Christian! Dost Thou See Them

Christian! dost thou see them
On the holy ground,
How the troops of Midian
Prowl and prowl around?
Christian! up and smite them,
Counting gain but loss:
Smite them by the merit
Of the Holy Cross!

Christian! dost thou feel them,
How they work within,
Striving, tempting, luring,
Goading into sin?
Christian! never tremble!
Never be down-cast!
Gird thee for the battle,
Watch and pray and fast.

Christian! dost thou hear them
How they speak thee fair?
“Always fast and vigil?
Always watch and prayer?”
Christian! say but boldly:
“While I breathe, I pray:”
Peace shall follow battle,
Night shall end in day.

“Well I know thy trouble,
O my servant true;
Thou art very weary,—
I was weary too:
But that toil shall make thee,
Some day, all Mine own:
And the end of sorrow
Shall be near My Throne.”

– John Mason Neale; Attributed to Andrew of Crete (660-732),
Published in Hymns of the Eastern Church, 1866. Edited.

Should I Marry a Man with Pornography Struggles?

Should a godly woman marry a guy with pornography struggles? This morning Dr. Russell D. Moore posted a powerfully perceptive article on marriage, sin and repentance. This is one of the wisest articles I’ve read in quite some time on the mortification of lust. His theological extrapolations on the grievous nature of sexual misconduct are uniquely profound. Here are a few highlights:

“Pornography is a universal temptation precisely because it does exactly what the satanic powers wish to do. It lashes out at the Trinitarian nature of reality, a loving communion of persons, replacing it with a masturbatory Unitarianism.

And pornography strikes out against the picture of Christ and his church by disrupting the one-flesh union, leaving couples like our prehistoric ancestors, hiding from one another and from God in the darkness of shame.

And pornography rages, as Satan always does, against Incarnation (1 Jn. 4:2-3), replacing flesh-to-flesh intimacy with the illusion of fleshless intimacy.”

Read the entire post here: http://www.russellmoore.com/2012/01/23/should-i-marry-a-man-with-pornography-struggles-my-response/

Self-knowledge

“Labor to know your own frame and temper; what spirit you are of; what associates in your heart Satan has; where corruption is strong, where grace is weak; what stronghold lust has in your natural constitution, and the like.”

-John Owen, Overcoming Sin and Temptation, ed. Kelly M. Kapic and Justin Taylor, 202

“In other words, know what you’re like. Where are your strengths? Where are your weaknesses? When are you inclined to sadness and melancholy? What gets you up? What gets you down? What kind of temperament has God given you?”

“Satan has been alive for a long time. His minions have been active and mobilized since the week the world was created. The Scriptures don’t give us any indication that they sleep. They’re watching you all the time. They recognize your habits and weaknesses, perhaps better than you do. The enemy knows what to put on the table to tempt you.”

“The truth is we must labor to understand our unique weaknesses, so that we can be prepared for Satan’s customized temptations.”

-Rick Holland, Uneclipsing the Son, 84-85