Community Group Questions 3/24/13

Kevlar: Bulletproofing Your Relationship [vimeo 62494103 w=500 h=281]

Announcements:

  • WPSM Summer Camp
  • West Pines 1.0
    • If you haven’t been to West Pines 1.0 before, this is for you
    • An event we do to help you get to know West Pines and find your next step.
    • After the 1st Service @11AM on 4/14
    • Write 1.0 on the back of your Connection Card to let us know you’re interested in coming.
  • Guys Night Out
    • Our Men’s Ministry is having their next Guys Night out on Monday 4/1/13 at 7pm in The Fuge.
    • Come play some pool, ping pong, dominos and eat some pizza and Flanigan’s wings with us

Sermon Title: Kevlar, Part 3: Temptation’s Lies

Main Text: Proverbs 7:18-27

Topics:

  • In Proverbs 7, we are told the story of a person who falls into temptation because he lacks sense. Specifically, it is a young man who get’s seduced into falling into adultery. But this story is not just a warning for young people. It is not just a warning to men. It is a warning to all of us. This is what it looks like to fall into sexual temptation.
  • We can learn from this story how to avoid falling into infidelity or unfaithfulness. We can learn how to withstand the temptation of sex before marriage. We can learn from this story how tobulletproof our relationships.
  • The young man in the story could have better avoided the entire situation if he had not been in the wrong place at the wrong time. Because temptation doesn’t wait for him to knock at her door. She seizes him out on the street.
  • This story shows us that it is the woman’s words that ultimately seduce him. We learn almost nothing about how she looks or what she does. We learn that succombing to sexual tempation is not merely giving into a physical impulse. There are mind games at work. They are setting a trap for him.
  • Some of her most ensnaring words are lies she tells him. These are lies that are so easy to believe.
  • She says to him:
    • let us take our fill of love until morning
    • let us delight ourselves with love
  • She is promising SATISFACTION. What she is dangling in front of him is an experience that appears like it will fully meet his needs and desires. She is presenting herself as the answer to all of his wants. She is making the promise of satisfaction.
  • She next says to him:
    • My husband is not at home
    • He went on a long journey and will be gone for a long time
    • He took a lot of money with him, so that is evidence that he won’t be back for a while
  • She is promising SAFETY. She is leading him to believe that there will be no consequences to giving into her. This is something that will be without danger and damage. She is seemingly guaranteeing safety.
  • This brings us to the end of the story. We are told the end very simply: “with much seductive speech she persuades him...” That was what seduced him. Her words. Her mind games and her promises.
  • But the writer doesn’t stop there. If it stopped there, we would be left wondering if this was purely a moral wrong. Is this just something that he shouldn’t have done even though it would be a good time? Maybe he shouldn’t have done it, but it was satisfying. But we are told the consequences.
  • The writer says:
    • he goes like an ox to the slaughter
    • or a stag caught fast
    • an arrow pierces its liver
    • a bird in a snare
    • it will cost him his life
  • The writer ends by practically pleading with us not to give into temptation. Not to turn down her street and down her paths. Many many have been destroyed by giving into sexual temptation. And that path leads to death.
  • God’s plan for our sexuality is not to torture us or hold us back. In fact in verses 1-2, the writer beckons us to hear his words, that we can be filled with life.
  • If we are going to heed the writer’s warnings we have to watch out for the false promises of temptation. We have to realize those promises are lies.
  • Is it SATISFYING? The writer Solomon, had 700 wives and 300 concubines. Many of these women were sent to him from other kingdoms. This man knew about sexuality. He knew what he was talking about. And what did he tell us about sex. What did he tell us about how to find sexual satisfaction? He wrote in Proverbs 5, “rejoice in the wife of your youth... be intoxicated always in her love.” He knew what was truly satisfying, focusing all of your sexual attention on the spouse God gave you.
  • The forbidden is always tantalizing but it is an illusion. Consider this statistic: 75% of marriages that began as an affair end in divorce. Think about that statistic because it is staggering. And of course that does not mean that the other 25% are happy and healthy marriages. Why is this the case, particularly when so many leave their marriages because they think the found another person who really the “right person”? We are drawn to the mysterious because we begin to think contains all the things we need and want. It is not based on reality, on that person with their flaws and faults. It is based on the expectations that we place on them. It is based on our self-centered imagination. Truly satisfying, committed relationships are those who truly and deeply know each other and are committed to each other no matter what. Flourishing relationships are based on meeting each other’s needs not on meeting our own.
  • Is it SAFE? Interestingly enough the author of this passage is Solomon. He knows what he is talking about. His mother, Bathsheba had an illicit affair with his father David. That affair not only led to murder of his mother’s first husband, but divided his family and destroyed the kingdom. He has seen first hand the effects of it temptation.
  • An affair is not safe. There is great destruction to all parties involved. There is distrust and brokenness and guilt and pain.
  • But there is good news!
  • If someone has experienced the pain of infidelity. There can be restoration. God can put the pieces of your life back together. He makes all things new.

Key Questions:

  1. What do you think are the biggest influencers on our culture’s view of relationships?
  2. Read Proverbs 7:18-27
  3. The man is seduced by the promise of satisfaction and the promise of safety.Which is more effective in alluring someone: the promise of satisfaction or the promise of safety?
  4. What are the thoughts someone has, when they are believing the false promise of satisfaction?
  5. What are the thoughts someone has, when they are believing the false promise of safety?
  6. Why are those two promises ultimately lies?
  7. What evidences do you see in the culture around us that those two promises are actually lies?
  8. Why do you think what is “forbidden” is often so alluring?
  9. In what sense is the allure of the “forbidden” really a mirage?
  10. Why do you think the writer chose the illustrations he did in verses 22-23?
  11. What are evidences that we are starting to fall for these lies?
  12. What can we do practically when we start sensing we are falling for these lies?
  13. How does not falling for these lies, actually bring more satisfaction and safety into our marriages?

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