“Marriage is not mainly about prospering economically; it is mainly about displaying the covenant-keeping love between Christ and His church. Knowing Christ is more important than making a living. Treasuring Christ is more important than bearing children. Being united to Christ by faith is a greater source of marital success than perfect sex and double-income prosperity.” -John Piper, This Momentary Marriage
The all-wise, all-knowing, all-powerful, and all-sufficient God created in us – His image-bearers – a natural desire for love, companionship, intimacy, and sex, and it isn’t something that we should be ashamed of. He also created the perfect means for us to glorify Him and exalt Christ in this way: Within the institution of marriage. Within the marriage covenant and union. This is His divine design.
Sex and intimacy is for one purpose: the sanctification of the marriage bed as we continue to grow as one in Christ.
If you are single, engaged, or married (and in Christ), be comfortable in your sexuality and in who you are in love as a child of God. But be careful as well. Especially if you are not yet married. If a natural attraction is there (between a man and a woman), things can escalate quickly before you even realize what happened.
Purity and holiness before and during marriage is honorable. The Word of God says to keep the marriage bed undefiled, for the sexually immoral and adulterers He will judge (Hebrews 13:4). He also says to flee sexual immorality (1 Corinthians 6:18). I think at times we are fooled by the enemy in that we feel as if we are strong enough to overcome natural desires when the heat is on. The enemy knows us. He knows our weaknesses, and he knows what we like. Don’t risk it. Set boundaries early. Married and single. And stick to them.
Jonathan C. Edwards, a contributing writer for Desiring God quoted this in one of his articles about selflessness within marriage, and I agree: Death to self is the center of marriage’s gravitational pull, not personal gratification. We die in our quest for power. We die in our quest for fame. We die in our quest for prosperity. We die in our quest to be known. We die in our quest for sex unless it is with our God-ordained spouse.
Married couples: Honor God in your marriage union – in every way possible. Singles, as you prepare for marriage, I encourage you to seek God. Grow in love, selflessness, sacrifice, humility, and righteousness. Flee youthful lusts. Pray without ceasing. Spend quality time with the person you are considering dating (if God has put someone on your mind). Make sure you are equally yoked.
Marriage is the second most important decision you will ever make in your lifetime – second only to being in Christ. It is so important to be rooted and grounded in Christ the Lord, fully understanding and embracing our identity in Him before we even THINK about a relationship that leads to marriage. So take your time. Grow in your relationship with God. Develop your gifts and talents. Serve. Give. If you desire to be in covenant within marriage, you must first be in covenant with God and Christ the Lord. Our spiritual relationship with Him prepares us for an earthly marriage that brings glory and honor to Him.
With that said, this is certainly worth mentioning: Single woman or man in Christ: If you never have an opportunity to marry and start a family in this lifetime, remember that God is the only One who completes you. With or without a ring, with or without a career, with or without popularity on social media or in the world, you are God’s son or daughter. And you submit to Him DAILY. Never let a desire for marriage replace your desire for Christ. It is better to remain single and serve Christ wholeheartedly than to risk eternity for love and companionship. God is our number one source for everything that we need.
God is love. Love is a lifestyle. Jesus lived it, and He’s still living it.
So should we. Don’t you forget it!
With God’s Love,
Porsche R. Armstrong
Founder, Love Is A Lifestyle
Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge.
Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity (love), peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart.
2 Timothy 2:22