To: en & others
From: Su Min
Subject: Mistake (a)!
My dearly beloved,
Today's headline :"Mistake! (a)" could also read as "SEX AND SIN". It is a 2 day reading which will extend to "Mistake (b)" tomorrow,
As we read Genesis 16, vs. 1-4, we see how selfishness, lust and the lack of Godliness lead to misery. Its the same old story, and it happens time and time again and repeats itself even today. I myself have fallen into the trap. I myself have made wrong choices. And the wonder of it all: God still loves me, in spite of my mistakes!!
God has a great plan for each of us. And his plan for Abram to father a great nation must have been congruent with his "one flesh" policy as laid out in Gen 2:24. God's plan was not for Eliezer to father the nation, but for the heir to come from Abram's own body: and implicit in this design was for Sarai to be the mother. But the fallen human mind could not trust God to carry out his mighty promise. The frail human mind decided that Sarai was incapable of bearing the heir to the nation. The sinful human mind invented a fallen selfish human response to a seemingly impossible situation. Sarai decides to use and abuse her slave Hagar in order to build a family (Gen 16:2). "Go in unto my maid (KJV)". Sarai was very clear in her mind what she wanted Abram to do to Hagar.
Can man's way ever be smarter than God's way? Proverbs 16:25 says "There is a way that seems right to man, but in the end it leads to death". Family building requires a man to be united with his wife and become one flesh. Eternal triangles do not contribute towards family building. But Abram failed to recognise this error. He should have rejected Sarai's offer. But he did not. He chose to accept this enticing offer. So now, as recorded in Genesis 16:4, Abram had sex with Hagar.
MISTAKE!: SIN & SEX. In human terms this must have seemed a juicy offer: Instead of a dried up old wife, Abram was being offered Hagar, with a presumably young enough nubile Egyptian body, and he lunges at the opportunity to build his nation (you can be sure that nation building was not the only thing on his mind as he took Hagar to bed.) Sex surely is a very powerful force. The human male is built with a very strong sex drive. God knows that for a fact, because He put the sex drive there. But just as a Lamborgini Testerosa may have 400 horses under the bonnet and bring you for an enthralling drive if you obey all the traffic rules yet bring you to grief if you flout the traffic rules, drive on the wrong side of the road and disobey the traffic lights, so too, men will throw themselves headlong into destruction if they let their gonads lead their lives. The urge for sexual gratification is very strong, and God clearly delineates what is acceptable to him and what is not.
In the book of proverbs there are at least 8 instructions for men to avoid adultery and prostitutes.
The wisdom of old knew that men can barely keep their pants on. The natural fallen human male desire is to satisfy the sexual need at the slightest drop of the hat. Hence the need for clear bible instruction: avoid adultery. One man, one wife. Very clear. "Second wife and fooling around"? Not acceptable! Adultery is bad. Jesus sets the standard one notch higher (Matt 5:28), teaching us not to look lustily or think lustily. Adultery is bad. It falls short of God's standards. It brings grief to God's heart. The wife is hurt. The family is hurt. We should do our best to promote healthy marriage relationships. We should do our best to help those with troubled marriages patch up. Let us learn from this sorry episode in Hagar's life to harness our sexual energy in a way that is pleasing to God and congruent with his plans.
- Proverbs 2:16 It (wisdom) will save you from the adulteress
- Proverbs 5:3-4 The lips of an adulteress drip honey and her speech is smoother than oil; but in the end she is bitter as gall, sharp as a double edged sword.
- Proverbs 5:8 Keep to a path far from her, do not go near to the door of her house.
- Proverbs 5:15 Drink water from your own cistern, running water from your own well.
- Proverbs 5: 18 -20 Rejoice in the wife of your youth, why be captivated my son, by an adulteress?
- Proverbs 6:20 -7:27 My son, keep your father's commands and do not forsake your mother's teaching: for these commands are a lamp, these teaching is a light, keeping you from the immoral woman. "Come let us drink deep of love till morning": with persuasive words she led him astray, her house is a highway to the grave, leading down to the chambers of death
Let us close today's reading with a conversation with God Almighty.
Father God, thank you for letting us call you Abba, Father.love, dad
Thank you for accepting us as your children.
Thank you for loving us in spite of our sins and wickedness.
Father, you have planned satisfaction in marriage as husband cleaves to wife.
Teach us O God to listen to you.
Help us Father to achieve the kind of family life that you have designed for us.
We ask this in the precious name of Jesus who died on the cross and was raised from the dead and who lives forever. Amen.
For any comments or enquiries please write to Dr. Lim Su Min
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