I John 3:3 "And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as He is pure."
With all the discussion of the ills of this life and the many evils prevalent which are lurking about in this day, where does the believer in that which is "pure, holy, and virtuous" find his approach to the conversations of the world about him? If we know Him, it has to be in a hope that is built on nothing less than Christ. In the words of a great hymn, "all other ground is sinking sand."
So often I'm reminded of a conversation overheard between two men, one being a Quaker. He was asked how he felt about the atrocities and moral decay that had come to haunt him in his simplistic way of living. In essence he simply replied, "We do not study evil. For, that which we study, we risk becoming." This has stayed with me for some time. Maybe, he really has something here.
In all truth, we are not ignorant of the enemy and his many devices. However, the way to victory in this life is to study after the one Who is Victorious. The Overcomer is the One we wish to emulate. He is the Indweller of our hearts Who enables us to "purify ourselves even as He is Pure." He broke the power of sin and evil over our lives; therefore, since we are filled with His hope of being like Him and seeing Him as He is, we set ourselves to live in this daily process of sanctification.
Though we're very aware of such evil, surely there's no need to make ourselves more familiar with it by getting so close to what He has paid such a great price to deliver us from. Do you know Him today? He paid such a high price and is forevermore worthy of our daily walk desiring to honor Him in this purity that He calls for.
When we are weak, He is strong. What a blessing to trust Him today!
"Purity of the Woman"
In the United States the influence of religion is not confined to the manners, but it extends to the intelligence of the people. . . . Christianity, therefore reigns without obstacle, by universal consent; the consequence is, as I have before observed, that every principle of the moral world is fixed and determinate.
The safeguard of morality is religion, and morality is the best security of law as well as the surest pledge of freedom." ~ Alexis de Tocqueville (Democracy in America, 1835, 1840).
Dare I write concerning women? Yet, how can I not when their value to the family, our nation, and the world is purchased with success or failure by the strength of their character.
The world's history of art and literature seem to me to run with two parallel lines concerning women. They are view and admired for their beauty and purity of character, or lusted after for their sexual appeal and sensuality. Their relation to man is portrayed by her being subdued and abused by the dominance of the stronger species, or by loving submission to the man as protector and provider.
Mr. Tocqueville and Mr. Adams both recognized their value of being the pillows and support of all we hold dear. From our families to our government, the support upon which it is laid, rest upon the character of the women.
Let me consider the words of Mr. Tocqueville, "women are the protectors of morals". Does this leave the male species of man without responsibility? Does this leave all accountability for moral decay upon the female species of man? I will only say, it seems when women forsake their qualities upon which God has bestowed them, men alone have not the power to uphold society, though the men are accountable for their lack of prudence in preserving this quality in women by recognizing and aiding support to it, the fall or rise of it is within the power of the woman.
Now lets consider for a moment the words of President John Adams, "The Jews, the Greeks, the Romans, the Swiss, the Dutch, all lost their public spirit and their republican forms of government when they lost the modesty and domestic virtues of their women".
So what is most important for our nation, a good public spirit, a good form of republican government, or the modesty and virtue of our women? It seems neither can stand without the later. I must ask myself first of all where I place the value of woman in my own life, then I must consider where our nation places them in our current society. I must say their value has been taught to me in the most wonderful way by the wonder of my earthly life, my wife. I will not embarrass her with a long discourse of all her qualities, but must acknowledge the strength of our family, and most of what God has done in my life is directly connected to her character and virtue. From our very first serious encounter till 26 years later, she has inspired me to commitment and faithfulness of which, though I desired, I had not found the strength nor courage to pursue. Such is the power of the woman, though physically weaker many times, God has chosen to make her the emblem of purity and virtue to the world, if she will embrace it.
What is our society telling our young daughters that they must portray to be admired and noticed? That purity and Godly virtue will bring them their desired end, or that their sexual behavior and sensuality will give them their success? Where are we pushing the young ladies of our society? What is our society telling our young men is the value of the girl before their eyes, the fulfillment of their lust to be purchased with deceit and cunning, or the portrait of purity and virtue painted upon the canvas of our world by the hand of God? The answer may very well hold the hope of our future or the demise of all that is dear. It is not to the man that the world looks and says, behold his purity and virtue, no, it is to the woman that God has entrusted this crown of jewels.
May the God of Grace touch every heart and open it to the Glories of His Grace in Christ!