Weekend Wrap Up, "Hot Seat: Sexuality"
It may be strange, but even though this was a more controversial topic to teach and preach about (Sexuality), it was one of my more comfortable times of speaking God's Word. I have to tell you, I had dreams about this sermon going off the rails a few weeks before. People getting upset, walking out, calling me hurtful names. The reason I think this was going on is because I knew I was going to be talking about something that is so precious to them. Not only is it precious but most of the time it is a very private.
It is good that Church's talk about these issues in ways that spur conversation and bring a greater understanding to what God has to say that needs to cut through all the messaging in the world that wants to say something less meaningful. As I preached on 1 Corinthians 6:12-20, I realized that I have heard a great deal of sermons on the first part of the chapter but many on these verses as the main drive of the sermon. I found that it I would be assuming too much of people's understanding in the culture of today if we just read the outcomes of conduct that pleases God without first elevating how Paul came to that justification.
In this letter, Paul is very bold by stating outcomes first to perhaps combat the mantra of "I can do anything I want". What we have to digest is that when we read 1Corinthians 6 in its entirety, that these outcomes in our behavior of our bodies are justified by the work and will of God in the supernatural realm. We do not do certain acts only because the Bible has text that tells us what and what not should be done with them. Paul takes it a step further when he informs us that our bodies our not for us, they "belong to the Lord". This is the distinguishing moment in every person's life when they decide to either self sanctify or self deny.
To me, this is a big sign that we are truly practicing the lordship of Jesus in our life when we let go of our right to our selves, our bodies. To many, this tangible form of self is very important to their livelyhood. It is how they are found valuable, make a living, gain attention, have 34.5k instagram followers. The body can be idolized so much that we have removed God's interest entirely. We say "Lord, take my soul, but I'll manage the rest". I'm sorry but this is not discipleship, this still is saying to God that he is subject to your throne room, your kingdom, your control. Yet, with each passing day and each new wrinkle or hold that gravity claims, we must eventually come to a decision about these vessels that are capable of housing the very Spirit of God. We must answer if they will be included in what we offer to Jesus as what he atoned on the Cross, or will we keep our distance from complete surrender to God?
Until we bring our bodies with all its wants, desires, inclinations into a place of self sacrifice, then we receive the words of Jesus as an imposition instead of a invitation.
I want nothing to come in between me and Jesus, especially a vain pursuit to idolize a created thing like the body. However, our nature plays tricks on us as we settle for half committed steps of how we treat and submit sexuality to God. It has to be understood that it is a daily act of devotion to not objectify, not lust after, not covet what is not ours.
It is to become more and more sensitive to the value the body has to God and how we are to compliment this view of God's act of creation by how we treat every example living amongst us each day.
This takes a deeper work of grace that is first found willing and then finishes by daily obedience to say to God, "my life is...yours!" I pray we each can come to see how this temple of God's that our soul dwells in is our responsibility and our example of Christ's body doing, saying, and acting as if it was living Jesus' example. What would we understand about ourselves if we adopted a biblical ethic to our morality? Would we perhaps for the first time or be able to remain in a sustaining way of feeling comfortable in our own skin? I pray so!
Keep Looking Up!