READ | SERMON NOTES
Summary l Society today has distorted the beautiful gift from God – sex. During Paul’s time, the Corinthian church was dealing with multiple issues that threatened to divide it and the message of the Gospel. The Corinthian church not only tolerated the city’s culture that was immersed in sexual promiscuity but seemed proud of their broadmindedness. Sex was just a physical act, devoid of any consequences. Our society today does not seem to have changed much either.
This sermon discusses the following:
3 Theological Realities
2 Sexual Destinies
1 Great Lie
3 Theological Realities
Paul raised 3 theological realities for us to recognise the Lordship of Christ, to honour the spiritual significance of sex and to reject sexual sins:
1)Sex is God’s design
Set is God’s DesignSex is not learnt from the Internet nor from textbooks, it is God’s design. As a church, we must claim it back. Paul wanted to address the instant gratification mindset. The word of God stands forever, but it is culture that is shifting. Sex is spiritually significant because we are created in the image of God. Sexuality is not defined by culture, experience nor environment. God designed it with love, pleasure and redemption. The image that a couple carries in sex and marriage reflects the covenantal union between Christ and His church. In our freedom, we may mistakenly believe we can do whatever we desire. However, this freedom is won by Christ sacrificing Himself on the cross. Christ is our master, and we will not be mastered by anything else.
2)Sex is more than a physical appetite
It is a spiritual union that mirrors the profound unity we have with Christ as believers. By engaging in sex outside God’s design, we distort the sacred connection and diminish the significance of God’s design for sex within the context of the church. We fail to fully reflect God’s intention for us. We are God’s image bearers to this scriptural truth. The discipleship of our sexuality is the opportunity to love God by loving and giving ourselves to our closest neighbour – our spouse. Sexual intimacy within marriage is the celebration of the covenantal union. The discipleship of those who are dating and of singles is the faithfulness to give yourself to God in this season of your life – God first and partner second. The discipleship is then brought into marriage when God provides the right one; sexual faithfulness is the representation of the spiritual union and covenant.
3)Sexual immorality is sinning against the presence of God in our body
Paul reminded the believers that they are temples of the Holy Spirit. Engaging in sexual immorality is not just a personal transgression but a sin against God because we are dishonouring His presence within us. The gravity of this truth is that God is with us, and He wants to establish a spiritual relationship with us. We carry God’s presence with us into relationships, families and workplace.
2 Sexual Destinies of the Christian Faith
As we centre ourselves on God’s design, may we embrace the sexual destinies of the Christian faith:
1)Our bodies being sacred vessels redeemed as members of Christ, one with Jesus in spirit
We move from doing what we want with our bodies, to our bodies being sacred vessels. Our bodies are not meant for sexual sins or abuse. They are members of Christ Himself. As believers, we are intimately united with Christ in spirit. The reality leads us to how we view and honour our bodies; they have been bought with a price. Does this reality weigh upon our hearts and bring forth the glory of God?
2)Sex as deeply spiritual
Paul urged all to flee from sexual sins than to shamelessly indulge in it. He emphasized the importance of choosing sex as designed by God in the context of marriage. We honour God individually, as a couple in our marriages and as a faith community. We experience the fullness of His blessings in this area of our lives.
1 Great Lie
There is no such thing as sex is just physical. Verse 18 tells us when we sin sexually, the impact on our soul is more profound than other kind of sins – we are sinning against our own bodies. The one great lie is:
1)We are of our own
Paul addressed the lie that our body belong to ourselves. As believers, our bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, purchased with a great price by God’s sacrifice. Therefore, we do not have the right to do as we please. As disciples of Christ, we are called to present our bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God. This includes our sex life and thoughts which are to be lived out in a way that aligns with what God intends – set apart from the world.
What can we do as part of intentional discipleship:
1.Surrender to Christ’s Lordship
Surrender our desires, sexual choices and behaviours to Christ’s authority. Then seek His guidance in aligning our lives with His design.
2.Cultivate Holiness in Relationships
How is our interaction with our partner in marriage/dating? How are we interacting in God’s image? Are we proclaiming that we are set apart for Christ alone?
3.Guard our Minds and Hearts
Do we know what we are letting into our hearts and minds when we interface with the media, entertainment and conversations? How are we drawing near to God?
Form a faith community and allow others to speak into our lives, to journey together and help one another draw near to Christ.
5.Embrace God’s Grace and Forgiveness
There are people who have been hurt, who are seeking a breakthrough, and who are looking away. May God have mercy and help them.
May God transform us and do His work to revolutionise and claim back the perspective on sex and our responsibility to honour God with our bodies.
PONDER | REFLECTION QUESTIONS
Let’s Recall, Reflect, Consider and Commit!
1. Recall the main points from the sermon that challenge your current cultural understanding of sex and relationships.
- How did those points resonate with your own beliefs and values?
2. Reflect on 1 Corinthians 5 and 6 and how it has prompted you to re-evaluate your personal beliefs and attitudes towards sex and relationships in light of God’s design.
3. Consider how you can apply biblical principles on God’s design for sex and relationships, to your own life and interactions with others.
4. Commit to taking steps in aligning your actions and choices with God’s design for sex and relationships, and plan to implement those changes in your life.
- Consider sharing with someone who would be able to journey and pray along with you in keeping you accountable and in drawing near to God.