January 18, 2021

Flame of YAHWEH-Moral Integrity in our sexuality

Summary of Steps toward Moral Integrity

an excerpt from Davidson’s

Flame of YAHWEH-Sexuality in the Old Testament

December 3, 2013

James C. Stephens


Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden

In a desire to pursue what is good and pure, and seeking to please YHWH in every aspect of my life, both public and private, I was lead to an extensive treatment on sexuality from a Judaeo-Christian perspective that wrestles on a very deep Biblical level with the issues that have confronted the human race for thousands of years. It was written by Richard M. Davidson, the J.N. Andrews Professor of Old Testament Interpretation at Andrews University. One of his extensive footnotes seemed to provide an answer to my quest to find a model to work on getting my own internal house in order. The entire work of 844 pages is encyclopedic in its scope, e.g., the bibliography in itself is 140 pages.

“The hymnic/Wisdom literature of the OT give very practical steps for availing oneself of empowering divine grace to preserve moral purity in both thought and action. Although this material is more pastoral and application-oriented than exegetical, I include it here because the theology of the hymnic/Wisdom literature is in fact oriented toward the practical, everyday life, presenting wisdom as practical advice on how to succeed in life.

Here is a summary of steps toward moral integrity that have emerged from my study of this literature:

(1) daily consecration and prayer for God to create a pure heart (Ps 51:12 [ET 51:10]);



(2) trusting in God’s keeping power by faith (Prov 3:5-6);


(3)meditation upon the character of God and focusing upon pure thoughts (Ps 16:8; Prov 23:7);


(4) avoiding situations that contain temptations to impurity (Prov 5:8);


(5) constant “watchfulness” (Prov 4:23,26) [NASB]; 8:34;


(6)earnest prayer and claiming of God’s promises (Prov 2:1-6, 16);



(7) dependence upon the abiding influence of the Holy Spirit (Ps 51:13 [ET 51:11];143:10;Prov 1:23);


(8) diligent study and internalizing of the word (Ps 119:9,11; Prov 2:1-13; 6:20-24; 7:2-3);


(9)cultivating a sense of God’s presence and the certainty of future judgment (Ps 139:7; Prov 2:18-19;5:3–4,20-22);


(10)cultivating a sense of the ennobling power of pure thoughts (Prov 22:11);


(11) cultivating intimacy and sexual satisfaction with one’s own spouse (Prov 5:15-19);


and


(12) realizing the cosmic conflict in which the enemy “stalks” victims (Prov 6:26).



The hymnic/Wisdom literature presents these twelve steps in order that the wise—the ones who follow these steps—
may experience success in the path of moral integrity.”


Flame of YAHWEH-Sexuality in the Old Testament by Richard M. Davidson, Hendrickson Publishers, Peabody Massachusetts, 2007, pg. 375 footnote 138.

About jstephens

James C. Stephens was a graduate of a Buddhist Study Academy and a Buddhist leader for fourteen years (1970-1984). In 1978, he married Elizabeth, a Jewish Buddhist at a Buddhist temple. Following an accident in Japan in 1981 while on a Buddhist pilgrimage followed by an intense three year spiritual search through various other faiths and practices, James and Elizabeth made the decision to become disciples of Jesus Christ. James graduated in 1999 with a MA in Intercultural Studies from Fuller School of Intercultural Studies and in 2010, launched http://www.worldviews101.com/ which offers a twelve week course "A Christian Perspective on the Dalai Lama and Tibetan Buddhism."

He and his wife enjoy Landscape architecture, gardening, making kombucha and kefir, film, screenwriting, literature, and music.