Adultery – Matthew 5:27-30

Today is Saturday, May 30, 2020, and I am Pastor Kim Alexander and you are listening to COVID-19 Connection Series # 60

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Q: What golden image did the Israelites make at Mt. Sinai?
A: A golden calf

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Today our WORD from the Lord comes from Matthew 5:27-30,

27 You have heard that it was said to those of old, You shall not commit adultery. 28 But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29 If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell.30 And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell.

Today I want to have a Word with you about Adultery.

   I. What have you heard about adultery?

   27 You have heard that it was said to those of old, You shall not commit adultery. 

   You shall not commit adultery. Have you heard that statement before? Where does that statement originate? With God – the ultimate of all authority! It is listed in the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:14; Deuteronomy 5:18).

  Have you heard this statement: The grass is greener on the other side of the fence?

   Are you aware that there are websites (Ashley Madison) that promote adultery? They of course don’t call it adultery. They call it an affair. Ashley Madison has an estimated 37 million users.

   According to the infidelity statistics, about 40% of unmarried relationships and 25% of marriages see at least one incident of infidelity. An issue of Marriage and Divorce journal also stated that 70% of all Americans engage in some kind of affair sometime during their marital life.

   Note: Christians are not exempt. I’m not naive enough to think that adultery doesn’t affect the people of God. It shouldn’t, but it does.

   One guy who committed adultery said to his wife, “It didn’t mean anything. I didn’t love her. I love you.” That man had a very destructive way of showing his love for his wife. Love doesn’t harm another person.

   Have you committed adultery? You will no doubt answer, No! But before you answer, let’s move along in our text today. The context before us may better help us to answer that question more honestly.

    II. Have you ever lusted after a woman?

  28 But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 

   If you are a woman this may not pertain to you (but we do live in a crazy mixed up sexual world today). There may be women who lust after other women. Surely there are a lot of men who lust toward other women, women I might add that are not their wives.

   One guy I heard said, “I look but I don’t touch.” Isn’t that lust?

   Notice that Jesus tells us that adultery is another sin that originates in the heart. You see, all the issues of life do in face flow from the human heart (Proverbs 4:23).

  Tony Evans wrote, “Sexual purity involves more than avoiding a physical act. It too involves the heart. Immoral actions, then, begin with immoral thoughts – and immoral thoughts are evil too.”  

   Adultery doesn’t have to be a physical action; it can be something that occurs in the heart – the essence of who we really are.

   If lust is a problem for you – it’s a heart problem. You better take care of what is going on in your heart. The Psalmist prayed in Psalm 139:23-24,

   23 Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me, and know my anxieties; 24 And see if there is any wicked way in me, And lead me in the way everlasting.

   III. How do we deal with our heart sin?

   Jesus is going to provide a radical approach to dealing with the sins that flow from the human heart. Two important words found in our text. They are “cut” and “cast”. These words mean that we must detach from a sin, and we must remove that sin. Once it is out of the human heart it dies for lack of sustenance.

   Jesus deals with two areas where sin is played out from within the human heart – our eyes and our hands.

   1. If it is your eye that sins

  29 If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell.

  • Pluck it out – tear it out is the meaning in the Greek.
  • Cast it from you – throw it aside, like dung.
  • More profitable for you that one of your members perish
  • Than for your whole body be cast into hell

   The Greek word “hell” in this verse is “geenna” from which we get the English word, “Gehenna”. We read about this awful place in 2 Chronicles 28:3, “the Valley of the Son of Hinnom”. It was a place where child sacrifice and incense were burned to the baals. This is a good visual picture of what hell will be like.

   Note: The valley of Hinnom today has been made into a park, and is covered with grass.

   2. If it is your hand that sins –

30 And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell.

  • Cut it off – cut down.
  • Cast it from you – throw aside, like dung.
  • More profitable for you that one of your members perish.
  • Than for your whole body be cast into hell – See reference to Gehenna in note above.

   Is Jesus actually teaching that we gouge out our eye, and cut off our hand? No! But he is telling us that we must not be easy on our sin. We must take it serious enough to do some major business with it.

Lessons for Learners:

  1. Jesus has a word for us today about sexual purity.
  2. Adultery can occur in the human heart without the physical act.
  3. We must radically deal with sin by discovering its source – heart, eye, hand.
  4. If you are playing around with adultery – STOP!
  5. Hide God’s Word in your heart so that you will not sin against Him – Psalm 119:11
  6. Hell is a real place. It stinks, its hot, and its nasty. Many people face hell in their minds because they committed adultery.
  7. Find forgiveness with God and your spouse. Don’t delay.

Remember, I’m in touch so you be in touch.

And as Dr. Robert Cook from the King’s College used to say, “Walk with the King today and be a blessing.