THE MARRIAGE GOSPEL – A Biblical Approach to Sex, Dating, & Relationships
This past week – we started our Sex, Dating, & Relationships Series for FORGE – Grace Point Church High School Ministry. We are taking a 5 week journey to tackle some of the topics that are relevant to High School Students today. Before we got in to the Juicy stuff about sex – I believe you have to start with a Biblical Approach. In essence – starting with the TRUTH of God’s Word should be your approach when studying any topic. If you want to listen to the full 37 minute message from the first week – be sure to go check it out by CLICKING HERE
What’s cool about Scripture – is that you don’t have to go very far before you get to Sex in the Bible – take a look at Genesis 1:27-28:
So God created man in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.
God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”
God gives man and woman (husband and wife – see Genesis 2:24) a couple of things to do – Go make lots of babies and rule over the rest of His creation. We see God telling Adam & Eve to enjoy creation and enjoy each other. When we talk about SEX in the way that God intended it – we have to speak of it in the confines of Marriage. Everything else is “Sexual Immorality” – i.e. homosexuality, adultery, beastiality, pleasure-seekers, prostitution, and pornography are ALL outside of God’s design for sex.
SO, WHY DID GOD CREATE MARRIAGE?
1) To Bring Himself Glory – God uses us (His image-bearers) to represent Him in the world and bring Him glory, honor, and praise all of our days.
“The Chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.”
– Westminster Catechism
In the confines of marriage and taking seriously the command/blessing to “be fruitful and multiply” – we are not only to be his image-bearers, but to create MORE image-bearers through sex and procreation. This takes not only sex, but “training a child in the way it should go.”
Finally, we bring God glory “ruling over his creation.” – we represent Him as Priests/Rulers on earth “as if God is making His appeal through us.”
2) To Make Man Holy – By Marriage – we are constantly being molded more and more into His image and being sanctified. Marriage is fulfilling and amazing – but at times Marriage can be difficult. God uses the trials, fights, joys, and so much more to make us more like Him. Through Marriage we are shown first hand what it means to practice humility and sacrifice for another person. Through that, God Sanctifies us in areas of Love (1 John 4:19), Forgiveness (Ephesians 1:7), and Selflessness (Ephesians 5:22-33) for our Spouse.
HOW DOES MARRIAGE PROCLAIM THE GOSPEL?
God chooses MARRIAGE as the symbol for His relationship with us. We are so infused and so connected to God, it is like we are bound, by law, love, and liberty to Him in marriage.
Old Testament – God and His Chosen People (His Bride) – Israel
New Testament – Jesus and His Chosen People (His Bride) – The Church
“Christ’s goal was to help her (the Church) realize her eternal preciousness and value,
so He purchased her with the price of His own blood, so that God could attain the radiant beauty for His Spiritual Spouse”
– Bryan Chapel
Just as God referenced His chosen people (Israel) as His Bride over and over again – Jesus does the same for the Church. Jesus in Matthew 22 tells a story of a KING having the “rich and the rulers” turn down His invitation to an amazing Wedding Celebration – so the King instructs His people to go and invite ANYONE and EVERYONE to the amazing celebration – normal folk right off the street. During the celebration a man is turned away from the celebration, because he wasn’t wearing the proper clothing – it is said he was sent to a place where there is “weeping and gnashing of teeth.” And at the end of this amazing story (where we see those who rejected the invite, the people who were invited in by an open invitation, and the one who was not ready for the celebration) we see the Gospel laid out where Jesus says: “For many are invited, but a few are chosen.”
We as believers are given this amazing invitation to join Christ in the celebration of salvation and union to Him. We can either reject it, accept and not treat it seriously, or accept it and give our lives to it. The Gospel is presented and available for all, but that does not guarantee your attendance – you have a responsibility in that.
At the end of the day and the end of it all in Revelation 19:7-9 this is the image we will see:
For our Lord God Almighty reigns.
Let us rejoice and be glad
and give him glory!
For the wedding of the Lamb has come,
and his bride has made herself ready.
Fine linen, bright and clean,
was given her to wear.”
Then the angel said to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!’” And he added, “These are the true words of God.”
I believe that in Marriages, we should see the clearest examples of the Gospel of Jesus Christ