God offers real hope through
the victory of Jesus Christ. Begin
your study with a simple prayer
expressing your trust in His death
and resurrection. Thank Him for
giving you the desire to change.
Lust defined: craving sexually what
God has forbidden. To realize that killing lust leads to
the joy and freedom of holiness.
1. Honestly, how realistic does the standard not even a hint seem to you
with regard to sexual sin? Why did you choose this response?
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Are you crazy? We can do it!
2. Whether you think this is a realistic standard or not, rate how strongly
you desire to have not even a hint of sexual sin in your life. Why?
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Forget it! I can't wait!
LUST VERSUS SEXUALITY
In Sex Is Not the Problem (Lust Is), Josh writes, "I have a simple definition
for lust: Lust is craving sexually what God has forbidden" (book 20).
3. What is helpful to you in Josh's definition? What would you change
in the definition, if anything? Why?
4. Part of the challenge Christians face in a lust-filled world is
remembering that neither sex nor sexuality is our enemy. Lust is
our enemy and has hijacked sexuality. We need to keep
reminding ourselves that our goal is to rescue our sexuality from
lust so we can experience it the way God intended (book 12).
Summarize from the following Scripture passages God's thinking
about the differences between lust and pure sexuality (see also book
Lust-Ephesians 5:3; Colossians 3:5; 1 Thessalonians 4:3-4
Sexuality-Genesis 2:22-25; Proverbs 5:18-19; 1 Corinthians 7:2-5
5. God never calls us to sacrifice as an end in itself, but only
through sacrifice on the way to great joy. On the other side of the
seeming loss and denial is always reward and pleasure so deep
and so intense that it's almost impossible to call what you gave
up a sacrifice at all (book 28).
If this is true, then describe what is really happening .
. when you give in to lust.
. when you resist lust.
6. What is an example of you (or someone you know) passing up the
instant pleasure offered by lust for a deeper, more lasting pleasure
later? What sacrifice do you think God is calling you through for the
sake of true joy and godly pleasure?
OUR EFFORTS VERSUS GOD'S PROVISION
7. At the beginning of chapter 1, Josh describes his futile efforts to live
up to "the contract":
The year that followed was a very humbling lesson in how utterly
incapable I was of being righteous in my own strength All my
great ambitions, all my vows, all my self-efforts were revealed to
be worthless (book 20).
Describe a time when you tried to accomplish something good on
your own when you actually needed outside help.
8. God's standard of not even a hint quickly brings me to the end of
my own ability and effort. It reminds me that God's standard is so
much higher than the standards I place for myself that only the
victory of Christ's death and resurrection can provide the right
power and the right motive needed to change me (book 27).
Why was each element of God's plan better than Josh's original plan
(see book 24-27)?
GOD'S PLAN JOSH'S PLAN
Standard not even no masturbating
of holiness a hint for a year
Power source the cross his own
for holiness of Christ willpower
Motivation God's to show God that
for holiness grace he was good
FORGIVENESS VERSUS CONDEMNATION
In the preface, Josh writes, "I've learned that I can only fight lust in the
confidence of my total forgiveness before God because of Jesus' death
for me" (book 13). If you have put your faith in Christ as your Savior,
are you confident of your total forgiveness before God? Do you believe
He loves and accepts you because of Jesus' sacrifice for you? Without
this confidence, it will be difficult to be honest about lust in your life
with other carefully selected Christian brothers.
9. Summarize the central point of each of these statements from God
1 Timothy 1:15-16
1 Corinthians 10:13
1 John 1:6-9
10. Honesty with others takes courage. Take a minute to talk with God
the Father about any fear you have about discussing the topic of
lust. Ask His Holy Spirit for courage and a deep hunger for holiness.
Starting with lesson 2, this section will guide your group to review commitments
or action points from preceding lessons in order to evaluate
your progress and to encourage you toward greater obedience in God's
strength. In this first lesson (especially if you're with a group of guys you
don't know well), use the following questions to begin your journey.
11. What is one question you would like us to ask you on a regular basis?
12. What is one way you want us to pray for you this week in keeping
with this lesson? (Write down each other's requests and take a few
minutes to pray for each other.)
MEDITATE AND MEMORIZE
But among you there must not be
even a hint of sexual immorality,
or of any kind of impurity, or of greed,
because these are improper for God's holy people.