If someone told you that they are storing pennies in their ear, I doubt that you would say, “That is what the ear is for – good for you!” We seem to know what all our body parts are for, except our genitals. Just as an observation, the female sexual body part and the male sexual body part seem to be made for the other. And as another observation, it seems that the male anus, “the opening at the end of the alimentary canal through which solid waste matter leaves the body,” was not made to be inserted by the male sexual body part. That would be like driving up an exit ramp – that’s not what it’s for. (see the intro to Making Gay Okay, by Robert Reilly)
I do not mean to be insensitive, crass or crude in stating it this way. I find the same reasoning in God’s Word, to a church that is living its life in a culture where every kind of sexual penetration is endorsed:
“The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. And God raised the Lord and will also raise us up by his power. Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute? Never! Or do you not know that he who is joined to a prostitute becomes one body with her? For, as it is written,
“The two will become one flesh.”
But he who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with him. Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” (1 Cor. 6:13b-20)
Yesterday, June 29, Cheryl and I celebrated our 31st Wedding Anniversary, starting here under the Pergola in our back yard, and then on to Chicago for some delicious food, and, sights and sounds from some of our favorite venues.
According to the passage above (since union comes from the male body part fitting with the female body part, the meaning of “the two will become one flesh” cited from Genesis 2), by God’s grace and with his endorsement, we are not forcing Jesus to bed a prostitute as we unite ourselves. However, if I have sex with anyone else, male or female, then I am not using my body for the Lord (the word for sexual immorality in the Greek is for all forms of sexual activity outside of a married male and female, which includes all hetero and homo sexual hookups – see 1 Cor. 6:9-11). But if I am a married man to Cheryl, keeping in step with “the two will become one flesh” marriage license, then Jesus’ union with us as his members is holy. A majority of the Supreme Court might sanitize your bedroom, but not Jesus. The above passage therefore, teaches me to celebrate these realities:
1. No matter what I feel in my body, it is not meant for any sexual activity with any other than my wife, any more than if I feel like punching someone, that’s not what the fist was made for.
2. Jesus is Holy. He will never endorse a threesome between you, him, and a prostitute, male or female. Jesus will only endorse his members if they are “one spirit with him” – and you cannot be one spirit with Jesus if you use your body for any sexual activity outside of “the two shall become one flesh” union of male and female.
3. Jesus was meant for the body (“. . . and the Lord for the body”). This means that before the world was created, there was a plan to send the Son of God into a male body, so that it would be crucified and “raised” up by his Father. Take-away: therefore glorify God in your body in the way that you live your sexual life. Jesus killed the hetero and homo sexual sins as he died and was raised for them. Now we have the same resurrection power to “put off the sinful deeds of the body” and use our bodies for their intended purpose – glorifying the God who made us as male and female, to showcase the union of Christ with his Church.
4. My body is the Temple of the Holy Spirit. This is why all sins except sexual sins are outside the body. This does not diminish the seriousness of non-sexual sins, it only highlights the profound mystery of what it means to be a sexual being, male or female. Point: all hetero and homo sexual activity outside of a male and female marriage union is “against the body” because the body was not made to be vandalized and scandalized by spiritual self-mutilation. I am more than my body parts – I am a spiritual being. But if I use my body parts in a way that is contrary to the holiness of the Holy Spirit, then I have become my own enemy – I will destroy my soul.
5. Finally, I trust what God, his Son, and his Holy Spirit have to say about sex than what my feelings, my desires, my world, and my government say about sex, and even what my church have to say about sexual expressions, if my church happens to steer away from what God has given me in his Word. As an observation, any church that endorses sexual activity outside the one that Jesus approves, then that is not what a church is for. The church was founded on the person and work of Christ so that the world could see the Savior. This is why I’m so blessed to belong to a set of “members of Christ” who know what their church is for – it is for Jesus, first. That means we’ll love sinners of all kinds and show them the way, the truth, and the life that is found in Jesus alone.