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Friday, August 5, 2011

8/6/11 Animal House

 7 “Why should I forgive you? Your children have forsaken me and sworn by gods that are not gods.
I supplied all their needs, yet they committed adultery and thronged to the houses of prostitutes.
8 They are well-fed, lusty stallions, each neighing for another man’s wife. 9 Should I not punish them for this?” declares the LORD.  (Jeremiah 5:7,8)

22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.
24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.
26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error. (Romans 1:22-27)

(Animal House Toga party)

Thoughts: Should we really seek to give in to our natural instincts, and live like animals?  The ability of human beings to contain their animal instincts point to something higher.  There are some that say to have any standards at all would be hypocritical, for no one can perfectly keep their standard.  So, maybe the best thing in life is to be animal-house-like.  If so, we should give up the illusion of human love.  Maybe another question would be, what kind of animals are we? 
There is very little true monogamy in the animal kingdom (10-15% primates; 3% mammals; formerly it was believed 90% of birds were monogamous, but that figure has been brought into question).  Certain Gibbons and apes are monogamous. 
     But the question is broader than that.  First, is it a healthy thing- physically and financially to be monogamous?  The answer would have to be "yes."  For monogamy- generally controls sexually transmitted diseases (currently 8-10 million American teens contract STIs each year).  If you ask a divorcee if they were better off financially before their divorce, generally the answer would be "yes"-  (One roof, one utility bill, no alimony, sharing of resources and time). 
     A second broader point relates to our Maker.  Scripture links monogamy (one spouse) with monolatry (worship of one God).  Above Jeremiah points to adultery with the spouse as a sign of adultery against God.  Romans also points to God giving humans over to sexual immorality because they forsook the right idea of God (preferring many to one).  The covenant we make with God is a symbol of the covenant we make with the spouse (the image is we are the bride of Christ).  Purity of heart toward God shows itself in purity in our sexual relationships.  Sex is not bad- it is a great gift given to us by God.  But God protects it and human love by the commitment of marriage. 
    The goal is not to behave like animals, giving into our animal instincts.  But to behave as children of God, seeking to honor and glorify Him. 

Prayer: Help us, O Lord, to seek not the baseness of our nature, but the higher calling you have given us. 

Westminster Shorter Catechism:
Q, 71- What is required in the Seventh Commandment?  A. The Seventh Commandment requireth the preservation of our own and our neighbor's chastity, in heart, in speech, and behavior.
Q. 72- What is forbidden in the Seventh Commandment?  A. The Seventh Commandment forbiddeth all unchaste thoughts, words, and actions. 

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