Psalm 139:11-12

If I say, "Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me," even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you. (PSALM 139:11-12)

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

God-Honoring Intimacy

Intimacy is a really important part of marriage. Notice I didn't say "sex". It's taken us quite a while to understand the difference. It's even more complicated when you are married to a recovering sex addict AND you have childhood sexual abuse baggage.

I believe God created sex to be something you share with your spouse alone.

I believe that sexual intercourse is the fruit of knowing and being known by your spouse. This "knowing and being known" is not exclusive to the bedroom. This can be deep, heartfelt conversation, non-sexual touching, spending quality time together, and being loving to one another (thru actions and words) -- all of which can ultimately culminate in intimacy in the bedroom. When you feel loved, connected, cared for, and safe it creates an atmosphere for trust and vulnerability which I believe naturally leads you to God-glorifying physical intimacy.

I believe that all things, including and especially your sex life with your spouse, need to be God honoring. And I believe you know whether it is God honoring when you truly understand and are honest about what is motivating you during the act of making love. If it is for self-gratification or just to make your spouse happy then I don't believe it is God honoring.To glorify God in sexual intimacy it cannot be about using each other...using for a release or using to feel loved or so they won't leave you.

Intimacy includes being respectful of your spouse and not asking them to do things that make them feel uncomfortable, confused, objectified, or unloved. It's about mutually loving one another. It is me loving and putting his needs before mine and him loving me and putting my needs before his. If sex is a means to getting off, whether it's with your spouse or not, I don't believe that is intimacy (atleast the way God intended it to be). Intimacy is definitely a heart thing and intimacy is about LOVE.

Marriage is not a free ticket to sex anytime, anywhere, any way you want it. You are not an object. You are his wife and should be honored above all. You should be his treasure and treated as such.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (the message) "There's more to sex than mere skin on skin. Sex is as much spiritual mystery as physical fact. As written in Scripture, "The two become one." Since we want to become spiritually one with the Master, we must not pursue the kind of sex that avoids commitment and intimacy, leaving us more lonely than ever - the kind of sex that can never "become one". There is a sense in which sexual sins are different from all others. In sexual sin we violate the sacredness of our own bodies, these bodies that were made for God-given and God-modeled love, for "becoming one" with another. Or didn't you realize that your body is a sacred place, the place of the Holy Spirit? Don't you see that you can't live however you please, squandering what God paid such a high price for? They physical part of you is not some piece of property belonging to the spiritual part of you. God owns the whole works. So let people see God in and through your body."

Sex has and continues to be one of our biggest struggles in our marriage. And it's only been until recently that we have made some major strides in this area. A sexual addiction makes sex an idol. Whatever the means by which they get the sex they so desperately want (even if it's with their spouse), it is still an idol. Until they turn to God, instead of sex, to fulfill all of their needs, it will be a struggle for them (and you).

Reading the book "Undefiled" by Harry Schaumburg has helped tremendously with our understanding of biblical intimacy and biblical manhood and womanhood. Another resource that has been helpful to us is a sermon series by Pastor John Piper of Desiring God ministries called "Sex and the Supremacy of Christ". To listen or to download a copy of the sermon click the links below.

Sex and the Supremacy of Christ Part 1 -- By John Piper. © Desiring God. Website:
Sex and the Supremacy of Christ Part 2 -- By John Piper. © Desiring God. Website:

1 comment:

Light in the Darkness said...

Because of my abuse I never viewed sex as beautiful. All of my experiences, including with my husband, were tainted and it felt like sex was more trouble then good. For years I have been working on understanding sexual intimacy. Because I know God didn't create it to be this messed up. So then what was his intention when he first created it? We are a long way off from Adam and Eve, but I believe the marriage relationship is one of the most important relationships he created. God's intention for marriage was to show us a glimpse of what being in relationship with Jesus is all about. This is why in Ephesians 5 God speaks about the roles of husband and wife...husbands should love their wives like Christ loves the church. We are His bride. I am sure he treats me, as God's bride, with nothing but unconditional, untainted love. Obviously our relationship with our husbands cannot be that perfect, but it is the model for what our marriage should look like. This transcends the whole marriage, not just sexual intimacy. Sexual intimacy is one of many expressions of love in a marriage relationship.

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