For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the
eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the
world.”—I John 2:16 (NKJV)


passion drives you, let reason hold the reins.”—Benjamin Franklin

I’m actually not going to break this all the way down the way I
usually do, because after praying about this message (Luke 12:12),
the Holy Spirit impressed upon me that this revelation will mean
different things to different people. That said, I do pray that you
will read and retain what’s in here. I often say that when God takes
me to the New Testament, it’s usually a “grace message”, but when
we go Old (School) Testament, it’s a “wrath warning”.

I am one day and one month away from my two-year, no sex anniversary,
and when I tell you it’s getting tight on a sistah…you have no
! Because we ALL, single and married alike, were created as
sexual beings (single people just need to know how to control it
until marriage—Hebrews 13:4), I believe it is a struggle for anyone
to deny the flesh…some harder than others. But when you are called
to a certain area, I believe the Enemy cranks it up a notch.

who are called to give probably struggle with selfishness.

who are called to minister/serve probably struggle with pride.

who are called to faith probably struggle with doubt.

KNOW that I am called to help free people from sexual bondage, and so
my stronghold in that area is extra tight. Anyway, as I was praying
to God about how much I needed his help these next four weeks (cold
weather…mistletoe…are you serious?!?), he didn’t say much. He
simply took me to an Old Testament story. Immediately, I knew it was
a huge, flashing “warning sign”:

had a son named Absalom and a son named Amnon. Absalom had a
beautiful sister named Tamar, and Amnon loved her. Tamar was a
virgin. Amnon made himself sick just thinking about her, because he
could not find any chance to be alone with her.

had a friend named Jonadab son of Shimeah, David’s brother. Jonadab
was a very clever man. He asked Amnon, ‘Son of the king, why do you
look so sad day after day? Tell me what’s wrong!’

told him, ‘I love Tamar, the sister of my half-brother Absalom.’

said to Amnon, ‘Go to bed and act as if you are sick. Then your
father will come to see you. Tell him, ‘Please let my sister Tamar
come in and give me food to eat. Let her make the food in front of me
so I can watch and eat it from her hand.’

Amnon went to bed and acted sick. When King David came in to see him,
Amnon said to him, ‘Please let my sister Tamar come in. Let her make
two of her special cakes for me while I watch. Then I will eat them
from her hands.’

sent for Tamar in the palace, saying, ‘Go to your brother Amnon’s
house and make some food for him.’ So Tamar went to her brother
Amnon’s house, and he was in bed. Tamar took some dough and pressed
it together with her hands. She made some special cakes while Amnon
watched. Then she baked them. Next she took the pan and served him,
but he refused to eat.

said to his servants, ‘All of you, leave me alone!’ So they all left
him alone. Amnon said to Tamar, ‘Bring the food into the bedroom so
I may eat from your hand.’

took the cakes she had made and brought them to her brother Amnon in
the bedroom. She went to him so he could eat from her hands, but
Amnon grabbed her. He said, ‘Sister, come and have sexual relations
with me.’

said to him, ‘No, brother! Don’t force me! This should never be done
in Israel! Don’t do this shameful thing! I could never get rid of my
shame! And you will be like the shameful fools in Israel! Please talk
with the king, and he will let you marry me.’

Amnon refused to listen to her. He was stronger than she was, so he
forced her to have sexual relations with him. After that, Amnon
hated Tamar. He hated her more than he had loved her before.
Amnon said to her, ‘Get up and leave!’

said to him, ‘No! Sending me away would be worse than what you’ve
already done!’

he refused to listen to her. He called his young servant back in and
said, ‘Get this woman out of here and away from me! Lock the door
after her.’ So his servant led her out of the room and bolted the
door after her.

was wearing a special robe with long sleeves, because the king’s
virgin daughters wore this kind of robe. To show how upset she was,
Tamar put ashes on her head and tore her special robe and put her
hand on her head. Then she went away, crying loudly.

Tamar’s brother, said to her, ‘Has Amnon, your brother, forced you to
have sexual relations with him? For now, sister, be quiet. He is your
half-brother. Don’t let this upset you so much!’ So Tamar lived in
her brother Absalom’s house and was sad and lonely.”—2 Samuel
13:1-20 (NCV)

there are SO MANY lessons in here. How virgins need to watch their
boundaries. (Rolling over to the crib in the middle of the
night?…Umm, probably not the best idea) How you can want something
so badly that you lose all sight on reason. (That’s not love, that’s
lust, by the way. Love and stupid are not synonyms.) I even love it
when Tamar said, “…talk with the king and he will let you marry
me.” (How many people swear that they want someone, but they ain’t
said nothing to God about it?) But,
what I knew God wanted me to see is the sentence that is in bold. I read it and my heart sunk:

having sex with her), “He hated her more than he had loved her
.” (verse 15)

the scriptures don’t even describe what Amnon felt for her as lust.
It says he loved her. But because he did not go through the
proper channels, because he did not wait (I Corinthians 13:4),
because he put his flesh above his spirit (Galatians 5:16-17), he
took matters into his own hands. As a result, the sex that he
thought he wanted so badly caused him to hate the very thing he once
loved. (Wow…wow…triple wow!!!)

I’m pretty much going to leave it right there, because that is what
the Holy Spirit is leading me to do. I know that personally, God is
warning me that if I let my carnal desires supersede my spiritual
knowledge, I could find myself with a very similar testimony: making
hate in the midst of lovemaking. You know, when it comes to
fornication/adultery, we are always consumed with “hell”…the
eternal kind. But, as Thomas Hobbes so poignantly once said, “Hell
is truth seen to late.” There are a
lot of ways
experience “hell”, and as much as I know Christ understands my
suffering (Hebrews 2:18), because of all of the information I have
come into since my abstinence and because I know the Enemy is
threatened by my purpose (as he is with all of us), I KNOW that God
is warning me that to fall into this trap in this season, it would be
a gamble (to stake or risk money, or anything of value, on the
outcome of something involving chance; to
lose or squander by betting)…very similar to the story of Amnon and
Tamar (he ended up losing his life for it in the end, by the way) and
the story of the unclean spirit that returns to a cleaned-out space:

a defiling evil spirit is expelled from someone, it drifts along
through the desert looking for an oasis, some unsuspecting soul it
can bedevil. When it doesn’t find anyone, it says, ‘I’ll go back to
my old haunt.’ On return it finds the person spotlessly clean, but
vacant. It then runs out and rounds up seven other spirits more evil
than itself and they all move in, whooping it up. That person ends up
far worse off than if he’d never gotten cleaned up in the first
place. .”—Matthew 12:43-45

Shoot. I know what it
took to get ONE spirit out of me…seven moreworse than
the first
? I’m bold, but I don’t think I’m that bold.

So, you’re tempted? You
think you can’t wait for what you want? Ask yourself if it’s worth
losing…worth hating…worth leaving you worse off than before you
had it.

Passion is indeed a
gamble…usually a sucker’s bet. (John 10:10)

Play wisely.

R. Warren/2008