Spiritual Guidelines, Day 5 - Monday Morning Devotions

This devotion series is brought to you by Pastor Ricky Jacob, serving the Winnebago people at Jesus Our Savior Lutheran Church and Preschool. (Need to go back to week 1, click here.)

You can read the devotion below, or listen to it here.

Through this series, I am addressing those who are the head of the family and their God-given calling and responsibility to instruct their household in spiritual matters. The basis for our reflection today is on one of the commands that Creator God inscribed in stone and first gave to Moses.

Today we will focus on these words: "You shall not commit adultery."

First, a definition of the word 'adultery.' Adultery is the unfaithfulness of a spouse who engages in or desires sexual intimacy with someone to whom he or she is not married. This command of sexual purity applies to all human beings, whether married or not and to all kinds of sexual desire and activity.

A song writer once put this command to music. I will spare you of my attempt at singing it, here are the words:

"Be faithful to your marriage vow;  No lust or impure thought allow.
Keep all your conduct free from sin  By self-controlled discipline."  
Have mercy, Lord!
[LSB #581 These Are the Holy Ten Commands ML]

One of the blessings from above is the gift of marriage. This blessing is not extended to all and there will be no marriage in the new heavens on the new earth. With the blessing of marriage comes a vow to be faithful to one's spouse. This lifeline pledge is to love and honor one another.

Dr. Martin Luther nearly 500 years ago taught his flock this simple explanation of this command of God:

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.

All too often we focus our attention on what we will receive from the other and when our desires and expectations are not met we can become angry, distant, disrespectful and even allow ourself to wander away. Instead of dreaming of what your spouse will do for you, you should ask yourself are you willing to serve him or her sacrificially? To paraphrase John F. Kennedy: Ask not what your spouse can do for you, rather ask what you can do for your spouse.

This has been Pastor Ricky Jacob of Jesus Our Savior Lutheran Church and preschool, of Winnebago. I close with the words of God: God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment because in this world we are like him. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love." [1st John 4:16b-18 NIV]