Day after day Potiphar’s wife tried to seduce Joseph, but he said no. He gave her no time, no attention, no chitchat, and no reason for hope. ‘He did not heed her, to lie with her or to be with her.’ (Genesis 39:10 NKJV) In today’s framework: when she called, he didn’t answer the phone; when she texted, he didn’t text back; when she showed up, he ‘fled and ran outside.’ (Genesis 39:12 NKJV)
In a culture that uses phrases like ‘consenting adults’ and ‘sexual rights’, we forget how immorality destroys the lives of people who aren’t in the bedroom. Max Lucado writes: ‘Years ago a friend gave me this counsel: “Make a list of all the lives you would affect by your sexual immorality.” I did. Every so often I reread it. “My wife Denalyn. My three daughters. My son-in-law. My yet-to-be-born granddaughter. Every person who has ever read one of my books or heard one of my sermons. My publishing team. Our church staff.” The list reminds me: One act of carnality is a poor exchange for a lifetime of lost legacy.’
Joseph’s primary reason for saying no to Potiphar’s wife was—God. ‘How… can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?’ (Genesis 39:9 NKJV)
The lesson we learn from Joseph is surprisingly simple: do what pleases God.
When a friend offers you a joint of marijuana: do what pleases God.
When your mates show you a way to cheat: do what pleases God.
When the temptation to watch pornography is great: do what pleases God.
‘How can I please God?’ you ask. ‘Do what is right as a sacrifice to the Lord and trust the Lord.’