Bound up in the mystery and intrigue of sex is found one of the greatest powers that will be encountered in this earthly life.
At the root of sex is not a simple biological exchange void of emotion and consequences. Instead, in it is found a divine signature and design that when dishonored has the most devastating effects on humanity.
There is a reason that the pornography industry continues to grow its revenues by the billions each year. There is a reason that hundreds of thousands of babies are aborted each year. There is a reason for the seemingly never ending stream of stories of marriages torn apart by adultery in addition to men imprisoned because of sexual abuse, rape, and child molestation.
Proverbs 5:18-23 (MEV) says this:
"Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice with the wife of your youth.
Let her be as the loving deer and pleasant doe; let her breasts satisfy you at all times; and always be enraptured with her love.
Why should you, my son, be intoxicated by an immoral woman, and embrace the bosom of a seductress?
For the ways of man are before the eyes of the Lord, and He ponders all his goings.
His own iniquities entrap the wicked himself, and he is snared in the cords of his sins.
He will die for lack of instruction, and in the greatness of his folly he will go astray."
The Scripture is clear here in describing both the great joy that sex brings in a right relationship before God, and the destruction that it yields outside of marriage.
Hear this: Sex, when honored and enjoyed in keeping with God's design, will propel believers into deeply intimate relationship with one another and with God. On the other hand, sex, when abused and sought after outside of God's design, will propel men and women alike with great fury to the depths of depravity.
Here are a few thoughts that come to mind when considering this topic.
Sex was given as a gift to a man and a woman joined in marriage:
1. To enjoy one another and be satisfied. The proverb describes a relationship in which a man can be truly blessed, satisfied, and pleasured without guilt or shame, as comes with sex outside of marriage. There is true joy when a man and a woman are infatuated with one another in marriage, and there is a satisfaction that allows men to fulfill the physical, visual, and experiential needs inborn in him.
2. To understand intimacy with God. Sexual intimacy between a man and his wife finds its deepest meaning and fulfillment in providing a shadow of understanding of the depth of relationship that God desires with His people. Sex carries with it a grand intention of illustrating through humanity's limitations, the all-encompassing and ultimately surpassing nature of relationship with God. The gravity of what sex represents in God's love for His bride is what I believe is the reason for the destructive nature it can have when abused. To sin sexually is to make light of God's covenant with His people, and belittle the importance of their wholehearted dependence on Him.
3. To expand the kingdom of God. Just as believers learn the depth of God's love for them and desire for their commitment to Him through sex, we also learn about the call to make disciples. Christian men and women should not have children simply to fulfill what may be their picture of a natural life progression. Believing couples bear children in order that they would raise them in the ways of the Lord and teach them to seek out and live for Jesus. This, I have learned as a young father is one of the greatest privileges of life.
So, as we continue to battle for purity in the lives of our students, let us commit not to make sex the enemy of young men and women, or the untouchable topic of discussion. Instead, let's highlight the holy and perfect purpose and design of intimacy between man and wife and celebrate the pleasures of God made available to us on earth!
John Paul Basham is a student ministry specialist for LifeWay Christian Resources. For the original article, visit lifeway.com.
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