General Identity

God’s Purposes for Sex

MW Editor’s note. This week, Mentoring Warriors welcomes guest author Eric Douglass. This post is an excerpt from his booklet, Victory in the Battle: Biblical Power for Purity. Eric’s booklet is available on the MW store: https://mentoring-warriors.com/product/victory-in-the-battle-biblical-power-for-purity-by-eric-douglass/

Note from Eric: The booklet, Victory In The Battle, is a simple, yet powerful Biblical tool to help you have victory in the battle for purity, for overcoming sexual temptation in your life. It gives you a number of Biblical passages and principles, along with some practical applications to help you say no to the bait of sexual sin and avoid the disastrous consequences that come with it: brokenness with God, yourself, and others. The place to start to gain victory in overcoming sexual temptation is to correctly understand God’s purposes for the sexual relationship.

God created sex! Yup, you just read that and read it right. God created us as sexual beings, gave us our sexual drive, and created sexual intercourse to be shared and enjoyed between a husband and a wife.

 But Satan seeks to take everything that God has created, which was good when He created it, and twist, distort, deceive, and break God’s good creation. Sin is why we see so much distortion of God’s intended purposes for the sexual relationship. The enemy wants us to fulfill the God-given sexual desires He’s created us with in any way possible OTHER than the way God created.

If that’s the case, then before we can talk about how to overcome sexual temptation, we must first understand God’s purposes for sex. Here are 5 of God’s purposes for sex:

1. Procreation

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. And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.””[1]

God creates humans, male and female, in His own image (having characteristics like God does) and gives them the command to multiply and rule over the earth. Right here in the first chapter of the Bible we see that one of God’s purposes for sex is for us to make more image bearers; more people. To multiply and fill the earth is the command He gave to Adam and Eve.

 But is that the only purpose for which God created sex? Does this mean that sex is only to be engaged in with the intention of having a child? No.

2. Pleasure

Proverbs 5:18-19 – “Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice in the wife of your youth, a lovely deer, a graceful doe. Let her breasts fill you at all times with delight; be intoxicated always in her love.”

God created a husband and wife to enjoy the pleasure experienced in sex, just as He created it. In fact, He’s even created parts of the body that serve no other purpose except for sexual pleasure! The book of Song of Solomon in the Bible is about the love relationship between Solomon and his bride, and his detailed descriptions reveal that the sexual relationship between a husband and a wife is indeed pleasurable.

God created sex to be a pleasurable experience and wants those who are married to enjoy that relationship with their wife.

3. Holy Living

The apostle Paul, in responding to a question of whether a believer should stay single or get married, responds with:          1 Corinthians 7:2, 9 – “2But because of the temptation to sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband. … 9But if they cannot exercise self-control, they should marry. For it is better to marry than to burn with passion.”

Paul says celibacy is a gift from God (1 Cor. 7:7) and not for everyone. If God hasn’t given you the gift of celibacy, then Paul goes on to say that if you desire to marry, you should, for “it is better to marry than to burn with passion” (1 Cor. 7:9).

Now I hope you’ve noticed in the previous points that I’ve not said that God created the sexual relationship to be experienced between “a male and a female”, but rather between “a husband and his wife”. God created the institution of marriage (Gen. 2:23-24), and this covenant of marriage between one husband (man) and one wife (woman) until death parts them is the only God honoring way to engage in a sexual relationship. Any other sexual relationship outside of this covenant of marriage is sin and will damage you: spiritually, relationally, and sexually.

God created us and gave us these sexual desires, and He also created and has graciously given us the protective relationship of marriage in which to enjoy and fulfill our sexual desires. Therefore, a husband and wife in the covenant of marriage can enjoy their sexual relationship in the only holy way there is to: as God designed it.

4. Intimacy

            In the first marriage (Gen. 2:23-24), Scripture declares:

Genesis 2:25“And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.”

Adam and Eve experienced a deep communion, companionship, and oneness with each other, so much so that they were always exposed to the fullest, even physically. Though the Fall brought sin into the world, and this intimacy with one’s wife now comes with much more work and difficulty, it still can be wonderfully experienced. The two becoming one isn’t just a physical act, but it’s two people intertwining their lives together. Not so that they lose their individuality, but so that they are united together and transparent with one another. This creates relational intimacy that transfers and finds expression in sexual intimacy. Sexual satisfaction comes as both husband and wife give themselves to each other, not just physically, but as they grow spiritually, relationally, and emotionally closer to one another.

5. Spiritual Picture

A fifth purpose that God has for sex is to remind us that the intimacy we desire is ultimately fulfilled only by Him. Gary Thomas says:

“[Christian spirituality] teaches us the goodness of sex while reminding us that there are things that are more important than sex. It allows us to experience pleasure without making pleasure the idol of our existence. It teaches us that sex can certainly season our lives but also reminds us that sex will never fully nourish our souls. (Sacred Marriage – p. 201)”[2]

Sex is very satisfying, but it can’t ultimately satisfy: only God can. Our sexual desires can be fulfilled for a time, but the desire for more comes again.  This can be a reminder of how although we can be filled with discovering more of who God is, we can keep coming back to discover more and more of Him. Growing in knowing our God is something that is never ending. 

Conclusion

These 5 purposes for sex give us the truth to stand on as we begin to overcome sexual temptation. Jesus sets for us the example for how to battle temptation in general in Matthew 4 and Luke 4. Jesus battles the devil with the Word of God. He combats the temptations of Satan with the truth of God’s Word. This is the model for believers to have victory over any temptation in their lives: To resist the temptations that present themselves to us with the truth of God’s Word.

Before we look at additional Truths of Scripture, it’s also helpful to understand the tactic of the enemy. Understanding the lie of sexual lust and how we’re tempted is yet another step in resisting temptation and gaining victory in overcoming sexual temptation.

Warrior On!

You can purchase this entire study at the Mentoring Warriors store.

This booklet continues to unpack and apply numerous passages of Scripture to help you gain victory in your battle for purity in your heart and mind. It is available for purchase at the Mentoring Warriors store. https://mentoring-warriors.com/product/victory-in-the-battle-biblical-power-for-purity-by-eric-douglass/


[1] All Scriptures are from the Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright © 2001, 2007, 2011, 2016 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

[2] Sacred Marriage by Gary L. Thomas. Copyright © 2000 by Gary L. Thomas. Used by permission of Zondervan. www.zondervan.com

Eric Douglass
Lead Pastor at Beacon Community Church | Website

Eric Douglass is the Lead Pastor of Beacon Community Church in Goddard, KS. Eric’s passion is to know and follow Jesus while helping others do the same. He has a heart for personal disciple-making and lives being transformed as people follow Jesus and walk in obedience to His Word, thus experiencing the abundant life that He offers! His booklet, Victory in the Battle, is how the Lord is graciously giving him victory in the battle for purity in his heart and mind. You can contact Eric at eric@beaconlife.org

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