This is why a man is to leave his father and mother and stick with his wife, and they are to be one flesh. (Bereshit / Genesis 1:24; CJB)
This past week I had the privilege of teaching a room-full of mainly twenty somethings, mainly singles, key lessons from the first two chapters of Genesis, the creation accounts. I found myself unusually moved as I was about to share one of my points due to how the forces of evil have so twisted this most precious area of human experience. My point was "sexuality is good." God created sex as part of his good creation prior to the invasion of sin and evil. Yet more than ever what had been designed to be one of the wonderful forms of human intimacy has been turned into something God never intended.
What was most disturbing, however, was a brief discussion I had after the class with one of my adult sons who was attending. He questioned my commenting that sex is good within marriage and bad outside of marriage. He wanted to know if I meant that all sex was good inside marriage. It took me a few seconds to grasp what he was saying, realizing that while my general statement of "sexuality is good" is accurate, even within marriage there are certain such activities that biblically based morality deems as wrong.
My son continued to explain to me that due to the kind of graphic material many young people are being exposed to, they have developed a warped understanding of what constitutes legitimate human intimacy. The result of this is that men and women have skewed expectations of each other in this area.
The purpose of the class I was teaching was to explore various foundational issues of life and living derived from the early chapters of Genesis. I believe that these issues should inform our basic understanding of what it means to be human beings living on planet Earth. One of the most important of them all is that people are not the product of meaningless, random, mechanical processes, but rather are the intentional design of an all-powerful, relational God. More than that! We have been formed in his likeness, placed on Earth with the expressed responsibility to care for it and fill it with offspring.
As part of the fulfillment of God's expressed purpose for us, God instituted marriage. Marriage is not a social construct that humans developed over time. God invented it in order to establish a life-long bond between a man and a woman for companionship and as the basic structure into which our offspring were to come into the world. Sexuality is a powerful force provided by God to serve the marriage bond and the development of family.
Like most things, whenever we undermine God's intended purposes, ignore his ways, and transgress his wise and loving boundaries, we bring destruction to ourselves and others. Abusing sexuality is no different. Doing whatever we want with whomever we want, driven by our drives and desires instead of God's directives, leads to harm of all kinds.
What God intended as a most precious experience for his human creatures in the Garden of Eden long ago is still available to us today. But like everything else it must be on his terms. This means that not only must sex be reserved for marriage as God defines it, but we may also need to evaluate how sexuality is expressed within our marriages as well.