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Christian Ethics, Part 1: Love, Sex, and Marriage B

Grace To You / John MacArthur
The Truth Network Radio
June 9, 2020 4:00 am

Christian Ethics, Part 1: Love, Sex, and Marriage B

Grace To You / John MacArthur

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June 9, 2020 4:00 am

Christians have an obligation to live holy lives to the glory of God. So how can you resist the temptation to compromise with the world? John MacArthur has answers today on Grace to You, as he shows you how to master “The Integrity Factor.”

Grace To You
John MacArthur
Grace To You
John MacArthur
Grace To You
John MacArthur
Grace To You
John MacArthur

Marriage that is honorable is regulated by love and that means that you are set about in your marriage not to take what you give what you're talking about physical things or economic. Whatever it is all very you're not looking. I get. In fact, it addresses everything we need. That pertains to life and godliness, and when the Bible speaks no matter how controversial or personal. The topic we need to listen and not shy away today on grace to you. John MacArthur focuses on a sensitive subject sex. So what does the Bible require of you in this area and how does your purity relate to your relationship with God. Your spiritual growth your effectiveness for God's kingdom. Find out now follow along with John MacArthur as he continues his study titled the integrity factor neighbors chapter 13 there is a very careful statement regarding the practical ethics of the Christian life that result in a portrayal of Christianity to the world. That is, without review, and this is important for the twins people to Christ and it gives glory to God. He gives the standards of Christianity here in a very condensed sense and will try to expand them a little bit. The ethics of this chapter are divided in the three categories in their very simple categories but they help us to kind of pigeonhole somebody's thought three basic categories for the ethics in the chapter number one in relation to others.

Ethics in relation to others or how we act toward others ethics in relation to ourselves. Secondly, or how we act for ourselves and this will be in the future.

Ethics relation to God. How we act toward God. First of all let's begin with ethics in relation to others. Number one the first ethnic sustained love verse one here is the first ethic and it's a dominant one because it really is the feature that overrides everything else. Let brotherly love continue.

That's it. Verse one. This is sustained love. This is the supreme ethic for the Christian to follow and that is that he love his brother. Verse two gives another dimension be not forgetful to entertain strangers for thereby some of entertained angels unawares. Now the term strangers here could refer to believers and unbelievers. The Bible says that we are to show love to strangers even who are unbelievers in Galatians 6 verse 10 it says, let us do good unto all men, especially to them who are of the household of faith.

But not just to them to all first Thessalonians 515 see that none render evil for evil, and to any man. But ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves and to all men, so we are to be careful to show love to all men, and then the one that I love and we we know it well need to be reminded of it.

Perhaps Matthew 543 you have heard that it hath been said, thou shalt love thy neighbor and hate thine enemy but I say and you love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, pray for them who despitefully use you and persecute you, then he goes on to say, if you love those in verse 46 and love you big deal that's in the MacArthur vernacular tax collectors do that if you greet your brother and only what do you more than others do not even the heathen do that. Learn to love your enemies, so there's a sense in which we are called upon to love those who are outside Christ, even strangers say I tried I got taken, join the club.

I stumbles in and says I'm destitute and this and this and that and that I need I need 10 bucks and he say year you're going to go buy drinks for that and all I want to feed my starving family you get a big sobs are willing to do given the $10. Use your head. It's obvious what is going to do if you can't make an ultimate decision make a decision immediately to love the guy.

Let him worry about the consequences of what he does with a $10 and got along you for loving a strange everybody gets taken by love is like that get stepped on. But that doesn't mean that we eliminated.

Don't get sour on love just because people are burned that you just have a saying there are six things the fruit of which a man eats in this world and by which he is raised in the world to come in the list began this way hospitality to the stranger and visiting the sick. So the Jews had a very very deep sense of hospitality fact among the Jews.

Abraham was, was regarded as outstanding for his hospitality and a true son of Abraham must love strangers and Christian shouldn't do anything less than that Christian should have a love for strangers is required of a bishop in first Timothy 32 that he be given to hospitality and also Titus 18 a pastor or leader in a church should have an open home where people can come and take part in his life, and have their needs met. If their needs exist that can be supplied by him when they're going to choose some older ladies to serve in the church in first Timothy 510. Here's the ones you want to choose goes well reported out for good works. If she's brought up children if she has large strangers very important that showed a loving heart and showed somebody who is willing to get burned just for the joy of expressing love and any excess little footnote this is a motive for thereby some of entertained angels unawares. You just don't know who you've got now he's not saying here do it because you will entertain angels he saying. Some have these scores going back to Genesis 18 member Abraham had the three come in and turned out to be God and to angels and Abraham was showing all kinds of hospitality it and he found out later was Jehovah God, that he was going hospitality to later on Gideon and Manoah did the same thing. Jesus even took a step further.

I love what he said in Matthew chapter 25.

I need to be reminded of it so much when I think sometimes out of turn somebody off.

I was a stranger and you took me in verse 43 naked and you clothed me sick and in prison and you visited me not. Then shall they also answer single one so you are hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked, or sick. Verse 45 essay due as much as you did to one of the least of these, you did it not to me earlier he had said the same thing in commendation here.

It's in condemnation so sustained love is basic to the Christian ethic sustained love to brothers and sustained love strangers, be they believers or unbelievers second statement of ethic sympathy sustained love is first and then comes sympathy verse three remember them that are in bonds as bound with them. That's compassion friend when you can be bound with the people who are bound and those Christians in those days had a lot of trouble staying out of jail because they were always being thrown in for their fate is just remember them there in bonds as bound with them and them who suffer adversity as being yourselves also in the body. Remember that your physical and you can feel the pain that they'd be going through empathy, compassion, sympathy, and many Christians. I said, were placed in bonds. One of the most un-Christlike characteristics of all is the selfish callousness which says I got troubles of my own without getting involved in anybody else's.

That is terrible, callous, selfish and different. The antithesis of the ethic of Christianity which is sympathy for someone in need.

You want to know what you to do replace your self-pity with love for others. You know the best way to get rid of your own problems start working on getting rid of other people's problem and you lose yourself in them. People who are preoccupied with their own problems preoccupied with self-pity are really not sympathetic and you can count you in a lot of terms. But it turns out to be self-centeredness. Tertullian's apology writes quote if there happen to be any in the minds are banished to the islands or shut up in prisons, Christians listen to this, the Christians became carriers of their confession. We need to bear each other's burdens, we need to feel what they feel Christ did. We have not a high priest who cannot be touched with the feelings of our infirmities but was in all points. What tempted like as we are. He knows everywhere we've ever been. He's felt every pain we've ever felt sympathy.

You are in the body. Look at verse three. You know I feel lose yourself in the care of others. I there's the first category the Christian ethic begins with a relation to others and what is the relationship with just this simple sustained love and sympathy is loving them and it's caring for you. They brothers or be they strangers. Secondly, we come to the category of your responsibility to yourselves what is the believer's responsibility to himself. And this begins in verse four, number one sexual purity, sexual. This follows the discussion of love fast because love when it gets perverted. Turns in the last and last soon brings about sexual impurity. So it fits well. Beginning in verse four marriage is honorable in all, in the bed undefiled, but fornicators and adulterers God will judge now sexual impurity is not only a sin against others, but it dominantly is a sin against ourselves. You say what you say that, well, that's what Paul said in first Corinthians 6 verse 18.

So I just getting it from him flee fornication, porn, AR, pornography, sex soon and you see it run every sin that a man do it is outside the body was outside the body, but he that committed fornication sins against his own body. So this is your responsibility to yourself that you be sexually pure Christian love is to be kept on a right basis. Morally pure and I want to look at this verse from it because it's important noticed he is is in italics, which means it was out of the literal Greek says marriage honorable in all, which means that the verb to be is implied.

It could be that is can be used.

The authorized version has marriage is honorable. If that's true then it's a statement of fact.

Marriage is honorable in all, and that's a true statement. God looks at marriage is an honorable thing. He invented is not honorable in the world today. People laugh at marriage. You're always arguments about the fact you don't need a certificate and all this kind of thing in men have coupon marriage and in our world. It's kind of a thing for old fogies and people from another dimension, but in God's eyes. Marriage is honorable, that is a true statement and maybe he's making this in reference to certain ascetics who had taken the valve chastity.

Some of them like famous origin that even had himself castrated as he felt that that would bring about greater devotion to God while here the Holy Spirit just ruins that ridiculous concept ridiculous theory at that is not particularly pleasing to God.

If God's design marriage that God expects marriage to be honorable God so stated that it's honorable is nothing wrong with that at all. In fact, first Timothy four says in the last days false prophets will come and they will despise marriage forbidding to marry, so it could be just a blanket statement if it is he saying marriage is honorable in all, and anything on the bed undefiled, and that simply means it sexually in your bed between you and your wife or you and your husband. There is nothing you can do that is wrong in God's eyes. Everything in the bed is pure. If you're married, that's a fantastic concept. You only to be hung up on guilt because whatever you do is undefiled in the sight of God.

You belong to each other and that's of course within the bounds of sanity and within the framework of health and hesitation from injuring the other person but there's nothing you can do that is the file. The bed is undefiled. He hasn't qualified any further than that. That's a true statement when you were married to the one you love, you became that one's property or the expression of that love. There is no impurity whatsoever in anything that you would do to get that's a true statement.

But beyond that I I think it's better not to use the word is it's better to use the verb to be. In this way, let marriage be honorable and all in the bed undefiled, you can use either way, but since this whole context is exhortation verse one.

Let verse five uses that let he's talking about exhorting the verse 13 let the idea here is that he is saying do this do this. This is exhortation and so I like to think that he saying let marriage be honorable and let the bed be undefiled and he's really calling for sexual purity, God design marriage is an honorable thing God honored marriage by creating it. Jesus honored marriage by attending one and starting there is miracles. The Holy Spirit honored marriage by making it the picture the church in Ephesians, the whole Trinity is called together the testimony that marriage is honorable and don't anybody come along to disparage marriage. Let it be honorable and more than that. Let marriage be honorable in the sense of its purity don't defile your marriage by sexual impurity outside that union. Scripture gives three reasons, at least for marriage one propagation of children Genesis 127 he said now you get together your one flesh. Now propagate replenish the earth.

Marriage is not only for the propagation of children. It is for the prevention of immorality is for the prevention of immorality as some people who couldn't stay pure single for scripting 72. Nevertheless, to avoid fornication. Let every man have his own wife, and every woman her own husband get married. It prevents immorality.

Thirdly, it eliminates solitude, God said it is not good for man to what to be alone. Marriage propagates children, prevents immorality and eliminates solitude of those are theological reasons. Add to that the fact that marriage is an enjoyable and fulfilling relationship. Marriage was meant to be the expression of the fullness of love. So God has portrayed marriage in Scripture as a very honorable thing keep it that way. Say will John how how can I be sure that I can really have a marriage that honors God. How are you to do that. Number one head is the husband.

God is glorified in a family where the husband is the head Ephesians chapter 5 it all. It's all right.

First Corinthians 11 verse three. Husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church. Second, the subjection of the wife, a loving subjection member how God commends the woman in first Peter three he says this regarding Sarah, even as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him Lord, and if verse five for this was the manner in old-time of holy women in subjection to their husbands, that is pleasing to God. Third thing marriage that is honorable is not only were the husband is the head of the wife is submissive, but where it is regulated by love regulated by law.

And that means that you are set about in your marriage not to take, but to give that your whole attitude is how can I fulfill the one I love. What can I do to please that one. Whether you're talking about physical things or economic things or whatever it is in all your relationships of marriage. Your attitude is not what can I get it, is what can I give so he says marriage is honorable. Let it be so. The bed is undefiled and marriage. Keep it undefiled. Don't ever have any kind of sexual entertainment or activity outside the purity of that marriage relationship. Why fornicators, adulterers, God will judge you know that that's the only time that a judgment statement goes along with an ethic in chapter 13 God serious about sexual purity very serious. You may fool around with illicit sex.

You may fool around outside your marriage and you may get away with it from the judgment of man standpoint. You'll never get away with it from the judgment of God, God will judge somehow in some way, chastisement, punishment, he says in verse six of Ephesians 5 let no man deceive you with words that are vain for because of these things cometh the wrath of God on the sons of disobedience.

God judges unbelievers who for our sex and you believe it folks the judgment of God comes is that it comes in the collapse of marriage comes in VD.

It comes in drugs. It comes in family breakdown. It comes in murder. It comes in suicide but it comes because you can't live against the grain of a morality that set in motion in the universe and beat the consequence is a will.

John how I govern my activity. That way will it take you to first Thessalonians 4.

I just can review this quickly is on the tape on the will of God. Let me just give it to you this morning is for three years, the standard for sexual conduct for this is the will of God.

Even your sanctification number one that you should stay away from fornication, a sort tornado means any kind of sexual activity. It's usually referred to before marriage adultery Moy Ghose means sex activity while you're married with somebody other than your wife or husband.

But fornication is just everything from homosexuality to heterosexuality to beastie Allie sex with animals everything in between is included in this term.

Number one principle here is God's will that you abstain from fornication principle one stay away from sex in some realizes how far away and the answer always comes back.

This is the will of God. Even your sanctification far enough away to be what pure 100% set apart in the God principle number one. Stay away from sex soon far enough away to be pure you take a step further principle number two and verse for every one of you should know how to possess his vessel.

I take that to mean body in sanctification and honor principle to know how to handle your body so that honors God was having to possess music controls your body under control so you young people regarding the date you sit there and and you you begin to engage yourself in the in a little extracurricular activity what happens. Pretty soon you cannot anymore control your body.

Your body controlling you.

Paul said all things are lawful, but didn't stop there. Everybody run to that claim. That is their life. Verse he said all things are lawful, but I will not be brought under the power of any is not what I do, that gets me in trouble, it's what does me and he simply saying here your body to be in control so that honors God.

You are to maintain the control of your body. So, it honors God. And Paul said that's not easy. I beat my body to bring it into what subjection rest in preaching to others I myself should become a castaway.

How many men do you know in the ministry who didn't do that, and rendered themselves a castaway in their ministries because they couldn't control themselves in a sexual fashion. Many more times in any of us like to think so. The principle is there.

People control your body so it honors God. Stay away from sexual activity. Verse five not in the lust of evil desire, sensuality, concupiscence is the heathen who know not God.

Principle three. Don't act like the heat in one stay away from sex into. Control your body so that honors God. Three.

Don't act like the rest of the world how they act, are guided by their lasts.

Whatever that whatever the world promoting their buy-in if the world throws it kicks down the traces and throws the floodgates open for sex there.

The first ones in the door. All of a sudden the floods open everybody's running why because everybody ago does as far society let them go without going to jail. That's depravity. The Bible is clear about the standards well is another standard in verse six and that you don't go beyond defraud your brother in any matter was at me don't take advantage of other people you know some people just use people to get what they want satisfy.

I love one article that Ann Landers had.

She said one time the lemon that's been squeezed too many times is garbage that says it, you're not to be using other people for what you need nor are you be stepping on her neck defrauding these taking advantage there are some principles friends stare from sex soon control your body so it honors God. Do you want to go to your body the way you dress the way you walk things you do, don't knock at the rest of the world ask guided by lust and forethought take advantage of other people don't use other people to fulfill your needs and pleasures that's got sent to satellite those roles. Verse eight was written for you. He therefore they despise or despise not Mammon. God, you know like you have to talk to him.

He wrote what is God saying God saying I expect purity sexual.

Apart from Jesus Christ. This whole concept is meaningless when you come to know Jesus Christ becomes a desire of your heart to fulfill his will. Doesn't sexual purity was bunker father. We know that you've called for us to live pure in this world.

We know that the world is examining our lives that they're looking right at us. The father if we have a strong doctrinal basis and we have a strong foundation.

We know the truths we are to abate that in obeying them father the world will see that were yours. We will have confer confirmation in our hearts that were yours and most of all, you will be glorified.

Father, help us to take the responsibility toward others of sustained love and sympathy. I was to get outside of ourselves and father, help us to take the responsibility to ourselves of sexual purity in our marriage relationship. May it be an honorable father keep us pure make us a holy people, Lord, that the world may see us and glorify our Father in the name of our blessedness. That's John MacArthur he's pastor of Grace Community Church, Chancellor of the Masters University in seminary in the study. He continued today is titled the integrity factor still thinking about the issues of integrity in the marriage relationship.

Here's a practical question John one that I know we've heard many times from wives, their husbands haven't committed adultery but they admit they struggle with sexual purity. The sin you talk about today. So what you say to a spouse like that how can. How can she encourage and help her husband will again if you think you're married to perfect person you you're wrong where all sinful sin is initially generated on the inside it's what is what starts in the heart starts in the mind. I would say that if you're married to a man who has not committed adultery.

That's a plus. That's a good thing because adultery so common in our culture.

I would say if you convinced that your husband is watching pornography or he has the middle thoughts about adultery, but he doesn't act on those thoughts that the right thing to do is to confront him about that lovingly confront him about those kinds of temptations it and then I would go would be more aggressive and I would say you need to get rid of anything and everything that can cultivate that in your mind. If if that's your iPhone or that's your television at that your computer whatever the sources of those temptations are need to eliminate those things from your life and and II would even think that love toward that man would would create a kind of accountability so that you help him to avoid those kinds of things in the process you you love him, you demonstrate grace and forgiveness as Christ has demonstrated to us but but I think you confrontation and then accountability is critical. I think you would encourage him as well, to begin to cultivate completely different thoughts by spending time in the word of God may be spending time listening to the teaching and preaching of the word of God. Resources like grace, to use our endless send your you're basically going to live out what your thinking as a man thinks in his heart, so is so you need to cultivate in that husband's life. The things of God that are going to take over his thoughts is Philippians 48 right there. If there's any virtue, if there's any praise, think on these things.

It's how you think so. Loving confrontation.

Accountability re-programming your mind with the things of God. David said that your word of a hit of my heart that I might not sin against you that that's going to be at the wife's role to help her husband be the man that the she would want him to be and that he would want to be more importantly, that God would want them to be. Yes send friend if you're looking to fill your mind with Scripture like John talked about pick up a copy of the MacArthur study Bible with 25,000 footnotes. It's designed to make every passage clear and remember our prices are reduced right now, 25% for limited time with additional savings on select editions of the MacArthur study Bible take advantage of that sale. In order today our number here 855 grace or place your order MacArthur study Bible is available in the new King James new American Standard English standard versions of Scripture with a variety of finding to see all of the choices go to TTY.or to order by phone, call us at 855 grace and thanks to for remembering that we are listener supported you help make a difference in people's lives. As you stand with us prayerfully and financially.

We know how difficult these days have been for so many people to be able to provide free books or CDs every month through the mail and to give listeners free access to Bible teaching, radio, television and the Internet is been so important for so many full hearing those stories every so ask for supporting grace to you as you are able and as God leads you can donate online at TTY.4 or call us toll-free 855 grace now for John MacArthur and the entire grace to you Steph. I'm Phil Johnson inviting you back when John continues his study called the integrity factor.

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