Remove thy way far from her, and come not nigh the door of her house:
How close should you get to a cliff in the dark? How close should you allow a baby to play near a pool? How close should pilots approach other planes? How many drops of arsenic can you allow in a drink? The more dangerous and risky a thing, the farther that wise men will get away from it. The lesson here is simple, but few men will obey it.
The strange woman, a whore or adulteress, is a great danger for men (Pr 5:1-5). Many Christian homes and pulpits are too refined to speak openly about her, and the rest are too carnal and worldly to notice or care. But God’s wisdom is to identify her, condemn her, and give men sober and practical wisdom against her. Any woman that you are not married to is a stranger to you for any intimate pleasure, and you must stay far from her.
Silence on this issue is to commit moral murder and reject God’s word, for fornication is a great threat to men. Few men can resist an attractive woman using words and wiles inviting him to sexual pleasure (Pr 7:13-21). Samson, the strongest man, gave away his great secret to a Philistine whore, whom he knew wanted to destroy him (Pr 7:26).
The proverb has a simple lesson – a wonderful rule from heaven. Do you truly want to walk with God and please Him in all things? Here is wisdom: stay far away from her, and do not even get near her. The cure for sexual temptation is to get far away from it, just as you would get far from a cliff in the dark. Get away! Get far away! Get far away now!
Sexual temptation is too powerful to play with. You must run away from any influence even leading to thoughts of other women. You cannot justify any such thoughts. Get away! You cannot play with this temptation at all. Young man, flee youthful lusts (II Tim 2:22)! If you give this sin any room at all, it will deceive and seduce your soul like no other. If you give her an opening, you will have no strength to resist her words and wiles.
Jesus told men to pluck out their eyes or cut off their hands, when it comes to sexual temptation. He did not mean literal mutilation of your body. He meant giving up anything or everything in your life, no matter how valuable or precious or pleasant, if it tempts you toward the dangerous and damning sin of fornication or adultery (Matt 5:27-30).
Paul told men to make no provision for the flesh, which means avoiding anything that might even lead toward the possibility of sin (Rom 13:13-14). Get away! Get far away! Do not even give this sin a chance to get started. Do not even give it a possibility. Run! How close should you walk or drive near a cliff in the dark? Get away from such danger.
But men play with television, where attractive women with few clothes and no morals create a powerful visual stimulus for sexual thoughts. David, the man after God’s own heart, resolved to set no wicked thing before his eyes (Ps 101:3). Reader, you must treat the television like an armed and dangerous intruder at night. Fear it, and hate it.
Job made a covenant with his eyes to avoid even looking or thinking on any woman other than his wife (Job 31:1). He knew the temptation to think sexually about the maids among his domestic staff. And he begged for painful judgment, if he did (Job 31:9-12). How much television do you think this perfect, God-fearing man would watch in a week?
But men play with pornography, where many techniques are used to create the ultimate visual images. The strange women in the pictures are everything Solomon warned against. To argue that no one gets hurt with pornography is to ignore God, your present or future wife, your own soul, and your children. Porn will destroy you from the inside out.
Men play with swimming pools, swimming beaches, and cruise ships, where women often wear less than underwear, though much prettier than underwear. What is wrong with such recreation or vacations? Proverbs 5:8, that is what! A man can no more justify such situations for himself than lighting his house on fire and trying to sleep through it.
But men play with shopping malls and popular restaurants, where barely-dressed women parade back and forth in alluring attire and provocative friendliness. Such places may be the eyes and hands you must remove from your life! Are you willing to pluck out or cut off these things to avoid the danger? Would Joseph, Job, David, or Jesus eat there?
Men play with office situations, where forward secretaries and/or women colleagues vie for male attention with sensual clothing, flirtatious ways, and flattery. You cannot quit your job because of sexual temptation? Such a move is just too extreme? Is that what you would tell Joseph, who lost his great position and went to prison to avoid his mistress?
Joseph knew what to do. He ran from her presence so hastily that he left a garment in her hands. And he did this knowing the full consequences of his right choice (Gen 39:7-20). He was charged, convicted, and imprisoned for attempted rape, but the Lord put him on the throne of Egypt and blessed his legitimate wife with two of the tribes of Israel.
Men play with temptation of neighbors, church members, and other friends. The choice is simple – either get totally away from the situation or prepare to die. You cannot play with fire and not get burned. You cannot walk the edge of a cliff in the dark and not fall. Even if the act never occurs, the damage to your soul from sexual fantasies will be deep and permanent, without God’s healing grace. The thought of foolishness is sin (Pr 24:9).
If you need to cancel magazine subscriptions or the Internet, cancel them. If you need to change gyms to avoid women in spandex, then change your membership. If you can no longer vacation at the beach, then learn to love the mountains. If you need to ask for a transfer away from your departmental secretary, then ask for it immediately.
Christian man, if you stay far away from her, you will never be with her. Simple, isn’t it? But Satan and this generation are trying to bring her into your home by way of television, the Internet, magazines, smart phones, and other media of our modern society. You must cut off these opportunities. If you cannot control them, then get rid of them altogether.
The choice is yours. If you love the Lord Jesus Christ, then you will flee anything that leads to sin against Him. If you love holiness, then you will hate iniquity and one of the greatest temptations toward it – the strange woman. Hate her! For she will damn your soul for only apparent pleasure, and that only for a few seconds. Hell will last forever!
The Lord Jesus was tempted in all points like you are, yet He never sinned. He knows about sexual temptations, but He calls with authority and affection to avoid her. Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity (II Tim 2:19).