A friend of the podcast, who wishes to remain anonymous, writes in: “Hello Pastor John, I’m a listener in the Middle East. I slept with my girlfriend two days ago, and now we are both left hurt and feeling dirty, cheap, ashamed—we cannot even look at ourselves. We are both born-again believers in Christ, but we got lured into temptation. Is there any hope that we might become pure again and be healed from our sin? I know the blood of Jesus covers every sin. But how can we get back our relationship’s purity again? Or is that permanently gone? What do we do now?”
I think this young man from the Middle East is beginning in the right place. He is, it seems, appropriately shattered, meaning something has been irrevocably lost. He and his girlfriend will never be able to go behind this sexual encounter and undo it. They have lost something very precious.
I begin this way, even though it may sound hard, because I feel a tender and jealous concern for those who are listening who have not lost their virginity. It is a very precious thing for men and women. The world views it as weakness, silly in fact. God views it as a very great strength and beauty beyond compare. And I am just as eager to help listeners maintain their sexual purity and virginity before they lose it as I am to help those who have lost it recover the purity that Christ makes possible. So that is why I am beginning the way I am beginning.
So I think this young man is beginning in the right place. He is broken. He knows that a beautiful thing has been lost. And he knows that the blood of Jesus covers every sin. So this is a good place to begin. Those who take their sins lightly and treat the blood of Jesus as a kind of quick fix have never seen the true costliness of what Jesus did to purchase their purity. So let me simply make a few observations that might prove redemptive and hope-giving to our friend from the Middle East and his girlfriend.
1) I would simply draw attention to what he already knows—only put it in biblical words. First Corinthians 6:18, “Flee fornication.” God’s will for unmarried people is that they abstain from sexual relations. And God makes this possible by the power of the Holy Spirit through faith in his promises, and he gives sweet and special rewards to single people who honor him in this way.