Is Purity Finite? – Purity Part 6

Part 1: What Are Your Thoughts?
Part 2: What Is Emotional Purity? 
Part 3: The Struggle for Emotional Purity
Part 4: Is Emotional Purity Harmful?
Part 5: Is Emotional Purity Biblical?
Hold this bucket of water. It’s filled with your “purity”. Every time some water accidentally sloshes out, or you intentionally take some out, you can never get it back. Every bit of water you lose out of your bucket is purity that can never be reclaimed. You have a finite amount of water. I think this is how some people view purity, even those who have rejected the notion of being pure all together.
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Often, we see purity portrayed as being finite. We all start out at full health, and as we go through life, whatever amount we lose, can never be reclaimed. There are no purity gas stations to refill. Every little bit of purity you lose from your bucket makes you just that much less pure.
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Of course, this doesn’t just apply to the issue of impurity, but to many areas of sin. We feel that we all start out good and innocent, and as our sins accumulate, we become less and less capable and deserving of the good life God has in mind for us. Indeed, we soon can begin to believe that we don’t deserve anything good, or that we have “messed up” too many times to be redeemable. This is a lie that Satan plants in our heads, not God.
I’ve talked a lot about the goodness of purity throughout this series, but what if you haven’t always been the most pure? Well, then it’s possible you’re feeling one of two things after reading this series. Either you think what I’m saying is ridiculous and you find yourself wishing strongly that I am hit by a bus for saying such things, or perhaps you feel guilty, depressed, or without hope. It is not my desire for this series to result in either of these two outcomes.
For those who wish to see me bleeding on asphalt, I don’t think there is much I can say to you, except don’t get your hopes up. There aren’t too many buses around where I live. But for those who may be feeling a bit depressed or guilty from what I’ve said, don’t be! This post is for you.
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First of all, let’s entertain the notion that purity really is finite, and see where that takes us. I think you will conclude, as I have, how ridiculous it is to believe purity cannot be restored. To illustrate, let’s apply this same finite understanding of purity to another sin.
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Let us say that I am a pathological liar; however, I realize that I want to change. But, oh no! Honesty is finite! Once I tell a lie, I am just that much more dishonest. I can never again become as honest as I was before I told that lie. And if I have been a pathological liar…wow…there is no hope of my ever regaining honesty ever again, so why even try? Why should I even try to stop lying if I’ll always be a liar?
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We could apply this concept to other sins as well, and see how untrue it is. So, why then do we only believe that purity is finite? Just as I can turn and repent from lying and be forgiven and live a life of honesty, so too can we turn and repent and be forgiven and live a life of purity, no matter our pasts.
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“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” – 1 John 1:9
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All is not lost if you haven’t been very pure up to this point in your life. You are not locked out of the good available to us by pursuing purity. You can become pure again. You can restructure your thoughts and interactions with others and begin living in purity—both spiritual and physical.
That being said, the reality is that sin does damage here on Earth. If you’ve been drinking poison, you can certainly stop and begin living healthfully, but that’s not to say the poison you drank hasn’t done some damage. If I have been a pathological liar and stop and begin living honestly, that doesn’t mean there won’t be consequences. For example, perhaps no one will trust me even when I do tell the truth. This is the same with any sin. Sin hurts, and that’s why God hates it so much. Purity is no different, and a life of impurity can and does have consequences on Earth. No sin is ever okay, even though forgiveness and healing are very much available to us.
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But please don’t find that depressing if you have lived a life of impurity. It is much better to STOP drinking the poison than thinking, “Well, I’ve already drank this much so…might as well keep going.” You’ll end up dead that way. Stopping the damage is a BIG first step.
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The truth is, no one is really “pure” in the sense of the “bucket” definition of purity. If purity is finite, then no one is pure completely. We have all failed in some way in this area, just as we have all lied, and cheated, and hated our brother. We have broken all of God’s laws. (James 2:10) This goes to show that purity is not finite, and we cannot obtain it ourselves, and therefore there is no room for anyone to boast in this area. (Ephesians 2:9)
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Since, ultimately, it is Christ who makes us pure, we can have our purity restored, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)
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So regardless of your past, go forward and be pure. Through obedience to Christ and His grace, what was lost can be restored. If we repent and turn away from our sin, God will no longer remember our past transgressions (Jeremiah 31:34), and our sin will be as far as the east is from the west (Psalm 103:12).
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If you have failed in the area of spiritual or physical purity in the past, but have repented, then you have no need for guilt. We can live free, and continue to grow and heal through obedience to Christ. 

Final upcoming posts in this series:
Why I No Longer Talk To Girls Privately Online: Practical Purity
Emotional Purity In Courtship

Linked up at:
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What Joy Is Mine
Raising Homemakers
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My Daily Walk In His Grace
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Hope In Every Season
Serving Joyfully
Graced Simplicity
I Choose Joy
The Deliberate Mom

5 Comments

  1. Great post, Reagan!

  2. Thank you!
    I was hoping you would address this issue. It just makes me sick when people talk about purity as being limited.
    I talked to a girl who had been considerably impure in the past, but had repented of her sin. However, she was greatly depressed. “Nobody will ever want to marry me now” she told me.
    If we hold to limited purity, then she would be considered “damaged goods” and have insufficient “heart pieces” left. That's exactly what the devil wanted her to believe, and it's the kind of thing that too many people are teaching today.

    Thank God that He gives us forgiveness and the strength to turn from our sinful ways.

  3. Thanks for this post Reagan! It was greatly encouraging!

    In Him,
    Brigid
    the Middle Sister and Singer

  4. Glad you liked it!

    And hey, no one is perfect. If someone was to reject her for her past, then they would be a hypocrite.

  5. What an encouraging message!

    I recently wrote about how I struggled to forgive myself. I asked Christ for forgiveness, I can forgive others, but I couldn't seem to forgive myself. That self-condemnation is a slippery slope… so I frequently dwell on Romans 8:1.

    You're right, no one is “pure” in the bucket definition of purity. That's why we need Christ!

    Thanks for sharing and linking up to the #SHINEbloghop.

    Wishing you a lovely weekend.

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