WHEN JOHN SAID, “It is not lawful (or “permitted”) for you to have your brother’s wife” (Mark 6:18), he surely made reference not to the laws of the land, but rather to the law of God…
Herod was sleeping with his brother’s wife, and the wedding ceremony failed to change the adulterous nature of their relationship.
Same-gender marriages, legalized for the first time in U.S. history on May 17, 2004, offer an unhappy illustration of this point. The Bible strongly denounces homosexuality. Moses’ law condemns the offender to death by stoning. The New Testament writer, Paul, calls the sin a perversion and warns that those guilty of it will miss the eternal kingdom (Romans 1:26-27; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10). From God’s perspective, legalizing same-sex marriage has no cleansing effect on the perverted behavior. Married or not, two men or two women sleeping together will be under judgment.
The parallel is striking. Moses’ law condemns adulterers to death by stoning. The New Testament writer, Paul, warns that people guilty of this sin will be excluded from God’s eternal kingdom. If legalizing same-sex relationships fails to legitimize them in the sight of God, why would legalizing an adulterous relationship sanctify it?
Heather is in a terribly difficult situation. She loves Don and knows that terminating her relationship with him would be extremely painful for everyone involved, especially the children. How could a loving God expect her to do such a thing? Two vital truths demand attention here. First, God is not to blame for Heather’s predicament. Jesus clearly states that sexual immorality is the only legitimate reason for ending the sacred bond of marriage. Heather’s own sinful and disobedient choices have created the dilemma she now finds herself in.
Second, obeying God, though sometimes very difficult, is always ultimately best for the obedient person. According to Paul, “those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires” (Galatians 5:24). “Crucified” suggests pain. Dying to self hurt, but the reward of living a pure, God-pleasing life more than compensates for any loss of worldly pleasure. David Wright, “The Samaritan’s Immoral Lifestyle,” Real Women–Real Problems, 134-135
“Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.” Colossians 3:5