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Westminster Shorter Catechism Project

A Scripture Catechism
in the
Method of the Assembly's

by Matthew Henry

Q. 71. What is required in the seventh commandment?
A. The seventh commandment requires the preservation of our own and our neighbour's chastity, in heart, speech, and behaviour.

1. Is it our duty to keep our bodies pure from all fleshly lusts? Yes: we must possess our vessel in sanctification and honour, and not in the lust of concupiscence, 1 Thess. 4:4. Are we to present our bodies to God? Yes: Present your bodies unto God a living sacrifice, Rom. 12:1. Are we to glorify him with them? Yes: Glorify God with your bodies, 1 Cor. 6:20. Are we to use them for him? Yes: For your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost, which is in you, 1 Cor. 6:19. And to employ them in his service? Yes: Yield your members as instruments of righteousness unto God, Rom. 6:13. May they then be used in the service of our lusts? No: for if any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy, 1 Cor.. 3:17.

2. Ought we to preserve our chastity in heart? Yes: that we may be holy both in body and spirit, 1 Cor. 7:34. And must we keep out all unclean thoughts and desires? Yes: we must flee youthful lusts, 2 Tim. 2:22. And is that the way to prevent the acts of uncleanness? Yes: for when lust hath conceived, it brings forth sin, James 1:15.

3. Ought we to preserve our chastity in speech? Yes: Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, Col. 4:6. Is it the character of good people to be modest? Yes: I will turn to the people a pure language, Zeph. 3:9.

4. Ought we to preserve our chastity in behaviour? Yes: we must have a chaste conversation coupled with fear, 1 Pet. 3:2. And in our clothing? Yes: Women must adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety, 1 Tim. 2:9. Must we abstain from all appearances of uncleanness? Yes: hating even the garment spotted with the flesh, Jude 23. And from all approaches to it? Yes: Come not nigh the door of her house, Prov. 5:8.

5. Must we resolve against wanton looks? Yes: I made a covenant with mine eyes; why then, should I think upon a maid? Job 31:1. Must we always keep our bodies in soberness and chastity? Yes: we must cleanse ourselves from all filthiness both of flesh and spirit, 2 Cor. 7:1. And must we crucify all the lusts of the flesh? Yes: They that are Christ's have crucified the flesh, Gal. 5:24. Must the body be subdued? Yes: I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection, 1 Cor. 9:27. And must its sinful desires be denied? Yes: If thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee, Matt. 5:29.

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