Destiny Shaping Question #6 – Am I flirting with adultery?

At first I felt sure this wouldn’t apply to me. But this was actually the most painful question for me to face. The issue at hand goes beyong the physical act. It includes how I present myself before a world of men who are in covenant with other women.

Our society is beauty conscious.  Actually beauty obsessed might be a better word.  For women, the message we receive from all varieties of media is that to be happy we must be beautiful.  This is not good news to those of us who aren’t beautiful.  So we spend hundreds and thousands of dollars on hair care, makeup, clothing and whatever else we can find to improve our appearance.

We learn how to use our appearance to our advantage and how to feel better about ourselves by attracting the attention of men.  The right kind of look from a man can boost an insecure woman’s self esteem for days.  But it’s all innocent, of course.  And if I have dressed in a way to provoke a look, even possibly a lustful look – well, there’s no harm in a man looking, right?

I would have never thought of it as flirting with adultery until I considered this behavior in light of these words of Jesus:

“You have heard that it was said to those of old, You shall not commit adultery. But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” Matthew 5:27-28

If a man’s heart is filled with lust and he looks upon me with lust, he is merely following the evil desires of his heart.  But if I have purposefully presented myself in a way that provokes lust in a man’s heart, I have become an accomplice in his heart adultery.  I have aided him in dishonoring the covenant with his wife.  I have become guilty.

And as hideous as this behavior is, how much worse when we bring it into the church and cause our brothers to stumble. 

Must we continue to chase after the world’s standard of beauty?  Have we not yet learned that if we want to truly beautify ourselves all that is necessary is to put on the Lord Jesus Christ?  He is the only truly beautiful One.

May God help us all, as women of God, to focus on the beauty of a meek and gentle spirit which God values rather than the fading, temporary beauty that this world applauds.

CONCLUSION:  Modesty – a God honoring and covenant honoring virtue I need to cultivate