Summary: Don't let God's best for you be wasted on the illusion of greener pastures somewhere else. Instead, rejoice with your spouse as you give yourselves first to God, then to each other.
PROVERBS 5: 15-20
PURE OR POLLUTED REFRESHMENT
This eye opening chapter deals with a delicate subject daringly and with great directness. The way of wisdom is superbly illustrated by contrasting the false (7-14) with the true. These positive teachings concerning marriage relationship are revealed in the most intimate of physical blessings. Now the physical intimacy created for marriage can be exercised under the mastery or guise of false love, which is lust. Lust is only physical, true love should be spiritual as well. Lust is a perversion of God's great gift of love.
In contrast to much of what we read, see, and hear today, this passage urges couples to look to each other for lifelong satisfaction and companionship. Many temptations entice husbands and wives to desert each other for excitement and pleasures found elsewhere when marriage becomes dull. But God designed marriage and sanctified it, and only within this covenant relationship can we find real love and fulfillment. Don't let God's best for you be wasted on the illusion of greener pastures somewhere else. Instead, rejoice with your spouse as you give yourselves first to God, then to each other.
I. THE TWO SOURCES OF PHYSICAL RELATIONS, 15-18.
II. THE FREEDOM OF MARITAL EXHILARATION, 19-20.
[III. THE BONDAGE OF SEXUAL SIN, 21-23.]
Having viewed the deadly enticement of sin we now have the calm happiness provided by the ordinances of God. Surely none but a fool who refuses knowledge would leave the wholesome fountain for a poisoned and forbidden spring.
Careful abstinence from evil is only one side of the case made for moral purity and the lower one. There is the positive case made of what the true love of marriage and family contains.
God made the family, man made the night clubs, bars, casinos, the ballroom and many other things that drain off the support for the God established institution.
The prized possession of fidelity is the opening theme in verse 15. "Drink water from you own cistern, and (flowing) fresh water from your own well,
"Drink water from your own cistern is a picture of faithfulness in marriage. It means to enjoy the spouse God has given you. In desert lands, water is precious, and a well is a family's most important possession (where rainfall is scarce and deep drilling techniques unknown). The cistern collected rain water and could store any over flow of a well fed by a spring.
In Old Testament times, it was considered a crime to steal water from someone else's well, just as it was a crime to have intercourse with another man's wife. The reason is because the offender is endangering the health and security of family.
Desire after forbidden enjoyments spring from dissatisfaction with the blessings we already possess. Thus we are instructed to "drink water from your own cistern." Where nourishment, fulfillment and contentment is not sought at home-it will be sought for, however vain the search, abroad.
The pure delights oflove from the family are represented by sweet running waters of nature. The pleasures and delights that God gives to creatures to enjoy to the fullest are wholesome, pure and refreshing like streams of pure running water. God has hewn that cistern and given it to you and filled it. Draw out of it what He has put in it and give Him the Glory for it. Be true to your wife and family. Find happiness in your marriage and home.
The metaphor of cleansing, refreshing, life giving water for the marriage relationship continues in verse 16. "Should your streams be dispersed abroad, streams of water in the streets?"
Solomon compares enjoying married love to drinking pure water from a fresh well, but committing sexual sin is like drinking polluted water from the gutter or sewer. Sex within marriage is a beautiful river that brings life and refreshment, but sex outside marriage is a sewer that defiles everything it touches. To commit sexual sin is to pour this beautiful river of strength and goodness into the streets and the public squares. What waste! If you "drink deep" of the wrong kind of love (7: 18) it will contaminate and destroy your energies and life.
The commitment of marriage is like the banks of the river that keep the river from be waters within the banks, and this produces power and depth. Extra marital and premarital affairs don't satisfy because they're shallow, and it doesn't take much to stir up shallow water. A man and woman pledged to each other in marriage can experience the growing satisfaction that comes with love, commitment, depth, and purity.
Verse 17 emphasizes fidelity. "Let them be yours alone, and not for strangers with you."
Husbands and wives need to fulfill the deepest needs of each other. When this is done the reasons for looking to fulfill those needs outside of marriage is drastically lessened.