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Sunday, January 04, 2009

Sexual Boundaries

There is a lot of sex in our culture. It appears that sex sells. It is political. It can be woven into the fabric of just about any topic. I sometimes wonder if God intended sex to be so versatile. Even more, I wonder how the human race can be so naive about sexuality. To be sure, God intended us to be sexual. But what exactly does that mean?

We seem to have an ongoing argument in my country about what I call the “normalization” of a lifestyle that we describe as gay or lesbian. Specifically, people pursue same-sex relationships --- and expect everyone else to approve of them. Okay, maybe that’s a little strong. Perhaps some of them would settle for better tolerance.

California has been in the news for the past year or two as it struggles with the issue of same-sex marriages. Other states are wrestling with the issue as well. Now that Barack Obama has invited Rick Warren to give the invocation prayer at his inauguration, the gays and lesbians (and their supporters) are up in arms. They call it a travesty that their beloved (nearly divine) Obama would cozy up to a man who states in no uncertain terms that same-sex activity is wrong.

Don’t get me wrong; I love gays and lesbians. I truly do. I’ve been very close with some of them. However, I am not ignorant as to the facts. People of God, who call themselves Christians because they believe Jesus is the Messiah and submit to His ways of living, must know the difference.

The Bible is replete with clear terms that would be hard to mistake about what God says. Let’s look at the 18th chapter of Leviticus, for an early example of the clear boundaries God intended to draw on our sexuality. In my Bible, it falls under a section called “Unlawful Sexual Relations.”

In Leviticus 18, God told Moses to instruct God’s people regarding their sexuality as follows:

· No sexual relations with any close relative.
· No sexual relations with parents or step-parents. (Lev. 18:8)
· No sexual relations with siblings or step-siblings. (Lev. 18.9, 11)
· No sexual relations with grandchildren or grandparents. (Lev. 18.10)
· No sexual relations with aunts or uncles. (Lev. 18:12, 13, 14)
· No sexual relations with in-laws. (Lev. 18:15, 16)
· No sexual relations with step-children. (Lev. 18:17)
· No sexual relations during a woman’s period. (Lev. 18:19)
· No sexual relations with another man’s wife. (Lev. 18:20)
· No sexual relations with someone of the same sex. (Lev. 18:22)
· No sexual relations with an animal. (Lev. 18:23)

Now God used some pretty strong language for these things. He called them perversions, detestable, wickedness, dishonorable and defiling. It is interesting that our society will readily agree that most of these expressions of our sexuality are wrong. But they will argue --- in the face of God Himself --- that sex with someone of the same sex is not. How does one sustain such an argument … with the God of the universe?

Let us not be deceived here. God didn’t differentiate these things. He said they are all detestable --- and they are all prohibited. He concluded by saying that if anyone engages in any of these behaviors, God’s people (e.g. Christians) should have nothing to do with them. (Lev. 18:29). So if you try to justify the behaviors and force me or anyone else to accept them as normal --- I am to have nothing further to do with you.

I guess I wouldn’t be any more acceptable to the gay and lesbian agenda to offer prayer at the Obama inauguration than Rick Warren is. It’s because I agree with Pastor Warren.

No matter how any of us feels about our sexuality, God drew some clear boundaries. The only question is whether or not we will prove that we are His people by respecting those boundaries.

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