Biblical View of Sexuality and Sex

0
64

When the Church is silent about the true meaning of sex, that leaves a vacuum that the Enemy is happy to fill with his own point of view. We hear and see it all around us, every day, and the culture that enables sexual violence takes the message to its ultimate extremes:

1. Sex is about fulfilling my desires, so laws and ethics should not apply.

2. There is no right or wrong (good or bad) with regard to sex, as long as it feels good for me.

3. My sexuality is just an expression of who I want to be.

4. The Bible says sex is just a list of rules, and why should it tell us what to do?

5. God does not have anything to do with sex.

We are letting God’s Enemy describe God’s character, and of course, it is all wrong.

The Purpose of Sex

God created human sexuality and sex, so we have to understand it on His terms. In inductive Bible study, we aim to understand what the text means by grasping what was in the mind of the author, figuring out what the author was trying to communicate to us. The same thing applies to creation – what did God mean, what was in His mind, what was He trying to communicate when He created sexuality and sex? The Bible is also an owner’s manual – how are we supposed to use sex? Let’s suppose that you buy a hammer; the owners’ manual says you are supposed to use it to hit nails into things, but you decide that’s stupid, you would prefer to use it with screws. What will happen? Your project will go badly, and someone will have to clean up the mess. God’s Word tells us how we are supposed to use sex, and if we trust the Creator (who is also the Book’s Author), then we will take His word for it.

God created mankind as a whole to reflect who He is and to illustrate our relationship to Him. God was not surprised to learn that Adam needed a companion, that was His intention all along. However, if His only goal was to create a companion, why not create another man? Because there was more. God created a female, the same species as man, with the same basic characteristics, and yet enchantingly different. Apparently, one type of human wasn’t enough to reflect God’s image, but God was satisfied that male and female together could do so. And then He went a step further by making it possible to unite the man and woman into a single entity. The two are united into one.

The Nature of God

Two distinct persons in one entity. Is it just about the physical act of sex? Of course not. But sex could be called a symbol/representation/fullest expression (and celebration) of that unity, that love. Is it the most important expression of that unity? Not really, because that unity can be felt just as completely in the mundane (washing dishes together) or the spiritual (praying together). After years of shared experiences, through sickness and health, through being poorer and being richer, through times of fighting common enemies and times of fighting each other, do we understand this? Not really. Does it remind us of something about God? Of course. God, in three persons, holy trinity, united eternally with a supernatural love. Sexuality gives mankind a way to reflect the true nature of the one God.

Then God takes it a step further. In His omniscience unhindered by time, He knew that sin would separate mankind from God, but God’s goal was fellowship, unity, and with mankind. That purpose in its completeness would have to wait many thousands of years until sin was vanquished permanently. A loving unity of God and mankind is something that we cannot comprehend any better than we do the trinity. So, God describes it for us using the language of marriage, wedding, bride, and husband (Eph. 5:32; 2 Cor. 11:1-3; Rev. 19:6-8). If in a marriage sex is the representation of unity, does it not follow that sex also points to the ultimate unity of God and His people?

Sex: A Taste of Christian Eternity

Since we can clearly see God’s invisible qualities through everything He made (Rom. 1:19-20), and God created sex as a mechanism of profound unity, then could not sex point to the unity of God with mankind in the new heaven and new earth? Do those few moments of exquisite rapture give us a tiny taste of the indescribable beauty and joy of the unity between the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit? Do they give us a sense of every moment to come of our eternity spent in union with God as His bride? Should they make us long for God and that eternity with Him? Then sex can be seen as something holy, something otherworldly, a taste of Christian eternity, or a bridge as it were between mankind and God. And sex is a promise of what is to come, our perfect unity with God.

The Damage of Sexual Violence

This helps us understand why sexual violence is so damaging. It abuses God’s precious gift, poisoning it with selfishness and cruelty, and presents God as a demanding, abusive, selfish brute. Eph. 5 so beautifully describes the image of God which sex is SUPPOSED to portray: personal power used to serve, to help, and to care for with tenderness, knowledge, and compassion. Paul teaches in Eph. 5:25-32 25: Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for her, that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that He might present the church to Himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, because we are members of His body. “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church.

This is a great mystery, but it is an illustration of the way Christ and the church are one. Doesn’t it take our breath away?!

We need to teach this, especially to our children and grandchildren. The world is screaming 24/7 the opposite message. If we want our children to understand what God intended, we are going to have to be louder and more persistent.


article by Karen Shogren, a BFC missionary and founder of Levanta La Voz which trains faith communities to confront sexual harm through workshops and eight week training sessions. The trainings are available in both English and Spanish and are developed from a world perspective (not a first world persepective).

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here