In the movie Fireproof, a powerful statement is made about the power of God to transform sexual behavior and a troubled marriage. For eighteen years, our Brief Intensive Counseling program has offered the same truth and witnessed the same power in the reality of countless hundreds of marriages destroyed by pornography. In my new book, Sexual Redemption, to be released next year by Moody Publishers, I spell out the details of God’s transforming power.
Our ministry not only attempts to meet the felt needs of lives and marriages broken by sexual sin, but also to awaken faith and courage when evil prevails. To live in the truth is always rock-solid; to live in perpetual comfort and fulfillment is shifting sand. Our purpose for everyone who comes for help is to convey an understanding that sin and evil, no matter how horrific, never nullifies the purpose of God. In fact, horrific sins exist in God’s unfathomable providence and by them His purposes come to pass. If this is the rock-solid truth on which we stand, then with our worst enemy—including an unfaithful spouse—we can learn that, “Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things” (1 Corinthians 13:7). Love is always active, never passive. It covers all things, patiently endures all things, always supports, never gives up, and it always endures. Peter writes, “love covers a multitude of sins” (1 Pet. 4:8). This is not a soft love without wisdom and discernment; rather, “Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good” (Rom. 12:9).
Fireproofing your life and marriage is more than living by the superficial tactics of many of today’s Christian gurus or reading the best-selling Christian self-help book. The path to fireproofing your life and marriage is through death; the death of our sin, the denial of ourselves and a life-long commitment to the purpose and glory of God. The secret simplicity of fireproofing our lives and marriages from all sexual unfaithfulness, whether of the heart or physical, is found in the following seven biblical essentials:
1st Biblical Essential: A Consistent Diet of “Meat” Heb. 5:11-14
- To be skilled in the word of righteousness
- To have the powers of discernment
- To distinguish good from evil
2nd Biblical Essential: A Rigorous Training in the Grace of God Titus 2:11, 12
- To renounce ungodliness
- To renounce worldly passions
- To live self-controlled, upright and godly lives
3rd Biblical Essential: A Well-Established Heart James 5:8-11
- To be patient
- To not grumble
- To remain steadfast
4th Biblical Essential: A Determined Effort to Supplement Faith 2 Peter 1:5-11
- To increase these qualities
- To not lack these qualities
- To practice these qualities
5th Biblical Essential: A Strict Departure from the Old Life Col. 3:5-14
- To put to death what is earthly
- To put away; put off the old self
- To put on the new self
6th Biblical Essential: A Restless Diligence Heb. 2:1; 3:12
- To avoid unbelief
- To not be hardened
- To be firm to the end
7th Biblical Essential: A Concerted Effort Must Be Made Heb. 12:15-16
- See to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God.
- See to it that no root of bitterness springs up.
- See to it that no one is sexually immoral.
- See to it that no one is unholy like Esau.
On a biblical basis we must hate our sin, repent of our sin, and seek to kill our sin. The process must be promoted in our hearts; not for self-serving purposes, the avoidance of serious consequence, or for the preservation of a marriage. This is all done for the glory of God. Any attempt to deal with sexual sin must be founded on the admonition of Paul: “For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live” Romans 8:13.