A Weapon or a Bond – I Corinthians 7:1-7

by Pastor John Fredericksen

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I received a phone call requesting prayer from the mother of a daughter who had been married for nearly fifteen years to a good man. This daughter had foolishly and emotionally recoiled from sexual relations with her husband. He had been extremely patient, but after several years of this, he was nearly through with the marriage. He wanted and needed the normal physical union between a man and wife. If she remained unwilling, he would simply go elsewhere to meet his needs.

While it is a mature subject, the Bible has a great deal to say, in a tasteful way, about the sexual union between a man and wife. God tells us: “Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled…” (Hebrews 13:4). As a pleasurable gift intended of the Lord to continually strengthen the bond between a man and wife, Proverbs 30:18-19 describes this physical relationship as “wonderful.” This “one flesh” interaction is so important Paul tells both the man and woman to carefully maintain this practice. Both are to willingly render “due benevolence” to one another to meet their mate’s need “…that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency” (I Corinthians 7:3-5). It is a foolish thing to use sex as a weapon to manipulate, or punish one’s mate. Doing so weakens the bond and tempts both parties to fulfill this need, in a sinful way, with someone else. Instead, both the husband and wife are responsible to initiate this sexual experience. There is a wonderful example in the book of Song of Solomon where the wife seeks out her husband for such an encounter (3:1). She confirms her love for him (3:2), holds him close (3:4), expresses “great delight” in her husband’s caresses (2:1-6), compliments his comeliness (5:10-16), and willingly gives herself to him (7:10-13). This is actually the way both genders are to respond within the bonds of holy matrimony. It is not the husband’s duty to be the initiator all the time, nor is it only the wife’s responsibility. Both are to equally participate in this way. To refuse to take action because “that’s just not me” or “I’m not in the mood” are flimsy and foolish excuses to rationalize disobedience in a very important area of marriage.

If you are married, we urge you to not neglect your responsibility in your physical union with your mate. God intends it for pleasure, but also to bring strength and longevity to your marital bond.

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Start each day with short, devotional articles taken from the book Daily Transformation by Pastor John Fredericksen. As Pastor Fredericksen writes in the introduction:

"We welcome you, as you journey with us..., to not only learn information, but to benefit from examples of faith and failure, and seek to apply God’s Word to every day life. Together, let’s transition from only studying theories of doctrine, to applying God’s truths in a practical way every day. May God use these studies to help you find daily transformation."