aside to her ways, Do not stray into her paths;
26 For she has cast down many wounded, And all who were slain by her were strong men.
27 Her house is the way to hell, Descending to the chambers of death.
Questions to Think About
- Guys: Do you ever find yourself interested in girls like the one described in this passage? If so, could this be a result from the types of women you’ve seen held out as examples of “cool girls” in movies and television shows? How can you get a more biblical mindset when it comes to the type of young lady you desire to date and marry one day? (Hint: Check our Proverbs 31!)
- Girls: Do you ever feel pressured to act like the woman in this passage by dressing immodestly or flirting a lot with young men? Why or why not? How can you fight this temptation better and instead pursue a godly model of womanhood?
- If God’s Word is so direct in warning us about the dangers of sexual immorality, why do you think that some churches and parents don’t talk more openly and often with young men and women about sexual sins and their horrible consequences?