Stop ‘Playing The Whore’…

John Wylie —  August 31, 2012 — 10 Comments

We were in small group last night and Micah asked a really good question based on a conversation he had earlier this week:
Is it possible for the believer to reach a place where he/she doesn’t sin anymore?

What a question!
I had to wrestle with it for a second.
But my mind went to 2 Peter 1:3 which says:

 His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us to His own glory and excellence…[ESV]

Interesting. His divine power has granted to us ALL THINGS that pertain to life in godliness – hmmm.
We are fully equipped to be able to not find sin so tempting.
We also have a spirit that guides us to all truth [John 16:13].

What is even more interesting is a point that Micah brought up.
In Romans 7 when Paul says that ‘[he] does what [he] doesn’t want to, and doesn’t do what [he] does want to…’ [Romans 7:15] well, it almost gives the feeling that he isn’t in control. All he does is surrender. Either you surrender to the flesh, or you surrender to spirit…either way you have no real control as to what you do, or don’t do.

Which brings me to another point of contemplation.
If we are surrendering to the flesh, what does the bible say about it?
Well – not good things.

Did you know that the bible mentions the word ‘whore’ (or any variation of it) over 90+ times (from my last count)?
It even explains the word as something worse than a whore…more like a prostitute who pays their lovers [Ezekiel 16:30]. I don’t even know if we have a word that would explain this fully…maybe slut?
Do you want to know when it uses such words?
Well, I’ll tell ya, it is (most every time) when God is talking about His people forsaking him for idols, or not surrendering to Him completely…yeah. Surrendering to flesh and not spirit.

Want some examples? Cool – here we go:
In Ezekiel 16, the writer goes into detail about what God thinks of Israel. He starts by explaining that when He came upon them in their birth, that they were a baby kicking in it’s own blood – still attached to it’s mother by birth cord. Then goes into a beautiful picture of how God picked up His people and clothed them in beautiful garments when they were fully developed, and beautiful.

He adorned Her with gold and silver…gave her the very best. Then Israel trusted in Her own beauty and:

“But you trusted in your beauty and played the whore because of your renown and lavished your whorings on any passerby; your beauty became his. 16 You took some of your garments and made for yourself colorful shrines, and on them played the whore. The like has never been, nor ever shall be. 17 You also took your beautiful jewels of my gold and of my silver, which I had given you, and made for yourself images of men, and with them played the whore.” – Ezekiel 16:15-17 [ESV]

The chapter goes on to be even more lewd and use even more powerful language to show what Israel did. They were proud of their sin, building and living in vaulted chambers…whoring themselves out to anyone who passed by.

Hosea 2 also gives a really good description of this event, but doesn’t leave us with such a bad taste in our mouth. In Hosea 2:14 the writer writes about God coming back to her and forgiving her completely for what she’d done. And He says that He’ll even take the name of Baal off of her mouth. That she will remember Him and honor Him forever. He allows the whore not to play the whore anymore. [Read it for yourselves...it is an amazing, and beautiful illustration...] [Hosea 2:14-23]

That is what God thinks of us. We whore ourselves out after every little thing that comes by, when we surrender to flesh. Whether that be possessions or attitudes or people. We are so quick to turn our affections away from Christ. And God is pretty clear what He thinks of such things…

Now, don’t get me wrong, once we are in Christ – we are His, and always His. There is no changing that.
But why would we want to break the heart of the man who romanced us and brought us in while we were still wild whores, slutting ourselves out for anyone that came by, to the point where we paid our lovers?

So, to answer the question that Micah asked at the beginning of the night in a whole new light; Is it possible for the believer to reach a place where he/she doesn’t sin anymore?
Well, is it possible for a whore to stop whoring themselves out? Yes. It will be hard to die to that flesh, but it is possible.
We need to trust in, and be lead by the spirit, not by flesh. If we do that – the bible promises that we will be lead in a life of Godliness. We just gotta surrender to it. That’s all…it is as easy, and as hard, as that.

And please, know this – I am nowhere near a life of godliness like this…but it sure is something to strive for.
I need to stop ‘playing the whore’ – I need to treat my sin how God views it…as disgusting, defiling, and devastating.
Oh how often I make excuses for my sin. Father, purge this from me.
Amen. Amen…

John Wylie

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John Wylie is the man behind the cartoon - a guy who enjoys drumming, hanging out with friends, and traveling. John is currently attending the SevenTen Discipleship Program with Ryan Dalgliesh in Texas - he plans to use this education to preach & teach all over the country (and hopefully, the world). John also feels very awkward typing in third person.
  • Jesse Yon Fong

    Nice. A sinless and holy life is something the bible does tell us to strive for.

    • http://www.ivoryjohn.com John Wylie

      we won’t ever be ‘sinless’ but we can strive for holiness. and not sin anymore. we cannot be sinless because, at one point, we’ve all sinned…make sense?

  • http://rkblog.com Rich Kirkpatrick

    The simple answer is yes! You will sin.

    Why? Not because you are a whore, but because as Romans 7 says the “presence” of sin is in our flesh. We are not fully saved from the presence of sin and are still learning to be saved from its power. So, we are all whores. Jesus treated whores not with condemnation but with the freedom to not act as one any longer.

    I think the biggest news that is the gospel is that our “holiness” is imparted not earned. Faith is believing our sonship and walking in it even though we still smell like the prodigal son.
    Rich Kirkpatrick recently posted..Are you a diva? – Four obstacles & strategies to prevent throwing a tantrumMy Profile

    • http://www.ivoryjohn.com John Wylie

      I didn’t say that we become SINLESS – the effects of sin will always be in our flesh, no doubt. I don’t think that Paul was saying we’d always have sin with us. We’d always have the effects of sin, sure.

      I also agree that holiness is imparted, not earned. But that shouldn’t be an excuse FOR our sin.
      ‘Oh, I’m just a prodigal son…we all do this.’
      ‘We all sin, it’s okay…’
      - I cringe at those words now.

  • http://www.inlightofeverything.com Josh

    Yes!

    This is part of the gift of abundant life, on this side of eternity, Christ promised those loved and obeyed Him!

    This idea of “not struggling” with sin has come up numerous times in discussions I’ve had about the subject of pornography. What Paul wrote in Romans 6, reminding us that we’re no longer slaves to sin, underscores what Jesus’s resurrection accomplished for us!

    I tend to lean towards believing we won’t be completely struggle-less until Christ finishes the transforming work in our lives… but that process of transforming will brings us pretty close!

    We become like what we worship!

    If we’re concentrating on NOT sinning – we have a tendency to slip.

    If our attention and focus is Christ-minded – that’s who we image!
    Josh recently posted..JumpMy Profile

    • http://www.ivoryjohn.com John Wylie

      I agree with this statement whole-heartedly:
      ‘If we’re concentrating on NOT sinning – we have a tendency to slip.’
      Amen!
      It isn’t about concentrating on NOT sinning. But keeping Christ central not first.
      Does that make sense?
      If we keep Christ central to our lives, and submit to the spirit ALL THE TIME (possible, not probable) – then we can reach a point in life to where we don’t sin.

      Again – please note. I said it is possible not probable :)

      I’ve still got a lot more surrendering to do…that’s for darn sure.

  • http://www.haleedawn.blogspot.com Halee

    Very inspiring post!

    Halee
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  • http://grazieadio.blogspot.com melissa

    I think what you’ve written has captured the essence of my post on Snakes and Ladders. The challenge is for everybody to live holy lives.

    While reviewing the OT with the little kids, we reflected on God’s love and faithfulness. The people do forget about this most of the time and rely on their own strength and wealth…I think this is where true compunction takes place ~ when we begin to realize that God’s love is larger than all of our sins.

    “God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” ~ Romans 5,8. And He continues to do so through the Sacraments. We sin, yes, but we are reconciled to Him through the Sacrament of Penance.

    We should not rely on our own strength but on God’s grace :)

    Thought provoking and challenging post. Thanks for sharing.
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  • Todd

    I appreciate where you are going with this, (the concept actually has a name, and is part of the Church of the Nazarene doctrine, known as “total sanctification”), however I have always had trouble ascribing to the doctrine simply because it can lead to a dangerous slippery slope of believing you are in a place you aren’t, or at the other end of it, if you are not able to, in your mind, achieve it, get in to a destructive pattern of feeling like a failure to God (as Martin Luther did for so long before he came to his revelation) . I do believe we need to continually strive for this, however I just think we need to be careful of what we could start to believe of ourself if things don’t go the way we think they should.

  • http://rodpitts.wordpress.com Rod Pitts

    Great post, bro! :)
    Rod Pitts recently posted..A Case for "Bromance"My Profile