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SOAP – Proverbs 5 – Adultery

Let’s wash our minds out with SOAP, shall we? 

Proverbs chapter five is really simple.  Adultery = bad.   Faithfulness = good. 

Wisdom doesn’t have to be complicated.

But on another level, there is an interesting mix of word pictures that Solomon paints on this topic, applying to both adultery and faithfulness:

  • Taste (verses 3, 4, 10 and 15)
  • Travel (verses 5, 6, 7, 8, 14, 16, 21 and 23)
  • Time, in terms of perspective (2, 4, 9, 11, 14, 18, 19 and 22)

It’s a crude simplification but with adultery versus faithfulness, Solomon uses these pictures to let us know that:

  • Pure well water tastes better than the bitter taste from dry heaves
  • There are roads that lead to death, take a different route
  • Take the long view; you’ll get a lifetime of love in the end

In this chapter, the person, time and place for adultery is assumed… the opportunity is present.  But it is also clear that the path to avoid it completely is ours for the taking.  And it isn’t just avoiding the negative, we can have a great relationship that is fulfilling and lasting and true.

Going one step further, Jesus (in Matthew 5) says that if we look at someone with lust in our heart, we’re guilty of adultery.   While shocking at first, we see the truth of this.  If we never go there in our hearts, the actual act will never happen.  The question is, in the spirit of Proverbs, how do we pick another path in practical terms? 

Imagine you’re at the grocery store and you see a smoking hot person of the opposite sex.  Our natural inclination is to notice… and do way more than notice.  Before you go too far down the honey dripped road that turns to gall, double edged swords, death and ruin, take another path!

Pray for that person.  Right then and there!

“God thank you that you made them beautiful, you did great!  I pray that they would be blessed in whatever they do today, in their job, their school, their relationships.  Protect them from harm and lead them to You.  May they come to the very center of Your will for their lives and be all that You made them to be.”

If you do that for a few days, it can become a habit and the opportunity for temptation becomes a continuing series of moments for prayer, blessing and faithfulness!  That can help us in our looking… and can short circuit the road to adultery before it ever gets started.

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