Properly Understanding Lust
by Jim Vander Spek
I was a Christian for over fifty years, grew up in an actively Christian home, attended a Christian College, spent time in Seminary, was an elder in a fine evangelical church, and paid attention to everything I read or heard about dealing with sexual desires and thoughts. However—with all that—I failed to understand lust.
Those who continue in sin become a slave to sin. Not understanding lust, I gave myself over to it. I started to lust as a child and did not stop. I could not stop. I was a slave.
I praise God that He has given me victory over lust. He has set me free. This is why He sent His Son—to set us free from sin. My life has been reset. Overcoming lust has changed my relationship with God and allowed me—finally—to begin pleasing Him.
When the life-dominating sin of lust is in charge, we lose our joy and we become ineffective Christians. On the other hand, when we are freed from its shackles, we can walk in the Spirit and become filled with the joy and love that are the trademarks of those who are God’s children.
Ever since that time—when I finally understood the depths of my sin and where I needed to be—I have been perplexed over my past ignorance. I began to talk about it. I went back and rehearsed what I had been taught. I also studied what other Christian teachers were saying. Most of what I found missed the mark or was tragically—frighteningly—wrong.
Being enslaved by lust is a dreadful state. It is also deeply displeasing to our Father in Heaven. Yet most Christians and their leaders look at lust and teach about it in a way that does not line up with the teachings of Jesus. They do not know the seriousness of adultery in the heart. They do not teach about “denying worldly lusts” (Titus 2:12). They imagine that cleaning up the outside of the cup is the same as cleaning the cup itself.
I invite you to read an excerpt from my book. It will introduce you to the correct way of looking at lust. If you are a slave to this sin—as I was—I hope and pray that God will move in your heart and cause you to turn from your sin and to begin pleasing Him.
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Jim Vander Spek is a CPA, businessman, author, and blogger. He is married to his high school sweetheart, Marsha. Jim graduated from Azusa Pacific University with a dual major in Biblical Studies and Business Administration. He has attended Cross Connection Fellowship (formerly Calvary Chapel Escondido) for over twenty-five year and is the treasurer of Shepherd’s Staff Missionary Facilitators.