Monday, October 12, 2015

Hearts Joined Together

Scripture Texts: Matthew 19; Proverbs 17

Marriage being a hot button topic is not something new to our current age. As we can see from the Gospel of Matthew, even since the days of Moses has there been a struggle with understanding marriage. Jesus offers what seems to be a clear teaching on the subject, the couple will leave their families to be joined together to create a new family. Because it is God who has put this new family together, no one should try to take it apart.

Jesus does offer one exception to this, sexual immorality. In all other situations, the intention of God is that the couple would remain together. Before moving on too quickly we have to at least acknowledge the challenge of the term sexual immorality. There are few terms in all of scripture as loaded as this term, especially as it applies to our current day. We find no shortage of people willing to generate lists of what constitutes sexual immorality, and usually the list is focused on behavior. While our actions matter, it seems the point of origin for sexual immorality is our heart.

When we allow our heart to be joined to something other than our spouse, this is sexual immorality. This means sexual immorality shows up not only in the actions we take, it also shows up in the thoughts we carry, the images we allow into our lives, the emotions we can give away. Rarely does the physical act of sex with someone who is not your spouse start out as a quest for a sexual encounter. It starts when we start allowing our hearts to be joined to something that is not God, and is not our spouse. We give away our heart.

Obviously there are many situations and interactions we need to avoid to keep from giving our hearts away. Possibly more important than what we need to keep away from are the things we need to be about so that our heart is only given to God and to our spouse. The most important things we can do is to daily offer our heart, our whole heart, to the one to whom we are joined. This is done through conversation, mundane and important. Your spouse should not find out about what is happening in your life or heart as secondhand information.

It is not clear what Jesus meant by sexual immorality. If we are honest about it, no greater clarity comes from the other Scripture writers. Still, Jesus and others are clear we are to avoid it as it will derail the relationships of our life. It will cause us to give our heart to someone or something that is not appropriate or deserving of our heart. For those that are married, it is the express lane to putting asunder what God has joined together.

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