* Note: Just as the woman in the Song of Solomon warns to not awaken love before it's time, you may want to use discretion in allowing your kids to read this post. While we believe it is an essential aspect needing to be addressed, we also want to be sensitive toward the younger age groups who may stumble across this post.
Recently my attention has been directed toward God’s design of mankind as sexual beings. As we progressed through a study in the Koinonia group on 1 Corinthians, we approached chapters 6 and 7. It is here that the apostle Paul deals with confusion and compromise regarding sexual issues within the Corinthian church body. This topic led us to a brief study of the Song of Songs (or Song of Solomon).
The topic of sexuality is far too often overlooked in our churches, yet we live in a world bombarded with sexual onslaughts. It doesn’t take long for one to see our world’s obsession with this aspect of humanity. The pornography industry for one example continues to infiltrate and affect scores of people throughout our world. In fact, society’s obsession with sexuality has led many Christians to either moral compromise and apathy or a stance of separation that paints sexuality as being almost gross.
Amidst a world chalked full of sexual images and headstrong sexual depravity, God provides us His purpose for His intentional sexual design. We as creatures fashioned in our God’s very likeness, picture aspects of our Maker. God’s intentional design involves the union of the female and male attributes of His Image in a wonderfully united and God-glorifying way. As husbands apply the truths of Ephesians 5 and 1 Peter 3, we depict Jesus’ love for the church in the understandingly, grace-infused interaction with our wives. Likewise, as wives apply the truths of Ephesians 5 and 1 Peter 3, they depict the church’s adoration of Jesus in their lovingly, submissive and honoring interaction with their husbands. These complementing and God-glorifying aspects of marriage and God’s redeemed image pictured in the marriage also relate to the bedroom. In other words, the sexual aspect of our marriages should take on the same forms seen in Ephesians 5, 1 Peter 3, 1 Corinthians 7, etc. Our attitude toward our spouses must be shaped by the Gospel and God’s own gracious treatment of us. Our interaction then in moments of intimacy must also reflect God’s own gracious treatment of us. We are called in marriage to lovingly serve each other out of a hearts of adoration for each other, ultimately stemming from a heart of worship for our God.
I heard a secular love song the other day that quite surprised me. It was actually a call to rekindle the love between a husband and wife. As the blood-bought redeemed adopted children of the Maker of the universe, our marriages should reflect His intentional design and give Him glory. Why does the world look at Christian marriage and think it's boring? Why are so many marriages stuck in a rut? Why are sexual issues some of the most divisive problems within marriages? Oh, may we apply God's design in our marriages. May we relish in God's intentional enjoyment that comes with marital intimacy. May we delight in the "wife of our youth." Wives, may you delight in the "husband of your youth." May we continually allow the Gospel and our love for our Redeemer God help shape our marriages! Those of you reading this who are married, seek to apply God's grace in your marriage! May we seek to make marriage look like a blast! May we seek to make marriage look like a deep-cherished commitment. Even in those rough spells that come in the course of every marriage, may our application of the Gospel in our marriages make marriage look godly. May we simply apply consistently God's intentional design for marriage.
As we allow God’s intentional design for our sexuality to be redeemed in our own lives and marriages, we will stand out in our sex-saturated world. May we allow Scripture to shape the way we understand, live with, sacrifice for, and serve our spouse. Men, may we realize our calling to adore and honor our wives in ways that sometimes call us to give up our own supposed rights or needs. Women, may you realize your calling to honor and submit to your husbands in ways that call you to shower him with grace. Those of you who are single, may you realize your current calling to live as God has so chosen for you right now. May you truly heed the warning of the woman in the Song of Songs to not rush and awaken love before it’s time. During your time of waiting, may you honor the opposite sex in sexually redeemed ways.
Sexuality must be redeemed in our world today! This is certainly one aspect of culture that stands in desperate need of redemption! We see it in our own area on Alaska’s road system, across Alaska’s villages, and I’m sure you see it in your own area as well. May we strive to courageously deny ourselves and serve our God and the husband or wife he graces us with out of redeemed hearts of worship.