Posted in 2Corinthians, Ephesians

The Call to Sexual Purity

“For I am jealous for you with the jealousy of God himself. I promised you as a pure bride to one husband—Christ.  But I fear that somehow your pure and undivided devotion to Christ will be corrupted, just as Eve was deceived by the cunning ways of the serpent.” 2Corinthians 11:2-3

 Why has God given us sexual desire and attraction to the opposite sex and then commanded that we control that desire and attraction to save it only for our present or future spouse?  To get to the why of sexual purity we have to go back to why God made sex in the first place.  When we understand what it pictures we will more easily be able to accept and even delight in His call to sexual purity.

 In the text above, Paul says we are called to be the bride of Christ and have only eyes for Him; pure and undivided in our devotion.  In Ephesians 5:31-32 he says: “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and shall be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.  This mystery is great; but I am speaking with reference to Christ and the church.”  So marriage was created to speak of this higher relationship with Christ and human beings.

 The two become one not by intercourse but by this “leaving” all others, and this “joining” to only one another.  The two becoming one flesh, sexual intercourse, consummates and celebrates that shared devotion to only one another.  Why did God make sex fun?  Why did he give us desires that are fulfilled in this act of passion?  Because it represents the spiritual pleasure available to us in our union with Christ.  There is fullness of joy in His presence.  But our union to Him is not based on spiritual pleasure, but on His devotion to us and our singular devotion to Him.  Spiritual pleasures make it easier to stay devoted to Him, and it strengthens our resolve.  It makes our relationship more than a duty; He is our delight.

 God created sex within marriage to sweeten our commitment to our spouse, so they wouldn’t be our duty, but our delight. Our singular commitment to them pictures for all the world to see our commitment to Christ who left His Father’s home, took on flesh, died and rose again, just so we could be His forever.


Pastor at City Church in Madison, Wisconsin