And He answered and said to them, 'Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning ‘made them male and female,' and said, 'For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh'? So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate."---Matthew 19:3-6 (NKJV)
"It`s most presumptuous to believe we already know all the answers and will never get any more big surprises."---Andreas Heine
While (re)reading the story (and *rape*) of Amnon and Tamar (2 Samuel 13) earlier today...
I was a bit taken aback *and fascinated* about where the Spirit (John 4:24) led (Luke 12:12) me re: it. Almost every time that I read that story, I think about my absolute favorite quote on (illicit) sex: "Sex without love is violence." Author Eric Jerome Dickey penned that. Anyway, if you're not familiar with the story, Amnon was in love with his brother Absalom's sister. That may seem a bit...icky within itself, before I continue, it might be wise to remind us all that *even now*, in Abba Father's family, we're spiritually considered brother and sister. Marriage is the *only thing* that changes that dynamic. Therefore, sex outside of marriage may not be as brutal as the rape that Tamar experienced, but spiritually, it's still a very unhealthy situation: "spiritual incest" is what I call it.
Anyway, what I kept getting "stuck" on was this part of the story:
2 Samuel 13:4(NKJV): "Amnon said to him, 'I love Tamar, my brother Absalom’s sister.'"
2 Samuel 13:14-15(NKJV): "However, he would not heed her voice; and being stronger than she, he forced her and lay with her.Then Amnon hated her exceedingly, so that the hatred with which he hated her was greater than the love with which he had loved her. And Amnon said to her, 'Arise, be gone!'"
Amnon loved Tamar. He *had to have her*. He had her. And then his hatred exceeded his love.
I have quoted this more times than I can count. Perhaps because I find it so indicative of Adonai's nature (Jonah 4:2): "We are not punished for our sins, but by our sins." It was Elbert Hubbard who said that and although fornication is not nearly, to the human senses, as horrific as sexual assault, spiritually, in many ways, is it not similar? The Word says not to fornicate (I Corinthians 6:9-10, Hebrews 12:12-17&13:4, Revelation 21:8) and yet, so many of us do; claiming that we love the person that we are engaging in the act with. And yet look at Amnon's *spirit*. He loved. He *had to have*. And then after the act, his hatred manifested.
How many of us are or have engaged in fornication *for the exact same reason*? We feel like we love someone and while we're not ready for marriage (which should *automatically mean* that we're not ready for sex, by the way), we feel like we've just *got to have* the person that we're with and so we overlook the Lord's instructions and we find ourselves, on some level, whether it's immediately happened or not...being punished for our sins (Romans 6:23).
Wow. Fornication carries about the spirit of Amnon: LUST.
Love? Real love? It will wait. Until it's right. RIGHT WOULD BE MARRIAGE.
But the Lord had more. Something that I never thought about when it came to *another reason* why the Most High puts fornication in the "settling for less" category is because the act comes from a place of *extreme pride and arrogance*. And as Proverbs 16:18(NKJV) clearly states, "Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall." Sometimes "the fall" is what so many people call, "falling in love".
You see, what I never fully considered before today is that another reason why God takes such issue with sex before marriage is being that it's for married people, even when we claim to love the person that we're engaging in the act with, aside from the fact that the act puts them in spiritual danger and the relationship in extreme emotional compromise, it also comes from a place of *extreme presumption*.
Genesis 2:24-25(NKJV) tells us this: "Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed." A man *and his wife* are who have the spiritual sanction to be naked and not ashamed. Matthew 19:6 states that what GOD has joined together, let no man separate.
Presumption: assumption of something as true; the act of presuming; bold or insolent behavior or manners
Synonyms: audacity, conceit, ego, gall, guess, nerve, opinion, postulate, shot in the dark, smugness, sneaking suspicion, swagger, vanity
Participating in sexual activity before marriage is either just flat out rebellious or the result of pure presumption: *assuming* that you will end up together and being so *bold* as to act like a wife...before GOD joined you as man and wife. That audacity, that ego, that utter gall and nerve are so displeasing in the eyes of the Father and, on a lot of levels, it's a "shot in the dark"...literally:
"The lamp of the body is the eye. Therefore, when your eye is good, your whole body also is full of light. But when your eye is bad, your body also is full of darkness."---Luke 11:34(NKJV)
When we put *anything* (or one) before God's will for our lives---and as single women, his will would include sexual purity---it's like casting a shadow on our lives and in this case, our relationship. When we're *so consumed* with making a relationship work that we're not totally surrendered to serving God, our vision has some darkness in it and as a *direct result* our body becomes capable of doing some...very strange things.
A STRANGE THING WOULD INCLUDE ACTING LIKE A WIFE BEFORE GOD JOINS YOU TO YOUR HUSBAND. IN MARRIAGE.
Now *please believe* that sex is not the only misstep in the area of premature wifedom. The other day, a girlfriend of mine and I were talking about how *utterly irresponsible* it is to give *single people* marriage advice; to reference them to Scriptures that apply to *what God has joined together* when they're not together, like that, with their significant other...yet (I Corinthians 7, Ephesians 5 and I Peter 3 immediately come to mind). And here's the thing: once you have entered into a *marital covenant*, there is a different kind of grace that you're given that no matter how much you try to *play house* in a dating situation, you just don't have.
I have stated from personal experience that, "What wives call commitment, for a lot of single women, that would be settling." When the Lord calls a wife to respect her husband, to be faithful to her husband, to be a good homemaker for her husband (there's a good article on godly wife duties here), isn't it a trip how so many *girlfriends* will assume these positions *prematurely so*? Suddenly they are putting up with things that honestly, they can walk away from but they stay because they believe it's a sign of respect. They are not engaged and yet, talking about "faithful" and "cheating" in a relationship where they are no *vows* of such in place. They are just as involved in their boyfriend's daily affairs including bills and home upkeep when that is not something that a single woman is biblically-commissioned to do.
And here's the trap with that...
SINGLE WOMEN ARE OFTEN SO CAUGHT UP IN ACTING LIKE THEIR BOYFRIEND'S WIFE THAT THEY IGNORE WHAT THEY *HAVE BEEN* INSTRUCTED BY GOD TO DO: "CARE FOR THE THINGS OF THE LORD."
"There is a difference between a wife and a virgin. The unmarried woman cares about the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit. But she who is married cares about the things of the world—how she may please her husband."---I Corinthians 7:34(NKJV)
Me personally, I haven't been fond of the whole boyfriend thing for many years now: I have no interest in someone getting the *benefits* of my being a wife without any of the *responsibilities* and at 37, I often say that I'm too old for a *boy* anything. But now I see why Satan probably likes the term so much. It gets us caught up in the "play wifey" mentality. The Word, which is Adonai (John 1:1), makes *very clear distinctions* re: the difference between a married woman and a single woman (which was supposed to be a virgin, by the way): a married woman cares about pleasing *her husband*. A single woman's responsibility says nothing about substituting the word "husband" for "boyfriend". Until she is united as one, she cares for the things of *the Lord*. And the *big bonus* in that is that the Word also tells us, that even when it comes to our dating/courtship situations, "Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you."---I Peter 5:6-7(NKJV)
WHEN WE HUMBLE OURSELVES UNDER GOD'S HAND AND POSITIONING FOR US, HE LETS US KNOW WHEN IT'S TIME TO BE PROMOTED (WHICH HONESTLY, IS PROBABLY MORE LIKE A LATERAL MOVE. THERE'S *GREAT BENEFITS* TO BEING SINGLE). WHEN WE CARE ABOUT SERVING HIM, HE REMINDS US THAT HE HANDLES, QUITE WELL, THE CARES THAT WE HAVE.
Hmph. It's a trip ain't it? The verse the *immediately follows* I Peter 5:6-7: "Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour." As a single woman, a part of being sober-minded is not getting "drunk off of our emotions". A part of being vigilant is being "ever alert and awake" to our duties...*as a single woman who follows the calling, will and way of the Lord*. Who doesn't *act* married until she *is* married. Who uses this time to train for the position, but not with her *boyfriend* as her guide but God as her teacher.
Yeah. That was good right there, Divine Spirit.
Besides, who wants to *assume* in a relationship? You know how the saying goes about assumption. It's just not the wisest thing to do. *Another thing that I can testify to*.
Presumption operates out of flesh.
Faith moves in the Spirit.
The difference? The latter lets GOD lead. Not a "wifey". Or a *boyfriend*.
“With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”---Matthew 19:26(NKJV)