Sin begins as a desire.
That scares me.
What if my desires lead to sin?
James 1: 14 – 15 says, “Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away. These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death.”
Fine, not all desires are bad. There are good desires and bad desires. Actually, what makes a desire bad and evil is if it is out of God’s will, command and plan for us. If God doesn’t will and want you to do it, then I don’t care if seems good to others and to the world, it is not good for you.
Desire is a very strong feeling and if not careful can turn into lust and lead to sin.
Notice that sin in the beginning of creation also started from a desire.
Genesis 3: 4 – 6 ( CSB) – “No! You will not die,” the serpent said to the woman. “In fact, God knows that when you eat it your eyes will be opened and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” The woman saw that the tree was good for food and delightful to look at, and that it was desirable for obtaining wisdom. So she took some of its fruit and ate it; she also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it.
Eve desired the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil. Fine, the serpent planted the thought in her head but she allowed the thought to sink in and desired to have the fruit because she wanted wisdom for herself. Thus, she sinned.
Note that desiring wisdom is not a bad thing but in this situation it was bad. Because God wanted to be the one to guide us on what is right and what is wrong. He wanted to be our wisdom. It wasn’t in His perfect will for humans to eat that fruit at that point in time.
But man, had a sinful desire, a disobedient desire and sinned.
Same goes for sex.
Sex is not bad. It is a very pleasurable activity between a man and a woman. Not just a man and a woman but MARRIED ones.
Now, if someone who isn’t married begins to desire to have sex, have sexual thoughts and keeps dwelling on them, eventually, they will have sex outside of marriage and commit sin. A good desire becomes a bad one because it was longed for too early, longed for outside of God’s will and command.
Same goes for alcohol.
Drinking alcohol is not condemned in the Bible but drunkenness is condemned and breaking the rule and disobeying government authority is a sin (Romans 13: 1 -7).
For example in the USA, the legal age to drink is 21. Now, if someone who isn’t 21 years old desires to drink alcohol and dwells on the thought (which is already a sin) and even goes ahead to drink it. Again, a good desire became a bad desire because it was out of God’s will and command.
So, you might be wondering…
“What am I going to do with my thoughts and desires then? Because bad desires and thoughts often pop into my head once in a while. Is this normal?”
First, you must know that daydreaming and dwelling on sinful thoughts and desire are dangerous. The desire will begin to grow and will eventually lead to sinful actions.
Second, understand that sinful and impure thought will always pop up in our minds once in a while. If they don’t that means the devil is sleeping somewhere which is not possible because his 24/7 full-time job and all he knows how to do are to tempt you, rob you, steal from you and kill you. So, he is constantly prowling around and throwing baits at you hoping that you will come after them and fall into his trap.
So, those sinful thoughts that come into your mind once in a while are like baits, they are normal and part of being human in this sinful world. However, it becomes a sin when you begin to follow the bait – that is you begin to indulge the sinful thoughts and dwell on it.
Some of us actually follow this bait (dwell on the thought) intentionally. We get curious and try to test if we will eventually fall into the trap or see how far such thought can go. Super dangerous!
But I am sure you have heard the saying, “Curiosity kills the cat.” Yes, in this case, curiosity will really kill the cat (Sin will lead to death). The cat is you. The cat has got to be careful. Leave the bait (bad desire) alone, when you see it, take your eyes off it, shake it off your mind and move on.
Don’t take detours or stop to do some research on some bait (sinful desire).
Finally, you’ve got to be prayerful.
Pray that God will help you to guide your heart.
Mark 7:21-22 (CSB) says, “For from within, out of people’s hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immoralities, thefts, murders, adulteries, greed, evil actions, deceit, self-indulgence, envy,slander, pride, and foolishness.”
Thus, Proverbs 4:23 says “Above all, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” This is totally impossible by yourself. So, pray that God will help you to filter the thoughts and desires that enter your heart and get rid of the ones that are not His perfect will for you. May your desires align with God’s perfect will for you in Jesus name, Amen. God Bless.