I have devoted much of my lay ministry to the subject of adultery and what it does to all involved, the guilty and innocent alike. Of course, only the guilty will be held accountable for the sin, while the innocent, like a betrayed spouse and children, will not. The innocent will, however, reap a harvest in this world they did not plant, nor deserve.
While I am most concerned with adultery’s victims, I have grave concern for the adulterer, as they have, according to the Word of God, chosen a path that will destroy their very soul. “Whoever commits adultery with a woman lacks understanding; He [who] does so destroys his own soul.” (Proverbs 6:32 NKJV)
It might be asked, “Why should we care about the adulterer, when they obviously don’t care about others?” From a secular point-of-view, I understand the sentiment, as there are times that I find it extremely difficult to help those who will not see, those who will not hear, and those who are a black hole of selfishness.
But I always try to rise above my earthly shortcomings by relying on the One who can do everything except fail - "I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance.” (Luke 15:7) These are the words of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
If Christ was willing to die a horrible agonizing death for a world lost in sin, then the least we can do is help the adulterer see how much God loves him, how much He cares. How He rejoices when one of His family returns home and is saved from the everlasting torment offered by Satan to those who have, by their works, rejected the completely unmerited gift of salvation.
As a lay minister/counselor I will not help adulterers find peace in their sin. Doing so would be a completely amoral thing to do, as the punishment for adultery, as chosen by the adulterer, is almost too catastrophic to comprehend. Hell is exactly what you might imagine, except to the umpteenth power. It is not a choice that can be reversed. When we enter, we do not leave - ever.
We must love the adulterer enough to help him see the error of his ways. We must explain that unless he repents he is doomed. "I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish." (Luke 13:5)
Christian love is to be given freely, but if the sinner will not listen, we are to leave them in the hope that in our rejection they might be reclaimed in Christ. “And if anyone does not obey our word in this epistle, note that person and do not keep company with him, that he may be ashamed. Yet do not count [him] as an enemy, but admonish [him] as a brother.” (2 Thessalonians 3:14-15)
The world has, in large part, turned its back on God, which explains much of the turmoil we are now experiencing. America in particular is guilty of making every effort to remove God from our everyday lives. The courts have been a useful tool for the evil one and, for the most part uses even the most ridiculous cases to further its belief in secular humanism. And we are such fools to let the inmates run the asylum. But few are willing to speak out to right the wrong - and our nation is paying the price.
Imagine then how God feels when we use and abuse him while trying to remove Him from the very fabric of our society, and then, when we have a national emergency, we turn to Him by calling for a national day of prayer.
This generalized gestalt of hypocrisy is not only appropriate for our nation, but to the adulterer as well.
There are millions of adulterers sitting in church every Sunday. If they have repented, this is where they should be. If they haven’t, they are wasting their time. God will not hear their prayers. “But your iniquities have separated you from your God; And your sins have hidden [His] face from you, So that He will not hear.” (Isaiah 59:2)
The point that must be made to all adulterers is this - obedience to God’s Word is not optional. "He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters abroad.” (Matthew 12:30) Being a Christian is an either/or decision. There is no such thing as a part-time Christian. We are either with Him, or against Him. We either commit adultery, or we don’t - and in that decision we choose our eternity.
“Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.” (James 4:4)
An enemy of God! Stop for a moment and let that sink in. An enemy of God!
Is adultery, or any sin for that matter, worth becoming the enemy of the Almighty? An enemy of the One who created heaven and earth? An enemy of the One who breathed life into mankind?
Has anyone ever told you that committing adultery makes you an enemy of God? They should have, but probably not, as many of the faithful have been so cowered by the secular they are afraid to speak His truth, the very truth that will set you free from the sin that has bound you.
I beg you not to commit adultery. If you already have, or are, stop it - now! Repent, and God will lovingly welcome you back into His family.
Edward Mrkvicka is an award winning Christian author, lay minister/counselor, and lifelong Bible student.
He is the author of The Prayer Promise of Christ, named Christian Book of the Year by Books & Authors.net.
His newest book, No Innocent Affair: Making Right the Wrong of Adultery, can be ordered at Amazon.com and purchased at most bookstores.
Ed’s web site is located at: www.EdwardFMrkvickaJr.com