What is the Lord’s law of chastity? (See D&C 42:22–24; 59:6; 63:16; and the following quotations.)
The First Presidency stated: “The Lord’s law of moral conduct is abstinence outside of lawful marriage and fidelity within marriage. Sexual relations are proper only between husband and wife appropriately expressed within the bonds of marriage. Any other sexual contact, including fornication, adultery, and homosexual and lesbian behavior, is sinful” (First Presidency letter, 14 Nov. 1991).
Elder Richard G. Scott of the Quorum of the Twelve taught: “Any sexual intimacy outside of the bonds of marriage—I mean any intentional contact with the sacred, private parts of another’s body, with or without clothing—is a sin and is forbidden by God. It is also a transgression to intentionally stimulate these emotions within your own body” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1994, 51; or Ensign, Nov. 1994, 38).
If you asked a class member to summarize the section “Sexual Purity” in For the Strength of Youth, have him or her do so now.
What are some consequences of violating the law of chastity? (Discuss consequences that are spiritual and physical, immediate and long-term.) How does a person’s violation of the law of chastity affect others?
Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin taught: “One of the most pervasive deceptions in recent years is the notion that immorality is normal and acceptable and has no negative consequences. In truth, immorality is the underlying cause of much suffering and many other problems that are prevalent today, including rampant disease, abortion, broken families, families without fathers, and mothers who themselves are children” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1994, 100; or Ensign, Nov. 1994, 76).
How are we blessed as we live the law of chastity? (See D&C 121:45–46. Answers include that we feel increased peace and joy, love for our spouse and other family members, self-respect, and respect for others. Living the law of chastity is also necessary for us to have the companionship of the Holy Ghost, receive priesthood ordinances, and partake of the sacrament worthily.) How might our obedience to the law of chastity affect others?
How does Satan tempt people to violate the law of chastity? How do people try to rationalize violating this law?
If you asked class members to summarize sections of For the Strength of Youth, have them give the following summaries now: “Dress and Appearance,” “Entertainment and the Media,” and “Music and Dancing.”
President Gordon B. Hinckley warned: “You must not fool around with the Internet to find pornographic material. You must not dial a long-distance telephone number to listen to filth. You must not rent videos with pornography of any kind. This salacious stuff simply is not for you. Stay away from pornography as you would avoid a serious disease. It is destructive. It can become habitual, and those who indulge in it get so they cannot leave it alone. It is addictive” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1998, 66–67; or Ensign, May 1998, 49).
How can we protect ourselves from temptations to violate the law of chastity? What can we do in our homes to avoid immoral influences?
The law of chastity includes purity of thought as well as action. How are we affected spiritually when our thoughts are unclean? (See D&C 63:16.) How can we dismiss unclean thoughts from our minds?
Elder Boyd K. Packer of the Quorum of the Twelve counseled us to evict unworthy thoughts from our minds by putting “something edifying in their place” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1977, 90; or Ensign, Nov. 1977, 60). Discuss how to follow this counsel. Suggestions include praying for strength, singing a favorite hymn or reciting a favorite scripture in our minds, or thinking about our love for family members.