King's Business - 1917-10



viz., “Let each man have his own wife, and let each woman have her own hus­ band.” If this is not done, illicit indul­ gence is likely to ensue. One of the darkest pages of Christian history is that which illustrates and proves the wisdom of these inspired words of Paul. The history of the monasteries, the nunneries, and the celi­ bate priesthood proves this. The Bible exalts marriage (Heb. 13:4; 1 Tim. 4:1-3). The Bible tells us that marriage symbol­ izes the holy, mystical union of Christ and the Church (Eph. 5:23). When one has entered into a marriage relation, which all should enter unless God calls them to the other path, their duty is then clear: the husband has no right to withhold from the wife that natural and lawful gratification of her desires which is her due, and the wife has no right to withhold from the husband that which is his due in the same direction. Too many today in the search after holiness set up a standard of absti­ nence that is contrary to God’s Word in this passage. One who is unmarried and has the gift of absolute continence in act and thought need not marry. It is “good” for him “not to touch a woman.” But if he marry, the woman he marries has a claim upon him which it is selfishness and disobedience to God for him to refuse to satisfy. So is also with a woman who is married but refuses her husband “his due.” “The wife has not power (or, authority) over her own body, but the husband, and likewise also the husband has not power (or, authority) over his own body, but the wife." That is; plain enough for anyone whose mind is in absolute subjection to the Word of God, and who is seeking not to be wise above that which is written. For the husband to withhold from the wife her due or the wife to withhold from the husband his due, is to defraud the other and cannot be done except with common consent and then only “for a season,” and that only that one may have leisure for prayer (cf. Ex. 19:15). Prayer demands a mind free from preoccupation with other things, a mind wholly occupied with prayer;

practices that weaken or defile the body would be given up if we always bore in mind that the “body is the temple of the Holy Ghost.” The Holy Ghost is in us (cf. John 14:17), He dwells in every believer. Not all are conscious of His indwelling, but nevertheless He dwells in us whether we are conscious of it or not. The Holy Spirit who dwells in us is God’s gift. We have Him “frorrf God.” This indwelling of the Holy Spirit makes us God’s property. We are not our own, “we” that is our whole self, including our bodies, have been “bought with a price.” That price was the shed blood of the Son of God (1 Peter 1:18, 19). Because we have been bought with a price we are under obligation to glorify God in our bodies. They were included in the redemption and therefore they belong to Him. We should make no use of our bodies that will not glorify Him (cf. ch. 10:31). Saturday, October 20 . i Corinthians 7 : 1 - 7 . This is an exceedingly important passage. It gives us in a very clear way the mind of God upon a subject that*is the occasion of much perplexity and anxious thought upon the part of those who desire to lead a life that is altogether pure and wholly pleasing to God. Paul tells us that it is good (a beautiful) thing for a man not to have any marriage relations with a woman, to be a complete celibate (of course for the sake of special use in the Master’s service, cf. v. 25; Matt. 19:11, 12). Paul does not say that this is the only good way, but it is a good way and a beautiful way. A good way for those who have a gift in that direction and for those who are called to special lines of service or prayer where singleness of life will be helpful. But Paul takes care to go on and say that such cases are exceptional;; and history shows that they are very excep­ tional. The average man, the man who has not this special gift, and seeks to walk this road, is sure to come to grief. Paul then states a general principle of action, the one that holds for most men and women,

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