The Wrong Question

This contains excerpts from the new book “Real Romance: Sex in the Song of Songs”. To purchase the book, click here, and to access the sermon series that accompanies these devos and this book, click here

Song of Songs 8:4 – Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires. 

If you’re a single person and have stuck with us through this entire series, hopefully you’ve gotten some good advice and wisdom for your future and have only felt a little awkward a few times. 

In the final section of the Song of Songs, we see Abbi give advice to a few of her single friends saying, “Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires” (8:4). This theme occurs a few other times throughout the book as well (2:7, 3:5).

When walking with God, it’s important to understand both His will and His timing. 

Often, single people will ask the wrong question: “Where is the sexual line in dating?” Generally, single people are looking to push that line as far as they can and then dance on it vigorously. When that is the case, the heart is in a bad place, which means the hands will not be far behind it.

Ephesians 5:3 says, “There must not be even a hint of sexual immorality…because these are improper for God’s holy people.” The question is not “Where is the line?” but rather “When is the time?” 

The time is your wedding night when you consummate your marriage covenant. Until then, Christians headed toward marriage can spend time together, love and enjoy one another, but until they are husband and wife, they need to act more like brother and sister.

Paul says in 1 Timothy 5:1-2, “Treat…younger women as sisters, with absolute purity.” Failure to follow God’s plan creates a lot of pains and problems, as we well know.

My wife Grace and I got God’s will right and His timing wrong. It was God’s will for us to marry and have a sexual relationship, but God’s timing was to have a sexual relationship only after we were married. Even if you messed it up, there’s hope for you like there was hope for us – it’s not too late to get back on track.

We determined to both live as Christians, stop sleeping together, meet with our pastor for Christian counseling, and eventually get married. God honored us putting things back into His success sequence, and we have been faithful to each other for more than three decades by God’s grace!

Have you ever mixed up God’s will and/or God’s timing?