Can a man hold fire against his chest without burning his clothes? Can a man walk on hot coals without scorching his feet? (Proverbs 6:27-28)
Let’s dispel notions that the inner life has no effect on the outer. You cannot court sin and keep it at arm’s length. You dance with the devil and pretend all you’re doing is thinking, while you dubiously hold the members of your body in check with strength of mind and willpower and inborn virtue. We all know thoughts are the foundation of action, and actions have justification in thought. Thoughts, good or bad, are the foundation of your relationship with God and your relationship with people.
This is why secular sin-avoidance is not an acceptable form of communion. The inner life determines the outer life. We’ve gotten used to saying what we do in private is not anyone’s business on the assumption these areas of our life are distinct. Real people, though, aren’t submarines, which have watertight doors to stave off flooding from one compartment to the next. Corruption spreads from the inner to the outer with disregard for such false, intellectual separation.
So let’s think and conduct ourselves in private like the people who we want to look like before the world.