Marriage and Morality

Bible Book: 1 Peter  5 : 8
Subject: Morality
Series: M&Ms: Sweetening Up Our Family Life

Marriage & Morality We are learning from God’s Word how to sweetening up our family life. Every home could use some sweetening up, including yours! And that’s our hope these days! That God will use these four messages we’re simply calling M&M’s: Sweetening Up our Family Life, to not only sweeten up, but to straighten up and strengthen our families!

Let me remind you of the first two M&M’s that we’ve considered! The first M&M: Marriage & Money! And do you remember the bible principles we discovered? The principle of OWNERSHIP. That God owns everything making every spending decision a spiritual decision.

And then there was the principle of STEWARDSHIP. The question we need to start asking is not, “Lord, what do you want me to do with MY money?” But rather, “Lord, what do you want me to do with YOUR money?” You and I are not owners of anything but we are stewards of everything. And one of these days, as stewards, we’re going to give an account to the owner of what we did with that which was under our guardianship.

But not only the principles of OWNERSHIP and STEWARDSHIP, there was also the principle of PARTNERSHIP. That in marriage, we have at least a 3-fold partnership. We have a partnership with our SPOUSE in making and managing money. We have a partnership with the SAINTS in ministry and missions. And of course we have a partnership with the SAVIOR in getting out the gospel.

Now that was the first M&M in chapter one! And then in chapter we considered the second M&M: Marriage & Mates. And from God’s Word we considered three timeless principles: COMPLETION, COMPREHENSION, and COMMUNICATION.

Now that brings us to the third M&M: Marriage & Morality. The dictionary defines “morality” as “the quality of being moral. The evaluation of or means of evaluating human conduct, as a set of ideas of right and wrong.”

And today, the devil has launched an all-out-attack upon the home. And don’t think he’s simply out to give you a bad day. He is out to DESTROY you and your family! We read in 1 Peter 5.8, “ … your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.”

And do you know who he has in his crosshairs? Every person who claims the name of Jesus, that’s who! If he can destroy you, he can slow down the work of God. And I will give him credit, he is making an impact on our families.

For instance, about 50% of today’s children will spend their entire childhood in an intact family. Of the children born to married parents, nearly half are expected to experience their parent’s divorce by the age of 18.

We’re being told that the divorce rate among Christians has reached an all time high. That Christians are divorcing at the same rate of non Christians. But according to a recent survey by the University of Connecticut’s Bradley Wright, that’s not true. In fact, the divorce rate among Christians who attend worship once or more per week is 32% vs. 41% among all Christians and 48% among non-Christians. The church is making a difference!

Now as we think about Marriage & Morality, let’s begin in Hebrews 13 as we hear what God says about marriage: Hebrews 13.4, “Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge.”

Now when God speaks of marriage, He speaks of the marriage between a man and a woman! The first wedding involved Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve, nor Eve and Jane! Nor Adam and Eve and Steve nor Adam and Eve and Steve and Jane. It was Adam and Eve.

The attempt to redefine marriage continues across our country today is nothing more than an attack upon the Word of God. This country, which was founded on Judeo-Christian values, held to marriage between a man and a woman, and that ladies and gentlemen is something that we must be willing to vote for and fight for, for the sake of our country and children and grandchildren. And yet, the Devil continues shooting his moral-busting missiles in order to destroy our homes.

Now as we consider this third M&M: Marriage and Morality, think with me about:

(1) The Marriage DESTROYERS

What moral-busting missiles is our enemy launching our way hoping to rip our families apart? What’s included in his arsenal that seems to be penetrating and dividing what God has joined together?

Well, let me give you what I consider the top 3, not only moral-busting bombs, but marriage-busting bombs as we think about Marriage DESTROYERS:

the marriage-busting bomb of PORNOGRAHY.

According to the Nielson NetRatings, 17.5 million surfers visited porn sights from their homes every month. Now you tell me we don’t have a problem when it comes to pornography. It’s been called the Christian’s secret sin and it is destroying lives and marriages. Jeremiah 5.25, “And your sins have withheld good things from you.” 1 Thess 4.3-5, “For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you should abstain (distance yourself) from sexual immorality (pornias .. pornography) ; that each of you should know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, not in passion of lust, like the Gentiles, who do not know God.” Verse 7, “For God did not call us to uncleanness, but in holiness.”

John Burke, in his book, No Perfect People Allowed, tell us that “Research has shown that sexual activity and sexual fantasy physically alters brain chemistry. Peptides such as endorphins get released from sexual stimulation, When sex or pornography moves toward an addiction, the person uses sexual stimuli to temporarily alter brain chemistry and thereby their mood.”

“… help people understand that lust and fantasy and pornography are just imposters of the real thing they desire.” Pornography is not only a deceiver, it is a destroyer!

There is so much more that should be said on the subject, but let me say that for more information and help regarding pornography, let me recommend Steve Arterburn’s book, Every Man’s Battle .. Every man’s Guide to winning the war on Sexual temptation One victory at a Time. On page 27, you will find help from NewLife.com and you will find their 800 number that will help you regarding treatment and counseling for sexual addictions.

Job 31.1, “I have made a covenant with my eyes; why then should I look upon a young woman?”

So, there is the marriage-busting bomb of pornography. But don’t think that the devil only has one kind of bomb in his arsenal in breaking up families. There is a second bomb that he is using to reek havoc on our homes:

the marriage-busting bomb of ALCOHOL

Proverbs 20.1, “Wine is a mocker, Strong drink is a brawler, and whoever is led astray by it is not wise.” “Mocker” means to ridicule or to shame. In other words, alcohol brings shame into your life.

Alcohol is a marriage-busting bomb! It promises happiness and then only sends sorrow. It promises health but only sends sickness. It will cause a man or a woman to forget their wedding vows. I don’t know anything that breaks up more homes and wrecks more lives than the marriage-busting bomb of alcohol!

And yet, 71% of America drinks it. And that number has doubled in the last 25 years! According to the latest survey, 48% of Southern Baptist drink! Moms and Dads, not only are you putting your marriage at risk, you’re setting a sorry example to your children.

One in every seven who drink alcohol eventually become addicted to alcohol. You may not be the one, but your son could be the one; your daughter could be the one. I would hate to think that my children became addicted to alcohol because of the example of their social drinking daddy.

They are MARRIAGE DESTROYERS! There is the marriage-busting bomb of Pornography and Alcohol. There is also the:

the marriage busting bomb of GAMBLING

Americans are spending more money each year on gambling than they do on all sporting events and moving-going combined. It is now America’s national pastime! Gambling is now a $550 Billion dollar-per-year obsession.

You put it down: gambling is not the ticket out of poverty, it is the ticket into poverty. One man meets another man in an alley at gun point, takes his money and we call that robbery. Two men meet each other in a Casino trying to get what belongs to the other and we call that gambling.

The only difference between the two is that in the first case there was one man with the spirit of thievery. In the second case there were two men with the spirit of thievery and God says, “Thou shall not steal.” And today, the National Gambling Impact Study Commission estimates that we have 11 million people addicted to gambling.

The motivation behind gambling is G R E E D and often times, it’s the government that’s leading the way.

Mark Twain said that “the best throw at dice is to throw them away.” 1 Timothy 6.9-10, “But to those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.” Proverbs 13.11, “Wealth gained by dishonesty will be diminished, but he who gathers by labor will increase.” Proverbs 15.27, “He who is greedy for gain troubles his own house, but he who hates bribes will live.”

And listen to this. In the last twelve months, 51% of American purchased lottery tickets and 49% admit to losing money. Here’s what that tells me: Gambling turns you into a loser!

When it comes to Marriage & Morality, we need not only to understand the Marriage DESTROYERS, but also.

(2) The Marriage PROTECTORS

What we need to protect our families against the world and flesh and Devil is godly wisdom! And the Bible’s book of wisdom is Proverbs.

Turn with me to Proverbs 7 as we consider a couple of Marriage Protectors as we think about Marriage & Morality. And Dads, you ought to take the time and sit your sons and daughters down and read through these verses with them. It could very well save them and you a lot of heartaches and hurts in the future.

Proverbs 7.6-20: For at the window of my house I looked through my lattice, And saw among the simple, I perceived among the youths, A young man devoid of understanding, Passing along the street near her corner; And he took the path to her house. In the twilight, in the evening, In the black and dark night. And there a woman met him, With the attire of a harlot, and a crafty heart. She was loud and rebellious, Her feet would not stay at home. At times she was outside, at times in the open square, Lurking at every corner. So she caught him and kissed him; With an impudent face she said to him: “ I have peace offerings with me; Today I have paid my vows. So I came out to meet you, Diligently to seek your face, And I have found you. I have spread my bed with tapestry, Colored coverings of Egyptian linen. I have perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon. Come, let us take our fill of love until morning; Let us delight ourselves with love. For my husband is not at home; He has gone on a long journey; He has taken a bag of money with him, And will come home on the appointed day.”

Now let me just mention a couple of Marriage Protectors that Solomon mentions in these verses that will help guard your heart and home from the Devil’s marriage-busting bombs.

Stay away from the location of wickedness.

Verse 8, “passing along the street near her corner” .. “he took the path to her house.” Now he may not had originally planned to go there, but in the back of his mind he knew she lived there. So, he passed “near her corner, he took the path to her house.”

Do you know where he went wrong? He was in the wrong place at the wrong time with the wrong person! Now let me say that another way: to avoid the Devil’s marriage-busting bombs, stay out of his neighborhood!

You will NEVER become an alcoholic if you never take a drink. You will never get hooked on cigarettes if you never smoke. You will never get hooked on pornography if you never look at pornography. You will never commit sexual sins if you don’t put yourself in a wrong situation.

Hey folks, the Devil knows where you most vulnerable! Whatever it is that takes you out of the will of God and drives a wedge between you and Him, stay away from it!

Proverbs 5.8 warns us to, “Remove your way far from her, and do not go near the door of her house.” That’s what Joseph did! Do you remember him? Genesis 39.7, “Now it came to pass after that his master’s wife cast longing eyes on Joseph, and she said, ‘Lie with me.”

You know what “longing eyes” are don’t you? It’s that “come hither” look! Verse 12, “that she caught him by his garment saying, ‘lie with me.’ But he left his garment in her hand, and fled and ran outside.” Now as commendable as that was, Joseph could have saved himself a lot of trouble had he never gone in the house with her. If you don’t want to get burned, stay out of the kitchen!

So here’s the first bible principle that will help protect your marriage: stay away from the location of wickedness.

Stay alert to the lies of the world

Proverbs 7.21, “with her enticing speech she caused him to yield, with her flattering lips she seduced him. Immediately he went after her, as an ox goes to the slaughter.”

“.. with her flattering lips ..” Do you know what flattery is? It is an artificial sweetener. Flattery looks like friendship like a wolf look like a dog. Wake up men! Flattery is like perfume; you’re suppose to smell it, not swallow it!

Proverbs 2.16, “To deliver you from the immoral woman, from the seductress who flatters with her words. Proverbs 5.3, “For the lips of an immoral woman drip honey, and her mouth is smoother than oil.” Proverbs 6.24, “To keep you from the evil woman, from the flattering tongue of a seductress.”

Beware of the flatterer! Flattery makes big fools of little men. Let me conclude with one more passage of scripture to consider: Proverbs 6.27-29, “Can a man take fire to his bosom, and his cloths not be burned? Can one walk on hot coals, and his feet not be seared? So is he who goes in to his neighbor’s wife; whoever touches her shall not be innocent.” Verse 32, “Whoever commits adultery with a woman lacks understanding; He who does so destroys his own soul.