Summary: This sermon is a continuation of the Guardrails Series we adapted from Andy Stanley's series. This message deals with the need for us to not only run from sexual temptation but to understand God's purpose in giving us the gift of sex.
Flee Baby Flee
We are in our 3rd message on guardrails. Guardrails are a system designed to keep vehicles from straying into dangerous or off limit areas. Guardrails are designed to cause a limited amount of damage now, to prevent major damage or loss of life later. The guardrails are always placed in the safety zone. A guardrail is a personal rule, or standard of behavior that becomes a matter of conscience.
A guardrail is designed to light up our conscience before we hurt ourselves or others. Our culture does not like guardrails when it comes to actual behavior, it prefers painted lines and guidelines. Nowhere is this seen more clearly than in the area we are going to talk about today which is sex. It is amazing how many of the shows and movies we watch glorify sex outside of marriage and present affairs as delightful. We laugh at them and enjoy looking forward to the next episode.
But then when our daughter in law who has an affair, it isn’t so funny. Or if our husband is going with his secretary, it’s not so romantic. Of if our grandson is the one with three girls pregnant at the same time, it’s not something to joke about. We realize that real people are being hurt, and lives are being devastated by the irresponsible acts of others. As much as we want to watch those shows, if we’re honest with ourselves, what we want most for those we love the most is fidelity and faithfulness.
When our sons and daughters get married, we want them to keep their vows to be faithful to each other. We don’t want our kids going off to college jumping in bed with whoever comes along. If someone comes into our lives, we want them to be faithful to us and us faithful to them. We actually want for ourselves and our loved ones, what God wants for them which is to have the best lives possible.
I hope when you heard the Old Testament reading, you discovered once again where sex came from. Sex was God’s idea. Look at how he created the man and the woman. He structured them in such a way that they could literally become one body. He even said, “a man shall leave his father and mother, and is untied to his wife, and they become one flesh.” Chapter two of Genesis ends with the words, “Adam and his wife were both naked and felt no shame.” There was nothing dirty or bad about sex when God created them. Sex didn’t have to be done in the dark.
God gave them this wonderful gift of sex to enjoy, and God gave it to them to enjoy in the context of a committed marriage relationship. The word leave means to put everything else at a lower priority including parents to this other person. The word cleave or united means to stick together as something that was glued together. You can’t rip it apart without doing damage to both parts.
Now knowing all that you know about how sex has been misused and how families have been destroyed, if God told you to come up with a simple rule for using sex in a way that honors both people involved and the people that loved them, what would your rule be?
I think the most difficult rule we have in the bible is the new commandment that Jesus gave to us. The old standard was do to others as you would have them do to you. The new standard is to love one another just as Christ has loved you. The new standard means doing what it takes to present this other person in a right standing right relationship with God. It means seeing this other person, not as an object of desire, but as a child of God who belongs to God. God wants you to protect His child.
Sexual temptation is such an issue for us, because we see the other person as someone who is going to fulfill a desire that is inside of us. Once that desire is fulfilled, there is a bond that takes place in which something is both given and something is taken. As a society, we know there is something different about sexual behavior. You can see the confusion in our laws in the Ohio Revised Code. Listen to the definition of what “obscene is in our Ohio Law”
(F) When considered as a whole, and judged with reference to ordinary adults or, if it is designed for sexual deviates or other specially susceptible group, judged with reference to that group, any material or performance is "obscene" if any of the following apply:
(1) Its dominant appeal is to prurient interest;