Yesterday we discussed adultery (porneia). Today, we are going to talk about uncleanness and tomorrow, conclude this three part series on Galatians 5:19 with a look at lasciviousness.
The word uncleanness is the Greek word akatharsia, which is the word kathairo with prefix a added. The word kathairo means cleansed or pure but when you add the prefix a, the condition is reversed, making the object dirty or unclean. In the New Testatment, akatharsia refers to lewd or unclean thoughts that eventually produce lewd or unclean actions. So, there is a strong suggestion that actions begin in the mind as unclean thoughts before they manifest as unclean deeds.
"And there was in the synagogue a man with an unclean spirit..." The Greek actually says that this man was "gripped by the control of an unclean spirit." It seems that this man had pondered on lewd thoughts for so long that he had thrown open the door for these to seize and control him. In this verse the word akatharsia is used. It implies that a demon found entrance into this man's life because he had committed mental prostitution. He allowed his mind to dwell on things that were forbidden.
"A man with an unclean spirit met him..." Here akatharsia is used in describing the man possessed by a legion of demons. In Mark chapter one and now in chapter five, we have two men who are in the grip of an unclean spirit. It appears that their demon-possessed condition started with impure, lewd, dirty thoughts, since the Greek word akatharsia is used in both verses. Did Satan lure them into the pornography of unclean ideas or into adultery, and then build a stronghold of uncleanness so robust in their minds that he was able to eventually cause unclean actions to be manifested in their lives and thus completely control them?
Whatever you give your mind to will eventually be your master.
Tomorrow, we will discuss the word lasciviousness.
This study is taken from Sparkling Gems from the Greek