The author of Hebrews reaches a point in his letter where he has finished with the heart of his doctrinal teaching and begins to convey how we should subsequently act knowing what we now know. It is a common thread of apostolic teaching in the New Testament, to present positional truth followed by practical truths.
Positional and Practical Truths
Positional truth has been defined as doctrine that is the basis for duty; practical truths as duty that flows from doctrine.”The author of Hebrews starts his practical teaching in chapter 13. In this particular devotion, I want to call your attention to verse 4 of that chapter.
- Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge. (Hebrews 13:4)
Practical Truths of Marriage
The Holy Spirit conveys to us that “marriage is honorable.” In the sight of God, marriage(“the actual joining of a husband and wife” – Zodhiates), is that joining together of a man and woman that God instituted in Genesis 2:24. Marriage is something God desires for a man and a woman, and it is for us to know that this institution is an honorable one.
What has happened in very large degrees in this postmodern age in which we live, is that the institution of marriage has been hounded by the disciples of this age in an attempt to either redefine it or render it obsolete. What is considered highly honorable to God has been reduced to a joking matter, or worse.
What blatantly stands out in the attempt to redefine marriage is the current corruption of it by societies and courts of law in actually legalizing that a man can marry a man and woman can marry a woman. In short, the marriage spoken of in Holy Scripture in no way condones such unions. The “marriage . . . bed” that has been deemed “honorable . . . and undefiled” by God has been rendered dishonorable by man.But this is no secret by any means. For we witness this ungodly intrusion on the institution of marriage every day, as our culture uses its various forms of communication to attempt to influence us to accept its progressive thinking.
But take note, in this postmodern age there has occurred another corruption of “honorable . . . marriage” — and this one on a much larger scale, And that is the practice of cohabitation. Long before the homosexual agenda, men and women living together out of wedlock had a profound effect on God’s holy institution . . . a profoundly negative one.
Under Our Radar
Cohabitation now seems to be under our radar! No doubt we cry out about the joining of same sexes in “marriage.” But sadly, God’s desire for a man and woman to be joined in biblical marriage continues to be flippantly disregarded with the number of couples choosing to live together increasing. It seems we have almost become desensitized to the idea of couples cohabitating and no doubt that has contributed to the acceptance of same-sex marriages.
That Which Is Honorable
The church needs to take note of that which is honorable in God’s sight and speak out against that which is not. And, the church needs to be the vessel by which the world is warned that God will judge fornicators (those who choose to have sexual activity outside of marriage, which includes co-habitation) and adulterers (those who choose to have sexual activity with a person other than their biblical marriage partner).
This is a most serious and stern scriptural warning to the world in which we live. We, as believers, need to make sure we don’t find ourselves compromising with the spirit of this age by allowing the practice of cohabitation to “fly under our radar.”
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