What is adultery? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.
Centuries ago, there was a Bible published that was called the Wicked Bible. In this one, there was a misprint in the seventh commandment so it read, “You shall commit adultery.” The publishers were greatly fined for this.
We should all know adultery is wicked, but what is adultery?
Adultery is sexual behavior reserved for the covenant of marriage that is done outside of that covenant. This can be of a physical nature, sexual activity, or it can be of an emotional nature, an emotional commitment to another person where you share things with someone else that should really only be shared with your spouse. Both of these are incredibly harmful to a marriage.
Why is this so? Because marriage is a relationship built on exclusive trust. When you go outside of that, then you are violating that trust. Sexual activity is giving someone total trust with your body and it only makes sense if this takes place in the covenant of a promise that is followed through.
This is why I always tell women to not have sex with a man until he marries you. Why would I not say the same to a man? Technically, I would, but more often than not, the men are the pursuers in the market. If it wasn’t for sex, men would never marry. Men seek to be with women because we have strong drives and those drives drive us to love the woman also.
When a woman gives herself to a man without that, she is ultimately saying she will give him her very body for whatever he has done already. It’s hard to think of something greater one human can trust another with than their body. So a woman needs to decide what her body is worth. A promise to marry in engagement? Six months of dating? A month? A week? Dinner and a movie?
By the way, normally, once a man is given what he wants, odds are that he could have a good chance of plateauing at that level. Many a woman will think living together is a prelude to marriage. It isn’t. He’s got a great deal already. He gets the sex he wants, he can leave any time that he wants, and in the end, he doesn’t have to pay alimony if something happens because there was no commitment.
Now while I said it’s hard to think of something greater one human can give to another than their body, there is one thing indeed. Their heart. Emotional affairs hurt. I speak from experience. In the age of Facebook, they can much more easily happen. Most physical affairs also start off as emotional ones.
A man goes out from his office on lunch and there’s a woman that goes out at the same time. Why not just go together? We’re friends. We’re both married to other people, but why not? Then they begin talking over lunch and they enjoy each other’s company and not too much later, they’re meeting in a hotel room and having sex.
Yes. This happens.
Very few people get up one morning and say “I think I’ll have an affair to screw up my marriage.” It happens gradually. Often, the other side of the fence can look greener to which the reply is “Tend your own lawn first.” This will lead to hopping from relationship to relationship, especially when the spark dies down.
This is why vigilance is required to guard a marriage. In my own personal life, I have said when I get my own place again, I don’t want to be alone with a woman who is not family, even one I am dating. I know my temptations. I know as a man I greatly desire sex and having been there before, I don’t want to put myself in a position where it’s hard to put the brakes on.
Sex is reserved for the covenant of marriage. Taking it outside is lying with your bodies. It is a beautiful gift to be given to a man and a woman who have made a lifelong covenant with one another. Their bodies in sex show what they have done with their hearts to one another.
God stands against adultery not because He is anti-sex, but because He is pro-sex. He created everything about it after all. If we are to enjoy it to the best, then we need to follow His counsel on the matter.
(And I affirm the virgin birth)