And what about pornography … is there a place for it within marriage or outside of it?
Song of Solomon 7 & 8
1 Corinthians 14.1-20
Red Hot Love
Real Intimacy, Pornography & Singleness
I’d like to share some of these verses from The Message to help us get a clearer picture of the imagery here. Chapter 7.1-9 contain Solomon’s description of his bride:
1-9 Shapely and graceful your sandaled feet,
and queenly your movement—
Your limbs are lithe and elegant,
the work of a master artist.
Your body is a chalice,
Your skin is silken and tawny
like a field of wheat touched by the breeze.
Your breasts are like fawns,
twins of a gazelle.
Your neck is carved ivory, curved and slender.
Your eyes are wells of light, deep with mystery.
Your profile turns all heads,
The feelings I get when I see the high mountain ranges
—stirrings of desire, longings for the heights—
Remind me of you,
and I’m spoiled for anyone else!
Your beauty, within and without, is absolute,
dear lover, close companion.
You are tall and supple, like the palm tree,
and your full breasts are like sweet clusters of dates.
I say, “I’m going to climb that palm tree!
I’m going to caress its fruit!”
Oh yes! Your breasts
will be clusters of sweet fruit to me,
Your breath clean and cool like fresh mint,
your tongue and lips like the best wine.
Then his bride begins to speak:
9-12 Yes, and yours are, too—my love’s kisses
flow from his lips to mine.
I am my lover’s.
I’m all he wants. I’m all the world to him!
Come, dear lover—
let’s tramp through the countryside.
Let’s sleep at some wayside inn,
then rise early and listen to bird-song.
Let’s look for wildflowers in bloom,
blackberry bushes blossoming white,
Fruit trees festooned
with cascading flowers.
And there I’ll give myself to you,
my love to your love!
13 Love-apples drench us with fragrance,
fertility surrounds, suffuses us,
Fruits fresh and preserved
that I’ve kept and saved just for you, my love.
What descriptive and suggestive language each of them used! And notice, God wasn’t shocked by their enjoyment of each other and their sexuality. Instead, He recorded it in Scripture as a godly example of married love.
Pornography: A Perversion of Intimacy
Pornography, on the other hand, which is so rampant today, is a perversion of the intimacy for which God created us. Instead of feasting on the desirability of our spouses and using our God-given imaginations to fantasize about each other, many settle for the quick sexual thrill of a cyber-partner or the words on the pages of book.
It’s quick and easy, because it requires no giving of love and no focus on the other’s pleasure, but it offers no real intimacy. And because it’s a sinful perversion of the real thing, it doesn’t even deliver what it offers. Instead, it drags many into deeper and deeper perversion and dependency.
But red hot love within marriage is God ordained. Take the time. Ask God for the will and the desire to do what is pleasing to Him and to your spouse. Become the lover God has called you to be. Get adventurous within biblical boundaries.
And if you are single and desire a mate, save yourself for the real thing, if and when it comes. It’s never too late to make a fresh commitment in this area.
Today’s Other Readings:
Verse 34 begins, “May my meditation be sweet to Him …” This is talking about what is going on in our hearts and our minds. What are your thoughts like? Are they “sweet” to the Lord?
A Godly Attitude toward Authority
Verse 21 begins “Fear the Lord and the king …” Just as with submission in marriage, all submission is to be “in the Lord.” If the person to whom we are in submission is asking us to sin or to look the other way concerning sin, we are not to submit (though we must still be respectful), because God’s authority is a higher authority!
Teach, Refute, Reprove, Admonish and Comfort
Paul begins this chapter by saying, “Pursue love …” This command prefaces the discussion which follows regarding the use of spiritual gifts in the church. Verse 1 goes on, “… and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy.”
One of the definitions in Strong’s Concordance for that word “prophesy” is “to teach, refute, reprove, admonish and comfort others.” Though the word “prophesy” has other meanings, the fact that this is a general instruction to the people in this local church, this would seem to be the best interpretation.
It appears the people in the Corinthian church enjoyed showing off their spiritual gifts, especially those that brought the greatest amount of attention. Paul spent much of the previous chapter talking to them about what Biblical love is and how it is expressed. Now he instructs them to pursue that kind of love and follows it with the instruction to desire to prophesy.
One expression of love within the church is to share God’s truth with others. Church services shouldn’t be about putting on a show or looking “spiritual” to those who come in, but about presenting the truth, including the gospel in a way that will cause others to understand and desire it.
Even as individuals, we should be able to “teach, refute, reprove, admonish and comfort others.”
For further study:
According to the authors … “This book is for married couples and mature engaged couples who are close to their wedding day. If you are disappointed with your marriage, this book can help you. If your marriage is good, this book can help make it better. If your marriage is already “better,” this book can take it up another level.”
Intimate Issues answers the twenty-one questions about sex most frequently asked by Christian wives, as determined by a nationwide poll of over one thousand women. Written from the perspective of two mature Christian wives and Bible teachers–women who you’ll come to know as teachers and friends–Intimate Issues is biblical and informative: sometimes humorous, other times practical, but always honest. Through its solid teaching, warm testimonials, scriptural insights, and experts’ advise, you’ll find resolution for your questions and fears, surprising insights about God’s perspective on sex, and a variety of practical and creative ideas for enhancing your physical relationship with the husband you love.
With warmth and wisdom, authors Linda Dillow and Lorraine Pintus speak woman to woman: examining the teachings of Scripture, exposing the lies of the world, and offering real hope that every woman’s marriage relationship can become all it was intended to be in God’s design.
God gave humankind the gift of sex. But many couples don’t experience the kind of joy and fulfillment God intended. If you’ve ever been frustrated with a lack of intimacy in your marriage, or if you just want to know more about how you can get the most out of your relationship, Intended for Pleasure is for you.
This honest and frank resource will answer your questions about sex and sexuality, improving sexual response, sex techniques for pregnancy, birth control, sex at any age, solutions for sexual problems, and much more. All of the questions you’ve been afraid to ask (or didn’t even know to ask!) are answered right here.
You can also Shop for Other Resources
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Mondays Making Your Home Sing Musing Mondays Darling Downs Diaries Mom to Mom Mondays The Life of Faith The Modest Mom The Art of Homemaking Our Home of Many Blessings The Beauty in His Grip Moments of Hope
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Thursdays Frog’s Lily Pad Booknificent Thursdays Children Are a Blessing 3-D Lessons for Life
Fridays Create with Joy Missional Women Coffeeshop Conversations Grace & Truth Faith & Friends
Saturdays Snippets of Inspiration Word of God Speak
Sundays Spiritual Sundays
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“Bible in a Year” posts have been edited and updated from previous posts.