Most sexual sin begins with sinful thinking.
God’s Perspective On Sex
Satan uses sex as a weapon in two ways. First he makes sex such a repulsive thing in the minds of some Christians that the divinely-intended beauty and blessing of the marriage union is seriously damaged. Secondly, he makes lust and sex outside of marriage (extra-marital sex) the accepted thing. In either case, particularly if a Christian is involved, Satan wins a great victory.
The Bible is very outspoken about sex. God is neither shy nor embarrassed about it because He created us as sexual beings, as male and female (Gen. 1:27-28). However, we need God’s perspective on sex because much of today’s media – music, TV, magazines, billboards, newspapers, and the Internet – present the worst of unsaved man’s (and consequently Satan’s) perspective. It so surrounds us that we need to be on guard at all times.
God’s Word says there is nothing wrong, nothing dirty, nothing to feel guilty about when sex is fully enjoyed within God’s framework for enjoyment – marriage! God says that the “sexual intercourse” bed within marriage is and should remain undefiled (Heb. 13:4). God even gave a new Israeli groom a year-long honeymoon: “For one year he is to … bring happiness to the wife he has married” (Dt. 24:5 NIV).
Proverbs 5:18-20 tells a young man to rejoice with the wife of his youth, to let her breasts satisfy him at all times, and to be captivated always with her love – a very sexual statement. God intends married sex to be fun! Let’s not twist our thinking to turn something wonderful into something “bad.”
It’s as though God says, “I’ve given husband and wife a beautiful way to have physical and mental pleasure, enjoyment and closeness together – the ultimate emotional experience – and I want them to enjoy it with My fullest approval. I’ve given it to them on a far higher plane than mere animals. I have further purposed that out of this love-union of husband and wife, children will be born to be loved and nurtured in My things.”
God knows our strong sexual urges, and how Satan will use them to damage our testimony, or worse. Therefore, He carefully spells out the other side of sex so we will continue to have right thinking about it. Sex outside of marriage may be exciting for the moment and provide a certain intrigue, but the pleasures of sin last only a short time (Heb. 11:25). The same verse that blesses the sexual bed in marriage goes on to say that God will judge adulterers and the sexually immoral (Heb. 13:4).
Immorality is not to be named among God’s people (Eph. 5:3). We Christians should always be obeying God’s will, and “it is God’s will that you should avoid sexual immorality, that each of you should learn to control his (or her) own body in a way that is holy and honorable, not in passionate lust like the heathen” (1 Th. 4:3-5). Paul wrote to the Corinthians, “The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord.” Therefore, “flee from sexual immorality … he (or she) who sins sexually sins against his (or her) own body” (1 Cor. 6:13,18). In the Old Testament, Joseph is an example of one who fled from extreme sexual temptation (Gen. 39:1-18).
The effect of sexual sin on one’s own body can take several forms. There is a chance of pregnancy, resulting in either an unwanted child to care for, or for strong pressure to murder (abort) the unborn child. In the case of a Christian, since he (or she) is grieving the Holy Spirit (Eph. 4:30), God will see to it that he (or she) has a guilty conscience with the resulting emotional problems.
Very serious communicable diseases are sexually transmitted. God is not mocked; a person reaps what he (or she) sows (Gal. 6:7-8). The common sexually transmitted diseases (STPs) are: herpes (incurable); syphilis (destructive but curable); gonorrhea (destructive but curable) and AIDS (incurable and slowly and painfully fatal).
As in the case of David and Bathsheba (2 Sam. 11), most sexual sin begins with sinful thinking. The Bible says that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart (Mt. 5:28). That goes both ways, and also pertains to looking at pictures as well as actual people.
That’s why we need to “take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (2 Cor. 10:5). Job said, “I have made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a girl” (Job 31:1). God says, “You were bought with a price. Therefore, honor God with your body” (1 Cor. 6:20). The idea is not to see how close you can come to an illicit sexual affair without actually doing it, but to maintain relationships that you would not be embarrassed for God to see. Remember, He does see.
I’ve Already Sinned. What About Me?
“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 Jn. 1:9). That’s how great and loving our Savior is, even though our sin has saddened Him. However, there may still be life-long consequences of our disobedience, such as disease or an unexpected, unwanted child. Further, there will be loss of reward (2 Jn. 8). At best, sexual sin is “straw” (1 Cor. 3:12) which will be burned up quickly at the judgment seat of Christ where rewards are given out according to our faithfulness to Christ.
Consider the immoral man, in 1 Corinthians 5, who was having a continuing sexual relationship with his stepmother. He had to be excommunicated (put out) of the local church as a wicked man. But he finally forsook and confessed his sin, and was received back by the assembly about a year later (2 Cor. 2:5-11). God is so gracious with us because He loves us so much. Let us also forgive the sexual sin of others when that sin is forsaken and confessed.
What About Homosexuality?
Homosexuality, whether man with man or woman with woman, is not an acceptable alternative lifestyle in God’s sight. It is a great sin. It is truly sinning against one’s own body! Romans 1:26-32 says that homosexuals “receive in themselves the due penalty for their perversion” (v. 27) and in God’s sight “deserve death” (v. 32).
Sodom’s major sin was homosexuality (Gen. 19:1-11). Sodom has even given its name, sodomy, to homosexuality. God destroyed the city and its inhabitants because they were so sinful. There is nothing “gay” about homosexuality. Homosexuals need the Lord Jesus as their Savior, as we all do, and then they must forsake their sinful life style, as we all must.
You will never regret taking God’s perspective and living sexually pure before God, whether as a single or as a married person. Don’t let Satan trick you as he has so many others of all ages.
END NOTE: The author, Roger Daniel, has written two books on this subject. They are: Man + Woman = God’s Design and Dating, Marriage, Sex: Vital Topics For Christian Youth. Both are published by and available from Believers Bookshelf, PO Box 261, Sunbury, PA, 17801, USA.
With permission to publish by: Sam Hadley, Grace & Truth, 210 Chestnut St., Danville, IL., USA.