good sex

Piles of grading have prevented me from blogging this week, but I did manage to finish this racy devotional for Our Daily Journey. It seems particularly appropriate given the winter storm that is burying us. If you’re single and snowed in, there’s always Scrabble.

read > Proverbs 5:1-23

Drink water from your own well—share your love only with your wife. Why spill the water of your springs in the streets, having sex with just anyone? (v. 15-16).

The glamour magazine in my mechanic’s office flaunts numerous articles about sex. One story, meant to be especially titillating, recounted the exploits of men who made love to multiple partners at once. The article left me sad. These hollow thrill seekers are not just looking for love in all the wrong places, they are looking for love in too many places.

The best sex is exclusive. The act of sex is the closest we come in this life to imitating the love of our triune God. God is a community of self-giving lovers: a Father, Son, and Holy Spirit who literally interpenetrate one another. Theologians ground this mutual indwelling on Jesus’ words that “you are in me, Father, and I am in you” (John 17:21), and they remind us that when we become one with another body we reflect the God who made us in his image as male and female (Genesis 1:27).

Popular love songs get it about right. Sex is “Almost Paradise.” It is “knocking on heaven’s door,” for the delight of this physical union echoes the flourishing love of our triune God. This is why Proverbs instructs married couples to “reserve [sex] for yourselves. Never share it with strangers” (5:17).

When we spread sex around we cheapen ourselves, reducing the climax of our human experience to nothing more than a rutting animal. When we selfishly use another person for our own physical pleasure—renting their body rather than owning and being owned by them—we forget that the deepest joy comes from giving ourselves completely to the one person who has given themselves to us.

Any animal can have an orgasm. Only humans can know the bliss of being loved by one other—of being naked and vulnerable and still embraced. And that is simply divine.

more > Let your wife be a fountain of blessing for you. Rejoice in the wife of your youth….Let her breasts satisfy you always. May you always be captivated by her love (Proverbs 5:18-19).

next > In light of this theology of sex, explain why God hates divorce and any sex that occurs outside the covenant of marriage. If you are single, what can you do to honor God’s plan until you find a life partner?

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11 Responses to good sex

  1. Tyler says:

    No to be too nit-picky, but as a Bob Dylan fanatic, I feel that I should point out that “knocking on heaven’s door” is a reference to death for the song writer. Unless you’re going for the French idea of lovemaking (le petit mour), I think you may have mixed your metaphors.

    No class Thursday, right?

  2. mikewittmer says:

    Tyler:

    I was referring to the line in “Almost Paradise.” I’m not cultured enough to listen to Dylan, but it figures that sex and death would be the same thing for him!

  3. Jonathan Shelley says:

    Mike:

    I sure hope you don’t mean that sex is “good.” If I learned nothing else from Augustine it’s that sex is an evil desire of the flesh that is necessary for procreation, but that is all. Any other sexual activity, even between husband and wife, is a sin. Thankfully, due to my personality, my wife is rarely (very rarely) tempted to give into her carnal, sinful desires.

  4. Adam F. says:

    Dr. Wittmer: Here’s the gospel-tinged “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tybrBzteDYk that Tyler’s referring to. It’s about a sheriff who’s bone-tired of his violent job, and I think you may like it.

    Tyler: I didn’t know you were a Dylan fan! Favorite tunes? I’d love to see a playlist.

    All: I have a Scrabble story. When my cousin and I were pre-teens, we were playing the game in his basement when I laid down the tiles “S – [blank] – X”, that is, “sex.” It felt so subversive, we laughed like bank robbers who’d escaped over the border.

    And then his mother (my aunt) came down to the basement and saw the board. She pointed at the word and became angry: “What is this?

    Luckily we’d put a cross-word on the blank tile by then, “fleck.” (F-L-[blank]-C-K). So inspiration struck and I said “the short word is ‘six’.” See, the cross-word is ‘flick.’” “Oh,” my aunt said, and relaxed. So did we.

  5. Craig Hurst says:

    Jonathan, I dont know you well enough to know if you are joking about questioning the goodness of sex. You sound serious…are you? If you are serious then I am sure Mike would certainly disagree with you and there is much more to be said about it.

  6. Tyler says:

    Adam F.:

    Dylan’s writing indeed can raise a person to a higher level of consciousness – more acutely aware of the world and the people in it. The following is not a complete list of my favorite Dylan songs, but a few of my all timers:

    -Sudden Twist of Fate
    - It’s All over Now, Baby Blue
    - It Ain’t Me, Babe
    - Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right
    -I Shall Be Released
    - Highway 61 Revisited (“God said to Abraham ‘kill me your son’, Abraham said ‘God, you must be puttin’ me on’ ”
    - Just Like A Woman

    how about you?

  7. Adam F. says:

    Tyler, are you the Tyler who has my Black Keys album? :) Not a problem if you are, I’ll get it from you someday.

    Dylan does offer incredible insight into life. At least I can relate to a lot of his thoughts, like “I feel like my soul is beginning to expand / Look into my heart and you will sort of understand…” I like all of the songs you mention, and love “Twist of Fate.” I’ll try to stick to…

    10 Dylan Songs Every Man Should Hear (According to Adam)
    1. Thunder on the Mountain http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0RPkJeziNyI
    2. Blind Willie McTell http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dP2WpA4lmVI
    3. Ain’t Talkin’
    4. Ring Them Bells
    5. Most of the Time
    6. Tangled Up in Blue
    7. Shooting Star
    8. Man in the Long Black Coat
    9. Father of Night
    10. Rainy Day Women #12 & #35 – ’cause the previous 9 are so heavy :)

  8. Jonathan Shelley says:

    Craig:

    I’ll redo my post using the “rules” from bracketology to indicate sarcasm.

    [I sure hope you don’t mean that sex is “good.” If I learned nothing else from Augustine it’s that sex is an evil desire of the flesh that is necessary for procreation, but that is all. Any other sexual activity, even between husband and wife, is a sin. Thankfully,] due to my personality, my wife is rarely (very rarely) tempted to give into her carnal, [sinful] desires.

    I hope that clarifies things.

  9. Craig Hurst says:

    Joanthan:

    Thanks for the clarification….I should have know better but maybe its just one of those days:)

  10. Congrats Mike on the Brown’s win last night! C-browns have been beat by the burg 12 times in a row but not last night!

    Redemption for Cleavland!

  11. ‘God is a community of self-giving lovers: a Father, Son, and Holy Spirit who literally interpenetrate one another. Theologians ground this mutual indwelling on Jesus’ words that “you are in me, Father, and I am in you” (John 17:21), and they remind us that when we become one with another body we reflect the God who made us in his image as male and female (Genesis 1:27).’

    Mike this is very intriguing. The phrase ‘literally interpenetrate one another’ builds a mystery that bears reflection. It isn’t really about sex or procreation but about ‘love creating’ by the essence of what love is.

    To know a theologian/professor who uses the phrase without inhibition is quite refreshing. I causes me to ponder…so thanks.

    This seems core to understanding the message of God.

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