Read Thessalonians 4:1–5
We have a number of ways of encouraging someone toward excellence. Paul encouraged the Thessalonians to excel in their walk with Christ.
While advocating an excelling lifestyle, Paul targets one specific area that needs constant attention—moral purity:
Finally, dear brothers and sisters, we urge you in the name of the Lord Jesus to live in a way that pleases God, as we have taught you. You live this way already, and we encourage you to do so even more. For you remember what we taught you by the authority of the Lord Jesus.
God’s will is for you to be holy, so stay away from sexual sin. Then each of you will control his own body and live in holiness and honor—not in lustful passion like the pagans who do not know God and his ways. (1 Thessalonians 4:1–5)
Whoever wishes to excel in his or her spiritual walk must come to terms with an inner battle: sexual lust. Yes, it is a battle—a vicious, powerful, relentless fight that won’t suddenly stop when we turn 50—not even at 80! The struggle to be morally pure is one of those issues from which no one is immune. That includes you!
What a relief to know exactly where we stand with our holy God! Let’s be very specific: it is the will of God that you not be sexually intimate with any other person until marriage, and from then on, only with one person, your spouse. That’s what Scripture teaches, and that is how to walk in obedience. It is God’s best. Equally important, it is for your good, and it enhances God’s glory.
Now would be a good time to go to the Lord in prayer, Scripture open, asking Him to reveal anything that might be dishonouring to Him. Confess it. Receive His forgiveness. Then keep walking in a clear and clean manner, which is known as holiness. Not a bad plan to start your day...in your pursuit of excellence.
Devotional content taken from Good Morning, Lord...Can We Talk? by Charles R. Swindoll. Copyright © 2018. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, a Division of Tyndale House Ministries. All rights reserved.
The full devotional can be purchased at https://www.tyndale.com/p/good-morning-lord-can-we-talk/9781414380681.