Bible Verses About Lust

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The Bible defines lust as something that is very different from love. Lust is selfish, and when we give in to it we do so with little regard for the consequences. Frequently, lust is a harmful distraction that pulls us away from God. It is important that we gain control of it and pursue instead the type of love that God desires for us.

Lust Is a Sin

The Bible describes lust as sinful, a form of faithlessness and immorality that "comes not from the Father but from the world." Believers are warned to guard against it:

Matthew 5:28
"But I tell you that if you look at another woman and want her, you are already unfaithful in your thoughts."

1 Corinthians 6:18
"Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body."

1 John 2:16
"For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—comes not from the Father but from the world."

Mark 7:20-23
"And then he added, 'It is what comes from inside that defiles you. For from within, out of a person’s heart, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, wickedness, deceit, lustful desires, envy, slander, pride, and foolishness. All these vile things come from within; they are what defile you.'"

Gaining Control Over Lust

Lust is something almost all of us have experienced, and we live in a society that promotes it at every turn. However, the Bible is clear that believers should do everything they can to combat its control over them:

1 Thessalonians 4:3-5
"For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you should abstain from sexual immorality; that each of you should know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, not in passion of lust, like the Gentiles who do not know God."

Colossians 3:5
"So put to death the sinful, earthly things lurking within you. Have nothing to do with sexual immorality, impurity, lust, and evil desires. Don’t be greedy, for a greedy person is an idolater, worshiping the things of this world."

1 Peter 2:11
"Dear friends, I warn you as 'temporary residents and foreigners' to keep away from worldly desires that wage war against your very souls."

Psalms 119:9-10
"Young people can live a clean life by obeying your word. I worship you with all my heart. Don’t let me walk away from your commands."

Consequences of Lust

When we lust, we bring a number of consequences into our lives. The Bible makes it clear that we're not meant to sustain ourselves on lust, but on love:

Galatians 5:19-21
"When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God."

1 Corinthians 6:13
"You say, 'Food was made for the stomach, and the stomach for food.' (This is true, though someday God will do away with both of them.) But you can’t say that our bodies were made for sexual immorality. They were made for the Lord, and the Lord cares about our bodies."

Romans 8:6
"If our minds are ruled by our desires, we will die. But if our minds are ruled by the Spirit, we will have life and peace."

Hebrews 13:4
"Marriage is to be held in honor among all, and the marriage bed is to be undefiled; for fornicators and adulterers God will judge."