The afternoon . . . an evening . . . a few days with the guys on that trip . . . deployed for six months . . . in the shower by yourself in the morning . . . Sooner or later, you’re going to be alone.
. . . and, you’re going to be tempted to think, then do, something that would dishonor your wife. And then what will you do? Are you a Faithful Man?
. . . well, most of the time . . .
But, is that okay . . . to be mostly faithful?
When she said, “I do” she staked her whole life on the promise that you would be a Faithful Man – that you would be faithful – completely faithful – to her. And how is that going in your marriage, this week . . . today?
Temptation – it’s everywhere. But it’s worse than that. Our flesh naturally responds to – desires even – the filth that is dished up on every side in this porn-soaked, sex-driven world. Let’s be honest. Our baser self, our flesh unfettered, is capable of just about anything.
The Marine Corp Motto is Semper Fidelis – Always Faithful. What would happen if Marines were only faithful 90% of the time and the other 10% they were treasonous? It wouldn’t take much to destroy this country.
The same is true for marriage. Unfaithfulness is treason and, a little treason goes a long, long way.
Do you treat your wife with honor and respect when no one is looking? Are you Semper Fidelis? Are you a Faithful Man?
When temptation offers a little something here . . . a morsel there . . . ask yourself, “If my wife was here, right now, watching me in this moment, would I feel ashamed?”
Then say, “No” to the temptation and walk on. Don’t “click”. Stop looking. Quit coveting. Make no room for lust. Stop lying. Quit deceiving. Let go of your pride – the exact same you would want from her in similar circumstances. Never be found in places or doing things you would be ashamed to have your spouse discover by chance.
For the Christian, there’s a whole other level of concern. Never mind what your wife thinks. What does God think about you skulking around (in your mind or your body) with the morals of some sewer rat?
“I’m not that bad. It’s only a little bit . . . only a little sin!”
That’s the voice of temptation whispering in your ear. If you’ve convinced yourself God is good with a little sin, you better think again.
Among other things, 1 Corinthians 6:9 says, “Do not be deceived (don’t allow yourself to be tricked into believing something that isn’t true). Neither fornicators (illicit sex – the root word of “pornography”) nor idolaters (a worshiper of false gods, one who covets) nor adulterers (which includes the idea of faithlessness to God)” will inherit the kingdom of God.
How destructive it would be to be caught by your wife delving where no man, married or otherwise, should go. You don’t want to crush her heart, do you? But, how much worse it would be to discover, too late, your “little” sin separated you from God, forever.
Temptation can feel overwhelmingly powerful but, there is some amazingly good news in the Bible about the next temptation you will face – or the one you’re in, right now. God will never leave you to handle the power of temptation on your own. The fact is, God has already guaranteed you will never – ever – face temptation without a way to win. God has given you a way out of temptation every time!
1 Corinthians 10:13 says, in your next head-to-head fight with temptation, you have a sure-fire way to win. “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.”
You can believe the truth and walk in it. What happens next is a choice – one that you will make – one way or the other.
Say “No” to temptation before it becomes a second look, then a thought pattern, then a decision, and then an action. No one ever jumped, unaware, into the canyon of filth and destroyed everything in his, his wife’s, and his family’s life. Destruction starts with yielding. And, you don’t have to yield to temptation.
To be faithful means to be prepared to do battle. Remember those Marines? 90% faithfulness means 10% treason. The only kind of faithfulness that is meaningful is 100% faithfulness. Semper Fidelis.
Go to war – Draw near to God and he will draw near to you – James 4:8. Be the Faithful Man God calls you to be. Be the Faithful Man your wife needs (and deserves!) you to be.
Keep your mind undefiled and the marriage bed will follow suit.
It seems there are sexual temptations on every side and in front of me every day. I often feel under attack. The enemy is very real but I know that doesn’t have to matter if I keep my eyes on You. Help me believe and walk in the Truth – that You have made an escape for me in the face of every temptation. I am not weak, as the enemy wants me to think, but strong because Your Holy Spirit lives in me. Help me to walk in the victory you won for me at the cross. Help me to be a Faithful Man – to You and to my wife, every moment of every day. From this time forward, may I honor You and her all the days of my life.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen
Conversation Starter: Ask your Wife, “Do you realize that I face temptation often? I commit to you to stand strong against temptation, in the grace God gives me, but I have a question. Would you do something for me (other than all the amazing things you already do!)? Would you remember to pray for me – that I would stand strong in the face of temptation?
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Matt Jacobson is the founder of FaithfulMan.com a biblical marriage, parenting, and discipleship ministry providing written and audio teaching, as well as couples marriage coaching. He is the co-host (with his wife, Lisa) of Faithful Life Podcast and is author of the bestseller, 100 Ways to Love Your Wife. Matt is pastor of Tumalo Bible Fellowship and is married to Lisa, founder of Club31Women.com (they have 8 kids!).