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Right and Wrong Use of Desire

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Someone once said that God gave us humans desires not so that we wouldn’t bore each other but that we wouldn’t bore him. After all if God wanted mindless, thoughtless robots He would have created such from the beginning. But he didn’t; He created living and breathing humans that have built in desires. We as creations of God’s have built in to us certain desires that are really not bad at all; but simply the way we are created.

            Desire is one of life’s strongest emotions. The desire to be loved, the desire to love, the desire to survive in a crisis, the desire to have a family, is just to name some of those desires that come to all of us naturally.

            Sadly though we only know the dark side of desire. The side of desire that draws us to something else, which becomes sin in the long run; taking us away from God.

            However, desire in and of itself is not totally wrong. It’s only when we have the wrong object as the subject of our desire is when we run a muck in sin. So instead of becoming a factor to ruin my life; my desire can be used to help transform my life for my good and God’s glory! That’s right; desiring the right object can and will have a positive effect upon my life as God’s Child.

            That’s what we need to think about tonight, ---the right and wrong use of our desire. 

This verse v4 gets misapplied so many times. I have heard people pray, “God I want a new 4x4 truck, a new car, a new house, you said that you will give me the desires of my heart, that’s what I’m desiring.” People just fill in the blank of what they are desiring and expect that God will give it.

Well, for the sake of time. I think this verse is saying that Yes, God will give you the desires of your heart, But God also tells us what things we should have as the subject of our desire. I.e. if I desire the wrong thing and persist long enough; then I just may get it and then it proves to be the very worst thing that I could have ever asked for. But it still has come from God; and he has honored his word! Even when it’s a wrong use of my desire!  

So that leads us to think about the right and wrong use of our desire! God knows that I have desired the wrong things sometimes and I got it! Man did it I get it! Afterward I wished I never have desired it.

I. The Right Use of Our Desire

            Jesus mentioned that there are some things that only come to us, if we are desiring them strongly enough.


A. Righteousness is a worthy desire.

Mat 5:6  Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: (what’s the object of their desire of those who are blessed? Righteousness) Jesus says…for they shall be filled.


B. Prayer is helped with desire.

Mar 11:24  Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.

            Prayer shouldn’t be something mindless, heartless exercise but a desire filled asking of God.


John Knocks prayer to God was “Give me Scotland lest I die” Queen Mary of England said she feared John Knock’s prayers more than all the armies of Scotland! Why? Because he prayed with desire of seeing it answered in his life!

            C. Many Good things are spurred along by one’s desire.

  • Paul had a desire to see others saved 

Rom 10:1  Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved.

  • Paul said that we should desire spiritual gifts            .

1Cor 14:1  Follow after charity, and desire spiritual gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy.


  • Peter said we should have a desire to have the word of God.

2 Pet 2:2  As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:


  • Paul desired his converts to have fruit in their lives.

Php 4:17  Not because I desire a gift: but I desire fruit that may abound to your account.

  • Paul tells Timothy that a desire to preach is one sign that God has called you.

1 Tim 3:1  This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.

All these things, prayer, reading our bibles, soul winning, preaching, are said to be pushed by our desire. These are just some things that God says we should have as the object of our desire. And if they are the object of our desire then they will be fulfilled!

Psa 37:4  Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.


God willing answers those desires that we realize should be there! It is God that worketh in you (What does God work in you?) The desires to do his will.

II. The Wrong Use of Our Desires

Remember when I said that we have to desire what God has all ready chosen for us to have in our lives. What happens when we chose something, persist in one direction so much, desire the wrong object for our lives?  What happens? Well, we end up with it to our ruin.

  1. Children of Israel

Psa. 78:5-29

This is the sad history of God’s dealings with the children of Israel in the wilderness. They complained about manna from heaven. They wanted meat like they had in Egypt! They desired it so much, persisted in it so much, that God gave in to their request! V19 God sent quails into the camp to that they could have their desire! Watch this!  God wanted them to desire the manna, but they didn’t want the manna anymore, they wanted meat!

The meat wasn’t sinful in itself. What was sinful was them desire something that God didn’t apparent want them to have. So what does God do? Deny their requests? Deny their desire? No!

God gives them what they think they need!

Listen to the situation play out;

Num 11:18-20  And say thou unto the people, Sanctify yourselves against to morrow, and ye shall eat flesh: for ye have wept in the ears of the LORD, saying, Who shall give us flesh to eat? for it was well with us in Egypt: therefore the LORD will give you flesh, and ye shall eat.

Ye shall not eat one day, nor two days, nor five days, neither ten days, nor twenty days;

But even a whole month, until it come out at your nostrils, and it be loathsome unto you: because that ye have despised the LORD which is among you, and have wept before him, saying, Why came we forth out of Egypt? 

            Psa. 78:30-31 They were not estranged from their lust. But while their meat was yet in their mouths, 31 The wrath of God came upon them, and slew the fattest of them, and smote down the chosen men of Israel.

 What was God doing in giving them this meat? God was proving that if you desire something that He doesn’t want you to desire; then it will be the ruin to you, even if it is just meat!

 I.e. God was using this desire of theirs to be their punishment!

Their desire became their punishment!

B. Homosexuals     Rom.1:18-28

Paul describes a group of people that have rejected the God given knowledge of God to the individual.

Rejected the true God v20

Made their own idea of God v23

God Gave them over to do the things that they were desiring


These folks have left the knowledge of God, once you do that you change everything else, including yourself!

vv 26-28 describe those who have left their original sexual orientation for something against natural itself!

Why didn’t God stop them? Because they desired it so much, God has let them have their wicked desire, not as their prize, but as their punishment!

The greatest judgment of God isn’t when you feel convicted, or rebuked by the message, or every chastened; but the single greatest judgment of God is when he lets us have what we desire!

When God stops convicting us; he stops rebuking us, he stops telling us no; then watch out!

Closing:   Psa 37:4  Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.

Php 2:13  For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

These are just some examples of the right and wrong use of our desires.

God wants to give you the desires of your heart; when your heart is in tune with His heart! What are some things that God wants us to desire? Happy Home. A Loving Marriage. A spirit filled church. These things can come about if they are desires in our hearts!

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