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The Folly of Adultery, The Wisdom of Marriage

January 12, 2020 Speaker: John Bell Series: General

Passage: Genesis 5:1–5:23

BIG PICTURE: The father’s instruction to his son is countering the honeyed speech of the loose woman. He is saying, “Stay away from another man’s unchaste wife, and instead be devoted to your own wife, enjoying all the erotic delights of marriage with her.”

Point 1: The father’s call for attentiveness to his instruction: beware the adulteress (1–7)!

Point 2: The folly of adultery, and the son’s belated regret for not heeding the father’s instruction (8–14)

  • A man consumed with worldly sorrow is concerned about losing stuff, no matter how honorable or dishonorable that stuff is (wife, job, reputation, etc.).
  • Worldly sorrow leads to death because it flows from the same kind of heart that wants to commit adultery or look at porn in the first place: a heart full of pride.
  • Godly sorrow leads to holy indignation against our own sin.
  • Godly sorrow leads to alarm, a healthy fear.
  • Godly sorrow leads to longing and concern for restoration.
  • Godly sorrow leads to confession

Point 3: the wisdom of marriage, and a frank invitation to the erotic delights of married love (15–20).

Point 4:  The fatal consequences of sinning against God and spurning the father’s instruction. The father grounds his teaching in theology: that is, the Lord’s omniscience (21) and justice (22–23).



* This sermon owes a debt Denny Burk’s The Smooth Tongue of the Adulteress; Heath Lambert’s Finally Free; and Bruce Waltke’s The Book of Proverbs, Chapters 1-15