Biblical Sexuality Sunday
Opening Prayer: Our Father, we are raising children in a culture that increasingly hates your design for human sexuality, for the glory of being made male and female. But we know that only You are our fortress; only You can protect us and our children and grandchildren. So we ask for that protection now, and we ask that You would protect us by causing Your Word to do its good work in us now, so that we would be safe from the lies and allures of the world. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
In January 2022, the Canadian government enacted Bill C-4, effectively criminalizing Christian preaching, teaching, and counseling that upholds Biblical morality for all sexuality. It specifically prohibits “conversion therapy” and defines that therapy as any practice, treatment, or service that seeks to call individuals to embrace the body God created them with and covenant marriage, with a penalty of up to five years in prison. It also condemns historic, biblical teaching on sexuality as “myths.”
A number of faithful men have called for the pastors of Canada to preach messages annually in direct defiance of that law. We, along with many American pastors, are joining them to stand in solidarity with them. With the recent passage of the so-called “Respect for Marriage Act,” American churches have even more reason to stand with our faithful Canadian brothers and to exhort and warn our own American leaders from going down this same path.
Here in this text, we are given an example of a faithful father teaching and warning his children, and his son in particular, to spot the deadly allures of sexual confusion and sin, and to pursue and rejoice in one woman in the fear of God.
The Text: “My son, attend unto my wisdom, and bow thine ear to my understanding: that thou mayest regard discretion and that thy lips may keep knowledge…” (Prov. 5:1-23).
Summary of the Text
Solomon warns his son to listen to his father closely in order to stay far away from the seductive lips of the strange woman whose feet go down to Hell (Prov. 5:1-8). That path is paved with regret, sadness, sickness, and poverty (Prov. 5:9-14). Instead, the son is instructed to love the life God has given him and rejoice in the wife of his youth (Prov. 5:15-20). God sees all things, and He has fashioned the world such that a man hangs himself with his own sins and folly (Prov. 5:21-23).
There is no neutrality anywhere; every square inch of the universe is claimed by Christ. And therefore, every human moment is either submitted to that Lordship or else it is defying that Lordship. This means that children are growing up either being taught that Christ is Lord of everything, or not. This is why God required Israel to teach their children that the Lord is One God and to love Him with singular devotion all day long and everywhere (Dt. 6:4-9). This is what the New Testament calls “the nurture and admonition of the Lord” (Eph. 6:4). This nurture and admonition includes everything the Bible says about human sexuality. This means that whatever any human authority says, we must obey God rather than man (Acts 5:29). This applies to all men, but it applies particularly to our children.
And so we declare with our Canadian brothers and sisters that we will not comply with Canadian decrees that forbid our obedience to King Jesus, and we warn our American authorities of the same: You are not god; you are not our Creator; you are certainly not our Savior. We will continue to joyfully obey our Lord Jesus Christ. We will continue to cheerfully teach what the Bible says: that God has created us immutably male and female from conception, and that sexual union is only blessed in the covenant bond of marriage between one man and one woman for life.
Life or Death
The basic choice before us and our children is: life or death? The path of all sexual confusion and immorality leads to death; sexual obedience is the path of life (Prov. 5:5-6). Of course the enemies of God and of His word, have begun framing the question the same way. In a recent FOX segment, a so-called “conservative” family was interviewed that said they had decided to let their little girl pretend she was a boy (she’s now a teenage) because they said they would rather have “a living son than a dead daughter.” So they frame this as a life or death decision. And therefore, the fundamental question is: will we trust the Word God or the word of man?
This same choice is between, on the one hand: productivity, fruitfulness, and joy, and on the other hand: futility, barrenness, and sorrow (Prov. 5:10-14). Sexual obedience begins by submitting with gratitude to the biology God has given, as well as rejoicing in the respective assignments and glories that come with your body. And from the earliest ages, honoring those differences with all modesty and purity and joy. This requires joyfully teaching boundaries and enforcing them. This should be done in faith (not fear), trusting that what you’re actually insisting on is the natural goodness of the created order, like teaching them to walk or talk or sing. Require your sons and daughters to treat one another differently. Do not let your girls wrestle/fight their brothers, or your sons to wrestle/fight your daughters. Cheerfully insist on creational differences; and if they tell you otherwise, cheerfully insist that God requires this. Establish wise protocols in your home to protect your children: girls bedrooms off limits; separate baths/showers; modesty in the home. And without being paranoid, don’t be foolish with friends or extended family. Just because “we’re all Christians,” doesn’t mean we don’t still have sins and temptations. Protect one another. My family doesn’t do sleepovers because nothing good happens with kids after 10pm. If you are going to have boarders, make sure clear protocols are in place.
All of these protocols should include lots of healthy physical affection, compliments, and good humor – between parents and children, as well as husband and wife. The central “well of life” in a family is the affection, respect, and loyalty between a man and his wife (Prov. 5:15-19). Whatever you are saying, you are either confirming or contradicting by your marriage. The strongest protection from the Devil and all predators and lies is the unity of husband and wife (1 Cor. 7:5, Eph. 4:26-27).
Run from all temptation: Joseph ran from Potiphar’s wife (Gen. 39:12). Jesus says to cut off the hand that causes you to sin, pluck out the eye (Mt. 5:29). It’s striking that He says this again, specifically when He warns against causing little ones to stumble (Mt. 18:6-10). Run from sexual temptation, but also run from all bitterness, wrath, and strife in your home that may cause your children to stumble.
Repent of all your sins: “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God… For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God… Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth: fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry… put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him” (Col. 3:1-10).
Sin deforms the image of God; repentance in Christ reforms and restores the image of God. But Christian repentance is impossible apart from regeneration. You cannot “mortify therefore” unless you have been raised with Christ. But if you have risen with Christ, then you are dead and your life is hidden with Christ in God, and repentance is simply agreeing that all of your sin really is dead. And if it is dead, then you are clean and free. Full repentance includes confession to God, people sinned against, and new obedience.
Clean hearts see more clearly than dirty hearts. Sin-laden hearts have eyes with logs in them, and you can’t see dangers clearly and know how to avoid them, whether for yourself or your children (Mt. 7:3-5). There are several biblical principles for wise and faithful parenting (e.g. faith, joy, obedience, fellowship), but parenting is a lot more like cooking than a math problem. There is a general recipe to follow, but depending on a number of details, your taste must be well trained to know what is needed next. And that is only possible with clean hearts.
The central thing clean hearts see is Jesus. This isn’t me saying: get your heart clean so you can see Jesus. This is me proclaiming to you Christ crucified for sinners. Christ was crucified for your sins: for your sexual sins, for your parenting sins, for your sins as children and siblings. Your sins were crucified with Christ; you were crucified with Christ. See all of your guilt, all of your filth nailed to His cross, and then see Him risen from the dead and your sin are no more. If you glance down now, you will see that your heart is clean. And now you can see clearly because You see Christ.
Photo by Daria Volkova on Unsplash
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