PRAYER ALERT for biblical courtesy. The recent flood of charges of sexual harassment against public figures has only begun. We can expect many more. In fact, almost half of all women say they have been sexually harassed in the workplace. This should not surprise us. Hollywood movies supercharged with profanity and eroticism have set the pace for an oversexed environment wherever we go. Fewer people are taking on the responsibilities of marriage. More and more are seeking for sex for sex’ sake. Predators of both sexes abound.
But women are more vulnerable to the vulgar behavior of men. Moreover, vulgarity has become the new normal not only in the media but increasingly in public places. More and more people are mocking chastity and modesty. More and more are exalting promiscuity and lechery. In such an anything-goes atmosphere, male bosses have felt free to take advantage of female employees.
But no longer. The recent backlash of #metoo’s has sent offenders running for cover. Now we hear frequent calls for a national dialogue about right relations between the sexes. Yet no one is saying where we should begin. Well, the answer is right under our noses—though many will hold their noses before considering it. The Bible.
Biblical courtesy is shown in the many scriptures about male-female relations that are shocking to politically-correct sensibilities. But they come as welcome relief to those who hunger and thirst for righteousness.
“Treat…younger women as sisters, with absolute purity” (1 Tim. 5:2).
“Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouth, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, so that it may benefit those who listen” (Eph. 4:30).
“…live a life of love, just as Christ loved us… But among you there must not even be a hint of sexual immorality, or of greed, because this is improper for God’s holy people. Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving. For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person—such a man is an idolater—has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God” (Eph. 5:2-5).
“However, each of you should love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband” (Eph. 5:33).
“Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure. For God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral” (Heb. 13:4).
(See also Mt. 19:3-9; 1 Cor. 6:13-20; 7:2-16,25-40; Eph. 5:22-32; 1 Thess. 4:3-8; Prov. 2:16-19; 5:1-23; 6:23-35; 7:4-27).
If we faithfully taught such biblical courtesy, the majority of Christian youth would not be approving of fornication as they now do. For these passages set the true norm for God’s people. In turn, we can set a new normal for unbelievers around us. We can provide a clear contrast against those who “have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, with a continual lust for more” (Eph. 4:19).
Not only that. We should protest against every instance of sexual harassment that we see perpetrated against any woman, just as a brother would do for his sister. This will please our Father in heaven.
PRAY WITH US. Father God, we thank You for the way You designed us. You designed each man to love and cherish one woman, and each woman to love and cherish one man. Deep down that is what each one is looking for. A blessed union with one faithful marriage partner for life. And You designed jealousy too. For parents, brothers and true friends—to defend the honor of a girl before marriage. And for a husband and true friends—to let no man put that union asunder.
But now we live in a world which disparages and perverts Your design for marriage, sex and family. Expose our own compromises with that world. Forgive us of our many transgressions. Let us not conform any longer to the pattern of that world. Rather show us how to treat the ladies You have put in our lives. How to love them as brothers without lust, how to speak without innuendo, how to think for their advantage and not for ours. And don’t let political correctness distort the true image in which You created men and woman. Instead, transform us by renewing our minds. Then we will be able to test and approve what Your will is, Your good, pleasing and perfect will, for every man, woman and child. In Jesus’ name, amen.
DailyInsight. Fire can be good when it stays in the fireplace. Sex can be good when it stays within marriage (see Heb. 13:4).
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