This post is to serve as a balance to my last three posts on homsexuality and gay marriage. It is a reminder to all of us that we are all broken and in need of grace and forgiveness.
Genesis chapters 1 and 2 recount for us the creation of all things and God’s intended design for our relationships with him, fellow human beings, and the rest of creation. Genesis 2:18-25 specifically informs us of God’s intended design for sex and marriage. This passage tells us that God custom-fashioned woman as the perfect compliment for man after there was no other compliment found in all of creation fit for him. It also tells us that man and woman are meant to “hold fast” to one another and become “one flesh.” These phrases describe the marriage union for us in that it is supposed to be permanent (“holding fast”; or “cleaving” in some translations). It is also supposed to be between a man and woman, which we realize because God just finished designing the woman especially for man and only a man and a woman can properly form the “one flesh” union that is pictured in this passage.
It is also worth pointing out that sexual union (becoming “one flesh”) is only proper after the marriage union (“holding fast”) in this passage. Polygamy is ruled out here as well, as a “one flesh” union is not possible with more than one man and/or woman.
When sin enters the world in Genesis 3 everything is impacted. All three basic relationships are distorted. Our relationship with God is broken and we turn to idols of different kinds. Our relationship with one another is broken and we turn to self-interest. And our relationship with the earth is broken and instead of caring for the creation, we seek to exploit it for personal benefit.
If we seek to understand how the curse of sin impacted God’s original design for sex and marriage, we do not have to look far. In the Old Testament law, there are laws concerning bestiality, rape, sex with close family members, adultery, and homosexual acts. The effects of sin to the created order are apparent. When we read the words of Jesus in Matthew 5:27-28, we get an even greater understanding of sin’s impact on our sexuality:
“You have heard it said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that everyone that looks at a woman with lustful intent has already commited adultery with her in his heart.”
These words should be sobering when we realize the implications. Anything that is against God’s created order is considered “deviant” by definition. Jesus says here that not only is adultery wrong, but so is lust. Have you ever lusted? Remember God’s intended design for sex? It is supposed to be between a man and a woman AFTER marriage. Have you ever had pre-marital sex? The Bible tells us that being addicted to anything is wrong. Are you addicted to sex (some are)?
It is easy to point the finger at those who practice bestiality, pedophiles, and homosexuals and say “you dirty sinner.” However, we must realize that those who are addicted to sex, have pre-marital sex, and/or lust over another are “dirty sinners” as well. I am pretty sure that we all fit into these categories somewhere or another. That means, according to the Bible, we are all sexual deviants.
I hope we can all realize our own struggle with sin and need for forgiveness. As we do, I hope we can remember to show more grace, respect, and genuine love for one another as we all struggle with our own brokenness and need for God’s restoration. As Christians, we can never accept sinful activity as OK, but we can seek to genuinely love our neighbors and help them understand the restoration that is made possible through Jesus Christ.