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Scripture Reading: Proverbs 1:10-19
1. Every person wants to be accepted. Natural to desire approval, affection, and goodwill of others (esp. our friends).
2. This desire to be accepted by others (family, friends, teachers, coaches, spouse, employer, co-workers, etc.).
a. Can be good, Heb. 10:24. (Righteous influences)
b. Can take us down wrong paths. Peer pressure is often in play.
I. PEER PRESSURE: KNOW THE ENEMY.
A. Defining Peer Pressure.
1. “Social pressure by members of one's peer group to take a certain action, adopt certain values, or otherwise conform in order to be accepted” (dictionary.com).
2. Pressure exerted to think and act in certain ways.
B. Tactics: Who is Affected by Peer Pressure? Everyone…
1. Youth: Social media; Violence, gangs, alcohol/drugs, sex/promiscuity, bad language, dancing, smoking, disrespecting parents, dating, buddies, etc.
2. Adults: Dishonesty (cheat on taxes/ job)/Immorality/deny God and gospel…
3. Christians: Doctrinally and morally.
4. Bandwagon tactic: Entice with acceptance, popularity, ridicule, ostracize… Manipulation.
C. Bible Warnings Against Peer Pressure to do Evil:
1. Prohibited in Law of Moses, Exod. 23:2.
2. Be wise and avoid, Prov. 1:10-15.
3. Avoid, turn away from it, Prov. 4:14-15.
4. Know the power of influence, 1 Cor. 15:33-34.
5. Carefully choose your associates, Psalm 1:1-2.
D. Bible Failures and Successes:
1. Noah (Gen. 6:5-9, 22): Preacher of righteousness; Stood alone 120 years.
2. Aaron (Exod. 32:1, 21-24): Golden calf.
3. Joshua and Caleb (Num. 13:26-14:10): Stood alone against Israel and possible death. (Song: “Dare to Stand Like Joshua,” #480)
4. Jewish rulers (John 12:42-43): Loved the glory of men.
5. Peter (Matt. 26:69-75): Denied the Lord.
6. Jesus (Matt. 26:56): Went to the cross alone.
7. Mob (Matt. 27:20, 22): Crucify Him!
II. DARE TO BE DIFFERENT…COURAGE TO BE RIGHT.
A. Courage and Conviction, Josh. 24:14-15; Rom. 12:1-2; Eph. 6:10-13.
1. It is easy to stand with a crowd, but it takes courage to stand alone (Elijah, Micaiah).
2. Decide ahead of time what your answer will be.
3. When pressured to compromise moral purity (sex, immodesty, dancing); Count it an honor to stand alone (cf. Joseph).
4. When pressured to smoke, drink, drugs; Count it an honor to stand alone.
5. When ridiculed for being Christian; for standing for sound doctrine; Count it an honor to stand with Christ (not alone).
B. Set and Keep Godly Priorities, Matt. 6:33; 1 Pet. 4:14-16 (Acts 5:29).
1. What do you want the most: Popularly and acceptance, or to be right with God and be accepted by Him?
2. Must have self-control, prayer, and persistence.
C. Pay the Price of being a Christian.
1. Heaven’s standpoint: Death of the Son of God.
2. Earth’s standpoint: Denial of self, Matt. 16:24-26 (Phil. 3:7-8).
3. “I Surrender All,” #332 (“All to Jesus, I surrender…”)
1. Solution? Shift our desire for approval from earth to heaven.
a. Seek heavenly approval rather than earthly.
b. Seek to please God before men, Gal. 1:10; 1 Thess. 4:1.
2. Have you failed to obey the gospel because you are afraid of what others might say or think?
3. Fear God, not man, Matt. 10:28 (33).
4. Do not be ashamed of Christ, Mark 8:38.
By: Joe R. Price
Posted August 23, 2022