A father’s warning against adultery

For thousands of years, parents have been giving their children advice at all different times for all different reasons and on all different topics:andrew and me walking

  • “Eat your vegetables”
  • “Sit still”
  • “Take a bath”
  • “Go to sleep”
  • “Say thank you”
  • “Clean your room”
  • “Be kind”

If we are honest, most of the time that advice is unwanted and unsolicited – which is why we so desperately need it.  No kid ever runs with scissors thinking, “I wish I had a ‘grownup’ to tell me if this is a good idea.”   No child ponders the many benefits of bathing.

Instead, as the Scriptures teach, “foolishness is bound up within the heart of a child.” (Proverbs 22:15)  This makes sense.  Since a small child has never touched a hot stove before, how can they possibly know the pain that is about to scream in their small fingers?   Children don’t know what they don’t know.  This is one of the primary reasons why we need parents in our lives to help guide us along the way.  Parents have often been where children are heading.  Our scars come from a painful past.  Even if we haven’t touched the proverbial stove ourselves, we’ve been tempted and our ancient perspective allows us the ability to forsee the pitfalls a child simply cannot see.  As parents, we KNOW what happens when you don’t “eat your vegetables” or “go to sleep.”   Though there are other authorities in our life that can certainly help guide us (relatives, pastors, teachers, police, etc), none are quite as motivated like that of a parent.

A casual reader of my blog can see that I have a sordid past.   I have tripped and fallen while running with moral scissors.  I have not always colored within the lines.  I have touched more stoves than I can count.  Some discredit me because of it and deem me a poor teacher.  From my perspective, my sins were the tuition to the most expensive school in the land, EU – Experience University.   To be honest, I hold honorary degrees I wish I never earned.  But as a highly educated fool, I have a responsibility to share what I know with others, especially my own children.

If you have been paying attention to the news lately, adultery is once again front page material.  With the recent hack of the Ashley Madison website and the continued exposure of the names of those who were members, infidelity is wreaking havoc on the lives of millions of families.

Given the sad state of relational affairs (pun intended), I thought it was time to post a heartfelt letter about the topic – from a father’s perspective to his son.   All parental advice should be listened to simply because of that unique relationship.  But some parental advice is so packed with street cred that only a foolish child would choose to ignore it.   This letter, penned to a beloved son, is that such letter.

It is no secret that this particular father had numerous illicit relationships.  Because of this, he can offer an extremely unique perspective.  More than most, he understands the temptation and deception of the human heart and more than anything – wants his children to avoid his path.  If you don’t have a father who shared such wisdom with you, consider this wisdom as coming directly from him. (Though this letter is written from a father to his son, it obviously applies to daughters as well.)

And to my two boys, if you read this one day, please listen.  It is truth purchased at an incredibly painful price.

“Dear son,

(1-2) Please listen to what I’m about to share with you.   I beg that you stop what you are doing and really hear me.   These next few minutes can keep you from a world of hurt.

(3-6) In time, you will encounter an adulterous woman and her lying lips will seem like a sweet candy to your ears.  Her candy will give you a lifetime of cavities.  Her speech, though flattering, is deceptive.  Her words will cut you like a knife.  She walks down a street of destruction and following her will lead you straight to the grave.   She is lost and she will lead you into the land of the lost.

(7) Please listen to me and do not ignore this letter. Keep it somewhere safe and refer to it often, especially when you’re married.

(8-14) Do not go near this woman.  Stay as far away from her and her house as you can.  Don’t even drive by her neighborhood, lest you fall prey to the deceiving thoughts of your strength.   Taking her hand will bring a mere moment of pleasure and a lifetime of irreversible regret.  You will lose everything you have worked hard for. 


Trust me on this.  I don’t want you living with regrets that you can never change.  I don’t want you haunted with the voices that will scream, “Why did I not listen to my Dad’s words?  Why did I ignore his instruction?  How did I get in this position – even as a Christian?” 

(15-20) Son, would you eat food found in the dumpster?  Would you quench your thirst with water from a street puddle?  Of course not!  Eat food from your own plate and drink water from your own trusted bottle.  Don’t open your heart and body to a total stranger.  Blessing is found in the context of marriage.  Concentrate all your energies on your wife.  Discover the treasure of that relationship. May her body alone satisfy you always.  Get drunk with her love.  Why get intoxicated with another man’ wife?  Why get entangled with a woman of poor character?

(21) Don’t be deceived, you will get caught.  And even if you escape the notice of men, everything you do is in plain view of God’s sight.  Every night He is keenly aware of the bed you lie in.

(22) Being with an adulterous woman is like willingly walking into jail.  You will lose precious freedoms. 

(23) This decision can cost you your marriage, family, career, reputation, friendships and income and if you choose this, you will be led astray by complete and utter foolishness.



(This above letter was originally written by King Solomon to his son as recorded in Proverbs 5.  Obviously, the passage above was paraphrased and placed in modern context – particularly for my boys.)

Single? 10 creative ways to find a mate

It is estimated that there are over 54 million single people in the United States.  Most of my single friends say the same thing about finding love, “It’s so hard to meet someone decent.”   Many of them have exhausted the traditional places one searches for their next date (the church, the bar, the office, the gym – to name a few).   Beyond those places, where else can you go?   Before they allow their parents to pre-arrange anything, many today go online.

According to StatisticBrain.com, 40 million American singles have tried online dating sites like eHarmony or Match.com.  With the average dater spending over $200 per year for such sites, the industry rakes in over 1 billion dollars annually.  The Beatles claimed that “You can’t buy me love.”   Apparently, they were wrong.  Love can be purchased and it has a steep price tag.  Interestingly, (according to the same website) the typical online marriage lasts just over 18 months long.   Love is expensive!

But what if you do not live in a technological area?  What if, for example, you are Amish?  Would you attend the local barn raising event or enter a butter churning contest to find a suitable mate?  What if you did not grow up in a technological era?   Where would you find love if you grew up in a Biblical town during the Biblical days?  After a brief survey of the Bible, I have compiled a list of how folks in the Bible found their mate.  After reading the below segment, it should make online dating (OR letting your parents choose for you) much more attractive.   If you are single, perhaps one of the methods below will work for you?


1.  Have God create a wife for you while you are asleep. 

“The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”  But for Adam  no suitable helper was found.  So the Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribsand then closed up the place with flesh. Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.” (Genesis 2:18-24). 

2.  Marry your sister.   (Where do you think Cain’s wife came from??   Prior to the passage below, the only people mentioned on earth are Adam & Eve.)

“Cain made love to his wife, and she became pregnant and gave birth to Enoch. Cain was then building a city,   and he named it after his son Enoch. To Enoch was born Irad, and Irad was the father of Mehujael, and Mehujael was the father of Methushael, and Methushael was the father of Lamech.  Lamech married  two women,  one named Adah and the other Zillah.” (Genesis 4:17-19)

3.  Find a man who owns a farm that has lots of daughters.  Impress him by watering his flock.

Now a priest of Midian had seven daughters, and they came to draw water and fill the troughs to water their father’s flock. Some shepherds came along and drove them away, but Moses got up and came to their rescue  and watered their flock.  When the girls returned to Reuel  their father, he asked them, “Why have you returned so early today?”  They answered, “An Egyptian rescued us from the shepherds. He even drew water for us and watered the flock.”   “And where is he?” Reuel asked his daughters. “Why did you leave him? Invite him to have something to eat.”  Moses agreed to stay with the man, who gave his daughter Zipporah  to Moses in marriage.”  (Exodus 2:16-21)

4.  Find an attractive prisoner of war, bring her home, shave her head, trim her nails, and give her new clothes. Then she’s yours.

When you go to war against your enemies and the Lord your God delivers them into your hands and you take captives, if you notice among the captives a beautiful woman and are attracted to her, you may take her as your wife.   Bring her into your home and have her shave her head, trim her nails and put aside the clothes she was wearing when captured.”  (Deuteronomy 21:11-13)

5.  Find a prostitute and marry her.

When the Lord began to speak through Hosea, the Lord said to him, “Go, marry a promiscuous woman and have children with her, for like an adulterous wife this land is guilty of unfaithfulness to the Lord.”  So he married Gomer daughter of Diblaim, and she conceived and bore him a son.” (Hosea 1:2-3)

A prophet marrying a prostitute?  Now there’s a headline!

6.  Purchase a piece of property.  Make sure a woman is part of the deal. 

Then Boaz announced to the elders and all the people, “Today you are witnesses that I have bought from Naomi all the property of Elimelek, Kilion and Mahlon. I have also acquired Ruth the Moabite, Mahlon’s widow, as my wife, in order to maintain the name of the dead with his property, so that his name will not disappear from among his family or from his hometown.   Today you are witnesses! ”  (Ruth 4:9-10)

7.  Go to a party and hide. When the women come out to dance, grab one and carry her off to be your wife.

And the elders of the assembly said, “With the women of Benjamin destroyed, how shall we provide wives for the men who are left?  The Benjamite survivors must have heirs,” they said, “so that a tribe of Israel will not be wiped out.  We can’t give them our daughters as wives, since we Israelites have taken this oath: ‘Cursed be anyone who gives a wife to a Benjamite.’ But look, there is the annual festival of the Lord in Shiloh,  which lies north of Bethel, east of the road that goes from Bethel to Shechem,  and south of Lebonah.”  So they instructed the Benjamites, saying, “Go and hide in the vineyards and watch. When the young women of Shiloh come out to join in the dancing, rush from the vineyards and each of you seize one of them to be your wife. Then return to the land of Benjamin. When their fathers or brothers complain to us, we will say to them, ‘Do us the favor of helping them, because we did not get wives for them during the war. You will not be guilty of breaking your oath because you did not give your daughters to them.’”  So that is what the Benjamites did. While the young women were dancing,  each man caught one and carried her off to be his wife.”  (Judges 21:16-25)

(Warning: I have a feeling that this option would carry some serious legal ramifications if tried today.  Just sayin’.)

8.  Cut 200 foreskins off of your future father-in-law’s enemies and get his daughter for a wife.

Then Saul ordered his attendants: “Speak to David privately and say, ‘Look, the king likes you, and his attendants all love you; now become his son-in-law.’”  They repeated these words to David. But David said, “Do you think it is a small matter to become the king’s son-in-law?  I’m only a poor man and little known.”  When Saul’s servants told him what David had said, Saul replied, “Say to David, ‘The king wants no other price for the bride than a hundred Philistine foreskins, to take revenge on his enemies.’” Saul’s plan was to have David fall by the hands of the Philistines.  When the attendants told David these things, he was pleased to become the king’s son-in-law. So before the allotted time elapsed, David took his men with him and went out and killed two hundred Philistines and brought back their foreskins. They counted out the full number to the king so that David might become the king’s son-in-law. Then Saul gave him his daughter Michal  in marriage.” (I Samuel 18:22-27)

(A word of caution here: Think twice before you use this method to obtain a wife, as this option is life-threatening.  If this is what your future father-in-law requires you to do before he gives you his daughter’s hand in marriage, ask yourself if this is really the kind of family you want to get involved with?   Lastly, if you thought admitting that you met your mate online was embarrassing, try this one.)

9.  Grab someone else’s wife and kill her husband.  

(Warning: It’s a very bad idea, breaks two major commandments and will not end well for you or the husband.  II Samuel 11 covers the entire story.)

10.  Don’t be so picky. Make up for quality with quantity.

King Solomon, however, loved many foreign women besides Pharaoh’s daughter—Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Sidonians and Hittites. They were from nations about which the Lord had told the Israelites, “You must not intermarry with them, because they will surely turn your hearts after their gods.” Nevertheless, Solomon held fast to them in love.  He had seven hundred wives of royal birth and three hundred concubines, and his wives led him astray.”  (1 Kings 11:1-3)

(For those of you who are married, you know how hard it is to please one wife.  Can you imagine 700 or more?   This option really is not wise at all.  Interestingly, Solomon was considered to be the wisest man to ever have lived.   Apparently even the wisest among us have lapses of judgment from time to time.)

Final note…

If you are reading this and are married, thank God that He has provided you with a spouse.  Do what YOU can to strengthen that marriage TODAY since we know that a strong marriage is wonderful for both the family and the country.  Remember, “God hates divorce” (Malachi 2:16) and NO ONE wins when that option is chosen, except maybe a lawyer.

If you are reading this and are single, thank God as well.  Perhaps you are not called to be married (I Corinthians 7:24) or that God is saving you from severe heartache?  If you think you are lonely now, it pales in comparison to being lonely in a marriage.  Or maybe you are not ready for a relationship yet and God is still working on your relationship with Him (Matthew 6:33).  Regardless of the reason, embrace and enjoy your singlehood.  There are many who jumped too quickly into marriage (for all the wrong reasons) and would love to trade places with you now.

Personally, I’d choose option #1.   How cool would that be?   You drift off asleep – dreaming about the perfect spouse and when you wake up – there he/she is – ready for you!   Humorously, an evangelist (Ray Comfort) once remarked that “God put man into a deep sleep and nowhere in the Bible does it say he ever came out of it.”  

(Forward this to all your single friends.  They need as much help as they can get!)