One of the reasons you should study your Bible again and again is that you’ll glean different lessons from different readings. Depending on where you are in your life and your spiritual journey, God can speak to you through His Word right where you are.
Have you ever had that experience? Like when you read a Bible story you’ve heard time and time again and notice something that hadn’t stuck out to you before. Perhaps the Holy Spirit is tugging you in a direction you need to pay attention to—something you need to apply to the life you’re living now.
That’s how my new book, Intimacy Revealed: 52 Devotions to Enhance Sex in Marriage, came about. I started looking at scriptures I’d seen numerous times and noticing that they had application to my marriage . . . and even to my sexual intimacy. Even familiar Bible stories contained biblical principles I could apply to my marriage bed.
Digging further into the Word of God, I drafted 60 devotions and then chose 52 to include in the book. It wasn’t that I didn’t like the leftover eight, but I’d either covered the point in another chapter or a devotion didn’t fit as well with all the others. From that “cutting room floor,” here’s an example of a Bible story you may have heard about Nehemiah, but with an application to your marriage and marital intimacy.
Meanwhile, the people in Judah said, “The strength of the laborers is giving out, and there is so much rubble that we cannot rebuild the wall.” Also our enemies said, “Before they know it or see us, we will be right there among them and will kill them and put an end to the work.” Then the Jews who lived near them came and told us ten times over, “Wherever you turn, they will attack us.”
Therefore I stationed some of the people behind the lowest points of the wall at the exposed places, posting them by families, with their swords, spears and bows. After I looked things over, I stood up and said to the nobles, the officials and the rest of the people, “Don’t be afraid of them. Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your families, your sons and your daughters, your wives and your homes.”
Our marriages are under daily attack, just like the Israelites were when rebuilding the Jerusalem wall. Look around at the plethora of sinful sexual messages in our culture, and it’s easy for us to also say, “Wherever you turn, they will attack us.” It can be overwhelming at times to weed through what the world says about sex—that it’s foolish to wait until you’re married, that it’s purely physical, that there are no limits, etc.—and settle on the truth of God’s design instead. It can feel especially foolhardy to trust in God’s plan when your marital sex life isn’t everything you hoped it would be.
But maybe the wall simply isn’t built all the way yet. And the enemy doesn’t want you to succeed in erecting a strong wall in your marriage—a solid structure of satisfying sexual intimacy. He wants your marriage to be rubble. So what’s our answer? Like Nehemiah, we need to do two things: Guard the wall and trust in God’s plan.
Nehemiah set sentries to protect the workers, and likewise we need to guard our hearts and minds against wrong views of sex. Then Nehemiah appeals to the people: “Don’t be afraid of them. Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your families, your sons and your daughters, your wives and your homes.” We need not cower or apologize for our view of good sex in marriage, but rather remember God and His excellent plan and fight for our families. Our best defense against the enemy is the offense of an ever-growing marriage and God-honoring sexual intimacy.
♥ What erroneous messages about sex is the world sending today? How do they differ from God’s perfect plan for sexual intimacy in marriage?
♥ Where do you need to focus in your marriage? What needs to happen to strengthen your wall of sexual intimacy?
Glorious God, we praise You and Your perfect plan for humankind. Thank You for the excellent examples of faith and righteousness throughout the Bible. I know my marriage is under attack from the enemy, and I don’t want to give the devil even a foothold through weaknesses in our sex life. So I pray You will help me guard my heart and my mind against sinful messages from the world about sex. Help me also to trust in Your plan and to be faithful in pursuing godly sexual intimacy in my marriage. In the name of Christ I pray, Amen.
What lesson or lessons do you draw from this story of Nehemiah and the building of the wall? How can you apply God’s plan for His people to your marriage specifically?
For more devotions, check out Intimacy Revealed: 52 Devotions to Enhance Sex in Marriage. (And yes, this would make a great Christmas gift!)
What does the Bible say about sexual intimacy?
Quite a lot actually. From marriage-specific scriptures to biblical principles, Intimacy Revealed: 52 Devotions to Enhance Sex in Marriage guides Christian wives through weekly devotions that shed light on God’s gift of marital sex.
Each week includes a Bible passage, application, questions, and a prayer. These short devotions will deepen your understanding of God’s design of sexuality and encourage you toward a holier, happier, and hotter marriage.