“You shall not commit adultery.” — Exodus 20:14 (NIV84)
Martin Luther in his explanation to this commandment stated, “We should fear and love God so that we lead a sexually pure and decent life in what we say and do, and husband and wife love and honor each other.” Please notice that he referenced the marriage relationship as only part of his explanation. Although the commandment refers to adultery, which typically is associated with the marriage relationship, Luther rightly expanded his explanation to sexuality as a whole. He did this in the same spirit that Jesus said that hatred for a fellow human being is murder.
God is not looking for a singular-type obedience but rather a broad-spectrum obedience. It’s not good enough to say that I have never committed adultery, but I am addicted to pornography. When looking at this commandment, we need to look at every aspect of human sexuality and ask whether it is, or isn’t, in line with God’s will. Promiscuity, adultery, homosexuality and pornography all have to be thrown into the mix as we discuss whether we are living a sexually pure and decent life. And please, don’t forget that God isn’t just concerned with our outward practices — He is concerned with what goes on in our hearts and minds. We may be in a heterosexual relationship and still sinning. So, let’s not only pay attention to one aspect but always have sexuality as a whole in our sites.
We ought to fear and love God enough that even our desires in the realm of sexuality come into submission to His will and purpose. We ought to be saying, “Not my will, but Your will be done!”