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Best of 2020: God's Plan for Sex & Marriage: The Problem with Selfishness

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
January 15, 2021 3:00 am

Best of 2020: God's Plan for Sex & Marriage: The Problem with Selfishness

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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January 15, 2021 3:00 am

It’s been said that if marriage doesn’t end your selfishness, selfishness might lead to the end of your marriage. A good marriage is made up of givers and forgivers.

Today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie brings another of his most requested studies of the year with a look at strengthening our marriages. We’ll see marriages that go the distance work on closing the distance between the two spouses through better communication and reorienting priorities. Let’s learn more.

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A New Beginning is the daily half-hour program hosted by Greg Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Southern California. For over 30 years, Pastor Greg and Harvest Ministries have endeavored to know God and make Him known through media and large-scale evangelism. This podcast is supported by the generosity of our Harvest Partners.

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The following message from Pastor Greg Laurie is made possible by harvest partners, helping people everywhere know God check out virtue our website for Christian women go to of marriage one word it would be so rarely does a marriage woman around to considering Pastor Greg Laurie has important what you really do believe it's me me me me when in reality I needs of your spouse, your own lust as a result, most importantly, you put God first of all said that of marriage and yourself. Selfishness mightily to the end of your marriage a good marriage is made up of givers and for givers today on a new beginning. Pastor Greg Laurie brings another of his most requested studies of the year with a look at strengthening our marriages, marriage is the go to distance closing the distance between the two spouses better communication and reorienting your Bible and turn to Ephesians chapter 5 that's going to be our anchor taxes as part of a larger series that were doing on marriage and the family called home sweet home.

What's up with the word of prayer. Father, we that you would bless this time a Bible study as we open your word because we want to see our marriage is strong and vibrant we want in the last a lifetime and we want to live happily even after the Lord as we deviated from your template and from your plan wave seeing the consequences of this Scripture says we so that when we reap the whirlwind.

Forgive us for that. I prefer every marriage representative. Every person that's listening that you will strengthen it.

And for those Lord that are single.

Help them to be patient and wait on you for that right person to not rush this thing. We committed all to you now in Jesus name we pray.

Amen. Ephesians chapter 5. God is given us an instruction manual online that includes marriage and that includes family that includes raising children. That includes being single. It's called the Bible. BI BLE basic instructions before leaving earth. We need to pay attention to what the Bible says God will tell us how to do this right and that is why this series is anchored in attacks but we wonder is impossible to have a marriage where we live happily ever after. Only when we are to lose the fairytale and just rephrase it as I said earlier to you can live happily even after if you build your marriage on the right foundation wasn't.

If you see a strong and thriving marriage that did not happen by accident or by default of a marriage is strong and thriving. That's because two people are doing their part. The man has his part and the woman has her part and it's amazing to me how people will obsess about weddings, but forget about marriage at the spend more time talking about the house again or purchase rather than the home they're going to build so the most important thing is nothing else, it's the home.

The most important thing is not the wedding. It's the marriage and here's how to do it right. Ephesians 5 God takes us back to the very beginning. Verse 31. For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife and the two shall become one flesh. This is a great mystery that I speak concerning Christ and the church. Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife as himself, let the wife see that she respects her husband. There why did God bring the woman to the man because she would bring what was missing in his life and the purpose and objective of marriage can be summed up in two words go back to Ephesians 531 for this reason a man will leave his father and mother in Cleveland those wife and the two shall become one flesh. I want to write down two words if you're taking notes. The words are leave and flee leave and cleaved two very important words that must be in constant play in the marriage relationship to keep it vibrant, strong. So it's leave and cleave or sever and attached to or loosen and secure a successful marriage begins with a leaving a leaving of all other relationships. Now don't misunderstand me. I'm not saying that you don't have other relationships are still up a child to your parents sure you're still a sibling. Your you're still that person. But now a new relationship. A new family has emerged and that should become your number one priority. The closest relationships outside of marriage is specified here.

A man will leave his father and his mother, meaning that if it's necessary to leave your father a mother then all lesser ties must be broken, changed or left behind. The primary responsibility of a husband is to his wife. The primary responsibility is wife to her husband. You still honor your parents put a leaving must take place, and this can be detrimental in the marriage. If you don't do it so get this figured out ahead of time leaving as a leaving pleading also means giving other relationships. A lesser degree of importance. Listen guys, you can still live your body's girls. You can select your girlfriend. You can have those relationships but the most important relationship is that of you to your spouse so it's kind of hard to have a best friend that isn't your husband or wife you can have), but your best friend should be your spouse and I hope I don't need to tell you that it's very problematic to have close friendships with members of the opposite sex right so if you sit here waiting on him going out with my best friend Mary ever get to go to dinner and then do a movie but there's nothing here to worry about, forget that. Okay, that just has to stop.

You can't do that, your best friend should be your spouse. Here's a really key verse, you might want to write it down and look at it later, but I'll read it to you. It's Malachi 213 God says the Lord is good with this between you and the wife of your youth, to whom you have been faithless although she is your companion and wife is interesting to God's reproving of the individual for unfaithfulness, but he's refers to the wife is not just the white but your companion and your wife see your wife is just your wife sees your companion and your wife in the word companion means someone that you united with an thoughts, goals, plans, and offer thoughts, goals, plans and efforts. Your companion are the same ideas communicated over a first Peter three husband's throat with your wives with understanding, giving honor to the wife as to the weaker vessel as being heirs together of the grace of life, so your prayers be not hindered so actually what Peter is saying is take you need to understand how important your wife is because of you know if your you're not united with her as you want to be your prayers will be so periodically it's a good idea to take stock of your life in your marriage and say, is there anything I'm doing that asserting my relationship with my spouse not be attention. Which of these is Greg II don't like it when you do that or this concerns me know.

You may seem trivial to me. Okay, I may dismiss and say what that's ridiculous noble way. If it means something to her, it should mean something to me, and same with her and I when this I don't like this thing here that is happening you need to listen to each other in these areas and take stock and if there is another relationship. Or maybe at your career.

It could even be your ministry, and is becoming more important to you, then your first ministry which is to your wife and your children then you need to reevaluate and you need to realign again as the Scripture tells us we should note interesting operetta. Many were married.

The Bible says God called their name Adam.

He saw them as one flesh to become what and so when you're married, your gear you note. Technically, one flesh know it's going to take a lifetime to kind of work that out. Kathy and I realized recently that between us we have one complete bring. It's like I have one. She has the other half and when I forget something. She remembers it and she forgot something and I remember it, and so together we have one working brain. But you see that it takes time.

It takes a lot of time to get to know a person at the flex with the person and adapt in all the things that happen in a relationship and that can be said of our relationship with God needed to become a Christian.

I'm forgiven of my sin right to become a Christian.

The Bible says unjustified, which means that all my sins are forgiven and the righteousness of Christ is placed in the my account. But then there's what is called in the Bible. Sanctification. Sanctification is now living out what God is done in my life and it sort of that way marriage and in your technically married your technically one flesh, but it's a lifetime now discovering what that means the first to leave and then you cleave what is the word cleaving what does it mean to divide is in the meat cleaver it actually means to bring together the suggested determined action. There's nothing passive about the act of cleaving your holding on your clinging to each other and one of the ways that we express that love.

One of the ways that we demonstrate that love is through the sexual union. You know I think sometimes people think that God disapproves of sex. How ridiculous God created sex clearly in the Bible, we can see that he gave it to us to be fruitful and multiply. So guess it's for procreating exit for bringing children into the world, but God and say you couldn't have some fun while you're doing it and you can't have fun insects.

It doesn't have to be a dirty word.

It doesn't have to be a taboo subject. It's something that can be enjoyable, pleasurable, and listen to this even blasts but only in the boundaries and safety of a marriage relationship because God will bless this as you come together in his perfect master Greg Laurie will have the second half of his message in just a moment, everybody Greg Laurie here personally inviting you to join us for what we call Harvest at Home. It's a Bible study. It's a worship service. It church in your home, you're not able to get out to your church right now. If so, join us per Harvest at Home people are listening this from around the world listen to this. We have seen thousands of people commitment to follow Christ.

Join us this weekend Harvest at Home is the auto what were looking at marital intimacy today Pastor Greg's message called God's plan for sex and marriage. One of the top 10 most requested studies of the past year. Another way that we express this oneness to each other is through communication. One of the keys to a successful marriage is communication that means you gotta talk a lot together. You need to spend time together. You need to take time off together from all the things that you're involved in sharing your heart I read a survey that pointed out the divorced couples were asked why did their marriage fail.

Why did their marriage fail.

You know the number one reason was deficient communication, 86% said my marriage fail because it deficient communication.

So you see while even cleaver operative words all through a marriage first to leave all other relationships and make your marital bond your most important and then you're constantly cleaving constantly growing constantly loving and expressing that love toward one another. I mean, it's as simple as telling your spouse you love them when the last time you said your wife I love you or to your husband I love you. I appreciate you, even a hug would go a long way and about a couple that was having some marital problems so they went down to see their pastor. After a few sessions of listening and asking questions. The pastor said he had discovered the main problem he set up came up from behind his desk, walked over the woman asked her to stand and he gave her a hug and he turned to the husband. This is that's what your wife needs at least once a day.

Husband said they could pastor than Osman said what time do you want me to bring her back tomorrow. This employee if I could sum up the breakdown of marriage one word it would be selfishness what it should be selflessness. Artie said don't marry someone if you think you're going to fix them because the probably get worse so you can have to accept and love them as they are and if you're not willing to do that you have a problem Houston we have a problem it selfishness. We walk into the merging. How are you going to fulfill me. Are you going to meet my needs.

What you gonna do for me it's me me me me when in reality it should be.

How can I fulfill you.

How can I meet your needs.

You put the needs of your spouse above your own. And then when they do it in turn.

Everybody's blessed as a result, but most importantly you put God first in all things, but this breakdown in communication is what causes I think because we don't have the excitement we initially felt when we first got married all the way through the marriage.

We think well I guess the marriage isn't working anymore, like that actor site coded in the beginning. I'm not so sure that two people are meant to be together for a lifetime know actually what it is is they are meant to be together for a lifetime, but they have to understand that life changes emotions change, but it gets better listen, it gets better. A study was done in couples who had serious conflicts but decided to stay together. The study revealed that two thirds of unhappily married spouses who stayed married reported their marriages were happy.

Five years later, David just hung in there other marriages are happy.

Five years later most striking this article says long-term studies demonstrate two thirds of those unhappy marriages out there will become happy with in five years.

The people stay married do not get interesting when stats bear out with the Bible said all along is in it. Let's just do it God's way. Leaving in cleaving leaving all of the relationships making your marriage, and most important relationship putting the needs of your spouse above your own selflessness instead of selfishness.

Watch what God will do saving sex and keeping sex for you and your spouse only you never cross those lines. Do everything you can to cultivate and weed the garden of your marriage and you will live happily even after why because God said you would in the Bible, and you can trust what God says so now we just need to start living it out. No enclosing the marriages of course a picture of the love of God for us in the picture of our love for God and how did God show his love to us. I mentioned earlier, while we Christians because we responded to the love of God how to God show his love to us. He sent his son Jesus to die on the cross for our sin and there he hung on the cross and and for every wrong in every sin and every evil thing. You and I have ever done, but he rose again from the dead three days later in the stands at the door of our life and he knocks to procure his voice and open the door.

He will command a listen. I'm not talking about marriage right now I'm talking about life objected about eternal life.

So if you're married if you're single live. If your divorce if you're widowed it you know if you're a kid you don't even know what I'm talking about. Here's what I want to say to you, you just need Jesus wherever your item like you need Jesus Christ you need him living inside of you, helping you to be the man of the woman is called to be in there might be some of you here who don't have Christ living inside of you. I will go to church and maybe learn a few biblical principles and how to have a better marriage and be a happier person. That's what I'm here for all share with you principles that will help your marriage.

I'll share with you principles that will help you of a happier life.

But that's not my job, my job, if you will, is to tell you how to get right with God and go to heaven when you die. That's what I want for you more than anything else in the moment were going to bring, to give you an opportunity to ask Christ to come into your life and forgive you of all of your sin. There might be some of you that we have kind of wandered off. You know it's right but you straight, and you've done things you're ashamed of.

Maybe your marriage is unraveling. Maybe your single what your oven sex before you're married.

Or maybe you're doing this you don't know whatever you're doing, you need to get right with God. You need to repent of your sin and get right with God. I want to give you an opportunity to do that. Let's all pray father I pray for any person here, especially those that don't know you. Those that have gone astray, help them become the you know and believe and be forgiven of all their Jesus name I pray for Greg Laurie important prayer if you'd like to make a change in your relationship with the Lord today don't turn away. Pastor Greg will help you before today's addition of a new beginning.

Concludes now to hear any part of today study again one of our most requested messages of the past year. You can get a replay by going to just look for the message called God's plan for sex and marriage for CD copy. Call 1-800-821-3300 call anytime 24 seven, 1-800-821-3300 West Greg. We know that more than 140,000 people made professions of faith. Last year through harvest ministries go, the Lord moved in such a mighty way in the midst of such a tumultuous year and one of the main outreach platforms was your film called a rush of hope it's right now were making the DVD available for short time longer, and we're hoping our listeners will take this film and use it themselves to bring people to the Lord. Naturally true Dave, you know, during these days of the coronavirus. It's been hard for a lot of people to go to church but listen to this. Jesus did not say the whole world should go to church but he did say the church to go to the whole world. We need to go to where people are and I'll tell you where people are right now they're looking at screens looking at phone screens, tablet screens, computer screens and television screens so we thought. Instead of saying the people come to us. We thought let's go to them let's saturate.

Let's permeate. Let's get the message to them in a way that will be entertaining visually stimulating but without compromising the essential gospel message. So the result of that was a rush of hope, a cinematic crusade that I did with my friend John Irwin who is along with his brother Andy Irwin run the kingdom studios as a part of Lions gate. These are what the Brits might call proper filmmakers of the of the most successful Christian film of all time. I can only imagine these guys going to make movies so I had this idea to do this so I went to them so we work with director Ben small bone under the direction of John Irwin to produce what many of called the greatest evangelistic film they have ever seen those other words not mine, but we have some proof that it's reaching people because we've seen thousands of people come to Christ.

As a result of simply watching this film that we called a rush of hope, something about something. Imagine getting someone you care about in front of the screen to watch this.

Imagine inviting someone over to your home, and maybe you give him a little meal and you will sit down and watch a rush of hope and easy all at some cheesy religious film. They don't want to watch it. Trust me, they'll be cooked after the first two minutes and we will pray that God will impact them with the message of the gospel that is baked into this film, so I want to send you your own copy of a rush of hope for the first time ever out on DVD.

We also will send you information about how you can stream it exclusively.

This is not information for the general public, but you will be able to do it because will give you the info you need and we want to encourage you to support our ministry was in the best I can sell this to you but instead I'm in a give it to you For your gift of any size. Some can only give a little.

Some can give a little bit more. Some can give a lot do what you can to help us get the gospel out to our generation. Our nation needs to hear the gospel what other hope was there for America right now you really think it's a political help. I don't care what side of the aisle you're on the need is spiritual and the answer is spiritual and the answer is the gospel. Paul said, I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one who believes the were the Paul use. There is from a Greek word that translates out to explosive power its dynamic or dynamite power. There is explosive power in the simple message of the gospel.

The story of the life, death and resurrection of Christ, and we want to get this message to people you care about so order your copy of our rush of hope and send what you can and in advance.

Let me say thank you. Yet such a strategic time not only for your donation. But for you to reach out with the hope of the gospel surrenders today at a new beginning.

Box 4000, Riverside, CA 92514 or call 1-800-821-3300. That's 1-800-821-3300 and we can take your call 24 seven or just go online to and then FS are great for those who want to make a change in the relationship with the Lord today.

What's the next step.

I would say the next step is that you have to recognize you're a sinner and be sorry for your sin and ask God to forgive you and the way that we do that is through prayer. That's how we communicate with God, so I would like to lead those people listening you that are listening that do not yet know Jesus Christ in a word of prayer. If you want Christ to come in your heart if you want him to forgive you of your sin if you want to know that when you die you will go to heaven. Pray this prayer with me right now. God I know in the center and I'm sorry for what I've done and I turned for my sin. Now and ask for you to forgive me. Thank you for sending your son Jesus Christ to die on the cross in the shed his blood for me. Jesus come into my life be my Savior and my Lord be my God, and be my friend. I want to follow you from this day forward. So fill me with your spirit and help me to be your disciple.

Thank you for accepting me. Thank you for forgiving me. Thank you that I am now yours in Jesus name I pray, amen, amen. Listen if you have just prayed that prayer with Pastor Greg and asked Jesus to be your Savior would like to offer some help as you begin your new life as a Christian would like to send you our new believers growth packet it will answer some of the questions you might have been good to start it off right toward building a strong foundation for your face so get in touch for your free new believers growth packet today. Our address is a new beginning. Box 4000, Riverside, CA 92514 or call her 24 hour phone number 1-800-821-3300. That's 1-800-821-3300 or go online to and click know God. Next time more of the most requested presentation the past year.

Pastor Greg answers the challenging question why does God allow trials in the life of the believer to in for some important insight. Next time you beginning and possible by harvest partners, helping people everywhere know God sign up for pastor grades free daily email,

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