Marital Sex Proclaims the Gospel

“He who unites himself with the Lord unites with him in spirit.” ~1 Corinthians 6:17

How could we possibly understand what it means for two to become one? For two separate people to be completely united together? How could we ever comprehend what Jesus means when he says he is united with us? And that all of us will be one just like the Father is in Christ and Christ is in his Father and that he is in us? How could we ever understand that?

Well, our God has come up with this thing that involves a covenant and promises and vows and an ongoing unifying experience between the two in the covenant that’s mind-blowing.

Sex is what unites together two promise-making people into a life-giving covenant union before God and the whole world.

When the prophet Malachi talks about marriage, he says, “Has not the Lord made them one? In flesh and spirit, they are his” (2:15). Sex outside the marriage vows distorts the Gospel and proclaims a false God. An idol. That’s why the Scriptures everywhere use the words adultery and idolatry as synonyms. It’s the same thing. A false Gospel. A different God.

Paul says the one who joins himself to a prostitute joins Christ to that prostitute because sex is a joining together of both bodies and spirits. Sex outside of the marriage vows and commitments is a sin. It’s a sin against your own body. And it’s not like smoking cigarettes or eating too many cheese fries where you’re hurting only yourself. For Christians, your body is not your own. It’s a temple of God’s Spirit. Sex without marriage or outside your marriage desecrates God’s temple, something set apart by God to declare God’s love and faithfulness. Something holy is being used for something unholy, something that is contrary to the Gospel itself.

C.S. Lewis said sex without marriage is like tasting food without swallowing it or digesting it. It’s empty and hollow. It’s shallow and dead. And ultimately defeats the purpose. Sex in our marriages proclaims the unity we share with God in Christ by his covenant of faithfulness and love.


I was supposed to be in Dallas today with my whole family for the Aerosmith farewell concert at American Airlines Center. It’s been postponed indefinitely because of Steven Tyler’s fractured larynx, suffered in early September on the first leg of the tour. The tour has been postponed until next year — no new dates are set yet — while Tyler receives the “best medical care in the world.” The apology from the band’s front man on the Aerosmith website says we all need to be patient.

I’m not sure if it helps or adds to my anxiety, but here’s an old video of Dream On.

The 2:30 mark makes it obvious as to how Tyler might have fractured his larynx.



1 Comment

  1. Rob's Dad

    “Empty and hollow” – I don’t know. I thought it was great.

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