I Want It, But I Can’t Have It – Part 2

Posted on September 15, 2023 by Elizabeth Welte in Freedom Fighters

“If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell.” – Matthew 5:29 (NKJV)


“Victory over the desires of the heart, must be attended with painful exertions. But it must be done. Every thing is bestowed to save us from our sins, not in them. All our senses and powers must be kept from those things which lead to transgression. Those who lead others into temptation to sin, by dress or in other ways, or leave them in it, or expose them to it, make themselves guilty of their sin, and will be accountable for it. If painful operations are submitted to, that our lives may be saved, what ought our minds to shrink from, when the salvation of our souls is concerned? There is tender mercy under all the Divine requirements, and the grace and consolations of the Spirit will enable us to attend to them.”

Even though this quote is from Matthew Henry’s comments on the seventh commandment, I kinda thought it basically covers the tenth one as well. “All our senses and powers must be kept from those things which lead to transgression” is a pretty potent sentence to digest because once you read what Jesus says in Matthew 5:29-30, you might understand where Jeus is coming from. The Middle Eastern culture is one that has engaged in the practice of actually cutting off body parts from folks who violate the “Do not Take, Do Not Look” law of the land. So, metaphorically speaking, Jesus is taking the most extreme object lesson to make this point, once you do it in the heart, you’ve done it.

So, the idea to “amputate” wrongful desires is really what is at the forefront of Jesus’ teaching here so don’t go plucking anything tangible out or off yourself just yet, there’s a better idea to grasp here. Like I said the last time I was with you, I gave you my thought on what I think covetousness really is. To be a slave to the wrongful desires of the heart leave no room for God to do a good work within you and leaves you to worshipping those things that have no eternal use in eternity. If your aim is to be like Jesus one of the first things to understand is that The Son of Man had no where to lay His head. That oughta get you thinking…


“Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy–meditate on these things.” – Philippians 4:8


And speaking of thinking, let’s take a moment and exam that. One of the things about being covetous is in the thinking of having what someone else has will do for you. Instead of thinking of ways to pray for a better job within the company you work for, there are some who would “plot” to discredit someone in a position that they have their eye on. This mindset only comes from what it has been fed, so if you take dirt in then you’ll just spread dirt out. Instead of walking away from the water cooler when the juicy gossip is happening, you’ll take a moment, bend an ear, and then you’ll find yourself participating in it.

Ultimately you’ll find out that at the very essence of covetousness is idolatry. Colossians 3:5 says, “Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.”  The Greeks define covetousness as “the insatiable desire to have what rightfully belongs to others.” Basically, man sets up an idol in his heart because there’s a desire to get something from it, so instead of God being in His rightful place on the throne of your heart its you and that sets you up to be able to do illicit things for yourself. You actually believe that others and their stuff exist for your own benefit, you arrogant and callous meanie head!

If we were to take things from “In the beginning” then everything good thing came from God. It wasn’t until Adam and Eve had their encounter with our adversary that temptation revealed its damaging effect. This is why we read in the Book of James 1:14-15, “But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death.” You desire, the enemy presents temptation, and the next thing that happens is…well think about that part. I have more to add to this topic but for today I would highly suggest that you take a few moments and press your nose into Gods Word. The only thing tempting that it presents is eternal life with Jesus Christ. I’m thinking that’s a better option. Amen?


Written by Chris Hughes: Chris is a child of El Elyon, a son, a husband, and a father. He has an education in Biblical doctrine and is a graduate of The Colony of Mercy, 11/2003. He has been a Freedom Fighter contributor since 2008. You can email him at cphughes515@verizon.net.

Think About This:  “I have heard thousands of confessions, but never one of covetousness.” – Francis Xavier

The Daily Bible Reading: Ezekiel 44-45. You can download our 2023 Daily Bible Reading Plan by clicking here. 

This Week’s Verse to Memorize:  “But Christ came as High Priest of the good things to come, with the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation. 12 Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.” Hebrews 9:11-12

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