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Fighting Impure Thoughts with Scripture

By Dr. Don Dunlap
Pastoral Counselor
By recognizing and obeying the Holy Spirit, we live above the sensual control of our lower natures.

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When we reset our affections of Christ, we begin to deaden evil desires. Memorizing strategic passages of Scripture helps us overcome the sin habit of impure thoughts. In the 5th  article of a seven-part series on conquering impure thoughts, Dr. Don Dunlap suggests further verses that when committed to memory, succeed in cleansing our lives. He reminds us that if we walk in the Spirit of God, we will not fulfill the lusts of the flesh.

If a Christian desires to overcome the sin of impure thoughts, there are certain Scripture passages that he or she should commit to memory. This is a continuation of a list of those verses.

6.      By recognizing and obeying the Holy Spirit, we live above the sensual control of our lower natures.


Therefore, brothers, we have an obligation—but it is not to the sinful nature, to live according to it. For if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live, because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. Romans 8:12-14

7.      If we walk in the Spirit, we will not fulfill the lusts of the flesh.


But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control…Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Galatians 5:22-25

8.      When we reset our affections on Christ, we deaden evil desires.


Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God…Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, and evil desires. Colossians 3:1-5

9.      We should never give up. It’s always too soon to quit.


Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith…Consider Him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. Hebrews 12:1-3

10.  We cleanse our lives by delighting in His Word.


How can a young man keep his way pure? By living in accordance with Your Word. I seek You with all my heart; do not let me stray from Your commands. I have hidden Your Word in my heart that I might not sin against You. Psalm 119:9-11

The fifth principle for overcoming impure thoughts is to remove any hidden provisions for defeat. The writer of Romans 13:14 warns, “Do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature.” This command is far more important that we realize. When we allow ourselves to think about sinful pleasures, we not only expect to fail, but we invite ourselves to give in to temptation.


We should ask God to reveal to us the things that we have brought into our lives which set us up for failure—impure books, magazines and videos, sensual music, activities, or friendships. As we remove these ungodly influences from our lives, we demonstrate to God that we sincerely desire to resist the devil so that he will flee from us.




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