Controversy seems to pervade attitudes towards sexual habits and identity within and without the Church today. Such conflicting commentary has sadly created nothing but confusion about a matter that the Bible actually has much to say.
First, let it be simply said that the Scriptures (the Bible) do indeed discuss sexuality at great length, recognizing it as a very strong and persuasive power at work in the human psyche. Indeed, the Bible paints sexuality with brilliant and wonderful colors and makes clear that it is truly a beautiful expression of love and intimacy provided that it is observed within the boundaries laid out for it by the Creator of our bodies, minds, and souls.
The Word of God declares sex to be a beautiful and sacred consummation of a unique and special covenant between one man and one woman who have joined their lives together, becoming one flesh (see Matthew 9:5-6, Mark 10:7-8, Genesis 2:22-25). “Marriage is to be held in honor among all, and the marriage bed is to be undefiled…” (Hebrews 13:4 NAS).
It is interesting that the nature of sex makes it somewhat unique among human interactions and activities. It is not something in which one can involve only a single facet of him or herself no matter how hard one may try to do so: when one connects sexually with another, he or she involves the whole of him or herself – more so than in any other activity.
Giving us a “for instance,” the Bible asks the question, “Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ Himself? Shall I then take the members of Christ and unite them with a prostitute? Never! Do you not know that he who unites himself with a prostitute is one with her in body? For it is said, ‘The two will become one flesh.’” (1 Corinthians 6:15-16 NIV). Thus, sexual union with another isn’t just a matter of gratifying natural urges. It is more than that, being an investment of a certain amount of one’s essence as a spiritual and emotional being.
Tragically (and I definitely mean “tragically), our culture simply fails to see the spiritual dimensions of human sexuality. And muddying the water even further for minds estranged from God is the fact that participation in sexual activity outside of marriage places the person in a spiritual posture before God as either one of two things. One is either a “taker”, degrading his sexual partner (no matter how consensual the act) to no more than a means of temporarily satisfying one’s lust. Or else one is submitting himself to another, outside of any parameters that are acceptable to God, degrading himself to a position below the esteemed being of worth that God has made of him.
“Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a man commits are outside his body, but he who sins sexually sins against his own body” (1 Corinthians 6:18 NIV).
The person (man or woman) who goes lightly into the realm of expressing himself sexually however he likes, makes of himself something less than what God intends, whether this person engages in adultery (thereby watering down the spiritual and holy union that he has with his spouse), partakes regularly of casual sex (thus rendering his partners as mere “things” and not sacred beings created with divine purpose and value), or cohabitates with his partner (wanting the “perks” of marriage without its responsibilities and obligations).
The Scriptures are quite clear on this point: the degree to which we define and interpret sexuality however we choose is the degree to which we declare to God our rejection of His will for our lives. If we therefore justify homosexuality, pornography, or any of the other sexual immoralities mentioned above, we yank from the hands of God our lives and our world. We are saying, “Here, God, is an area in which You have no say.” And when we as individuals run from under the protective and loving limits given us by God, we run headlong into self-destruction (emotionally, physically, and spiritually). Even our culture suffers various degrees of disintegration as families become unsure of what they are, fathers and mothers become confused as to their roles and responsibilities, and children become caught up in the moral tempests that rage across the societal landscape.
And if the Church is afraid to engage these issues, afraid to say “right is right and wrong is wrong” and that there are many things that are just not acceptable to a holy God, we can expect the Church also to become riddled with the same confusion that keeps a stranglehold on the world and families within the Church to become just as confused as those outside in the world.
Again, sexual sin is a “sin among many sins”, but it is still sin. To play it down as anything less is to do no service to the world and does nothing to remedy an area of human life that is deplorably ill and corrupted. Worse, the travesty that our post-modern world has made of sex leaves countless millions with millstones tied around their spiritual necks, never knowing what it is that hampers them in having a fruitful and joyful relationship with God.
“Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit Who is in you, Whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NAS).
If one has found him or herself ensnared by sexual “improprieties”, he or she may take great comfort in knowing that God can bring healing and cleansing to his or her heart. Inasmuch as you are willing to admit to God that you have left God’s ideal for your life, and place your confidence in the power of His grace, which led Jesus to the cross of Calvary, you can experience a fresh start and a new beginning.
“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9 NAS).
This article is very precise, clear and to-the-point. I agree with you whole heartedly and know for sure that God is working through your article. It is quite evident that this has been written with a lot of conviction and faith in the Scriptures and for this I thank our Jesus. Keep up the good work teaching those who are yet to know and reminding those who are slack. Jesus loves you as always!
I think I aught to congratulate you. Two years with Faithwriters! Or am I wrong? All the same, you have been a powerful witness for Jesus, and for this I have to give praise to God. I just love seing the Spirit of God at work!