REDEEMING THE SEXUALLY MISTAKEN

Jesus made it very clear that God’s original plan was intended to be a permanent plan, when he saw man alone and declared that wasn’t a good situation. He made for the man a helper suitable for him and brought her to him.  Adam looked at Eve and felt that God had made her just right.  He declared, “This is now bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh.  She will be called woman.  For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife and the two will become one flesh.”  Obviously, when Adam made his declaration he was speaking of the ones to follow since neither he nor Eve had a father or mother to leave.  But they were meant to be so devoted to each other that any other sexual relationship outside their marriage to each other was sinful, and should be out of the question for the devoted husband or wife.  In Matthew 19 when Jesus quoted the words of Adam, he was discussing divorce but had no doubt that what God did in the beginning for Adam was the right thing.

The marriage relationship was intended to be the place where a man and woman had sex together and it was a huge part of their becoming “One Flesh” together.  Sex outside that marriage bond was considered by God to be sexual immorality.  In I Corinthians 7 Paul was building on the teaching he had just done in chapter six about fleeing sexual immorality and realizing that if we are Christians our bodies are temples of God and the Holy Spirit of God dwells in us.  For us to take the body that is the temple of God and join it to someone other than our married partner was completely wrong.  Evidently there were two major problems going on in Corinth.  One was the thought that what a person did with the body didn’t really matter since our spirit or soul was what was important.  So they thought one could have sex with someone other than their married partner and it didn’t affect their soul at all.  Paul answered that error by declaring our bodies are the temple of God and that we are no longer our own but we have been bought with a price and should now glorify God in our bodies.  The second error was that since they were Christians sex wasn’t important at all and that even the ones who were married should abstain from sexual relationships since these were of the flesh or body.  Paul responds to that error by saying “Now for the matters you wrote about: ‘It is good for a man not to have sexual relations with a woman.’ But since sexual immorality is occurring, each man should have sexual relations with his own wife, and each woman with her own husband.  The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife and likewise they wife to her husband.  The wife does not have authority over her own body but yields it to her husband.  In the same way, the husband does not have authority over his own body burt yields it to his wife.  Do not deprive each other except perhaps by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer.  Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.”  Sex in the marriage is right, good and holy. Sex outside the marriage is unholy, sinful and immoral.

But, what about the homosexual couple who loves each other dearly and commits themselves fully to each other by getting married?  Is their sexual relations now holy and acceptable to God since they are married?  Since our country has determined that such a marriage is legal it is now acceptable by the law of land for the homosexual couple to get married,  doesn’t that now solve the concern?

Remember two Scriptures that are vital to this discussion.  The first is found in Malachi 2 when God was explaining to the Israelites why their worship was unacceptable.  One of the reasons he gave was that they had been mistreating the wife of their youth by divorcing them and marrying another.  God explained to them that he had been a witness to their marriage and that he had made the two into one when they made their covenant of companionship to each other.  So, I need to notice that marriage involves a covenant of companionship and that God is involved in the marriage.  He is the one that makes the two into one flesh.  The other Scripture is in Matthew 19 again.  Jesus was explaining to them what God did in the beginning in making them male and female and their leaving father and mother to be joined to each other and becoming one flesh. “So they are no longer two but one flesh.  Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”  So, the question is, when man decides to accept marriage as legal between two people of the same sex, and by law we declare them to now be married and one flesh, does God join them together as one?  If a thing is legal, does that mean God accepts it and sanctions it by making two people of the same sex one as he does with a man and a woman?  If the law accepts two as one, but God doesn’t accept them and doesn’t join them together as one flesh, then there is no covenant of companionship with God as witness.  If God doesn’t join the two into one then, no matter what we may say of the relationship, it isn’t a marriage before him and the sexual relations remain sinful.  The fact we accept a thing and declare it to be legal, moral and right, doesn’t mean that God takes the same view.  Evidently the people accepted it as a good thing when Herod took his brother Philip’s wife and married her, but God didn’t accept it and condemned the relationship.  Since one vital aspect of marriage was always procreation, would God actually join those in a marriage that by its very nature cannot possibly fulfill one of the plans for marriage?  Also, since God had Paul to write to the Roman Christians about immorality and how far people were turning away from God and used the fact that men were longing for other men rather than the woman as God planned it and women were longing for other women sexually instead of how God intended it and He referred to those relationships a against nature, do we really think God would join two of the same sex in marriage?  No matter what people accept, the real question is what does God accept.

What then does God expect of people who have all their lives been drawn to people of the same sex? What are they to do when they fall in love with another who loves them and they want to be together for life?  In I Corinthians 7:8-9 Paul wrote, “Now to the unmarried and the widow I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I do.  But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.”  It is interesting that Paul suggested remaining as single as a very viable option and recommends it for all who can control their desire for sexual relationships with another.  Sex outside marriage is immorality.  If we don’t have a wife or husband then God tells us that we are to be single and moral.  In many relationships even between two people of the same sex or of the opposite sex, their longing is for companionship more than for sex.  There is nothing wrong with two people living together and being great friends and companions to each other without there being a sexual relationship.  Sometimes that is the best answer for a person.

But what if one is homosexual in their desires and realizes that having sex with another person of the same sex is wrong and having sex with even the opposite sex outside of marriage is wrong and want to be right with God?  What can the person do?  In I Corinthians 6: 9-11 God had Paul to pen these words, “Do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God?  Do not be deceived:  Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.  AND THAT IS WHAT SOME OF YOU WERE.  BUT YOU WERE WASHED, YOU WERE SANCTIFIED, YOU WERE JUSTIFIED IN THE NAME OF THE LORD JESUS CHRIST AND BY THE SPIRIT OF OUR GOD.”  Good Christian people in the church at Corinth who were now active workers had been involved in sexual sins and been ungodly people.  Thank God, no matter what one may have done, they can be forgiven and have a fresh start with the Lord.

What should a person with homosexual leanings, dreams and desires do?  They need to be washed in the blood of Jesus, set apart from sin to God and declared by God to be not guilty and accepted by him.  Anyone, no matter what the sin may be can be forgiven by God and have a fresh start.  So, what should a church do when the homosexual couple starts attending church with them?  They should love them, treat them with respect and acceptance like any other person that comes into our churches.  But can we accept people that aren’t living right?  Certainly, we accept people with sin problems every day.  Our heart should be that we accept anyone where they are right now, but we don’t intend to leave them where they are.  We want to help every person to grow, change and become all that God longs for them to be.  We aren’t the judge of the world.  We aren’t put here to serve as prosecuting attorneys.  Our job is to love every persons that God brings into our midst and treat them with the same love Jesus demonstrated to all kinds of people with sin problems.  Everyone that enters our doors comes with some kind of problem and many of the are horrible sinners.  But the church is intended to be the place that is safe for anyone to enter and know they will be loved, accepted and assisted with the problems they are facing.

There is redemption for the person with a problem with homosexuality.  It may not change their desires.  But it might.  But what ever it does, God is able to wash, sanctify and justify. But if we as a church don’t accept the ones who come in with problems even sexual ones, then we cut off the very redemptive power God has available for all of us.

About leoninlittlerock

Preaching minister for Central church of Christ in Little Rock. Author of over 20 books including: When a Loved one Dies, Spiritual Development, Skid Marks on the Family Drive, Challenges in the church, To Know Christ and A Drink of Living Water.
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One Response to REDEEMING THE SEXUALLY MISTAKEN

  1. A very good article on the relation of a husband and wife. May God bless the author.

    Like

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