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Sermons

Sunday School: Christian Ethics (Pt. 16.1: Marriage)

March 15, 2020 Speaker: John Bell Series: Sunday School: Christian Ethics

What are the essential elements for a marriage to occur?
• Why does Scripture place a high value on sexual intimacy within marriage, but prohibit it outside of marriage?
• Should the Bible’s definition of marriage apply to all cultures and all societies?
• What safeguards can help protect a marriage against adultery?
• Is it wrong for a couple to live together prior to marriage?
• What does the Bible say about singleness?


A. WHAT IS MARRIAGE?
1. Definition of Marriage. Marriage has been understood as “the legal union of a man and woman as husband and wife” in all cultures and societies throughout all of human history.
2. Fuller Definition of Marriage from Scripture. In Scripture, marriage is seen as a lifelong relationship between a man and a woman that is established by a solemn covenant before God.
3. Marriage Changes a Person’s Status before God and before Society.
4. Some Kind of Public Awareness Is Necessary for a Marriage.
5. Sexual Intercourse Alone Does Not Constitute a Marriage.
6. Sexual Union Is an Essential Component of Marriage (with Rare Exceptions).
7. Marriage Pictures the Relationship between Christ and the Church.
8. Christians Should Marry Only Other Christians.


B. THE GOODNESS OF SEXUAL INTIMACY WITHIN MARRIAGE
1. Sex within Marriage Was Created by God as Fundamentally Good.
2. Sexual Unity and Relational Unity.
3. Sin Brought Disruption to the Relational and Sexual Intimacy in Marriage.
4. However, Sex within Marriage Is Still Seen as Good after the Fall.
5. Sex Is an Important Part of an Ongoing Healthy Marriage Relationship.


C. GOD’S DEFINITION OF MARRIAGE IS MORALLY BINDING ON ALL PEOPLE IN ALL SOCIETIES FOR ALL OF HUMAN HISTORY


1. God’s Definition of Marriage Was Not for the Jewish People Only, but Was Intended to Apply to All People in All Societies for All Time.
2. Marriage between a Man and a Woman Is the Most Fundamental Institution in Any Society.


D. ADULTERY
1. Adultery Is Prohibited in Scripture
a. Scripture Repeatedly Affirms That Adultery Is Wrong:
b. Adultery Wrongly Intrudes Another Person into the “One Flesh” Relationship of Marriage.
c. Adultery Wrongly Pictures Unfaithfulness in the Relationship between Christ and the Church.
d. Adultery Destroys Trust within a Marriage.
e. Adultery Frequently Destroys a Person’s Entire Life.

2. Safeguards against Adultery.

3. Scripture Sets an Even Higher Standard: Do Not Desire to Commit Adultery.


E. WHY DID GOD ALLOW POLYGAMY IN THE OLD TESTAMENT?


F. SEXUAL PRACTICES PROHIBITED IN SCRIPTURE
1. Incest.
2. Homosexual Conduct.
3. Having Sex before Marriage.


G. PHYSICAL INTIMACY PRIOR TO MARRIAGE


H. MASTURBATION