SOURCE: Adapted from an article by David Boehi — Family Life Ministries
If I committed adultery…
- My relationship with God would suffer from a break in fellowship.
- I would need to seek forgiveness from my Lord.
- I would suffer from the emotional consequences of guilt.
- I would spend countless hours replaying the failure.
- My spouse would suffer the scars of this abuse more deeply than I could begin to describe.
- My spouse would spend countless hours in counseling.
- My spouse’s recovery would be long and painful.
- My spouse’s pain would grieve me deeply and compound my own suffering and shame.
- Our marriage relationship would suffer a break in trust, fellowship, and intimacy.
- In our marriage, we would be together, yet feel great loneliness.
- The reputation of my family would suffer loss.
- My children would be deeply disappointed and bewildered.
- My grandchildren would not understand.
- My friends would be disappointed and would question my integrity.
- My employment or job performance would be affected.
- My witness among neighbors would become worthless.
- My witness to my family would be worthless.
- My testimony among my spouse’s family would be damaged.
- My service in ministry would be damaged.
- My ability to work within the church would be damaged.
- I would suffer God’s discipline.
- Satan would be thrilled at my failure.
- Satan would work overtime to be sure my shame never departed.
- My spouse might divorce me.
- My children might never speak to me.
- Our mutual friends would shy away from us and break fellowship.
- I would bring emotional pain to the person with whom I committed adultery.
- I would bring reproach upon the person with whom I committed adultery.
- If my affair partner is married, that person’s spouse might attempt to bring harm.
- My affair partner’s spouse might divorce her.
- An unwanted child could be produced.
- My part in conception might trigger an abortion, the killing of an innocent child.
- Disease might result.
- Some might conclude that all Christians are hypocrites.
- My business could fail because I couldn’t be trusted.
- My leadership among those I have led in the past might also be diminished in impact.
- My zeal for ministry would suffer and possibly result in others not continuing in ministry.
- My health would suffer.
- I might have to start life over again.
- This same sin might be visited upon my family for four generations.
It’s a pretty sobering list, isn’t it? What’s even more sobering is that many people will consider these consequences and still proceed in their sin. The fantasy is more important to them than the reality.
The biggest benefit of this list may be in helping us realize the need to set up strict safeguards to ensure that we are faithful in our marriage commitment. If I am convinced of what adultery would do to me and to my family, I will watch my wandering eyes, guard my thought life, and avoid any situations that could put me in harm’s way.
The fantasy is just not worth it.