When we commit sexual sin, we are not victims but perpetrators. Therefore the solution is to keep the Father’s words in our hearts so we might see sexual temptation with new eyes. Then the glamor doesn’t seem so glamorous anymore. We’ll see the stupid deception for what it is and make better choices.
And behold, the woman meets him…
‘So now I have come out to meet you,
to seek you eagerly, and I have found you.’ (Prov 7:10, 15)
We love to feel loved. We want to feel wanted. We desire desirability. Immorality flatters us. It tells us we’re something special. It comes out to meet us, unlike all those real people with real lives, who are too busy even to take notice of us.
Dressed as a prostitute, wily of heart. (Prov 7:10b)
Women know it; men know it: If you dress a certain way, you’ll cause people to think of you in a certain way. But just because they think it, doesn’t make it true. And just because you’re deceived by it, doesn’t make it a good idea.
She is loud and wayward;
her feet do not stay at home;
now in the street, now in the market,
and at every corner she lies in wait. (Prov 7:11-12)
I know everybody’s doing it. I know it’s “every man’s battle” and “every woman’s battle.” But though immorality is loud and proud, and you can find it on every street corner and in every person’s life, it shouldn’t be that way. As a teen, I thought I should masturbate because all my friends were doing it. With the way many Christians discuss internet pornography today, those who don’t look at it will soon start to feel guilty.
She seizes him… (Prov 7:13a)
The right touch at the right time is like magic. It doesn’t have to be sexual (though see the next point), it just has to communicate a sense of concern and value. That’s why Jerry Sandusky groomed his victims through pats on the back and post-practice wrestling matches. Be careful how and when you touch or are touched.
…and kisses him… (Prov 7:13b)
I remember a Christian youth event about dating where the students asked the obligatory, “How far is too far?” Please pardon my flabbergasted incredulity at the woefully misinformed youth leader’s answer: “Well, other than no sex before marriage, the Bible doesn’t really say anything about it. So my personal advice is to keep it above the waist.” I pray and pray that this filthy, destructive lie might soon return to the pit from whence it came. The Bible teaches that kissing is sexual (Prov 7:13, 22:14, Song 1:2). Of course, not the “holy kiss,” which obviously was equal to a wave or handshake (Rom 16:16). I know you know the difference between that which welcomes and that which arouses.
…and with bold face she says to him,
‘I had to offer sacrifices,
and today I have paid my vows.’ (Prov 7:13-14)
She’s just what all Christian parents want for their grown son: a nice girl. She goes to church. Perhaps she went to Bible college. She is pretty, easy to get along with, and nice to puppies. She offers all the right sacrifices; she makes and keeps her religious vows. You think you can trust this girl with your life. But immorality can’t be trusted, no matter how often she serves in the church nursery. Remember that sexual temptation is not something “out there.” It’s right “in here” where we might not expect it.
I had to offer sacrifices. (Prov 7:14)
Notice the ESV marginal reading for “sacrifices”: peace offerings. Of the various Old Testament sacrifices, peace offerings were the only ones that ordinary people—not just priests—got to eat. Solomon portrays this woman as having divinely blessed lamb chops and hamburgers hot and ready. She’s got dinner waiting. And since the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, her seduction is likely to succeed.
What is the point? Only that immorality will promise to satiate every physical desire. It will try to convince you that, since your hunger must be fed, you should go ahead and take a bite. Don’t fall for it.
I have spread my couch with coverings,
colored linens from Egyptian linen. (Prov 7:16)
Immorality looks so good. It’s amazing what pounds of makeup and lumens of stage lighting can do to the most normal person. The human being takes on a perfect, angelic appearance. What is seen seems so real. It seems so exotic. So exciting.
I have perfumed my bed with myrrh,
aloes, and cinnamon. (Prov 7:17)
Immorality smells so good. A little deodorant can go a long way. The right fragrance can even cover the smell of death. Especially cinnamon. I love cinnamon.
Come, let us take our fill of love till morning;
let us delight ourselves with love. (Prov 7:18)
Immorality promises something special. In fact, it promises that you are something special, and with that promise we’re back where we started. You’re not like all the others who have shared this bed. You can expect the delight to last all night till morning. You’ll have your fill of love. You won’t want to miss out. There’s an adventure to be had…
For my husband is not at home;
he has gone on a long journey;
he took a bag of money with him;
at full moon he will come home. (Prov 7:19-20)
Seduction’s final tactic is the promise of isolation. Nobody sees us. Nobody will know what happens here tonight. We’re together under cover of darkness (Prov 7:9), far from prying eyes.
With the promise of isolation comes the promise of invulnerability. Because no-one knows about it, we will get away with it. Some believe sin doesn’t have consequences (the liberal lie). Others know God will forgive them, so it doesn’t matter if they capitulate again and again (the conservative lie).
All must know this sin doesn’t take place in isolation. The jealous God sees (Prov 6:34-35). The hapless victim—the willful perpetrator—rushes to the snare at the cost of his life (Prov 7:23).
If you’re caught in the snare, I beg you on behalf of Christ, please get out. We’re nearing the end of Proverbs 7, and Proverbs 8 approaches, so good news is on the way.
O simple ones, learn prudence;
O fools, learn sense. (Prov 8:5)