|John Goh||012 207 firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Dr Lee Fook Sin||019 230 email@example.com|
|Moh Ee Lin||019 273 firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Ng Cho Hoo||012 878 email@example.com|
|Susanah Ng||012 firstname.lastname@example.org|
Kindly contact any of these Gamma Facilitators. They will be hosting Zoom meetings for Discussions every Wednesday starting from April 1, 2020.
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS – STUDY 5
Please look at the questions and discuss the answers. The case histories are designed to let you apply what theoretical knowledge you have gleaned from the study. There are intentionally many more questions and case histories than you can manage in one session but this is designed to
cover the many and varied needs of the individuals in the church hence please pick and choose which ones to discuss as long as it gets people sharing and applying the Word to real life situations. Never feel obligated to finish all the questions. The answers will be posted on the web the next day
It is a universal problem that transcends time and geography
The quest for sexual satisfaction is in the end related to the emptiness of a life that is made for God and one tries to fill this spiritual void with physical counterfeit supplements like sex or money. Essentially this is idolatry where someone or sex is made out to the be the ultimate thing to satisfy an inner need that only God can satisfy
The woman’s many husbands indicated her underlying need for affirmation and satisfaction which has so far eluded her. It is her real spiritual thirst and need which Jesus was trying to gently steer her towards in their conversations about physical thirst . This is the common problem in the world as people seek of counterfeit ways to find meaning and satisfaction in life.
The loosening of sexual mores and attitudes all over the world is the desperate attempt of the world to fill its emptiness.
Lust is strong desire directed towards some person who is not your spouse where the desire captivates you and you mentally dwell on the sexual thoughts and imagine having sexual relations with the person. The eventual outcome in Oscar Wilde’s life was a life enslaved to his emotions and need to find greater and more dramatic ways to satiate his desires .He even turned to homosexual relations and other perversities to find satisfaction and was incapable of having normal and enduring relationships with others. Unknowingly he stumbled into addiction and became a slave to his own desires and need for affirmation in sex.
Sexual integrity is the the concept that sex is the physical expression of a whole life commitment to one another. The giving of one another’s deepest and most intimate parts to each other is just the physical expression of the giving and union of ones emotional and psychological self to another. To just have physical sex outside of a relationship is to loose sexual integrity as one divorces ones physical union from our emotional , psychological and spiritual dimensions. This degrades the personhood and the individual is treated as a commodity and not a true person who has spiritual , psychological and emotional dimensions. A person treated like this is dehumanised and prostitutes instinctively feel shame because they have been treated as objects and not complete whole human beings. They are told that their good enough to have sexual union with but not good enough to have whole life union with. Their worth as a human being is being reduced to the fee that are paid for sharing their most intimate parts of their bodies.
This is the phenomenon in popular culture and media that only regards women as sexual objects.It dehumanises women because their value has only been reduced to their sexuality and attractiveness towards men. What they think or how they live and contribute to society and companies is ignored.
Women subtly give in to this pressure and focus inordinately on their looks and sexual allure as the basis of their self worth. Society and men in particular will reward these women financially and perpetuate this objectification. If a woman performs well in the corporate sector this is often seen a threat to the masculinity of the male workers and instead of being appreciated this is resented and all efforts will be made to suppress her rise. Corporate ambition amongst women is also viewed negatively and regarded as non-feminine. Stereotyping women to be only the home maker and being sexually available to me is all another way in which women are objectified.
If couple one spouse has a consumer attitude towards sex and marriage and the other a covenantal attitude then there will be exploitation as one spouse always remains committed and gives in whilst the other will take that acquiesce to mean weakness and will exploit it and have his or her own way which will be detrimental to both in the end.
If they both have a consumer attitude towards sex there will be much tension in the marriage and a lot of deal making and ensuring of reciprocity. There will be uncertainty which will result in jealousy or possessiveness from either party as there is no covenantal protection. There will be a constant need for sex as a marketing tool so that each partner will maintain their sexual attractiveness and market value. Often one or both spouse may resort to plastic surgery and other means to maintain their attractiveness and value to the other spouse. There will be limited disclosure or sharing of lives as each party will want to hide with faults and weaknesses and anxieties. There will always be a risk of a third party or infidelity simply because there will always be a younger man or woman in the wings as each spouse will continue to age and loose their looks and an upgrade is always on the cards.
The covenantal position in Ephesians 5 provides the protection and security that will enable to the couple to flourish in all ways. Both their ultimate spiritual needs are met by the Lord and they do not place the unreasonable burden on each other and accept each other as they are. Their love and care for each other is unconditional and sacrificial and sex under such circumstances is not a marketing tool instead it is a covenant renewal tool and commitment apparatus which sexually cements what their marriage and covenant means. This is the only way a person can have sexual integrity.
Sex within a covenantal relationship is not the same as one in which there is no covenant which is cohabitating as the latter is basically an audition process which may or may not result in a covenant hence this does not adequately simulate what real marriage is like in order to be a compatibility device. Breaking up in a cohabiting relationship is fraught with a whole lot of messiness and emotional distress. There is also loss of opportunity costs especially for the women whose reproductive cycle limits the duration of their availability as fertile life partner prospects
Harvey was a senior pastor of a large mega church which was very successful and growing but in recent years he grew increasingly authoritarian and one day he was caught in an adulterous affair with one the secretaries in the church office. He was disciplined and repented of his sin and wanted to return to his Senior pastor post after just 6 months of the discipline process. His argument was since lust was equivalent to the actual adultery in Jesus eyes why is it that all the other men in the church leadership who have ever sinned in lust allowed to keep their positions in the board after their own private confessions and just because he had done it physically, he had to undergo a longer rehabilitation process and be removed from leadership? How is this fair?
Brian is a healthy 21 year old going to university and whenever he see’s a particularly attractive university mate he feels attraction towards the person and enjoys engaging in conversation more than with other male friends. However when he goes home and has his quiet time he always feels guilty and has to confess his sin of “lust” as it is equivalent to adultery according to Jesus in Matthew 5. This has paralysed his service to the Christian fellowship in the university and he wound up avoiding any contact with female university mates. How would you advise Brian now that we understand a bit more of what Jesus meant by “lust” epithumias from this passage?
Karen and Bill were very good friends with Jack and Lee Moi and often had social activities together going for parties and even church together. On one occasion Karen caught herself admiring Jack whom she thought was much better looking and more caring husband than her own husband Bill who was a bit of a male chauvinist. As she prayed she realised that her feelings had strayed into the area of lust just on a few occasions. She sought forgiveness from the Lord in prayer and contemplated confessing her feelings to her husband and also to Jack and Lee Moi because she read in James 5: 16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. Do you think this is a good idea ? How will it change the fellowship between these two couples if it occurred
Answers are available.