Świętosława's Corner 32
The Other Sexual Sin
It is becoming increasingly apparent in the Christian polygamy community that a glaring misconception is held by some coming into the principle, particularly the men. There seems to be this idea among some that since a man having sex with an unmarried woman is not adultery, whether he has a wife or wives presently, that somehow, there is no disobedience to Yahweh's will or sin. This is a grave error spiritually and one that needs to be swiftly, definitively and scripturally addressed.
While it is true that a man having sex with an unmarried woman does not constitute adultery, we must remember that adultery is not the only sexual sin. The Apostle Paul plainly condemns sexual immorality amongst believers as serious and salvation-threatening sin. We will explore what scripture has to say on the issue, as that is the final determinant at any rate. Let us look at some scriptural references.
The idea here, symbolically, is that we are not born of an illicit relationship, that we are born spiritually of a righteous relationship with the Father. We are born into a righteous relationship to Him through purity and obedience to His will. Let us consider some further scriptural enlightenment.
"Ye do the works of your father. They said unto him, we are not born of fornication, we have one Father, (even) Elohim (God)." (John 8:41 ASV)
Very plain and easy to understand, I think. We are to avoid fornication, and there are no qualifiers. ALL believers are to avoid fornication. It must be considered very serious, as it is listed along with avoiding blood and things sacrificed to idols. Knowing how abhorrent Yahweh finds idolatry and consumption of blood and animals sacrificed to idols should give us a little of a feel for how He feels about fornication. Let us explore a bit further and see what scripture has to say further on the subject of immorality.
"For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things: that ye abstain from things sacrificed to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled and from fornication; from which, if ye keep yourselves, it shall be well with you. Fare ye well." (Acts 15:28-29 ASV)
"But as touching the Gentiles that have believed, we wrote, giving judgment that they should keep themselves from things sacrificed to idols, and from blood, and from what is strangled, and from fornication." (Acts 21:25 ASV)
I would like to interject an observation here. Please note, brothers and sisters, that fornication here is equated with uncleanness and lasciviousness and categorically condemned. This is completely in its own context here.
"It is actually reported that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not even among the Gentiles, that one (of you) hath his father's wife." (1 Corinthians 5:1 ASV)
"Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but Elohim (God) shall bring to naught both it and them. But the body is not for fornication, but for the Master; and the Master for the body." (1 Corinthians 6:13 ASV)
"Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body, but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body. Or know ye not that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit which is within you, which ye have from Elohim (God)? And ye are not your own." (1 Corinthians 6:18-19 ASV)
"Lest again when I come, my Elohim (God) should humble me before you, and I should mourn for many of them that have sinned heretofore, and not repented of the uncleanness and fornication and lasciviousness which they committed." (2 Corinthians 12:21 ASV)
There are very few key concepts in scripture that receive as much attention as sexual behaviour, both in and out of marriage, and the intent and instruction seem to be clear. It is even equated with our sanctification, that we contain and control our flesh impulses and abstain from fornication. The seriousness of obeying these instructions is emphasized in Jude 7 as deserving punishment of eternal fire. This is no little thing, and we in the Christian/Messianic polygamy community, most especially, must be absolutely sure that we are in obedience to ALL of Yahweh's commandments if we have any hope at all of living a sanctified life, or even of salvation. Scripture describes fornication as a deadly sin, as any unrepented sin is. Playing with scriptures to try to make them say that because a man may have more than one wife, there is no crime if he has sex with an unmarried woman is equally deadly spiritually and such a mindset must be avoided at all costs. Scripture expounds in detail the need for and requirement of sexual purity for an obedient believer and sleeping around indiscriminately just isn't it folks, for men or women either.
"Not the works of the flesh are manifest, which are (these): fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness." (Galatians 5:19 ASV)
"But fornication and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as becometh saints." (Ephesians 5:3 ASV)
"Put to death therefore your members which are upon the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry." (Colossians 3:15 ASV)
"For this is the will of Elohim (God), (even) your sanctification, that ye abstain from fornication; that each one of you know how to possess himself of his own vessel in sanctification and honor, but not in the passion of lust, even of the Gentiles who know not Elohim (God)." (1 Thessalonians 4:3-5 ASV)
"Even as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities about them, having in like manner with these given themselves over to fornication and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example, suffering the punishment of eternal fire." (Jude 7 ASV)
"And the rest of mankind, who were not killed with these plagues, repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not worship demons, and the idols of gold, and of silver, and of brass, and of stone and of wood: which can neither see, nor hear, nor walk; and they repented not of their murders, nor of their sorceries, nor of their fornication, nor of their thefts" (Revelation 9:20-21 ASV)
There are passages as well, that link fornication to adultery in seriousness and degree of repugnance by the Lord. Let us look at and consider these passages.
It cannot be any plainer. Fornication and lasciviousness are grouped with adultery, not only that, but with murder and theft and coveting as serious and deadly sins if unrepented. Now brothers and sisters, it is critical to recognize the importance of this issue, and refrain from twisting Yahweh's word around to excuse our own licentious behaviour. Yes, a man absolutely may have more than one wife, and devout Christian/Messianic plural marriage is a glorious blessing from Yahweh, but the act of having sex does not make the marriage. The act of covenanting in marriage before Yahweh makes the marriage, and any sexual activity outside that sacred covenant is a sin, plain, pure and simple.
"But the things that proceed out of the mouth come forth out of the heart, and they defile the man. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, railings; these are the things which defile a man, but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not the man." (Matthew 15:18-20 ASV)
"For from within, out of the heart of men, evil thoughts proceed, fornications, thefts, murders, adulteries, covetings, wicked nesses, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, railing, pride , foolishness: All these evil things proceed from within, and defile the man." (Mark 7:21-23 ASV)
There are those that use the example of Isaac and Rebekah to say that the act of sex is what makes the marriage but that, I think, is a little erroneous, as Abraham's servant had worked out the marriage arrangements with her and her family as per the custom of the times, before Isaac ever laid eyes on her and they were covenanted together before they actually physically met. While it is true that no specific ceremony is delineated in the scripture and that there are, in fact, many different kinds of marriage covenants and vows, it most definitely does involve a formal covenanting before Yahweh before witnesses to constitute a sanctioned marriage covenant. Nowhere in the Bible does it just describe a man having sex with a woman then they were married, though it does charge a man who has sex with a woman that he is to marry her afterward. That, to me, does not suggest permission for uncovenanted sexual activity, but repentance and making restitution as best one can after the fact.
The simple fact is, we are to maintain ourselves in sexual purity. One can be sexually impure within or without marriage, but a sure guarantee of sexual impurity is licentious sex outside the marriage covenants. That may not be what some want to hear, but it is the plain and easy to discern truth of Yahweh's word. I pray that all of us take His word deeply to heart and maintain ourselves in a pure relationship with Him that we may all reap the richest of the glorious blessings that He offers in sanctified marriage. Yahweh bless.
First created on 28 February 2002
Updated on 10 August 2016
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