Pursuing A Pure Life

Different translations of James 1:27 read, “keep oneself from being polluted by the world” NIV, “keep oneself unstained by the world” ESV, “Refuse to let the world corrupt us” NLT.

Believers in every generation struggle with the allure of the world, the enticement of the culture’s values and standards. Temptation, as old as Adam and Eve, still lurks around every corner, multiplying its victims. For me, a few-too-many episodes on HGTV capture my imagination and carry me downstream to a place I do not want to go. Scripture, the antidote for temptation, shows me the way of escape.

Notice the intentionality in the psalmist’s words.

“How can a young man keep his way pure?”
By living according to your word.
I seek you with all my heart;
do not let me stray from your commands.
I have hidden your word in my heart
that I might not sin against you.
Praise be to you, O Lord;
teach me your decrees.
With my lips I recount
all the laws that come from your mouth.
I rejoice in following your statutes
as one rejoices in great riches.
I meditate on your precepts
and consider your ways.
I delight in your decrees;
I will not neglect your word.” Psalm 119:9-16

Living according to God’s Word instead of according to the culture requires daily intentionality. Seek God with all our hearts, pray that God will restrain us, hide God’s Word within, be teachable in learning God’s ways, and keep God’s Word on our lips. Meditate on God’s precepts and make them our joy and delight. Dear brothers and sisters, we must not neglect God’s Word.

The apostle Peter tells us that God has given us his very great and precious promises so that through them we may escape the corruption in the world (2 Peter 1:4).

I can tell you from experience that memorizing Scripture has helped me tremendously, but I still have to guard myself against complacency and letting down my guard. The enemy of my soul connives and schemes and tantalizes me with false promises. He lies to me, tries to incite me to fear, and heaps guilt on my weaknesses. Knowing God’s Word is only part of the battle. To be vigilant against my enemy, I must go beyond knowing God’s Word. I must live God’s Word.

What thoughts can you share on pursuing a pure life? What helps you?

3 comments to Pursuing A Pure Life

  • Ethan

    This morning I studied Matthew 4. Every time Jesus was tempted His response was, “The Scriptures say”. What should be my first response or thought when I am tempted to get off the path? “The Scriptures say.” In order to have that be my immediate and natural respond I must know the Word.

  • Cherie

    You’re not kidding Janet…, “the enemy of my soul tempts me to fear…” A constant battle for so many—myself included. This time of year proves one of the enemy’s favorite ways to toy with believers is Fear. We Mega-Memorizing-‘Siblings’ (MMS’s) 🙂 have the privelege and advantage of smacking the enemy upside the head.

    “With my lips I recount all the laws that come from your mouth…..”
    { speaking my chapter I’m working on—or one appropriate for the situation }

    “I have hidden Your Word in my heart that I might not sin against You.”
    {constantly memorizing Gods Word, so it’s a permanent fixture etched in our mind}

    Thank you Janet, our dear “MMS”, for the somber reminder, that we cannot let down our guard.
    People say, “If only I’d thought to say this…or if only I’d thought to say that… ” If we have scripture etched in our mind by memorizing—we can repeat aloud what God says in His Word.

  • Richie Malone

    Philippians 2:14-16 comes to mind…”Do everything without complaining or arguing so that you may become blameless and PURE, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life”. A life of purity means standing apart from the world and being able to hold out God’s word to them. How am I to hold it out if I don’t know it? I need God’s word in me to shine like a star in the universe for his glory and to live purely.