June 15th

 

Double-mindedness and Sex Addiction

1 Therefore if there is any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and mercy, 2fulfill my joy by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. 3Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. 4Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.  5Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus”  Philippians 2:1-5 NKJV

 

“Double mindedness” is a condition that is often a root of sex addiction and other struggles with sin.  Double mindedness is a serious threat to us spiritually because it leads to instability in our walk with God (James 1:8).  Paul gave some keys in the above passage about how to avoid falling into the trap of double mindedness. 

 

Paul highlighted two ways that the mind can be divided from serving God: pride and selfishness.    Pride is shown in our motives of selfish ambition or conceit (excessive appreciation of one’s own worth or virtue).  Pride can also be a motive to keep our sin secret from others in order to preserve our reputation.  Pride is also present when we refuse to abide by God’s laws of purity.   Practicing our secret sin, we’re rebelling against God and saying that our way is better than his. 

 

Selfishness may be the more obvious element in sex addiction.  Lust and masturbation are focused on self-gratification.  They condition us to focus on pleasuring ourselves.  This form of “self idolatry” can easily consume our time, talents and resources at the expense of other areas of our lives (family, friends, ministry, etc.).  For example, the husband who locks himself in the study all night to surf for porn on the internet is investing time in pleasuring himself, not in leading his family or building up his marriage.   Selfishness opposes God’s purposes in our lives, and demands our attention and devotion.  As Jesus said, we can not serve two masters.    

 

If we are suffering from double-mindedness, we can take steps to reclaim our minds for God: 

1)      Confess our sin (pride and/or selfishness and any others) to God and turn away from it (repent).  James wrote, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded” (James 4:8 NKJV).   

2)      Take positive action to counter the effects of selfishness and pride:  For selfishness, we can put other’s needs ahead of our own (ex. giving our time, talents and resources to people in need).   For pride, we can start putting on humility each day by esteeming others better than ourselves.

3)      Check our motives on future things we do to ensure they are not linked to pride or selfishness. 

 

Questions for further thought:

·        How did God demonstrate true love that had no hint of selfishness?

·        What does it mean to submit ourselves to God and how will that help keep any pride problems we have in check? (James 4:6-7)

·        How will putting God’s interests ahead of our own impact our ability to be of “one mind” with other Christians?  How does selfishness impact our ability to be of “one mind” with other Christians? 

 

Prayer:

"Father God, I draw near to you now, confessing that I have allowed my mind to become distracted from you and corrupted.  I repent of any double-mindedness that I’ve tolerated and repent from it now.   Lord, please show me how to stop responding to selfish or prideful motives and to start putting on love and humility.  Please create in me a pure heart that will not sin against you and renew a steadfast spirit within me that will be faithful to you. Thank you, Father. I now receive your strength to walk according to your righteousness. In Jesus name I pray, Amen." (Based on James 4:8 and Psalm 51:10)