Do not deprive one another, except perhaps by agreement for a limited time, that you may devote yourselves to prayer; but then come together again, so that Satan may not tempt you because of your lack of self-control. (1 Corinthians 7:5 ESV emphasis added)
Everything seems to come before sex even Netflix or should we say especially Netflix. Today’s headline is “Netflix is Killing Couple’s Sex Lives: Study”. It goes on to describe the disturbing trend that couples are turning off the TV and going to bed with their iPads. Apparently, a decline in sex is corresponding with increased Netflix viewing in bed according to a university study.
Sex has become casual for married couples. We take it as something we’ll get around to eventually unless there’s something more pressing like a good movie. The Bible takes a less casual view of married sex.
We understand there are hindrances to frequent sex such as aging, illness, and travel as well as many other circumstances. But the Bible gives only one reason not to have frequent sex and then only for a short time – prayer.
A special time of prayer is the only reason for a break in frequent sex, and then only if both the husband and wife agree to abstain from sex, “except perhaps by agreement for a limited time, that you may devote yourselves to prayer”.
We are way too casual about sex; we can take it or leave it. If something comes up then we say that sex can wait. Life is always crowding out sex.
God’s Word makes sex a marital priority in 1 Corinthians 7:1-5. If you struggle with sexual immorality then get married, once married you must give your spouse conjugal rights and, oh by the way, you don’t have authority over your body, your spouse does. Paul goes on to warn spouses not to “deprive” one another because he knows we tend to deprive one another of sex.
Paul is telling us that sex is not to be taken lightly; in other words, stop being so casual about sex. It is a big deal. If you are casual about sex in your marriage the devil notices and will “tempt you because of your lack of self-control”.
In addition, Paul explains to us that any interruption of frequent sex needs to be mutually agreed upon; that is, both spouses must sign off on the abstinence from sex and then only “for a limited time”.
The next time anything could possibly interfere with frequent sex then there needs to be a conversation between you and your spouse. It could be the next annual retreat or church conference. Paul says to talk to your spouse and come to a mutual agreement about abstaining from sex.
Bible Thought: A married couple should make sex a priority and talk about any potential interference in their sexual frequency.
Prayer: Father, help me understand that any break in frequent sex must be mutually agreed upon. Renew my mind according to your Word. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
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