TEXT: 1 Corinthians 7:1-6:
1 Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman.
2 Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.
3 Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband.
4 The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife.
5 Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.
6 But I speak this by permission, and not of commandment.
— PRAYER —
We are in a series of messages titled “Praying Through the Bible: A Series on Every Passage and Verse Regarding Prayer in the Bible.” The purpose of this series is to encourage and motivate you to pray to the God of the Bible. We highlighted each of these over 500 verses and passages in the Prayer Motivator Devotional Bible. So far, we have completed 240 messages in this series.
This is message #241 titled, Prayer and Sex.
Several years ago, I wrote a message for my Prayer Motivator Devotional podcast. By way of introduction, allow me to share with you that personal encouragement titled “God, Sex, and Prayer: Don’t be so heavenly-minded that you are no earthly good.”
As a young person, I hated church, I hated preachers, I hated church people and anything that had to do with church. We went to church every time the doors of the church were opened, and we stayed in church all day long on Sundays. One of the reasons why I hated church is because both of my parents were preachers. I carried my father’s name, he is Daniel Whyte, Jr., and I am Daniel Whyte III, and he was pretty well-known in that region, and I did not like that situation at all since I was trying to be cool, hip, and accepted by my evil peers.
I did not like church or church people for several reasons:
(1) many men seemed weak and effeminate; in fact, I don’t believe they even liked football because they stayed in church way past the time all of the games were played every Sunday during football season;
(2) the women, for the most part, controlled the men and ran everything in the church;
(3) my dad was Baptist and my mother was Pentecostal Holiness, but in any church we went to there always seemed to be people in the choir or doing the music who were out and out homosexuals, and if they weren’t, they acted as though they were not interested in the women, and to me that was rather odd that no matter what denomination we went to, homosexuals ruled in the choir box and/or at the piano or organ. This was a huge turnoff for me because if testosterone can be measured on a scale of 1 to 100, I was off the charts at least to 150. I was very much interested in the beautiful girls in the choir.
(4) as I touched on before, church services were long and drawn out. If they preached the Gospel, they did not preach it were I was able to understand it. Most of the time was taken up with spooky stuff such as speaking in tongues, and showmanship rather than spirituality.
My point in sharing this testimony with you as we start this series on God, sex, and prayer, is to help you to understand that when I share something with you about prayer, it does not come from the standpoint of religiosity or trying to be super-spiritual, mystical and spooky. I got saved out of religion and a lot of unnecessary foolishness. You are hearing from a man’s man who believes that you can pray consistently and still have exciting, satisfying sex with your wife consistently. (I would like to say here that as a credit to my wife, even though we have had our problems over the past 26 years of marriage from time to time, she’s never tried to use sex as a weapon against me. By the way, prayer, firm leadership according to Ephesians 5 and 6, and sex is what God has used to keep our marriage together this long in spite of the odds against us. Now, dear brother, if you are having problems with your wife using sex to manipulate you and control you to have her way, I feel bad for you, son. But I have 99 problems, but sex with my wife ain’t one. I thank God for that and I’ll be praying for you.) You are hearing from a man who believes you can pray consistently and still watch a good football game with the guys, not think for a minute that the game is violent. You are hearing from a Christian man who believes you can pray and still enjoy life with your family and others to its fullest without spooking people out, trying to act all sanctimonious. In other words, you can pray and keep it real. You don’t have to be so Heavenly minded that you’re no earthly good. So, don’t get it twisted. When I encourage you to pray, that does not mean you turn into a monk or a nun and get so “spiritual” and so “holy” that you can’t take care of business in the bedroom and in other areas of life. Remember, my motto that God gave me many years ago: Pray, Think, and Do.
Special notes, Believe it or not, God wants people who are married to get the sex.
For many of us, we may need to have sex first and then pray. I’ll leave it at that.
A church planter told me how he invited a young pastor to take over the church he started. The church planter was excited about turning the church over to him, but the young pastor, for some reason, had told the deacons and men of the church that if he became pastor they could not have sex on Friday and Saturday leading up to services. Needless to say, the men of the church voted against him and he did not get the opportunity to pastor that church.
To pastors wives, You are partly responsible for and will be held accountable to God if your husband commits adultery with another woman in the church because you have cut him off.
Pastors’ wives, your husband will not preach his best or be at his best if you do not take care of his sexual needs.
To pastors’ wives, much of the moral failure happening with pastors today would be prevented if the pastor’s wife would do her job of showing respect, affection, and sexual interest toward her husband. This goes for other church leaders and deacons as well.
To pastors wives, your husband will not need Ashley Madison if you did your wifely duties.
Dr. Warren Wiersbe said, “It has been my experience as a pastor that when a husband and wife are yielded to the Lord, and when they seek to please each other in the marriage relationship, the marriage will be so satisfying that neither partner would think of looking elsewhere for fulfillment. “There are no sex problems in marriage,” a Christian counselor once told me, “only personality problems with sex as one of the symptoms.” The present frightening trend of increased divorces among Christians (and even among the clergy) breaks the heart of God.”
In this passage, Paul responds to questions regarding celibacy and marriage that had been sent to him from the church at Corinth. Speaking with “permission” from the Lord, Paul says that it is good for men and women to be celibate. However, he also provides guidelines for those who are unable to remain so. He says it is better for people to marry than to have to endure the temptation of committing fornication. He also says that the husband ought to “render due benevolence” to the wife and that the wife ought to do the same to the husband. In verse 4, speaking of sex within marriage, he writes that the wife’s body belongs to the husband and the husband’s body belongs to the wife.
In God’s Word, sex within marriage is always portrayed as good. Some commentators even go so far as to suggest that the verse we are focusing on today requires — even commands — that married people have sex with each other frequently. Paul says that neither the husband nor the wife should “defraud” or “deprive” the other of sexual relations. The reason for this is because such deprivation opens up the door for the temptation of adultery. If a husband and wife are not coming together, they must consider whether they are abstaining for legitimate reasons or whether they are just giving the devil room to work. One thing we see from this passage is that God wants to encourage sex between married people. The devil also wants to encourage sex, but between people who are not married to each other or in perverted, abominable ways such as homosexuality, masturbation, and pornography.
Dr. Warren Wiersbe writes, “One man married to one woman has been God’s pattern from the first. However, the husband and wife must not abuse the privilege of sexual love that is a normal part of marriage. The wife’s body belongs to the husband, and the husband’s body to the wife; and each must be considerate of the other. Sexual love is a beautiful tool to build with, not a weapon to fight with. To refuse each other is to commit robbery and to invite Satan to tempt the partners to seek their satisfaction elsewhere.”
So, what are the legitimate reasons for which a husband and wife can abstain from sex? Paul only gives one: fasting and prayer. The reason why Paul previously said it is better to be celibate is because a celibate person is better able to give himself or herself wholly to the Lord and His work. So, it is fine for married couples to abstain in order to fast, pray, and better serve God. But Paul places some restrictions on the abstaining.
First, both parties must agree to it. Paul says, “defraud ye not one another except it with consent.” Neither the husband nor the wife can unilaterally decide not to have sex with their spouse for any period of time. They must come to an agreement on the matter. And, second, if both husband and wife decide to abstain, they must do so only for a short period of time. Paul says, “Ye must come together again, lest Satan tempt you.” Both parties must agree to the length of time they plan on abstaining.
Paul’s advice is intended to maximize a couple’s fidelity to each other while, at the same time, maximizing their spiritual growth and their potential for service to the Lord. Some might not be willing to say it, but sex and prayer are two of the main ingredients in a strong, long-lasting Christian marriage.
Michael P. Johnson wrote this poem which encourages husbands and wives to pray together:
Come join me now in prayer, my friend
Unite our souls in praise
Together, let our knees now bend
To the Ancient of Days
In spirit, let us be as one
Let’s bow before God’s throne
Let’s thank Him for the victory won
Upon the tree alone
In gratitude let’s raise our voice
Let’s celebrate and sing
Within our hearts, let us rejoice
That Christ is truly King
Let’s pray each day as a family
That our selfish world may hear
The truth that sets their souls free
And learn their God to fear
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
Now, if you are with us today, and you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Saviour, your first prayer needs to be what we call the Sinner’s Prayer. First, please understand that you are a sinner, just as I am, and that you have broken God’s laws. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! Congratulations on trusting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. You have done the most important thing in life. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door, by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.
He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.