A Biblical View of Intimacy in Marriage (and Abstinence)

Intimacy in marriage is not a neglected topic in Scripture. It is discussed a number of times in the Old and New Testaments, and one entire book—Song of Solomon—is dedicated largely to the topic. When God’s Word makes something important, Christians have a responsibility to make it important as well by learning what Scripture teaches on the subject. If Christians don’t do this, they are likely to gain their understanding from secular society, which has a perverse view of sexuality.

1. Intimacy in Marriage Is Blessed by God

Just as the devil has been successful in encouraging intimacy outside of marriage, he has been equally successful in discouraging intimacy within marriage. I once counseled a man in his fifties who was addicted to pornography. I mention his age only because pornography might be more typically considered a struggle for young, single men. In reality it can enslave men—and women as well—of any age, in any season of life.

The man’s actions were absolutely sinful; there is no minimizing the wickedness of his behavior. With that said, after months of counseling it became apparent that one reason for his addiction was a wrong view of intimacy. His mother had convinced him at a young age that sex was filthy, and he had never been able to rid himself of that belief. He told me: “I look at porn, because at least then I am not involving my wife in a dirty activity.” Though I tried to convince him otherwise, it was very difficult for him to shake his mother’s teaching, even though Hebrews 13:4 says, “Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge.” Continue reading “A Biblical View of Intimacy in Marriage (and Abstinence)”

Wives Submit to Your Husbands

“Wives Submit to Your Husbands” is the third message I preach at Marriage God’s Way Conferences. This message is the complement to “Husbands Love Your Wives.” Watch this video to have a marriage conference in the privacy of your own home!

Below you will find:

  1. Lessons for the message
  2. Discussion questions for the message
  3. Message notes
  4. Information about a Marriage God’s Way Conference you (or your church) could host
  5. Information about my books: Marriage God’s Way, and the accompanying workbook.

Lessons

Lesson 1: Submission is __________________ (Ephesians 5:23; 1 Corinthians 11:3).

Lesson 2: Submission is not:

  • (Part I) Done ______________ and __________________.
  • (Part II) A matter of ______________________ (John 6:38; Matthew 26:39).

Lesson 3: Submission means:

  • (Part I) Husbands still ____________ to their __________ (Genesis 2:18).
  • (Part II) A wife puts her husband in a ________________ to ________.
  • (Part III) A wife ________________ her husband even though she disagrees with him.
  • (Part IV) A wife ____________ ______ (1 Peter 3:5–6).
  • (Part V) A wife keeps her strength __________ ______________.

Lesson 4: (Part I) Husbands ____________ __________ when they’re wrong (Part II) and wives shouldn’t say, “__ ________ ______ ____!”

Discussion Questions

Husband asks wife:

  • How do I make it hard for you to submit to me?
  • How do I make it easier for you to submit to me?
  • Do you feel like I listen to your thoughts when it comes to making decisions?
  • Do you feel like I admit when I’m wrong, or do I make excuses and shift blame?

Wife asks husband:

  • Do you feel like I submit “kicking and screaming”?
  • Do you feel like I put you in a position to lead?
  • Do you feel like I take control of situations or decisions that should be left to you?

Continue reading “Wives Submit to Your Husbands”

Jesus’ Authority Over Demons

Since I haven’t been preaching from the Old Testament on Sunday mornings (except for the occasional passage connected to something in Luke, i.e. 2 Kings 5 about Naaman a few Sundays ago), I haven’t thought as much about types of Christ like I used to when I was in the Samuels. Colossians 2:17 says all the types in the Old Testament “are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ“; therefore, in Luke it’s not about looking at the various types or shadows, but the actual substance, Jesus Christ. This past week though I was really thinking about a type in the Old Testament that related to the passage I was studying: Luke 4:31-37 when Jesus casts out an unclean spirit from a man in the synagogue in Capernaum.

If you ask people for pictures or types of Christ in the Old Testament, David has to be one of – if not thee – strongest. Jesus sits on the throne of David (2 Sam 7:12-16) and seventeen times in the Gospels Jesus is called the Son of David. Plus there are all the different ways David looks like Jesus: both born in Bethlehem, shepherds, anointed, kings, hated for no reason, betrayed by close friends, and the list goes on. My suspicion is if you asked someone how David is a type of Christ these are probably the most common answers you’d receive, but I doubt you’d hear someone mention David delivering Saul from the tormenting spirit. That’s what I kept thinking about this past week though: as I prepared my sermon on Jesus delivering a man from demon possession I kept thinking about what David did for Saul, and it convinced it reminded me of Jesus’ ministry delivering people from demon possession. Like all types though, they generally pale in comparison to the reality and that’s the case with this one as well…

First, Saul was tormented, but he wasn’t possessed; if he had been, David would’ve been unable to help him because only Jesus has the power and authority to cast out demons. When others (like Paul) delivered people, it was only because Jesus gave them the authority to do it like He did in Luke 9:1 Then He called His twelve disciples together and gave them power and authority over all demons, and to cure diseases. When Paul cast the demon out of the young girl working for the fortunetellers, in Acts 16:18 he said, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” David couldn’t say that.

Second, even when David helped Saul, it only lasted a short period of time before the tormenting spirit returned. Jesus on the other hand delivered people permanently. In Jesus’ Parable of the Unclean Spirit That Returns in Luke 11:24-26, one of the points is the demon returned because the house was empty, picturing an unbeliever absent of the Holy Spirit allowing demon possession (1 John 4:4). Through faith in Christ though, we become the temples of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor 3:16, 6:19), able to have victory over the demonic realm and sin and death.