"When Was the Sexual Revolution?"
TEXT: Malachi 2:10-16; Acts 2:14-21; 1 Cor. 7
1. The many blessings associated with our ‘natural’ families should fill our hearts with praise and gratitude. But the privilege of belonging to a spiritual family is greater. As we observe how the Lord has structured family units to function, we can see that He is using our natural families to teach us important truths about belonging to a spiritual family. The Heavenly Father often uses physical realities to teach us spiritual truths (and to point our hearts towards Christ).
2. It is common in our culture for children to be raised as a part of a “blended” family. Meaning, one or both of the parents has lived a significant portion of their life with a previous spouse and might be bringing children from their dissolved union into a new marriage. There are a lot of opportunities for brokenness to exist and develop in blended families. And while it is true that we can’t push rewind and change the past, we can pray and ask God for mercy. The Lord can heal the brokenness that exists in some blended families and desires to chart a course for blended families that results in unity and peace.
3. When individual believers pursue righteousness and obedience to Christ it causes the spiritual family that they are a part of to be blessed. This reality should help us notice that the Lord desires for us to be motivated to pursue righteousness for the sake of others. The blessings of heaven are either ‘open’ or ‘closed’ based on how unified a local church body is.
4. If you find yourself struggling with the Christian faith, and are tempted to doubt the goodness of God, it would be wise to examine your life to see if you are holding something back from your Creator. Willingly holding on to something that the Spirit of God is directing you to let go of will cause you to struggle with your faith and commitment to Christ.
5. Why is God so concerned with marriage and how we handle our sexuality? Because He desires that the earth be filled with Godly offspring. That is only possible when men and women understand the sanctity of marriage and how God has designed intimate, human relationships to function.
6. A message for Christian women: your husband, while responsible for meeting many of your needs and desires, will never be able to fulfill your deepest needs. There are things that only Jesus can do, but Christian women are often tempted to view their husbands as their primary source for love, care, and well-being.
7. When was the sexual revolution? According to our culture, it happened roughly 50 years ago as men and women became “freer” in how they view, express, and receive love. But there was nothing revolutionary about what happened in our culture’s supposed sexual revolution. The real revolution happened when God declared that marriage is a partnership—not a patriarchy. 1 Corinthians 7 mentions that a female can sanctify her family if her husband is an unbeliever. This concept was completely foreign to the culture that it was originally written to. It was, in fact, a real sexual revolution. No one would have thought it was possible for a female to cover her family in this way until Paul writes his first letter to the Church at Corinth.
TALK TO EACH OTHER:
1. What can we discern about belonging to a spiritual family from observing how the Lord has designed for natural families to function?
2. Why is unity in a local church body so important? The NT makes this a critcially important issue--why? What is at stake? And what does it mean for a church body to be in unity?
3. Why do Christians often struggle with submitting 'all' parts of their lives to their Lord? Or, what are some of the wrong things that we think that often lead us to refrain from submitting parts of our lives to our Heavenly Father?
4. What are some of the dangers associated with putting the wrong expectations on your spouse (Truth 6)?
5. How should Truth 7 impact Christians? What does it cause you to consider?
TALK TO GOD:
Pray as you feel led concerning the following areas:
- Gratitude for being adopted into the family of God
- For husbands and wives to adopt biblical and realistic expectations; wisdom in this area of life
- That our church would be full of "godly offspring"
- For this heart motivation to be present within the individual members of our church--we pursue righteousness for the sake of others
- For those in blended families to flourish; that God would pour out blessings and wisdom on them