“I Just Wanna Be Happy!!” – (Part 3 of 4)

Let’s take just one moment to recap from the previous post, “I Just Wanna Be Happy!!” – (Part 2), http://wp.me/p5nZpi-kY.

God’s way to joy  =>> Other-centered  them, them, them  (How can I be a blessing to others?  What might I have to “give up”, sacrifice, to restore a relationship, to start a relationship, to set healthy boundaries in a relationship, etc.)

The world’s way to happiness  =>>  Self-centered – me, me, me  (What’s in it for me?  What will make me happy?)

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The life God calls us to live may seem, at first glance, counter-intuitive and challenging.  It seems to fight against every fiber of our being.  I often feel the way Paul describes himself in Romans 7:19 – I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway.   

              Jekyll-Hyde-logo-black2

Referencing the slide from my previous post, http://wp.me/p5nZpi-kY, The Way to…, we can see that there is a battle being fought for our hearts.

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Satan, the god of this world, John 12:31, the prince of the power of the air, Ephesians 2:2, seeks to influence our ideas, opinions, goals, hopes, education, finances, and worldview (philosophies) towards his ways.  Forget about others.  You’re the only one who matters.  Look out for #1.

God, on-the-other-hand, wants to give us wisdom, James 1:5, He’s allowed us to experience love, because He first loved us. – 1 John 4:19. God, who so deeply desires a relationship with us, that He willingly gave His Son, Jesus, to be a sacrifice in our place, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.John 3:16, and live forever with God.  He desires for us to look outside of ourselves, towards others.  Not for His benefit, but for ours.

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Have you ever heard of making a New Year’s Resolution?  A promise that you make to yourself to start doing something good, or to stop doing something bad on the first day of the year.

Have you ever heard of the concept – exercising mindfulness?  Meaning to pay attention “on purpose” – Jon Kabat-Zinn

Have you ever heard this verse from the Bible?  “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD.Isaiah 55:8

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WHAT DO THESE SEEMINGLY, RANDOM, QUESTIONS HAVE TO DO WITH GOD’S WAY TO JOY?

< “I Just Wanna Be Happy!!  –  (Part 4), http://wp.me/p5nZpi-lH >

SEE ALSO:   (PART 1) – http://wp.me/p5nZpi-kK,    (PART 2) – http://wp.me/p5nZpi-kY

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Love is in the Air!!! – PROVERBS 5 – Introduction (a) [1]

God’s will is for you to be holy, so stay away from all sexual sin. Then each of you will control his own body and live in holiness and honor— not in lustful passion like those who do not know God and His ways. – 1 Thessalonians 4:3-5

 

We are currently in the month of February.  A month often associated with Valentine’s Day. The day when sentiments of amor especial entre buenos amigos (special love between good friends) are exchanged,

                     dora-valentine-boots

and intentions of “like” are bravely shared with another.     givingvalentine

And this year, on Valentine’s Day, the movie, “Fifty Shades of Grey”, will be released taking “like”, to a whole nother level.  From the innocence of exchanging valentine cards, to a young woman’s “innocence” stolen by lust and perversion.

Are both of these examples of love?  Is one “good”, and one “harmful”?  Does God, our Creator, have any thoughts on the subject of love?

We will be looking at Proverbs 5 for wisdom on the dangers of sexual immorality.  But before we do, let’s look at the way God defines “love” in the Bible.

 

“LOVE” IS DEFINED IN FOUR DIFFERENT WAYS IN THE BIBLE

  • STORGE  –  this type of love refers to natural, familial love, parents, children, and extended family members.
  • PHILOS  –  this is the type of love a person would have for a friend.                                          Philos is part of the words philosophy (“love of wisdom”) and philanthropy (“love of humanity”). It describes loving another person like they were your brother or sister.  Philos love can be a bit persnickety (a bit fussy).  It could be equated with the phrase, a “fair-weather friend” – A friend who is only a friend when circumstances are pleasant or profitable. But at the first sign of trouble, these “friends” take-off.  Since phileo love involves feelings of warmth and affection toward another person, we do not have phileo love toward our enemies. However, God commands us to have love for everyone.  This love is called agape love.
  • AGAPE  –  this is the type of love of God has for His son, Jesus, and all people.                       Agape is a sacrificial love.  Agape love is based on our behavior and actions.  It is act of our will, a choice we make. It is not based on how we feel towards another person/people.  Although positive feelings can follow after we show this kind of love to others.                                                                                                                                                              When we have agape love, we seek to put other’s well-being ahead of our own. Agape love is the love that God commanded all people to have towards all people.  Because of our sinful nature, this type of love does not come naturally to us.  This kind of love can only be given to us by God, For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with His love.  –  Romans 5:5
  • EROS  –  this type of love means to have a desire for or longing for.                                                   Eros is part of the word erotic.  It is referred to as erotic/selfish love, and is focused primarily on sensuality and self. Eros love is based on the “feelings” we have for another person. Eros is often the first stage of a romantic relationship, and is based on the physical traits.                                                                                                                                                                       Erotic love, in and of itself, is not sinful.  However, because erotic love focuses on sensuality and self, erotic love can quickly become porneia  –  the Greek word for “sexual immorality” (the root of our word pornography).  Porneia covers the gamut of sexual sin (adultery, fornication, homosexuality, bestiality, etc.)                                                                                                                                                              When eros love is shared between husband and wife, it can be a wonderful thing.  In fact, the Bible has an entire book about the blessings of erotic, sexual, love within marriage.  It can be found in the Song of Solomon, in the Old Testament.   Unfortunately, when eros takes place outside of marriage, it becomes distorted and sinful.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   The Bible calls this form of eros, sexual immorality, and warns us – flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body.1 Corinthians 6:18  When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures… – Galatians 5:19

< The information on the four types of love was adapted from types of love.org and gotquestions.org >

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Looking For Love in All the Wrong Places…. PROVERBS 2:16-19 [4]

The LORD stands beside me like a great warrior.  aslan lion         Before him my persecutors will stumble. They cannot defeat me. – Jeremiah 20:11

 

16 Wisdom will save you from the immoral woman,
    from the seductive words of the promiscuous woman.
17 She has abandoned her husband
    and ignores the covenant she made before God.
18 Entering her house leads to death;
    it is the road to the grave.
19 The man who visits her is doomed.
    He will never reach the paths of life.

Verses 16-19 are talking about another temptation people often face.  The media glorifies it, and people get entangled in its enticement.  The temptation – sexual sin.

The song, ‘Looking for love in all the wrong places’, from the movie Urban Cowboy comes to mind when reading verses 16-19.  The lyrics to the chorus are:

I was lookin’ for love in all the wrong places
Lookin’ for love in too many places
Searchin’ her eyes, lookin’ for traces
Of what I’m dreamin’ of
Hoping to find a friend and a lover
I’ll bless the day I discover,
You – lookin’ for love.

urban-cowboy-21                          love lp

People tend to use sex in an attempt to fill “a hole”.  That hole, being a desire to love and be loved, as the lyrics above mention.

There is nothing wrong with having a desire for love.  In fact, it is God who gave us that desire.  Unfortunately, many times in our search for love we end up side-stepping God’s teaching and guidance.   We may find ourselves led astray by the ways and beliefs of our culture. Although we’ll find a ton of cultural support for our ungodly choices, the results may turn out to be anything but what we have hoped.

It is easy to get draw into sexual sin when led solely by feelings.  Often times people think that “I “feel” so happy, maybe if I sleep with ____, they’ll “feel” that same way about me.”  Or, “I have “needs”, and if God didn’t want me to fulfill them, He wouldn’t have given them to me.”  We’re reminded, however, in verses 18 and 19, that those who give into sexually immoral “feelings” are being led to death, not life.  They will be doomed, not blessed.

Remember God’s promise to us:

Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and He will give you everything you need. – Matthew 6:33