Where Christian couples get advice and how we form opinions about sexuality and relationships matters.
Last week, social media was abuzz over a certain Cosmopolitan post. The author of the article pulled a tiny bit of information from research recently published in The Journal of Sex Research and determined that men who feel more masculine from pleasuring their female partners are sexist. “Of course guys manage to make . . . [it] about themselves,” the subtitle accuses. To the writer, Ms. Smothers, I would suggest that much like racism, sexism is quite the charge to place upon someone. And when everything becomes an -ism, nothing is. But I digress.
Aside from the fact that Cosmo has spent the last decade instructing young women on how to manipulate men into their beds and please them sexually, the articles they produce rarely, if ever, pertain to those in monogamous, committed relationships, especially not Christian marriages. I urge you to take note of that, young men. Be alert! Magazines like these are directing their content to women who seek cheap thrills and the feigned power of liberal feminism, not devotion and submissiveness as God’s Word prescribes. That’s unfortunate for you and for every young woman waiting on her prince.
Since joining social media several years ago, I’ve made a habit of searching scripture for wisdom on the trending topics of the day. Sometimes, I’m not quite sure what the Bible has to say about an issue or if it’s even addressed at all. As far as marriage and sexual fulfillment go, however, I don’t have to consult Strong’s to know where to go for answers. God has given us the ultimate romance manual, Song of Solomon. In seven short, beautiful chapters, every facet of romantic love and desire is explored. Perfectly. Read it. Take notes. Your wife will thank you.
Cosmo or Corinth?
But there’s another place in God’s Word that I’d like to direct your attention, especially in consideration of the Cosmopolitan post: 1 Corinthians 7:1-5. Here, Paul is addressing the church in Corinth concerning a passage in a letter he’d received from them. “It is good for a man not to have sexual relations with a woman.” I know what you’re thinking. Those Corinthians need to calm down. Don’t stop there. Paul replies that we’re all prone to sexual immorality, so we need to get pair up and get hitched. Not exactly, but something like that. Then, in two verses, he tears up every notion of self-centered sexual gratification by simply saying, “Your body isn’t yours.”
Christian marriage has nothing to do with self and everything to do with spouse. My focus as a bride should be on my husband’s needs and desires, and his focus as my husband should be on mine. Ultimately, as the leader of his household, the husband is responsible for the sexual relationship in his marriage. Paul makes that clear, speaking first to men. So when your wife gets that special gleam in her eye, it’s time to put down the iPhone and pay attention. Likewise, wives should give themselves to their husbands when interest is expressed.
I would suggest that husbands and wives should make love willingly and joyfully, because having that positive attitude will affect the way your partner gives and you receive that intimacy. Your spouse’s uninhibited delight in you may even arouse you, making you feel more manly (as the research suggests) or her more feminine. Regardless, Paul makes it pretty clear in these passages that sex is not only a fulfillment of desire but a responsibility or duty we have to one another as a married couple.
The beauty of Paul’s words in this letter to Corinth is that husbands and wives are equals. We have equal rights to one another. We have a mutual expectation that our needs and desires will be equally satisfied. But if you choose to deprive your spouse, Paul issues two warnings: you will open your marriage up to temptation and you will lose self control. Satan hates marriage. Don’t give him the opportunity to destroy yours with an affair (emotional and/or physical), pornography, or self-gratification. Talk to your spouse. Seek counseling. Do whatever you have to do to protect your marriage bed. Taking responsibility for your wife’s spiritual, emotional, and physical needs – now that’s manliness.
Don’t get caught up in the world’s perverted perception of sex and sexuality. It doesn’t even compare to the wonder and exquisiteness of God’s plan for lovemaking between a husband and his wife. Christian couples don’t need the research of feminist scientists and dime-a-dozen magazine editors to tell us what God already wrote the book on. Be careful where you get your information. Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness.