Sex, Love and Marriage-pt 1
Sex is a created instinct that can be like dynamite. It is a gift of God that has the potential for being a blessing or raining havoc on ones life because of the abuse of it.
In every man and woman there exist sex instincts and desires. These instincts may not be of the same strength in all, but they do constitute a powerful force in all normal human beings for at least thirty years after adolescence. Like dynamite, sex can be used for good and for evil - for the glory of God or for the service of the devil. There is nothing inherently sinful in dynamite, it all depends on how and for what purpose it is used: so with sex. If accepted as God's gift and used wisely under God's control, it can be the means of man's highest fulfilment. If misused, it can lead him down to the lowest depths of degradation. It is indeed, as one has said, "a wonderful servant but a terrible master."
Sexual desire is as normal as the desire for food and for rest.
But the God Who created these desires has also ordained the means for their legitimate satisfaction.
Sex, as created by God, is sacred and pure. This is evident from the fact that it was created before man fell into sin and existed in a world which God Himself considered "Very Good". But ever since the Fall of man, his view of sex has been perverted and he himself has become a slave to sexual desire. As soon as Adam and Eve sinned, they became sex-conscious and ashamed of their nakedness and immediately sought to cover their bodies. We live in a world which is still reaping the sad effects of that Fall. As a result, sex which was meant to be a blessing to man has become a burden instead.
The word "sex" itself has an impure connotation in the minds of most people today because of man's repeated abuse of this God-given function. From Hollywood to the library, from the advertising world to the x-rated literature sold behind counters at many a local convenient store, all have served to give a crooked and perverted ideal of that which God intended to be pure, beautiful and holy.
There is abundant evidence to prove that our thoughts about sex are perverted. In 'Christian Behaviour', C.S. Lewis writes,
"You can get a large audience together for a strip-tease act - that is, to watch a girl undress on the stage. Now suppose you came to a country where you could fill a theatre by simply bringing a covered plate on the stage and then slowly lifting the cover so as to let every one see, just before the light went out, that it contained a mutton chop or a bit of bacon, wouldn't you think that in that country something had gone wrong with the appetite for food? And wouldn't anyone who had grown up in a different world think there was something equally strange about the state of the sex instinct among us?"
A Christian is called to shine as a light for God in this perverted world. He must therefore stand against the world's low views of sex, which reduce it to a mere source of pleasure. He should allow the Spirit of God to so renew his mind that he begins to look at sex as God looks at it - not as something sinful to be ashamed of, but as something sacred and naturally beautiful.
Many religions and philosophies hold perverted views of sex either because they look upon the human body as something evil to be cast off at the earliest opportunity, or because they go to the other extreme and worship the body, fulfilling its every desire without question.
The Churches view is that the body is as much a part of God's good creation as the spirit and the soul - although of lesser importance than these latter. The body therefore has a definite purpose in God's plan. The Bible teaches that “the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.” And that we are to, “Fly fornication.” since “your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost...therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.” (1 Corinthians 6:13-20). We are exhorted therefore to “present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, pleasing unto God, your reasonable service.” (Romans 12:1).
One theologian from the 1500's reminded those who felt that the body was the cause of sin, that the Lord Jesus had a body on earth, but was yet sinless, whereas the devil who has no body, is full of sin. The root of sin is to be found not in the body but in the human heart. Deliverance from sin comes not by eliminating the body and its desires but by the change of heart. We do not have to pray, as some do, that God will remove our sexual desires. That would mutilate our manhood and destroy a part of God's temple. God wants us to be complete men living in victory. The fire in the fire-place does not have to be extinguished. We have only to be careful that the house does not catch fire.
Even in the realm of sex, God permits us to be tempted with a purpose.
The same purpose with which He permitted Adam to be tempted in the garden of Eden. Adam was innocent but God wanted him to be holy. Holiness is more than innocence. Adam could have become holy only as he made a moral choice and overcame temptation: so it is with us.