Monday, August 22, 2011

Why Chastity?


In church yesterday, we had the greatest lesson on the Law of Chastity! It's difficult to try an sum up something so important and powerful in my own words but I'll sure try! My intent, however, isn't to summarize the commandment itself but rather to share some of the new thoughts I had about it.

1. The breaking of the Law of Chastity has consequences both before and after marriage.
I think too often we fail to remember the effects of our decisions to disobey God's commandments. When we break the law of chastity, we naturally begin to view others differently. We begin seeing others as objects of lust rather than pure and holy sons and daughters of God. The sacredness of relationships that should only be had after marriage is defiled.

The consequences, however, aren't all negative! We are blessed with greater trust in our relationships. We experience and feel a greater measure of the Spirit because we are pure and clean. We allow ourselves to give fully to our spouse (or future spouse)! We will find joy :)

2. The breaking of Law of Chastity is one of the most serious sins!
This is made pretty clear by Alma in Alma 39:3-5:
And this is not all, my son. Thou didst do that which was grievous unto me; for thou didst forske the ministry, and did go over into the land of Siron among the borders of the Lamanites, after the harlot Isabel. Yeah, she did steal away the hearts of many; but this was no excuse for thee, my son. Thou shouldst have tended to the ministry wherewith thou was entrusted. Know ye not, my son, that these things are an abomination in the sight of the Lord; yea, most abominable above all sins save it be the shedding of innocent blood or denying the Holy Ghost?


Elder Holland, reiterates how serious the violation of this commandment is in his talk "Of Souls, Symbols, and Sacraments:"

So partly in answer to why such seriousness, we answer that one toying with the God-given--and satanically coveted--body of another, toys with the very soul of that individual, toys with the central purpose and product of life, "the very key" to life, as Elder Boyd K. Packer once called it. In trivializing the soul of another (please include the word body there), we trivialize the Atonement that saved that soul and guaranteed its continued existence. And when one toys with the Son of Righteousness, the Day Star himself, one toys with white heat and a flame hotter and holier than the noonday sun. You cannot do so and not be burned. You cannot with impunity "crucify Christ afresh" (see Hebrews 6:6). Exploitation of the body (please include the word soul there) is, in the last analysis, an exploitation of him who is the Light and the Life of the world.

3. Keeping the Law of Chastity is essential to our eternal progression.
One of the members of the stake presidency noted 3 main things we learn by keeping this commandment: respect, selflessness, and self-control. These qualities are essential in fulfilling our potential as children of God to become like him! He perfectly demonstrates these qualities and has given us this law because he loves us and wants us to progress and inherit eternal joy.

The reasons for keeping the law of chastity are endless. It is of serious importance.

In 1972, Harold B Lee taught that "Satan's greatest threat today is to destroy the family and to make a mockery of the law of chastity and the sanctity of the marriage covenant." I believe this counsel still applies because of the eternal nature and importance of the law of chastity.

An important point to remember is that the Savior has already suffered for our sins! We can repent! We can be forgiven! We can be clean! I know this to be true! He has provided a way for us to overcome our sins, habits, guilt, shame, and all other negative things!

May we all seek to more fully keep this sacred law!

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