The Bible says God is coming for His bride who is without spot or wrinkle. We therefore need to cleanse ourselves of any stains that we might still have because of our sexual sin from the past, or from any sexual sin we might still be struggling with.
Many people find that dealing with sexual sin can be more difficult than dealing with other types of sin. The reason for this is because sexual sin is sin which is committed against your own body (see 1 Corinthians 6:18).
In this post I will not go into the details of what sexual sin is. I am assuming you already have a conviction about sexual sin, and that your desire is to be cleansed and to be free.
There are a few steps we need to take to become completely free from the bondage of sexual sin, and it starts with making a stand against temptation.
Victory Over Temptation
Start by acknowledging that sexual sin is not in line with God’s will for your life, and that God designed sex to be enjoyed between one man and one woman, and only in the context of marriage. God’s standard for sexual purity is so high, Jesus said in Matthew 5:27-28 that even if you just look with lust you commit adultery in your heart.
As already mentioned, in this post I am not going into all the details as to what sexual sin is. I am assuming you already have this conviction, and the purpose of this post is to help those who want to change and come into line with this conviction.
It is important to believe that it is possible to have complete victory over your thoughts and your actions. There is a promise in the Bible that this is possible, so you must believe that it is possible to live in victory.
1 Corinthians 10:13 says, “No temptation [regardless of its source] has overtaken or enticed you that is not common to human experience [nor is any temptation unusual or beyond human resistance]; but God is faithful [to His word—He is compassionate and trustworthy], and He will not let you be tempted beyond your ability [to resist], but along with the temptation He [has in the past and is now and] will [always] provide the way out as well, so that you will be able to endure it [without yielding, and will overcome temptation with joy].”
Receiving forgiveness starts with repentance, in humility.
Jesus said in Luke 24:46-47, “And so it is written, that the Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed) would suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and that repentance [necessary] for forgiveness of sins would be preached in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.”
To repent means to acknowledge your wrong ways and to turn your back on it. Therefore, start by acknowledging your sexual sin before your Heavenly Father and ask Him to forgive you on the grounds of the price Jesus paid on the cross (see Why Jesus Said He Is The Only Way).
Be as specific as you can be. It is best to swallow your pride and just do it, since God already knows about it anyway. Besides, Jesus said in Luke 12:2 that “there is nothing [so carefully] concealed that it will not be revealed, nor so hidden that it will not be made known.”
Next, start by forgiving those who have wronged you in this area. Sexual perversion is rampant, and if you are reading this it is likely you have been violated in one form or another.
While we cannot excuse or justify the wrongs that were done, we should not hold on to the shame or the guilt or any anger it has left us with. Forgiving others who have wronged us, especially when it comes to our sexuality, can be extremely hard. Nevertheless, we are commanded to forgive and to ask God to judge over the wrong that were done to us (see Romans 12:19).
Also, forgive yourself for the things you have allowed which you are ashamed of.
Put Off the Old
Once you have dealt with the legal matter of sexual sin between you and God by confessing it and asking for forgiveness, the next step is to get rid of all the traces it has left in your body, soul and spirit.
If you have read some of my other posts, you might already be familiar with the principle of putting off the old and putting on the new which we use to Change Bad Behaviour In Adults. It is also the principle as described in How To Renew Your Mind. We will follow the same principle to help us deal with sexual sin.
Declare, in the name of Jesus, that you are putting off sexual temptation, ungodly sexual desire, lust, images of a pornographic nature, and so on. Ask God to show you what you need to put off, and then put it off by declaring you are putting it off, in the name of Jesus.
Command the lust to go, in the name of Jesus. Speak to it and say it is no longer welcome in your body, in your mind, in your soul or in your spirit. Ask God to remove any and all traces of lust that planted itself in the most intricate parts of your being, and to wash and cleanse you completely of it.
Put On the New
Once you have put off the old, put on the new by declaring the new. Declare that you agree with God’s way and order when it comes to sex. Declare that you accept that sex was designed by God to be between one man and one woman, and in the context of marriage only. If you are married, declare that you only have a sexual desire for your wife, and any other sexual desire will bow its knee before the Lordship of Jesus Christ.
If you are not married, then tame your sexual desire by bringing it under the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Declare Solomon 8:4 over your life, and command the love that was aroused or awakened to go back to sleep until your marriage.
Do this every day until you walk in complete victory.
Spend Time with God
While sexual sin is wrong, the bigger problem is that we try to find fulfilment in that which God does not approve of, instead of seeking Him. The very thing you hope to find in sex or any sexually related sin, is the thing we should be finding in God instead. When we long for acceptance, God wants to give us that acceptance first. When we long to be comforted, God wants to be our comforter. When we hurt, God wants to be the one who heals us.
When we give in to temptation, we may feel better for a moment, but it is only for a moment. We should deal with our identity crisis instead, and find in God the very thing we hope the temptation will give us. The issue of identity is an important one, but outside the scope of this post.
However, ultimately the way we overcome sexual sin is by spending time with God instead of running into the inviting arms of sin.
We simply cannot walk in victory or grow in holiness if we are not cultivating our relationship with God. Galatians 5:16 says, “But I say, walk habitually in the [Holy] Spirit [seek Him and be responsive to His guidance], and then you will certainly not carry out the desire of the sinful nature [which responds impulsively without regard for God and His precepts].”
Break Ties with Past Relationships
Relationships from the past can have a direct influence on your life, even years after the relationship has ended. The reason for this is because God created us for intimacy and friendship. God designed us in such a way that we become connected with those we love on more than just a physical level. Genesis 2:24 says, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.”
This is a wonderful mystery, and God ties us to those we love for the purpose of unity. However, when relationships turn out differently than we thought they would, breaking them up can be more complex than we realise. If you find yourself thinking about someone from the past a lot, especially when things are tough in your current relationship, it is important to pause and properly break the ties with the person from the past.
Bring the person you need to break ties with before God, ask Him to bless them, and then ask God to untie you from them.
Then pray and declare, in the name of Jesus, that you are putting the relationship with that person behind you. Declare that you are no longer connected to that person, and that you have no desire to still be connected to that person. Declare that your desire is for the person you are married to or will be married to (even if you don’t feel like it right now), and that no other person will hold the place in your heart which your spouse or future spouse is supposed to hold.
Do this as many times as necessary, until the unhealthy connection with the other person has been broken completely.
In this post we looked at how to deal with lust and sexual sin effectively. It might be difficult at first, but don’t give up. Repeat the process of acknowleding God’s design and purpose for sex, repenting of any thoughts or actions that are not in line with this design, and by renewing the mind through the process of putting off the old and putting on the new by declaring it until you live in complete victory.
If you have your own testimony you would like to share, or if this post has been helpful, please let me know in the comments below.