Exposing the Darkness
Exposing the Darkness
“Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. But sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints. Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving. For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. Therefore do not become partners with them; for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret.” (Ephesians 5:1–12 ESV)
In my first post on pornography, I attempted to show that as a culture we have been on the slippery slope of sexual immorality for a very long time. As a result it is hard to come to agreement today on what is “pornography” or the display of sexual immorality. Whose definition do we use? If we use the Bible’s definition, namely, that sexual immorality is anything that is not consistent with God’s design and intention for our sexuality” then we have to first understand what God’s design is for our sexuality.
Sex is Good!
The first point we need to affirm is that God is the author of our sexuality. He invented it, it was His idea and He made sex one of the most intimate and pleasurable experiences of self-giving in all of creation. He didn’t have to make it pleasurable, but He did, and that fact alone shows us that God is not some mean ogre in the sky out to spoil all our fun. Sex is God’s good gift to us. Genesis 1:31 says, “And God saw all that He had made (including sex) and behold it was very good.” However, when we use God’s gifts to us in a way that He did not intend, the gift becomes destructive to us and dishonoring to God. Try using a hammer to change a light bulb and you will see what I mean. Use a tool in a way that it was not designed to be used and it is destructive. So really from the Bible’s point of view, there is no such thing as self-existent evil, there is only the corruption of the good things God made by our rebellion against Him.
Sex is a Sacrament
I know there are only two sacraments, Baptism and the Lord’s Supper. But a sacrament is a “sacred-mystery.” It is a tangible expression of a spiritual reality. And that is what sex is. God designed sex to be a tangible, physical expression of the spiritual oneness of a husband and wife. Genesis 2:24 says, “Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife and they shall become one flesh.”’ Sex is the sign of the one-flesh reality that God creates in marriage. So any sexual activity that is not an expression of the one-flesh reality in marriage is sexually immoral.
Sex is Serious
God takes sex seriously. I know our culture says that whatever two consenting adults do in the privacy of their own bedrooms is fine as long as no one is hurt. But that is a huge lie. The passage from Ephesians quoted above actually says, “Let no one deceive you with empty words (namely sex is no big deal) for because of these things (sexual immorality) the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience.” Sexual immorality is devastating on so many levels, personally, culturally and spiritually. Think of the thousands of young women being used and abused by pimps, slave- traders, selfish husbands, drunk boyfriends and dirty old men who use our daughters for their own selfish pleasure. Think of the hundred’s of millions of men every day who consume online pornography like breathing air and so fuel the abuse of young girls, demean women and live in a fantasy world all their own. Pornography is highly addictive and enslaving. We think we are using someone else for our pleasure, but in reality we are being used, we are being enslaved and others are growing rich from our addiction! Pornography destroys marriages by killing trust and crushing the self-esteem of wives. I could go on, but I hope I don’t have to convince you further that pornography is dark, really dark. And if God takes the gifts He gives us seriously, we ought to as well. God will avenge all the young women that have been taken advantage of by those who embrace sexual immorality. Of that you can be sure.
Sexual Immorality is Forgivable
The first part of the Ephesian passage is the best part, “…Christ loved us and gave himself for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.” The good news of this passage is that Christians are forgiven of their sexual immorality. Out of His unconditional love, God sent His Son Jesus to absorb in his own Holy soul our sexual immorality and the wrath of God promised to the sexual immoral is poured out on Him as our substitute. God’s Son actually becomes a “son of disobedience” on the Cross and He takes the penalty due our sexual immorality so that God can justly pardon us. So the way forward out of the darkness is first to admit you are in need of forgiveness and then cling to Jesus by faith and ask Him to be your substitute before God. I have tried to “expose the darkness” of sexual immorality, so that we will run from it to Jesus. That is our only hope but it is the only hope we need.