“Flee Fornication…” – Marriage in Scripture Part 8

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Marriage in Scripture – Part 8

“Flee Fornication…”

Study Aired April 27, 2014

Our study today will be addressed primarily to our men, who are intended by our Creator to be leaders, both physically and spiritually. Every word will apply to both men and women, but the emphasis of this study will be on those who are supposed to be leading the body of Christ.

1Co 11:3 But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.

The apostle Paul poses this question to us:

1Co 6:16 What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh.
1Co 6:17 But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.
1Co 6:18 Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.

Tit 3:8 This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men.

Tit 3:14 And let ours also learn to maintain good works for necessary uses, that they be not unfruitful.

In our last study, we discussed how our wives and our daughters are pressured to conform to the styles and values of this world, and we saw how dressing like a harlot can and does lead to harlotry, and how resistance to such styles and values of this world can and will lead to being rejected by the world and being persecuted and made to feel different. The Biblical conclusion is that this is exactly what we are to expect and that we should “from [our] youth” be brought up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, who was Himself “hated of all men” for being different from the religious world in which He lived.

Mat 10:22 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.

Mat 24:9 Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake.

Mar 13:13 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.

Luk 21:17 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake.

Now that is very plain language. If we love Christ, we “shall be hated of all men”. Yet there are billions of Christians who are not “hated of all men” and are not being persecuted for Christ’s name sake, even though we are also promised and warned:

2Ti 3:12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.
2Ti 3:13 But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.

That again, is very clear and plain language: “Yes, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution”. But this what Paul said in the preceding verses:

2Ti 3:10 But thou hast fully known my doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, longsuffering, charity, patience,
2Ti 3:11 Persecutions, afflictions, which came unto me at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystra; what persecutions I endured: but out of them all the Lord delivered me.

Paul set the example for those to whom he was sent. Transparency is a way of life for all who are in Christ.

In our discussion today, we are going to concentrate on how husbands and young men are commissioned by God to be the head and the leaders of their fiancees, wives and families, and are to set the example for their fiancees, wives and families.

As a society, we are completely ignorant of how the beast within us functions. We aren’t even aware that we are nothing more than beasts (Ecc 3:18). We have been fed and have accepted as truth so many outright lies, that without the awakening of the holy spirit to open our blinded eyes we would never, in this age, see the truth.

Mat 16:17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.

We have already mentioned the lie of ‘falling in love’. You cannot ‘fall in love’, but rather fall into a spirit of lust. The average person would be hard pressed to explain the difference between lust and love. The only way to truly love anyone is to work at doing so, by working at being obedient to God and loving our fiancee by keeping God’s commandments.

1Jn 5:2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.
1Jn 5:3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.

‘By this [you will] know that you, as a young man, love your fiancee, when you love God and keep His commandment to “flee fornication”.

It is significant that Paul said “flee fornication”, instead of ‘flee adultery’. Paul was specifically including young and unmarried couples in this admonition.

Another big lie which appeals to this world is the lie that kissing and embracing each other in a full body press, before even being engaged to be married, is acceptable behavior. It is not acceptable to any man who is vigilant about “flee[ing] fornication”. A couple who is dating and who allow themselves to be alone together for hours on end, are playing with fire, and they will surely be burned by that burning lust which is common to all flesh.

The reasoning is that kissing and hugging are not sex, and the fact is that nothing could be further from the truth when that kissing and hugging is with someone you hope to marry.

If we truly love our fiancee, then we will do whatever it takes to remain faithful to our Lord’s commandment to “flee fornication”, and we will keep ourselves and our future wife pure until after marriage. Then when she becomes our wife, there is a solid spiritual foundation on which to develop and grow that godly loving relationship.

So what is wrong with engaging in a full body press embrace before marriage? Any marriage counselor worth his salt will tell any couple they are counseling that kissing and caressing and embracing each other is actually the most important first step of the sex act. That is the necessary foreplay which prepares a couple to partake of the sacred act of sex within the institution of marriage.

God Himself always prepares our hearts prior to bringing us to be at one with Him:

1Ch 29:18 O LORD God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, our fathers, keep this for ever in the imagination of the thoughts of the heart of thy people, and prepare their heart unto thee:

Job 11:13 If thou prepare thine heart, and stretch out thine hands toward him;
Job 11:14 If iniquity be in thine hand, put it far away, and let not wickedness dwell in thy tabernacles.

Do not prepare each other for the act of sex and think you can just turn that passion off. It does not work like that. “If iniquity be in thine hand put it far away, [and] flee fornication, [and do not] blaspheme the name of God”.

That is why the holy spirit has seen fit to warn us all:

1Co 6:16 What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh.
1Co 6:17 But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.
1Co 6:18 Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.

Sex outside of marriage is ‘fornication’ between a harlot and a whoremonger, whether you intend to get married or not. Being engaged or intending to be engaged is not a license to commit fornication, and all who think otherwise will reap the fruit of such a foolish and permissive way of thinking. Sex is reserved for the institution of marriage and there alone. Children born out of wedlock are not the only fruit of fornication. The sense of guilt burns those who know that sex is only for marriage, and even if pregnancy is avoided when having sex before marriage, the sin of disobedience will exact its burning toll of guilt and shame.

This twice repeated warning is how a wise and godly couple will deal with the beast that is their flesh:

Pro 22:3 A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished.

Pro 27:12 A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself; but the simple pass on, and are punished.

Do not think that you are capable of doing war with the beast within. No one yet has ever won that war, and it is utter foolishness to think that you will be the first man to do so:

Rev 13:3 And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast.
Rev 13:4 And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him.

But there is hope for us in Christ, and that war against that beast within us can be waged, and it can be won only by having Christ within us sending His angel to fight for us within our heavens.

Php 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

Rev 12:7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,
Rev 12:8 And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.
Rev 12:9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

There are many marriages which are consummated before this “war in heaven” even begins to be fought. But for those who claim to “know God” within the body of Christ, that war must be fought and won on a daily basis “through Christ who strengthens me”.

A brother who cannot contain his own sexual drive until after marriage has no spiritual foundation as yet on which to build a strong and enduring marriage. If the virtue of patience is not there to restrain a man’s sexual desires, then it will certainly not be there when patience is needed within a marriage for this simple reason:

Luk 16:10 He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much.

If you claim to know Christ, then act like Christ, and keep your pants zipped up until after you are married. It is the height of hypocrisy to introduce a brother or a sister to the gospel of Christ, and then to use their acceptance of the gospel through your influence, to seduce that person. Likewise it is the height of hypocrisy to use God’s sovereignty as an excuse to “continue in sin”.

Rom 6:1 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?
Rom 6:2 God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?
Rom 6:3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?
Rom 6:4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
Rom 6:5 For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:
Rom 6:6 Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.

“Know you not, that so many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death [to sin].” It is true, Christ came and raised the bar so high that no one can attain to that bar on his own. But do not believe the lie of the adversary who is telling you that Christ in you cannot attain to His own standards. “So many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into His death… to sin”. That is the truth, and anyone who tells you by words or by deeds that sin can continue so grace can abound, has no concept of the bargain He is making with a just and loving Father, because:

Heb 12:6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.

If a brother cannot contain himself he has not yet endured that chastening and scourging and is not yet ready to marry a godly sister. The same is true for a sister who cannot resist the pulls of the flesh. If you both just cave in to temptation, then know you are not yet ready for the trials of marriage, and a merciful heavenly Father is revealing yourself to you.

Anyone “who is called a brother” must “flee fornication”, because you cannot lead a sister in Christ until you are given to bridle and lead the beast within. Do not call Christ ‘Lord, Lord’ if you are not yet able to do the things He says, and do not “blaspheme the name of God among the heathen” by naming the name of Christ, when you have not even been given to bridle and control the beast we all are by nature.

Luk 6:46 And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?

Be sure that these words are true for all men of all time, but they are especially applicable to the house of God at this time:

Rom 2:1 Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things.
Rom 2:2 But we are sure that the judgment of God is according to truth against them which commit such things.
Rom 2:22 Thou that sayest a man should not commit adultery, dost thou commit adultery? thou that abhorrest idols, dost thou commit sacrilege?
Rom 2:23 Thou that makest thy boast of the law, through breaking the law dishonourest thou God?
Rom 2:24 For the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles through you,, as it is written.

We all live by every word, just as the apostle Paul Himself did, but these Truths are still the truth, and we must stand upon them, even as the entire world considers them to be outdated and unrealistic. What is truly ‘unrealistic’ is to think for one moment that we can mock God, and not pay the price for doing so:

Gal 6:7 Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.
Gal 6:8 For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.

God knows our frame because He made us as we are.

All men of God are still just men of ‘like passions’:

Act 14:15 And saying, Sirs, why do ye these things? We also are men of like passions with you, and preach unto you that ye should turn from these vanities unto the living God, which made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all things that are therein:

Jas 5:17 Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.

“Three years and six months… one thousand two hundred and sixty days… times, time, and half a time… forty and two months” are all the symbol for the time of trials we must all endure before we begin in earnest to be judged in this life:

1Pe 4:17 For the time is come, that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?

I, too, am a man of like passions as all men and all women. It is my prayer for all who “are called a brother [or a sister]” that you are granted the wisdom to wait until after the drought of the word of God in each others lives, until after the beast within is “twice dead”, before you seek to be married to a person who uses the gospel of Christ as a license to continue in sin.

When you first see such a lascivious spirit…:

1Co 6:18 Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.

It is the holy spirit that warns us all:

1Co 5:11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.

All “brother[s]” in Christ make up the body of Christ. He who commits fornication or adultery sins against his own body, and it must be avoided at all cost in this world. Do not continue to go back to that same shame filled situation. “Flee fornication”, and “abstain from all appearance of evil”.

1Th 5:22 Abstain from all appearance of evil.

Any couple who stands in fear of those words will take the necessary steps to be obedient to those words, and in doing so will avoid a time of sorrow and shame. Those who don’t, won’t avoid a time of sorrow and shame, which while enduring it will seem like eternity.

No shepherd of the Lord’s sheep ever talks down to those over whom he has been placed as an overseer. Nevertheless, any messenger of God, must admonish those who are the body of Christ, and with the apostle Paul say ‘I am persuaded that you will receive these admonitions and will in turn admonish one another to the same “good works”.

Rom 15:14 And I myself also am persuaded of you, my brethren, that ye also are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, able also to admonish one another.

1Th 5:12 And we beseech you, brethren, to know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord, and admonish you;

It needs to be said, that the Word of God prohibits the body of Christ from being “unequally yoked together with unbelievers”.

2Co 6:14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?

It is a struggle to be of the same mind under the very best of circumstances, and it is certain that it will be a struggle if we become unequally yoked in marriage to an unbeliever:

Amo 3:3 Can two walk together, except they be agreed?

Marrying for the purpose of avoiding fornication is not a Biblical reason for getting married. Biblical marriages are “only in the Lord”, and avoiding fornication is something that should be done until the Lord sends you a mate who is “in the Lord” and agrees with you that you must both “in all your ways acknowledge Him”.

Pro 3:6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

1Co 7:39 The wife is bound by the law as long as her husband liveth; but if her husband be dead, she is at liberty to be married to whom she will; only in the Lord.

It is a sin to ignore the admonitions of scripture. We cannot ignore the Words of God and expect God to bless our ways. They will be under a curse, and they will produce nothing but misery and death:

Rom 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

If we are going to call ourselves by His name, then we need to do what He tells us to do via His Word, the scriptures:

Luk 6:46 And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?

Summary

What is it we have seen in this study that our Lord has said to us? We have seen that the Lord has told us that if indeed we are joined to Him we are “joined [to] one spirit”.

We have seen that if we are joined to Christ, then that “one spirit” will never tell us to be joined to a harlot or to the spirit and doctrines of a harlot. We have seen that the oft repeated admonition to “Be of one mind” is especially applicable in the marriage union.

We have seen that a prudent and wise man will foresee evil and will hide from it and will not tempt himself by allowing himself to ever be in a compromising position.

We have seen that anyone who is joined to Christ will “be careful to maintain good works”, and will “abstain from all appearance of evil”.

We have seen that God prepares our hearts for Himself before He comes into our lives. In like manner the most important part of the sex act is the preparation of kissing, embracing and caressing, and that such things need to be kept for after marriage. This is not to say that a peck on the cheek after an evening together is out of order, but that is as far as an unmarried couple should be going prior to being engaged, and even then great care must be taken to demonstrate for all who are watching them that they fear God and keep His commandments and His principles and His ways.

We have seen that any man who fears God will not prepare himself and his fiancee for sex by kissing, embracing and caressing each other until after they are married.

We have seen that appearances do matter to God and that a Godly man will “abstain from all appearance of evil”.

And finally, we have seen that no man “who is called a brother” should ever use his relationship and his knowledge of the Word of God for the purpose of seducing a sister in Christ. Instead, as the potential head of his wife he should be the leader and should set the example of restraint until after the two of them are legally married so the name of God is not blasphemed by any true man of God.

It is “not everyone that says Lord, Lord”, but it is “He that overcometh” the beast that is within who will rule and reign with Christ a thousand years and then judge angels in the great white throne judgment.

The scriptures give us many ways by which we are saved. We are “saved by grace through faith… we are saved by hope… he that endures to the end shall be saved… [and] in your patience possess ye your souls”.

But none of those statements is exclusive to the sum of God’s Word, and that ‘sum’ teaches us that only the overcomers will rule and reign with Christ:

Rev 2:26 And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations:
Rev 2:27 And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.

All overcomers must “keep my words unto the end”, so men, let us all pray that God will give us the patience to rule over the beast within and be a godly example to all men, and not blaspheme the name of God among the heathen by having no patience or control over the beast of lust that is all flesh.

There is one more way of being saved, and that is what this study is all about:

1Co 1:21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.

So these words apply to all of us, but someone has to preach them before they can be believed.

Our next study will be on the curse of anger, and how destructive uncontrolled anger is. Uncontrolled anger is the exact opposite of saving patience, and the title of our talk next week will be “Anger Rests In The Bosom of Fools”.

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