Chapter # 5 Paragraph # 4 Study # 5
May 12, 2013
Dayton, Texas
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<263> Thesis: Sexual sins are the most "manifest" of the "works" of the flesh and are deemed seriously wicked. Introduction: In a culture that is drowning in sexual perversions, it is both a shock and an affront to its participants to be told that God's attitude toward sexual misconduct is negative in the extreme. When, for instance, we read about the horrors of eternal death, it is the pain of eternal burning that puts people off the most. Another example is that of Genesis 9 wherein Shem and Japheth took a garment and laid it upon their shoulders and walked backwards into Noah's tent in order to cover his nakedness so that they could not see it. The often voiced accusation of someone being a "prude" is simply the reaction of a sexually promiscuous person to anyone who objects to careless licentiousness. The fact is, the first five "works" of the flesh are all tied directly to the misuse of the physical body by those who dwell in them. By way of contrast, it is interesting that the "salvation" of the soul and spirit of men is extended into the present time by way of "firstfruits", but the physical body is left completely unregenerated and, in a completely physical sense, unaffected by that "salvation" until death and resurrection. This has to mean something about how God views these physical bodies of ours. The question is this: what is the significance of Paul's focus upon sexual sins as his "first rattle out of the box" contrast between the works of the flesh and the fruit of the Spirit? Clearly, the answer has something to do with how "manifest" the works of the flesh are, and, just as clearly, the answer has something to do with God's attitude toward such obviously physical evils.