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New Horizons

March, 2004: Purity

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Pure Sex

"Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous" (Heb. 13:4).

It's no secret that God condemns sexual impurity. "God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous" (Heb. 13:4). "Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, ... nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality ... will inherit the kingdom of God" (1 Cor. 6:9-10). "But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity" (Eph. 5:3 NIV). Read more

Adultery and Apostasy

"Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; that he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, that he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church: for we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church. Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband" (Ephesians 5:25-33).

In Ephesians 5:25-33, Christ makes a very remarkable and very strong statement concerning the church as his bride. Notice, however, how God very carefully intertwines this with the marriage relationship. The two ideas are so fused together that in an exegetical study it is almost impossible to divide them—even, as it were, with an instrument as sharp as a surgeon's scalpel. There is here a very strong intertwining of teaching about the two relationships: the man-woman relationship and the Christ-Christian relationship with the Christ-church relationship. Read more

Sex Is Like a Typewriter

"Sex is like a typewriter." I hope that statement makes you uncomfortable. We should dislike the flippancy with which our culture talks about "sex," for language influences our character. Whereas some persons in our society might chase after "sex," God's people search for his design for "sexual union," a permanent relationship rather than a fleeting experience.

More important, we should resist the notion that something so beautiful and deeply expressive as sexual union should be likened to something so cold and sterile—so technologically non-intimate—as a typewriter. Like all analogies, this one fails drastically in every other aspect besides the point it is intended to make. The analogy that "sex is like a typewriter" is useful only in the way it directs us to the true remedy for our inexplicable pain. Read more

The Pornography Trap

"Live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature" (Gal. 5:16).

What is a man looking for when he watches an adults-only movie channel? What is a man looking for when he clicks an X-rated website on his computer? What is a man looking for when he stares into Playboy and other girlie magazines? What is a man looking for when he walks into a strip joint? What is a man looking for when he goes to a place of prostitution? Read more

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