Eph. 5:3-5 NLT
3 Let there be no sexual immorality, impurity, or greed among you. Such sins have no place among God’s people. 4 Obscene stories, foolish talk, and coarse jokes—these are not for you. Instead, let there be thankfulness to God. 5 You can be sure that no immoral, impure, or greedy person will inherit the Kingdom of Christ and of God. For a greedy person is an idolater, worshiping the things of this world.
We live in an era, in western societies, when people proudly claim to have cast off the sexual prohibitions of the past. Don't get me wrong, I don't think sexual immorality is new-- in fact it was one of the earliest ways in which humanity was challenged by evil. And, there is no greater depravity in sexual immorality over any other form of immorality. It is just the most basic in human nature. It takes natural created drives and contorts them for mere personal preferences and self appeasement. Sin is always just sin, to be sure.
However, Paul raises it for the church at Ephesus, and for us, to remind us of the private lives of thought we all struggle through regarding our sexual urges. Here, at the end of the first decade in the 21st century, we have nations setting nation-wide moral standards based on what the Bible calls perversion in God's eyes. We have the pleasure God created for man and wife being promoted openly in public schools for anybody with anybody. Pornography earns its designers untold millions of billions of dollars every year in profits. Popular television programs now promote adultery and limitless sexual expression as among the most natural and normal ways of human interactions. Research polls show children and teens are convinced, at increasing levels, that they must engage in unbridled sex in order to be considered normal, even when they do not wish to. The other evil twin of this immorality is abortion, which murders untold millions of unborn infants every year. Families continue to disintegrate and divorce to increase, with sexual immorality at the root of it all. Sexual diseases are killing enormous numbers of the world's population. And still the moral decline continues. Younger generations number less than senior generations in western societies creating a looming economic time-bomb sure to destroy civilization.
The Church speaks out on sexual immorality, only to be shunned, denigrated, castigated, and criticised by both the communication media and the academic communities of the world. Even the church has succumbed to the cancer of ingrown sexual immorality. However, Paul reminds us all that these sexual behaviors are, in fact, immoral! They are impure! And, they are based in 'greed.' He identifies it as greed because sexual immorality is completely selfish and insatiable. One can never get enough once one begins to pursue sexual gratification as primary ends in and of itself. Instead of imitating God in his unconditional love and care for others as we read back in 5:1, humanity is engrossed in self love and pleasing self regardless of the cost or impact to others. Think about the TV shows you watched yesterday or the movies you saw. How many of them actually honor God's standards for sexuality and how many of them violated those standards? What did you most put into your mind-- God's standards or humanity's standards? Do we wonder why we struggle with this area? Please join me in praying for power to rebuke the demon of sexual immorality of all kinds among us who are Christ followers so that then we can move on to promoting the image of God to those in the world who need to see it.
Your Servant in Christ's Love