May 7, 2018
CONTEXT: We are in a series on the book of Proverbs that we are calling - Uncommon Sense. If you remember we have see so far that God upon his coronation God gave Solomon a blank check, so that he could as for anything he wanted. God told Solomon to make his request as high as Heaven or as low as Sheol.
Solomon requested that God give him WISDOM to lead the people of God. God said, “because you asked for wisdom instead of riches and power - I will give you greater wisdom than all before you or after you. AND I will give you the other things as well.
WISDOM - we have said is seeing life and decisions from God’s perspective.
PROVERBS - is a training Manuel, if you will, that Solomon wrote for his sons - future Kings of Israel. Many believe that the book of Proverbs came to be a training Manuel for young men throughout the Nation.
So far we’ve seen Wisdom, or God’s perspective as it relates to Health, Wealth, and Words… but today is different. Today is perhaps the most perplexing topic that Solomon addressed. It’s the topic of sexual discipline.
It’s interesting because if there was anything Solomon did not have it was sexual discipline. We are told that Solomon had 300 wives and 700 concubines. You may wonder how that guy could teach us anything about Wisdom as it relates to Purity.
BUT we are told that even in the midst of his most sinful days - his wisdom never left him. He knew God’s perspective… but you see that is the nature of this particular sin… it tends to make one temporarily insane. So that they do things that fly in the face of all reason and logic.
As I preach this - names and faces are in my mind - Men, good men, wise men, gifted men… who played with something that plays for keeps. NOT ONE AFFAIR ever seemed logical.
One in particular was a great guy, very successful, he had a beautiful wife and three sons… I remember when I heard of his affair I thought to myself, well she must be so amazing that my friend just couldn’t resist… I’ll never forget seeing her and thinking… really? You took that bait? It was illogical.
So here is what I want to do - I want to speak to 3 groups this morning:
As I go through this passage you will remember things you seen and heard and with the help of the Holy Spirit, today you will see exactly what was taking place in your friend’s life.
IN chapter 7 Solomon gives us the AUTOPSY of an AFFAIR.
CONTEXT: This was written prior to Solomon’s decent into polygamy and adultery. At this point in his life his sons are young adults. Each son has the potential of one day succeeding their father as the next King over God’s people the Jews. Solomon knew the temptations and attacks that these boys would inevitably face. So he digs down into the depths of his immense wisdom and gives his sons one of the most important truth talks they will ever hear.
And we get to ease drop.
TEXT: Proverbs 7:1–5 (ESV) 1 My son, keep my words and treasure up my commandments with you; 2 keep my commandments and live; keep my teaching as the apple of your eye; 3 bind them on your fingers; write them on the tablet of your heart. 4 Say to wisdom, “You are my sister,” and call insight your intimate friend, 5 to keep you from the forbidden woman, from the adulteress with her smooth words.
Men he is saying it’s not primarily your wife’s job to keep you pure. It’s your responsibility. YOU MUST CHOOSE TO: Embrace wisdom and life or Embrace sin and death.
6 For at the window of my house I have looked out through my lattice,
Notice this exalted perspective - Solomon is above the crowd, viewing the unfolding affair from God’s perspective.
7 and I have seen among the simple, I have perceived among the youths, a young man lacking sense,
Note the perspective of this young man. Unlike Solomon - he sees only what’s in front of him. He’s only aware of what he sees, hears, and feels.
8 passing along the street near her corner, taking the road to her house
The first thing we notice in this Autopsy of an Affair is…
1. Unintentional Living -
This Hebrew phrase doesn’t speak of an intentional journey, but
a rather casual drifting. So he didn’t
get up that morning and say, I think I’ll go down and hang out with
the adulterous and see what happens. Some people do that, there’s
no hope for those men.... but this is not that guy.
Where I grew up we called this “loafing”. He wasn’t doing anything on purpose.. he was browsing, he was hanging out... his was taking a mental vacation. He was VOID of intention.
MEN - I have learned that I have to have certain goals, intentions, plans for my life. If you don’t have a goal, Satan is more than happy to provide his for you.
Proverbs 7:9 (ESV) 9 in the twilight, in the evening, at the time of night and darkness.
Sin like mold grows best in the dark.
ILLUSTRATION: I remember when I learned to drive my father said, be home by 10PM. I couldn’t understand why that was important. He said, “Son very little good happens after 10PM”. Now I discovered I could also find bad at 8:30, but that curfew kept me out of a lot of trouble.
Not only is there Unintentional Living…
2. Mutual Attraction
10 And behold, the woman meets him, dressed as a prostitute, wily of heart.
Mutual Attraction Doesn’t have to be physical or verbal - but generally it will fall in one of 4 categories that can be remembered with the acronym PIES.
So there is Unintentional Living, Mutual Attraction
3. Confirmed Interest
11 She is loud and wayward; her feet do not stay at home; 12 now in the street, now in the market, and at every corner she lies in wait.
What is she lying in wait for? Him… she’s arranging her plan and her schedule to spend additional time with this man.
13 She seizes him and kisses him,
Now for our culture it seems shocking that she grabs him and kisses him. In the Hebrew culture this was a common way to greet a stranger. The shocking thing to them was that the “seizes him”. Zero in on that statement.
Because chances are no one will ever come up and just start
kissing you. If they do, you should say to yourself... I think
this person has impure motives. That’s not going to
However, beware of the lingering touch... the extended hug...The unbroken gaze... these were dangers in their culture and ours.
She’s giving him signals that she is interested.
13b. and with bold face she says to him, 14 “I had to offer sacrifices, and today I have paid my vows; 15 so now I have come out to meet you, to seek you eagerly, and I have found you.
Did you know that in the bible it said that if you make a sacrifice you are supposed to eat the mean before sundown? So do you see what she is saying? It makes practical sense for you to come in and eat this meal alone with me...That’s very typical of affairs...
There will always be a practical excuse to cross a line. Don’t do it.
Proverbs 7:16–19 (ESV) 16 I have spread my couch with coverings, colored linens from Egyptian linen; 17 I have perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon. 18 Come, let us take our fill of love till morning; let us delight ourselves with love.
I want you to notice that she has made it very clear that she is interested in this man. When attraction is mutual and one of the two parties communicates the attraction… something occurs in the physiology of both parties.
ILLUSTRATION: In 1977 a Doctor named Dorothy Tennov began to study this phenomenon. In her writings she coined the term LIMERENCE to describe the physiological state of the person in the midst of an affair.
She discovered that the body produced certain chemicals at it entered this state.
There was a marked increase in:
ILLUSTRATION: This chemical reaction is what
causes a normally straight laced man to write
poetry. Solomon probably wrote SOS in this state. I
wrote poems to my wife in this state.
ILLUSTRATION: This is why in the Bible people were allowed to go to war for a year after they were married. Can you imagine how useless they would be on the battlefield, writing poetry as arrows were flying.
ILLUSTRATION: Test were run on lab rats where the scientists figured out a way to activate these same chemicals when the rat stepped on a particular peddle. Once the rat figured out how to do it, he continued stepping on the peddle and eventually starved to death.
Tennov discovered that this state of Limerence could last 6 months up to 3 years. This is typically the honeymoon stage of most marriages.
This is also the typical duration of an affair before a person wakes up and realizes he or she has made a completely foolish decision that they cannot live with.
Look how she encourages him to forget the consequences -
19 For my husband is not at home; he has gone on a long journey; 20 he took a bag of money with him; at full moon he will come home.” 21 With much seductive speech she persuades him; with her smooth talk she compels him.
22 All at once he follows her, as an ox goes to the slaughter, or as a stag is caught fast 23 till an arrow pierces its liver; as a bird rushes into a snare; he does not know that it will cost him his life.
It seems that those who do the hard work of remaining pure before marriage are more likely to do the hard work in marriage as well.
Someone says, but God will forgive me. Yes but you have to
Proverbs 6:33 (ESV) 33 He will get wounds and dishonor, and his disgrace will not be wiped away.
24 And now, O sons, listen to me, and be attentive to the words of my mouth. 25 Let not your heart turn aside to her ways; do not stray into her paths, 26 for many a victim has she laid low, and all her slain are a mighty throng. 27 Her house is the way to Sheol, going down to the chambers of death.
WHAT DO I DO?
ILLUSTRATION: Thomas Chalmers, “The Expulsive Power of a New Affection”
It is seldom that any of our bad habits disappear by a mere process of natural extinction. At least, it is very seldom that this is done through reasoning…or by the force of mental determination. But what cannot be destroyed may be dispossessed. One taste may be made to give way to another.
So a young man that idolize pleasure may cease from seeking it because he discovers that it drains him of his wealth. So his love for wealth drives out the idol of pleasure.
Perhaps then his love of money is driven out by his worship of ideology or politics. He is willing to give up his money for his new Idol influence and superiority.
This is the way the heart operates. The old IDOL must be conquered by the new one.
Don’t you see - God doesn’t look at you with hatred and anger - but with love greater than any affair you can imagine. When you feel something so strong for another person you can do what for all practical appearances seems insane - WELL, what do you make of the fact that Jesus Christ looking at you from the perspective of Solomon, through the lattice, knowing what you’d do. Seeing every moment. Watching the chat room conversations, the text messages… Jesus Christ STILL loved you so much that he would come to the earth and die a bloody death to save you from the penalty of your sin… His LOVE for you… is greater than your love for her… if that doesn’t set you free, nothing will.
ILLUSTRATION; Two hunters in the field noticed an unusual sight with an American eagle struggling. The men surmised what had happened was that the great bird flying overhead, looked down below, saw the weasel, wanted it for its prey, flew down and with its sharp talons, began to fly off with the wings clutching that weasel to its body. The weasel didn't want to be caught. A weasel has very sharp teeth. So it began to chew the feathers and flesh of that bird, that it lost so much blood that it plummeted to the earth and died. When I read that story, I thought, isn't that interesting, that eagle got what he wanted and when he did, it killed him.