Daily Thoughts : February 25th
1 Thess 4:4 that each of you should learn to control his own body in a way that is holy and honorable
It is always important that we check the context of our verse and see it in relation to the verses around it. The verse before this one today says, “It is God's will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality.” This is a very practical passage. When Paul says that it is God's will for them to be sanctified, he means that when God calls us to Himself and we become Christians, it is not for us to continue to carry on our old styles of life, but to be separated off from the world's way of doing things and to be different, by living in the lifestyle that God designed for us. Now there are many things that God has given us for our blessing, but they are to be used in the way He says.
Thus sex is one of those things. It is God-given, not only to procreate but for our pleasure, but it is pleasure that is part of love within a life-commitment relationship. Sexual immorality is sex in any way that doesn't fit into that definition. God's design for sex is with a member of the opposite sex only within a life-time committed relationship. All of the other 'varieties' that modern western life relishes, fall short of God's design and therefore of God's blessing and should be avoided.
Very well, says Paul, I don't care what you see the rest of the foolish world doing with sex (as he might say it today), I want you to control yourself so that you do not do what the world is doing, so that you remain holy – different, like God, living God's way, which is an honourable way. You don't honour yourself or that other person if you just use them and totally disregard God's design for you both. Don't make excuses; hear it! Self-centred for the moment or God-centred for a lifetime. Those are your options. The world's way or God's way, the way that doesn't work properly or God's way that does! Those are the only choices.
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