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God’s Plan for Sex & Marriage: Selflessness

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
January 3, 2022 3:00 am

God’s Plan for Sex & Marriage: Selflessness

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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January 3, 2022 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.

And 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.

Listen at harvest.org.

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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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You are listening to a new beginning with Greg Laurie, a podcast made possible by harvest partners, helping people everywhere. No guide this at our website and learn more about harvest partners@harvest.org marriage one word it would be so rarely does a marriage.

Women around to consider pastor Greg Laurie has important insight is what you really do believe me me me me one of reality that I will you the needs of your spouse above your own. Everybody was there.

As a result, most importantly, you put God first of all, marriage doesn't and so mightily to the end of your marriage a good marriage is made up of givers and for today on a new beginning pastor Greg Laurie brings another most requested studies of the year with a look at strengthening our marriage. Marriage is the go to distance work on the distance between the two spouses better communication and reorienting priorities your Bible and turned to Ephesians chapter 5 that's going to be our acre Texas as part of a larger series that were doing on marriage and the family called home sweet home would start 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 from your plan wave seeing the consequences of this scripture says we so that when we reap the whirlwind. Forgive us for that.

I pray for 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. Notice why this series is anchored in a text, but we wonder, is it possible to have a marriage where we live happily ever after. Only when we 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 About weddings, but forget about marriage at the spend more time talking about the house are going to purchase rather than the home they're going to build so the most important thing is nothing house.

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 and cleave in 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 cleave to 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 attach to or loosen and secure a successful marriage begins with a leaving a leaving of all of the relationships that are misunderstanding. 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 in 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 up), 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 and 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 isn't just your wife, she's 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 the ridge 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 pay attention. Which of these is great. I 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 weight 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 it's your career. It could even be your ministry is becoming more important.

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 your note. Technically, one flesh, but now 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. I 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 them the righteousness of Christ is placed in the my account. But then there's what is called the Bible. Sanctification.

Sanctification is now living out what God is done in my life and it's sort of that way in marriage and in your technically married your technically one flesh.

It's a lifetime now discovering what that means the first to leave and then you cleave what is the word cleave me will it doesn't mean to divide is in the meat cleaver it actually means to bring together the suggested determine action.

There's nothing positive about the act of leaving 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 for 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 procreation.

Yes it's 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 blessed but only in the boundaries and safety of a marriage relationship because God will bless this as you come together in his perfect pastor Greg Laurie will have the second half of his message in just a moment and emails, letters and phone calls from listeners are so encouraging to us and they let us know the effectiveness of these studies, Greg alive. I had graduated from college black here. I came back on the job and I would put my base on the back burner about me from being it. Do farm work and now in my morning. I looked near my dad and I never got there with the Lord.

I've been praying more and I've been going to church regularly and by that impact with Monday though. Thank you for the work you do in California I'm here in Tennessee and I get to listen to you, usually in the car on the way to the gym where I work out and I love your method to look at the I love the truth that you bring each and every single day. Thank you for sharing the word of the Lord and all that you do their part of ministry great stories, pastor Creek's teachings from God's will made an impact on this man's life. If you'd like to listen to pastor Greg's podcasts. You can do that through Google Apple course modify or just Google harvest.org that's harvest.org. 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 fact, 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 heard about a couple that was having some marital problems so they went on 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 out from behind his desk, walked over the woman asked her to stand and he gave her a hug and return of the husband. This is that's what your wife needs at least once a day. Husband said they could pastor Lynn 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 walked into the merging. How are you going to fulfill me. Are you going to meet my needs. What you going to 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, 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 another 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 up 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 a 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, you know, 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 why 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 it will hear 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 save you. It just need Jesus wherever you're at in life, 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 may be available go to church and you 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 have 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 sent 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 mature 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 in prayer. If you'd like to make a change in your relationship with the Lord, don't turn away. Pastor Greg will help you do that before today's addition of a new beginning. Concludes that such a privilege to have Pastor Levi Lesko with us today is author of the new children's devotional book roar like a lion, and it comes at a perfect time because of what's going on in the world in a covert caught the world by surprise, just upended everything but it didn't catch God by surprise, Levi.

What is your book. Tell us about trusting the Lord and the unexpected trials of life. Yeah, absolutely Dave, I think this book is hopefully going to help people to train for the trials. They're not yet in every single person every single family is going to suffer some sort of difficulty or loss. It's not a question of if but rather win and the Bible says that if we had a righteous heart. We have an everlasting foundation and when the whirlwinds of this life, we won't be moved but the person who builds their house on sand is can have the trial destroy them. So we talk a lot in the book about how to get ready for hard things that are going to come and how to respond to them when they do, by fixing our eyes on Jesus and by having faith and we talk specifically in the book there is a whole entry just to help people kind of view hard things differently and to believe that that good things can come out of hard situations just like the cross, which led to our salvation. Yeah, there's a little sidebar on this particular chapter.

That's called stuck where he talks about a what happens when you do get stuck and he said did you know have you ever seen a movie cartoon where people get stuck in quicksand.

The more they move the deeper they get pulled in. You may thought that only happens on TV but quicksand is real. It's a mixture of sand and water because the water doesn't reach all the way to the top quicksand looks like regular sand but if a person or animal steps ended the begin to sink.

If you ever find yourself stuck in quicksand moves slowly spread out your arms and legs and try to float on your back to safety. So not only is this a spiritual book into practical book because I often wondered if I stepped into quicksand.

What do I do now. I know because I've read roar like a lion by Levi Lesko is not just so amusing and yet I something like. I think one of the things this is that's fun for me about this book. Greg is is that there has to be something that keeps adults ingested to and finding out the Frank Sinatra paid $60 for his first microphone and before that he used to sing his Contras through a megaphone. When little things like that that will hopefully be interesting to the kids but also keep the adults paying attention as well. That's right so we want to send you this new book by Pastor Levi Lesko called roar like a lion subtitled 90 devotions to a courageous fate for your gift of any size they help a new beginning continue on ministering to people literally around the world. Yeah that's right and it's such an important time for that work. Hearts are hungry. We've been shot several weeks ago at SoCal harvest one person wrote in shape.

Can you believe how many people are here. We came from Los Angeles and frankly we would've driven across the country to be here, we wouldn't have missed this for the world is such an important time to reach out with the love of Christ and your investment makes that were possible with your donation right now would like to send you Levi Lesko's new book called roar like a lion. You can donate securely online@harvest.org or write to us at a new beginning. Box 4000, Riverside, CA 92514 and we have operators who can speak with you by phone anytime 24 hours a day at 1-800-821-3300 1-800-821-3300 and the pastor great for those who want to make a change in their relationship with the Lord today. Once their 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 I'm a sinner 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 and 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 and listen. If you have just prayed that prayer was 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 help answer some of the questions you might have and get you started off right toward building a strong foundation for your faith.

So get in touch for your free new believers] you can call us at 1-800-821-3300. That's a 24 seven phone number 1-800-821-3300 or write a new beginning. Box 4000, Riverside, CA 92514 or go online to harvest.org and click on know God when next time more from the most requested presentation of the year.

Pastor Greg addresses the question surrounding Angels and Demons in the life of the believer joined us here on a new beginning. Pastor and Bible feature Greg Laurie and thanks for the to a new beginning. Greg Laurie podcast made possible by harvest partners, helping people everywhere know God sign up for daily devotions and learn how to become a harvest partner harvest.org


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