Let’s Talk About Sex (and Marriage and Children and God)

A young couple at our church is considering marriage. Ahh youth. They are wondering about the usual stuff.  Can they afford a wedding, making a home when they are Man and Wife and, because my church takes all this old God stuff seriously, how to keep themselves sexually pure until they are wed.  Those things are indeed worth considering but, speaking as your neighborhood old lady know-it-all, it really boils down to two questions.

  1. Is this a man who can lead me and my future children spiritually?
  2. Is this the woman I want to become my lifelong partner and raise my children?
    marriage-childrenCredit: Google Images

God has a purpose for marriage and, I know this is very unpopular with you sensualists raised on Hollywood out there so take a big deep breath here, it’s not primarily your happiness. When done correctly, marriage will make you holy as you sacrifice (read: suck it up more times than you can imagine) for your spouse by putting their needs before your own.  This is what doing marriage God’s way looks like.  As a result there are times of great security, joy and intimacy and sometimes it sucks. This angle, you can imagine, makes me very popular with the pre-marriage counseling crowd.  From God’s perspective, marriage as an institution is about producing a spiritual nation of children who love Him and have no other God before Him.  Malachi the prophet speaks quite plainly on it.  “God made them one… because He was seeking godly offspring.”  His primary vehicle for making this happen is to join husband and wife together in one flesh and spirit, permanently, to produce offspring and train those children in holiness.  (Malachi 2:15)

Whatever view you take on marriage as civil policy, there is only one biblical prescription for it – one man and one woman for life.  There are those in our culture who argue that marriage is about feelings and the validation of their romantic partner.  Not so for the believer.  In our case, marriage is about man and woman coming together for the sake of producing and raising children.  For life.

Now. Let’s talk about sex baby. Let’s talk about you and oh yes I am a child of the eighties. Right. So then.  The whole “one flesh” thing- the Act. Just as your circulatory system or respiratory system is complete and with you till you leave this world, it is God’s design that joining sexually with your spouse completes your reproductive system and should remain a permanent part of your life.  As hard as our culture has tried to divorce the life-giving properties from the sexual act, the fact remains that children are a product of sexual congress.  God is purposeful about making sure that no child will be conceived without the involvement of a man and a woman.  He intends for each child to have a mother and father.  This a major basis of the marriage covenant among believers.

Not only does God join man and woman as one flesh, but “in spirit” they are His as well.  Someone somewhere once said that what God has joined together, let no man (not husband nor wife nor any human force) separate.  Why not? I’ll tell you because that is why you are here. God is not just seeking offspring.  He is seeking godly offspring.  Offspring are produced in a moment, as many a victim of our “hook-up” culture can testify.  But godly offspring are produced over a lifetime.  Thus the need for a permanent union.

Do not be fooled by the Christian who affirms gay marriage as biblically permissive.  Marriage has always been and always will be about a man and a woman coming together sexually and spiritually to raise the next generation. Better they raise the next generation as believers. Much more common among Christians but equally condemned by scripture, is the acceptance of “no fault” divorce or dating/marrying an unbelieving spouse- specifically denounced by Malachi in this passage.  Like most Christian principles, God has issued a unambiguous earthly method for achieving a spiritual goal.  We do not get to choose, amend, or redefine that method.  Neither can we improve on it.  Any attempts to go our own way or modify His prescription will produce painful earthly consequences.  In fact, it will probably look a lot like the state of our highly depressed, substance-abusing, fatherless nation.

Once again, because my brain is feeble and I am just not that bright, many of these ideas are not my own.  Our family attended Mars Hill church Sunday and we got to hear Mark Driscoll preach through this text.  For a more comprehensive look at this ridiculously relevant 2500-year-old passage, here’s the sermon. There is nothing new. We arrogantly believe we are so different from those ancient, backward, biblical folks. We are not. God’s truth and direction is relevant today because our nature is the same as it ever was.  And so is He.

Advertisements

14 thoughts on “Let’s Talk About Sex (and Marriage and Children and God)

  1. Oh, AskMe. I missed you for a while, and I tried to send you a message asking if you were ok because you disappeared, but now you are back and more severe than ever it seems! Now that I know you are ok, I am free to disagree with you. Although I have not been as into getting mad lately, so I’ve been staying away from these sorts of blogs. It does seem like a burden to know everything about what is right for everybody and thinking you have the market cornered on marriage and committed partnership because you are Christian. How tiring it must be to know so much better than everyone else. You do not need your God to have a committed marriage where humilty and your partner’s needs and spiritual well-being and concern for the future generations comes first. To think only Christians get this shows how skewed your perceptions are of people who are not Christians. I know you really believe that you are right and you really believe in the Boble so I don’t want to take away your comfort (and I know I coldn’t, because you are set on this), but whoa. Glad you are blogging again, even though I ave not had the energy to comment. Take care.

    • Sarah! Great to see you on here! I did get your note last month and replied. But perhaps I did so in a way that did not notify you of the response? Here it is: https://askthebigot.com/who-is-this-christian-bigot/comment-page-1/#comment-2124 Either way, I was so touched to hear from you both then and now.

      Regarding your thoughts above, God’s plan is and always has been to woo a people unto Himself, establish a genuine relationship with them, and use them to illuminate Him to a hurting world. Is it no wonder that His goal for sex and marriage is not simply the desires of the adults involved? There is a greater mission involved here. God has stated an explicit goal for marriage and it includes raising children into adulthood and beyond.

      You rightly cite that any two people can share an emotional connection and commit to one another for life. And many non-Christians do so, within and without marriage. But culturally we now speak about marriage as something that revolves around adult fulfillment, where the needs of children are secondary at best. Thus the high cohabitation and divorce rate. Not to mention the booming porn and human trafficking industry.

      And just as a preemptive move, let me say that the whole “Christians get divorced just as often as non-Christians” thing is total bunk. We have been in four churches in the last 19 years. With probably a total of 800 members (that’s a conservative figure). There have been countless couples who have struggled through infertility, adultery, porn addictions, depression, financial troubles. Do you know how many divorces have happened during those 19 years? TWO!
      I don’t have “the market cornered on marriage and committed partnership” because I am a Christian. I read what the Bible says, compare it to what happens in life when people (including me) go their own way and the devastation that follows and I say, this must have been written by someone who knows human nature well. No wonder He identifies Himself as a loving Father. He is trying to save us from heartache.

      And now as a peace offering, I give you this picture of my man visiting our friend’s puppies last night. What do you say? Friends?

      Peace Offering

      • AskMe- that’s a very cute doggie, indeed. Here are my thoughts to this comment and the one you posted a while ago in response to my message that I just now saw: Christians don’t appreciate being generalized, and sometimes you over-generalize us. You have predicted things you think I’m going to day, and the thought hadn’t even crossed my mind. I have no thoughts on the rates of divorce and I don’t think that means much. You’ve correctly called out what other commenters were going to say, but we are not all alike with the same thoughts and ideas and arguments and reasoning.

        On the divorce subject though, I do have to point out that when the other side is arguing their point, you need double-blind, peer-reviewed, large scale studies to be satisfied. You would never accept it if we said we know X amount of gay couples and their children are thriving. (I know you wouldn’t because that happened 😄.) You said that’s anecdotal and how could you be expected to take our word for it. But then when it comes to you proving your point, you cite that in your churches, you’ve seen two divorces. That’s hardly scientific and very anecdotal. So maybe be aware of double-standards.

        I don’t think bragging about no divorces in your circle is necessarily a good thing, it just means the group norm shuns divorce. Hopefully women in your church aren’t putting up with domestic violence and being abused just to measure up to the “We Christians value marriage too much to get divorced” thing. It’s good to try to work through a lot- vows are to be taken with the utmost sincerity. But oppressed women in some Muslim countries never get divorced either, and it’s not because both partners are committed. So the divorce argument is kind of bunk. Tolerating more is only good up to a point. Children growing up in a miserable home with verbal abuse are not better off with their parents staying together, and there is plenty of support for that.

        As for your conundrum of staying and being of service at church or reaching out through the blog, my opinion, if you’re wondering, is that your work at church is more meaningful and goes further. It would be very rare that somebody would look at your blog and be so moved that they find God; it probably has the opposite effect, actually. But where the blog does help, and where your real strength is, is how you respond to angry commenters. The grace you show in your responses is your gift, for sure. So maybe write things to rile people up, get a bunch of non-believers and crazy liberals to comment, and then be your sweet, level-headed yet firm self, and demonstrate that not all Christians are preaching grace and love in one breath and tearing apart someone who disagrees with them in another.

        Unrelated, my friend is married to a “Christian” man. I use that word loosely, because he uses it when it suits him. He’s not a Biblical literalist when it comes to pre-marital sex or getting way too intoxicated, but all of the sudden when two of his close friends are getting gay married he cannot attend the wedding. Where are you on this? I’ve been asking my Christian homies and most of them said they would go, as going does not imply support in that sense. Plus, Jesus would have gone for sure. It’s not that different than him attending my fiancé and I’s wedding, as we are two non-believers so he doesn’t recognize our marriage either, but he has no problem coming to our wedding. The most offensive part to me is that he is not telling them why. He’s just avoiding it. Wouldn’t a real Christian man have the decency and God-given balls to explain why he must abstain? He’s not taking a stand if he just pretends to be busy. Of course, everyone knows the truth so he looks even worse. I’ve found arguments on both sides. What say you?

        • Sarah,

          Heck yes that is a cute doggie. You know it brought joy to your dog-loving heart. And the picture was even better before I cropped out my husband’s begging, blue puppy-dog eyes. But I think we are going to have to stick with the kitties…

          You are right about the divorce statistics. I use my personal experience only to illustrate that it takes more than calling yourself a Christian to BE a Christian. And many of those who report that they are Christians who are getting divorced really aren’t walking the walk. We know that talking the talk isn’t enough. That is especially illustrated in the story of your friend married to a “Christian” man. Who cares what he calls himself. All of you know him by his fruit. And it’s rotten. Jesus says that we have to be ALL IN. It’s all or nothing in terms of obedience. If we are only half-way in, Jesus Himself will spit us out. Go big or go home.

          Regarding your comment that “it would be very rare that someone would read my blog and find God”, you are probably right. Thankfully I am not responsible for converting anyone, I just have to be obedient to walk out truth in love. BUT if you do find God on this blog, I would be happy to disciple you. At no charge. 🙂

          Your question about attending the gay wedding is a great one! If it’s OK with you I’ll noodle over it for a while and make it into a blog post. But first, I think we shall have to deal with the whole Duck Dynasty travesty. Stay tuned…

  2. AskMe,
    Wonderful post! I couldn’t agree more. Marriage can be tough but we, my husband and I, entered it for life. We have baby #2 on the way and God helping us,will stick with it through thick and thin. It will be worth it all hearing Well done!!! We do love each other and honestly even when times get rough we cannot imagine starting over with another person. Keep up the good work!

    • Thanks, friend! And congrats on baby#2! How far along are you? How old is your first? Hopefully you are past the worst(first) trimester…

  3. These days, I’ve been thinking about the sacrifice of family and marriage. Usually between 1 and 4am. My youngest, a philosophical 16-month old, is not yet keen on sleeping through the night. In these ways and many others, I know exactly what you mean about sucking it up more times than can be imagined.

    What you wrote about marriage is beautiful and wise and describes an ideal that I do (and think we all should) aspire to. If this post was the product of a feeble brain then I want my brain enfeebled!

    And if your blog’s tagline were “One Christian shares her personal views on the meaning of marriage” I could and would give a cheer and stop writing here. But you’ve chosen to specifically concentrate on promoting that part of our legal system that denies marriage to two people of the same gender. You argue that your views against gay marriage should be codified in law and applied to EVERYONE, regardless of their own personal beliefs. This is where, I think, the undeniable beauty of your vision comes to a screeching halt.

    Because, our country isn’t a theocracy. We each get equal rights and an equal shot at happiness (or, if we choose, we can each decide to put our happiness in the back seat and our legacy up front).

    Because, even if it were a worthy goal to impose through the force of law a Christian ideal of marriage on everyone, stopping gay marriage would be nowhere close to your biggest concern. Divorce is a much larger threat. (Aside: a traditional marriage is almost twice as likely to end in divorce as a gay marriage is.) Drugs, violence, prison, failing schools, financial factors, church attendance (I would argue) and a culture emphasizing self satisfaction are among the many more impactful issues. After all, even where gay marriage is legal the vast majority of marriages are of the traditional variety.

    Because, as I believe you’ve acknowledged, gay partners can engage in a loving, caring, sucking-it-up-for-the-sake-of-the marriage-and-the-kids relationships too.

    So where are your multitudes of posts on reforming the divorce laws? Where are your posts about legally requiring married partners to be of the same religion and requiring everyone to undergo counseling before getting married? Where do you write lengthy arguments on the merits of laws that would mandate pre-marriage drug tests and criminal background checks?

    It seems to me that pretty much the only people you are trying to legally prevent from marrying is gay people. That’s highly prejudicial at best. And not very Christian at worst.

    • Hi Keefe,

      Nice work on the sucking-it-up in the middle of the night so that your woman can get a few extra winks. You get 1,000 points. That is real manhood, IMO. 😉

      Thanks for the chance to clarify. As stated in numerous places on this blog, I advocate for traditional marriage in the realm of civil policy not using religious arguments. (Because, this not being a theocracy as you rightly assert, I don’t think it’s appropriate.) And I attempted to make clear that this post was intended for Christians as they think about their own marriage as stated here:

      “Whatever view you take on marriage as civil policy, there is only one biblical prescription for it – one man and one woman for life. There are those in our culture who argue that marriage is about feelings and the validation of their romantic partner. Not so for the believer. In our case, marriage is about man and woman coming together for the sake of producing and raising children.”

      I think we have had this conversation before so I shall summarize. I respect that Christians, even those who hold the views of my post above, can come to different opinions about how to vote on this issues depending on what they feel best aligns with our constitution. You have the right to your opinion about this subject and I understand why you have come the conclusions for which you advocate. What I was attempting to confront in this post is the pastors/teachers/denominations who say that God only cares about the romantic feelings of the parties involved and therefore we can throw out the man/woman/for-life standard.

      In the realm of civil policy, IF government is to be involved at all (which you and I have also had conversations about) then it ought to be for the purpose of forwarding a common good. That good, as historically understood, was primarily about attaching fathers to mothers and children and creating an ideal environment for childrearing.

      The problems of divorce, porn, cohabitation and the like regularly arise within my posts. But the subject of gay marriage gets more of my attention because it is on this subject that supporter of traditional marriage are routinely demonized and sidelined. And, in my opinion, the area where Christians need to be better equipped to lovingly and firmly present their case.

      Thanks for your comments, as always. Enjoy those wee morning hours with your little one. 12-24 months were some of our sweetest times with our kids.

  4. Askme,
    Sweet of you to check on me. I’ m 19 wks. and one of the fortunate ones who never get sick. Baby is due in May, and my son Canaan will be two in May as well. We hit the two yr goal. Supposed to be a girl. We’ll see. Pray that we can raise them for the Lord.

Comments are closed.