Sunday, March 19, 2006

Sex in the Bible -- the Really Good News!

I preached this morning at a church in White Plains, NY on sexuality and religion, and I used Genesis 1 and Genesis 2 as my text. These two chapters set the stage for the very positive sexuality messages that you can find in Scripture.

In the first chapter of Genesis, it says, God created “humankind in his image, in the image of God he created them, male and female, He created them.” The very first commandment that God offers these new humans: “be fruitful and multiply.” In other words, GO HAVE SEX. And then God surveying his humans, declares "it was very good."

In Genesis 2, God is displeased for the first time because God recognizes that “it is not good for man to be alone” and sets out to find Adam a companion. God brings each of the animals forward to Adam, and suggests it as a companion. Adam rejects them all. It is only then that God puts Adam to sleep to create woman. The centrality of sexuality is emphasized in the last line of the chapter: “Hence a man leaves his father and mother and clings to his wife and they become one flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked, and were not ashamed.” The goal of union in Genesis 2 is sexual pleasure; procreation is not mentioned in this account of creation.

Side by side, the two first texts of the Bible emphasize the equality of men and women, recognize that we need companions and helpers in life, affirm sexuality as both procreative and re-creative, teach that our bodies are good and shame is bad, and tell us that God is pleased to offer this gift. Really -- read it for yourself!

Stay tuned for more about what the Bible really says about sexuality.

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