Sex, Love and Marriage-Adultery
The first sexual union between a man and a woman brings a mystical union between the two, and marriage is consummated right there. The Bible says,
“Or know you not, that he who is joined to a harlot, is made one body? For they shall be, saith he, two in one flesh. " (1 Corinthians 6:16).
In the Old Testament, sexual union between a man and a woman is spoken of as "knowing". Sexual intercourse is not an act that has merely physical effects. Neither can it be easily forgotten. It fuses the two involved into one in a mysterious way. This is why God has placed so many deterrents along the pathway of sexual irregularity - deadly diseases like syphilis and gonorrhea to name just two. The Bible says that,
“For whoremongers/sexual immoral and adulterers God will judge.” (Hebrews 13:4).
Young men usually look for privilege and enjoyment without responsibilities.
This is why they are tempted to seek for the pleasure of sexual indulgence without the responsibilities of married life. Men who degrade sex like that can expect nothing but the curse and judgment of God upon their lives.
Young men are sometimes challenged by their perverted worldly friends to prove their manhood by sexual intercourse. They are derided if they don't date a girl or if they cannot recount any sexual adventures. True manhood however is proved not by sexual license but by self-control.
The Bible gives us the example of David who "lost out" partially because of unbridled lust. Notice the circumstances that led to his fall.
2 Samuel 11:1 & 2 tell us that he had been staying lazily at home when he should have been out on the battlefield. He had neglected his duty and given way to slothfulness and taking it easy. Then he saw Bathsheba. Instead of disciplining his eyes, he continued to watch her and because of this, fell into sin.
We read in the Bible also of Samson who "lost out" completely as a result of his uncontrolled passions (Judges 14 & 16). When he saw a beautiful women, he forgot all about his calling as a servant of God - and thereby lost his ministry. Many others since, have fallen in exactly the same manner and lost their ministry as well.
On the other hand, we read of Joseph who had neither the luxury, leisure and position that David had, nor the high calling to the service of God that Samson had, and yet who triumphed completely over lust. Genesis 39 should be read and studied by every person. We see in verse 7, how the temptation came to Joseph suddenly one day, without any warning whatsoever. So will it come to us. If we are not prepared for it beforehand, we shall assuredly fall. If Joseph had been indulging in lustful thinking in his private life, he would have likely fallen easily. But Joseph had been practicing the presence of God and so when the temptation came, the presence of God was more real to him then the presence of anyone else. If Joseph's spirituality had been only something put on to impress others and not something deep and real, then he would undoubtedly have given in to such a strong temptation.
Notice too that it was the fear of God that held Joseph back from falling into sin and not the fear of being discovered or the fear of punishment (verse 9). Alas, it is only these latter fears that hold back many people from sins these days. But Joseph's relationship with God was far deeper than the superficial relationship that most people have in our day.
We read that Joseph resisted repeated attempts made by Potiphar's wife to lead him into sin (verse 10). He said, "No" the first time and so it was easier for him to say "No" the second time and easier still the third time. As the old hymn from my youth says,
"Yield not to temptation for yielding is sin;
Each victory will help you some other to win".
Verse 10 tells us that Joseph avoided the presence of Potiphar's wife altogether. This is always the safest course to follow - to avoid the scene of temptation totally when ever possible.
Joseph's example warns us that we will have to be careful in our relationships with the opposite sex.
The Bible warns us,
“Fly fornication. Every sin that a man doth, is without the body; but he that committeth fornication, sinneth against his own body. Or know you not, that your members are the temple of the Holy Ghost, who is in you, whom you have from God; and you are not your own? For you are bought with a great price. Glorify and bear God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.”
(1 Corinthians 6:18-20).
“But flee thou youthful desires, and pursue justice, faith, charity, and peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart." (2 Timothy 2:22 ).
That was what Joseph did. He did not mind being slandered or even imprisoned, but he refused to yield to lust. No wonder God honoured him. Perhaps failure in this realm may be the reason why God cannot honour many today!