Temptation of adultery

 

“Then an Israelite man brought to his family a Midianite woman right before the eyes of Moses and the whole assembly of Israel while they were weeping at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting.” (Number 25:6)

 

 

                The world is full of sexual temptation.  It's a sexually promiscuous world.  Satan stimulates the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes to make us sin sexually (1 Jn. 2:16).  Satan kindles the fire of lust (Prov. 6:24-29) and makes us to covet the body of a woman other than our own spouses, leading to sin not only in mind but also physically.  In particular, Satan is using the honey trap to overthrow us men who are vulnerable to sexual temptation.  Therefore, it leads to the breakup of the family in the end.  Sexual seduction is so strong and dangerous.

 

                In Numbers 25:6, there is a scene that is absurd and incomprehensible.  All the Israelites were weeping at the doorway of the tent of meeting because they had sinned against God and were being punished.  A man of Israel went into the tent in front of Moses and all the people of Israel with a woman from Midian.  The reason the Israelites were punished was not only that they began to commit adultery with the Moabite women at Shittim, but the Moabite women also invited the Israelites to the sacrifices of their gods and made them eat sacrifices and bow down to their gods (vv. 1-2).  How could the single Israelite man bring that Midianite woman to the eyes of all the weeping people of Israel?  It is because he has committed spiritual fornication, how can a single Israelite bring that Midianite woman right before the eyes of all the weeping Israelites?  And that Israelite man was Zimri, the son of Salu, and one of the leaders of the family of the Simeonites (v. 14).  How could Zimri, a leader, bring Cozbi, a Midianite woman, [daughter of Zur, a tribal chief of a Midianite family (v. 15)] into the Tent of Meeting in front of all the weeping Israelites?  Why did Zimri bring Cozbi into the Tent of Meeting?  I hope it wasn’t because Zimri wanted to have sex with Cozbi when all the Israelites were weeping at the entrance of the Tent of Meeting.  When the Israelites sinned against God, God commanded Moses to take all the leaders of the people of Israel and excute them in broad daylight before the Lord.  So Moses told the Israel’s judges, “Each of you must put to death those of your men who have joined in worshiping the Baal of Peor” (v. 5).  How could Zimri, the leader of a Simeonite family, bring Cozbi, the Midianite woman, into the Tent of Meeting before the eyes of Moses and the whole assembly of Israel?  This was also in a situation where the Israelites were dying from a plague (v. 9) because the Midianite women seduced the Israelites through the Cozbi incident (v. 18) and made them join Baal of Peor (v. 3).   It's a really absurd scene and I don't quite understand it.

 

            When I think of these words, I think that Satan's clever deception (Ref.: v. 18) leads us to not only fall into the temptation of adultery and commit the sin of adultery, but also ultimately commit the sin of spiritual adultery.  I also think that Satan is especially persistent in attacking church leaders and tempting them into adultery, making them sin against God.  Satan not only hardens our hearts (Jere. 9:14, Heb. 3:13), but also makes our faces like bronze and iron (Jer 6:28; Ezek. 2:4) and paralyzes our consciences (1 Tim. 4:2).  By doing so, he is making us to commit the sin of adultery openly, not only in front of the brothers and sisters of other churches, but also in the presence of family members.  Satan is making us commit the sin of adultery even while we receive (or even after) loving discipline from God for our sin of adultery.  Satan makes us to see only those with whom we want to commit adultery.  And he keeps us from committing the sin of adultery (2 Pet. 2:14).  Satan fills our hearts with lust and greed.  That is why the Bible says, “But because of immoralities, each man is to have his own wife, and each woman is to have her own husband” (1 Cor. 7:2).