When God Whispers
In a sermon now infamous among many of us Southern Baptists, the then President of the SBC, J.D. Greear, stated that “God whispers about sexual sin.” Pastor Greear said he was quoting Jen Wilkin. And of course, the now President of the SBC, Ed Litton, parroted Greear (without citing his source, but that’s a story for another day).
It is not my intent to call into question the salvation of any of the above named. In fact, I have learned from the ministries of Greear, Wilkin, and Litton, even if I find myself sometimes disagreeing with them. Rather, I simply want to explore this notion of God “whispering” about sexual sin. So, let’s take a sampling of God’s whispering:
After a lengthy lists of forbidden sexual relations, Leviticus 18:29 says,
“For everyone who does any of these abominations shall be cut off from among their people.”
“If a man is found lying with another man’s wife, both of them shall die . . . If there is a betrothed virgin, and a man meets her in the city and lies with her, then you shall bring them both out to the gate of the city and you shall stone them to death” (Deut 22:22-23).
Deuteronomy 22:25-27 prescribes the death penalty for rape. Only the rapist is to be executed. We might remind ourselves that when we view pornography today, we are often gratifying our lusts by watching rapes. Not all, but much of the pornography industry is fueled by sex trafficking.
“For the lips of a forbidden woman drip honey . . . but in the end she is bitter as wormwood . . . her feet go down to death . . . keep your way far from her and do not go near the door of her house . . . for a man’s ways are before the eyes of the Lord” (Proverbs 5).
“Can a man carry fire next to his chest and not get burned?” (Proverbs 6:27, speaking of adultery).
“For this reason, God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error . . . Though they know God’s righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them, but give approval to those who practice them” (Romans 1:26-27, 32).
“But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality” (1 Corinthians 5:11).
“Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived, neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality . . . will inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-10).
“Walk in the Spirit and you will not gratify the lusts of the flesh . . . Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality" (Galatians 5:16, 19).
“But sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints” (Ephesians 5:3).
“For this is the will of God, your holiness, that you abstain from sexual immorality” (1 Thessalonians 4:3).
“Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they may have the right to the tree of life and that they may enter the city (heaven) by the gates. Outside are the dogs and sorcerers and the sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices falsehood” (Revelation 22:14-15).
If this is how God whispers, I would not want to be around when He shouted!
Every sincere Christian I know would say he or she believes these verses. Yet, I so often find myself as a Pastor counseling a brother or sister who has either had their pornography addiction exposed, or who has relapsed after patting himself on the back for a few “clean” months. What is wrong with us, beloved? Why don’t we hate this sin like God does? Why doesn’t bile rise in our throats each time we even think about clicking that link or tapping that phone screen? Why is Jesus not beautiful enough to us to prevent us from chasing other lovers? Why is Christ not important enough to us to filter all our devices, get a flip phone, cancel our internet service, throw our i-pads away, and rend our hearts?
Why do we so easily excuse away a few minutes of pornography? Would we proudly say, “I only fornicate a few times a year?” Or, “I only commit adultery once a year.” As if this is the evidence we would present of a vibrant, mature, growing-in-love walk with the Risen, Glorified Christ who bled out on a cross for our disgusting lusts and all their accompanying excuses! God help us.
We had better stop scrolling down and start reading the Scroll of God.
by Keith McWhorter