DEVOTIONS AND SERMONS

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Moral Purity In A Polluted World
 

Genesis 39:1-20
1 Now Joseph had been taken down to Egypt. Potiphar, an Egyptian who was one of Pharaoh's officials, the captain of the guard, bought him from the Ishmaelites who had taken him there.
2 The LORD was with Joseph and he prospered, and he lived in the house of his Egyptian master.
3 When his master saw that the LORD was with him and that the LORD gave him success in everything he did,
4 Joseph found favor in his eyes and became his attendant. Potiphar put him in charge of his household, and he entrusted to his care everything he owned.
5 From the time he put him in charge of his household and of all that he owned, the LORD blessed the household of the Egyptian because of Joseph. The blessing of the LORD was on everything Potiphar had, both in the house and in the field.
6 So he left in Joseph's care everything he had; with Joseph in charge, he did not concern himself with anything except the food he ate. Now Joseph was well-built and handsome,
7 and after a while his master's wife took notice of Joseph and said, "Come to bed with me!"
8 But he refused. "With me in charge," he told her, "my master does not concern himself with anything in the house; everything he owns he has entrusted to my care.
9 No one is greater in this house than I am. My master has withheld nothing from me except you, because you are his wife. How then could I do such a wicked thing and sin against God?"
10 And though she spoke to Joseph day after day, he refused to go to bed with her or even be with her.
11 One day he went into the house to attend to his duties, and none of the household servants was inside.
12 She caught him by his cloak and said, "Come to bed with me!" But he left his cloak in her hand and ran out of the house.
13 When she saw that he had left his cloak in her hand and had run out of the house,
14 she called her household servants. "Look," she said to them, "this Hebrew has been brought to us to make sport of us! He came in here to sleep with me, but I screamed.
15 When he heard me scream for help, he left his cloak beside me and ran out of the house."
16 She kept his cloak beside her until his master came home.
17 Then she told him this story: "That Hebrew slave you brought us came to me to make sport of me.
18 But as soon as I screamed for help, he left his cloak beside me and ran out of the house."
19 When his master heard the story his wife told him, saying, "This is how your slave treated me," he burned with anger.
20 Joseph's master took him and put him in prison, the place where the king's prisoners were confined. But while Joseph was there in the prison,


The Story of Joseph.

Ask the group what are some inferences they have drawn out of this passage about Joseph. Encourage the group to share practical experiences after every point.

1. Beware of situations where you are vulnerable - Sin is never private

Numbers 32:33
Then Moses gave to the Gadites, the Reubenites and the half-tribe of Manasseh son of Joseph the kingdom of Sihon king of the Amorites and the kingdom of Og king of Bashan--the whole land with its cities and the territory around them.

- You are vulnerable when you're in different circumstances, where no one else will know
- You are vulnerable when you are successful and good looking
- You are vulnerable when you are alone with an emotionally needy person
- You are vulnerable when you are emotionally needy - sexual tempatation is never just physical

2. Beware of how temptation works

- a needy women and a vulnerable man are put together
- flattery and surprise surrounds you
- persistence
- sudden ambush

3. Make a commitment to purity and develop a strategy before the temptation hits

- commitment to integrity in all of life
- up-front commitment to inner purity
- focus on responsibilities and not your needs at that time
- consciously live in the presence of God
- call sin, sin
- flee when you need to.

1 Corinthians 6:18
Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a man commits are outside his body, but he who sins sexually sins against his own body.

James 4:7
Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

1 Peter 5:9
Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.

2 Timothy 2:22
Flee the evil desires of youth, and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.

4. Be willing to pay the price for your conviction

John 8:11
"No one, sir," she said. "Then neither do I condemn you," Jesus declared. "Go now and leave your life of sin."

Study Questions

Read the following passages and write how you plan to fight your temptations like Joseph did.

Numbers 32:23
But if you fail to do this, you will be sinning against the LORD; and you may be sure that your sin will find you out.

1 Thessalonians 4:3-8
3 It is God's will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality;
4 that each of you should learn to control his own body in a way that is holy and honorable,
5 not in passionate lust like the heathen, who do not know God;
6 and that in this matter no one should wrong his brother or take advantage of him. The Lord will punish men for all such sins, as we have already told you and warned you.
7 For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life.
8 Therefore, he who rejects this instruction does not reject man but God, who gives you his Holy Spirit.


Ephesians 5:3-5
3 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.
4 Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving.
5 For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person--such a man is an idolater--has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.


Philippians 4:8
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things.

1 John 1:9-10
9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
10 If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.