(Photo by Selma Komisky)
Five Ways to Flee From Temptation
By Jehn Kubiak
So, you and your significant other think it’s time to make love because you’ve been together for a few years and know for sure you’ll get married, yet you also know the Bible forbids premarital sex. But how do you resist their amazing eyes, beautiful body, and charming character? How do you make your mind say “don’t” when your body says “do?”
Although I personally haven’t been in a relationship, I have three married brothers, several engaged or married friends, and friends who’ve broken up with several people. As a result, I’ve observed several successful and unsuccessful relationships. Throughout that process, I realized the couples who remained patient had the strongest relationships. Remaining pure is crucial for a strong bond with the love of your life. Here are five suggestions for resisting temptation.
- Mutually Establish Boundaries
How long will you hang out together? Is it okay to sleep in the same room or bed (fully clothed, of course)? Can you live in the same house or apartment? What do you do when you start to develop an attraction to someone else? These are all questions both people in a relationship should address and possibly even write down on paper for verification. Both people should agree on these boundaries and discuss them civilly. If any disputes arise, try to remain sensitive to the other person’s feelings. You may be comfortable with sleeping on your significant other’s couch for a night, yet they might not be ready for that. If you need suggestions, ask parents or other couples from your church for advice.
- Find a Mentor
This mentor should be at least five years older––10 or more is best––and have been married for over five years. Ask them how they fled temptations and how they deal with lust. If you face strong temptations in a certain area––such as the temptation to look at porn––ask them to hold you accountable and tell them when it happens. Have them check in on you each week, regarding the temptations you faced and how you dealt with them. You and your significant other can have the same mentor as long as you meet separately.
- Share Temptations with Your Significant Other
This may feel awkward and difficult at first, but sharing your temptations can help both people look out for each other and notice when they start drifting away from their normal habits. For instance, a woman who confesses that men with very toned bodies attract her can help her boyfriend remain on guard when they’re around other men with that body type. Similarly, a man can confess his struggle with porn and have his girlfriend monitor his browsing history.
- Spend Some Time in Solitude
Having some alone time can help you process things and settle down if you become too worked up over a specific issue. For instance, if you fight the urge to lust after another person, withdrawing from people can help clear your mind. Find a quiet lake, a nature trail, go to a less-busy beach, or find a mountaintop. Wherever you choose, make sure it’s relatively quiet. Bring a journal, write down your struggles, and also write how you want God to help you through the situation. Plus, all couples benefit from some alone time because it tests the strength of a relationship. Those who truly love each other will look forward to their time together, while those who remain impatient usually find another person to satisfy their hearts longing.
- Have an Arsenal of Scripture
As my hermeneutics professor once said, we fight with a sword of scripture, not a butter knife. Scripture is powerful––it’s how Jesus fought the devil in the wilderness. Recalling verses that discuss temptation and sexual impurity can help you battle those urges. In addition, today’s Christians often have a corrupt theology of sexual purity because they don’t actually know what the Bible says. Here are some key verses about sexual purity: Ephesians 5:3, Galatians 5:19, Genesis 2:24, Hebrews 13:4, 1 Corinthians 6:18, Mark 7:22, 1 Thessalonians 4:3-5, and Mark 10:9.
I hope these suggestions can help you in your walk with purity and temptation.