Donald Grey Barnhouse, who was pastor for many years of the Tenth Presbyterian
Church in Philadelphia, once told of a young man he knew who was dating a woman
many of his friends thought was not worthy of him. The friends were relieved
when he went into the army and she began dating other men. While in the
service, the young man met a wonderful Christian lady, fell in love and married
her. Upon his discharge, they returned to his hometown.
One evening the first woman came by her old boyfriend’s house to see him and
meet his wife. Finding the wife was not present, she made no attempt to hide
her affection and interest in resuming a romance.
As the young man later related to Dr. Barnhouse, he realized that he could have
a sexual relationship if he wished, and there was a physical attraction. But he
began to tell the woman about his wonderful wife; he showed her pictures,
praising his wife and acting as if he did not recognize the woman’s advances.
As she prepared to leave, the old girlfriend said, “Well, she must be
quite a girl if she can keep you from reaching!”
That young man said he was never more joyful in his life, and his love for his
wife had never been greater. Some would think he had given up the opportunity
for pleasure, but there was not any sense of sacrifice in his mind. The value
he put on his wife and on their marriage made cheating seem out of the
When we are tempted to sin, we can simply think of Jesus, His love for us and
the sacrifice He made for us, and yielding to temptation will seem out of the
Illustration by: John Huffman, Pastor, St. Andrews Presbyterian Church,
Newport Beach, CA
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